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Journal and Map - April 2007 to April 2008
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Volunteer BANWR Project 05-01-08
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Journal - Idaho to Virgina 2008 Updated 9-8-08
Birds and Wildlife - Idaho Adventure - Updated 9-21-08
Jack - FTRV Wonder Dog (Updated 09-07-08 )
Journal and Photos -On the Way to Idaho 05-04-08 Updates at bottom of Page
Lucky Peak Journal - Idaho Adventure -06-11-08
Interesting Sights in Idaho 05-06-08
Fran Comes to Visit Arizona - April 14, 2008
Who is this Amper in Arizona?
Utah Beauty - Birds and Flowers 04-30-08
Interesting Sights - Southwest and Arizona
Interesting Sights in South Dakota
License Plates - States Seen (Update 9-7-08)
Jack's Signature Page for Each State
Journal and Map - April 2007 to April 2008
Contact Larry and Sheila (UPDATED 09-07-2008)

The United States of America
mapoftrip2008.jpg

April Update - 4-17-08 and 1st Anniversary as FTRV'ers
 (See Map Above)
 
Well, it has been 1 year tomorrow since we pulled out of
Boydton, VA!!  I can still see the faces of Lisa and her family and I must admit, it brings tears to my eyes when I think of it.  I will be looking forward to seeing EVERYONE when we get back in September.
 
I sometimes think about the settlers that came out west and how they left their families behind.  However, there was NO Cell Phone, NO email, NO website and even the US Mail was not available to many of them!  How did they do it???  Our ancestors were brave and tough!! 
 
When we cross these mountains with BIG BLUE (F350 Dually) hauling our 5th wheel.....I think of the teams of mules and horses and covered wagons and how they had to cut through this land and cross the desert with no luxuries. 
 
It is hard for me to believe it has been a year since I left behind AMP/Tyco.  I still think of and cherish many friends and the ones that stay in touch have no idea how I treasure hearing from them!
 
Friends and family far away are remembered in our prayers each day. 
  • Moma and Daddy
  • Lisa and Family
  • Renee and Family
  • GRANDKIDS Calling me!!
  • Sharon and Ronnie
  • Terry and family
  • Cards from Lynn and Pyro
  • Phone calls from so many people
  • Laurie and Bryan's emails to their BIG sister 
  • Fran
  • Zizzo
  • Jackie and Wayne
  • Tom -TRAP
  • Anne from Dr. Assefa's Office
  • Tyco -ettes....many of them!

The other thing about friends is that this year has shown both of us that along the way there will be more and more friends that we will never forget.

  • Jack
  • Jared
  • Jim
  • Carrie and Brian
  • Librarians in Mobridge and in Arivaca (Did you know the Librarians and Library's  are the HEARTBEAT of these small towns?  I LOVE THEM!)
  • Lou from Washington State
  • Rob "Bird Man" and Sharon
  • Jenn and Marcela
  • Buck
  • Lots of people at Patagonia Lake
  • Chris and Sue
  • Chantel
  • Keegan and Jennifer
  • Bonnie
  • Jeff and Kathy + Bella and Annie
  • Darby
  • Debbie in Sasabe
  • Sib
  • Wally the part time Mexican
  • James
  • Dr. Suzy in Phoenix
  • Dr. Cha  in Nogales
  • Mobridge Clinic Staff

We have been in many states and seen many beautiful sites all over this country.  I have always been proud to be an American (not like Obama's wife) and this only makes me prouder!!

We especially enjoy the wildlife and scenery and have spent a lot of time after we set up, just riding and looking!!  We prefer that to the tourist traps and most of them time explore all the areas on our own. 

South Dakota -  What can I say but I loved it there!!  It wasn't the weather or the river, although I found them exciting and interesting.  It was the people, the life style and the SD spirit.  I think the people there are so great!!  It makes you feel adventurous just to be there!!  I can see why the Ingall's family stayed there.  The Larry found more rattlers there than he ever imagined.  Bama added a special flare and I will always hold her in my heart.   I could go there and feel at home.  Camp ground hosting there was so much fun and I LOVED THE KIDS and the families that came.   Larry loved it there too!

Arizona - We learned so much!!  We met so many nice people!  We love the desert and all of its beauty. Volunteering at the Visitor Centers was my cup of tea!  Larry loved being on the creek catching cray fish and so did Jack Dawg!   Working on Junior Rangers and the Arivaca Cienega was a great experience for me.  So many different and wonderful things in Arizona.  We had to remember that everything bites, stings or sticks here!  Jack Dawg had to learn that too!  Larry enjoyed seeing all the lizards and snakes and has seen a Speckled Rattle Snake which is a life snake for him!   We became "bird brains" at Patagonia.  I will NEVER forget Bill.....I became one of his "groupies" that always knew that he could help me when I saw a bird I did not know.  The boat tours there were so much fun and the families were really neat....I will never forget Kelly and her boys.     Birds, birds, birds everywhere and as we went to BANWR in Sasabe, there were more different birds.    There were coati's, coyote's , a wolf, deer, mountain lions, bob cats, lizards, snakes, cacti, and wildflowers (which I love)!

On April 18, 2008 we will pull out from here in Black Canyon City, AZ to head to Idaho for the summer.  There will be no family here to see us off.   It is the last leg of our trip before heading back to Virginia in September 2008. 

Our plan is to leave Idaho and go the south route of the country.  We will return the same way we came up and then head east on I10 and I20 through Arizona, Texas, Louisiana, Georgia , and on into Greensoboro where we will stop to see family and friends.   Then on to Boydton, VA!!

Keep us in your prayers!!  God has blessed us by putting many wonderful people in our paths!  We are blessed and thankful!!

(BIG HUG) XXXXX  OOOOO 

 

March Update 2008 - Check out new map above! 
Well, we got through March in BANWR and went into April with a BANG!!
 
March was a magical month.  We saw the flowers and cactus start to green up a little.  Animals and birds were abundant!!
 
Sib came and worked on frames for the visitors center and Wally came back!! I was disappointed he did not bring Maddy with him! Still hope to meet her someday!
 
The SCA Kids went with us to Organ Pipe Monument .  It was beautiful there!  We also headed off to Ruby and California Gulch.  The wildflowers were awesome and they got their photo take with Sun Dog!! 
 
Several times Kathy and me headed to shop at consignment places and I really enjoyed that!!  I will miss her!!  Jack will miss Bella and Annie!
 
Larry is doing good and continues to like to spend time exploring.   He found 2 Horny Toads (Actually they are lizards) and was thrilled!  Also, he found a Western Screech Owl on a nest of 7 eggs!  
 
Please keep Renee in your prayers.  She has several things going on.
 
Lisa is doing good and so is her family. 
 
Moma and Daddy have aches and pains, but seem to be doing OK. 
 
Wayne is doing good with his chemo!!  Remember him in your prayers.
 
I heard from Pyro's Moma and he is not doing good with his feet, so keep him in your prayers also.
 
On April 4 we had the Cienega Event that included the Interpretive Guide that I was working on.  The students at Sopori had a great time and we all did too!
 
While we were at the Cienega we saw Mountain Lion tracks!!  Many of them!
 
We have been on the road 1 day on our way to Idaho, but we are staying in Phoenix for several days, because Fran is coming here!!!!!  I can hardly wait!! 
 
We will go on to Boise from here and I will try to update the site frequently!  I am so happy to have access to my PC and email!!  It was a long 3 months for communications at BANWR.  
 

February UPDATE

February was an interesting month here in Arizona and for our family.

·        Rachel turned 16!! She has her Learners Permit to drive!!!  SCARY!!  (ha ha)

·        Renee turned 41!! 

·        We saw snow, hail and high wind 

·        Several nights it got below freezing here and our water froze.

·        Most days it was between 65 and 70 , but some days it hit 80!!

·        We played cards ….a  game called “Hand and Foot” and the ladies were leading the men in winning games

·        We rode on many of the back rodes here and saw some interesting sights on the old ranches. 

·        Pozo Nuevo Ranch still has a school on it that was used back in the 1890’s into the early 1900’s for the ranchers and cowboys children.  There is a book about it “9 Months Make a Year”

·        We saw illegal activity start to increase, but we had no problems.  It was on the news last night, that 368,000 illegal’s were processed through Tucson last year.  10% of them were convicted felons already in the USA, that had been deported and coming back!!  Many of them serious crimes!

·        We went to Organ Pipe Cactus Monument and the desert flowers had started to bloom.  No cacti blooming yet….but they were very green.  Near Organ Pipe in Mexico is a huge crater El Pinacate, but we did not go there.  I did not want to drive into Mexico with our truck.  Maybe we will get back that way again.  I would still like to go to Cabeza Prieta Wildlife Refuge.

·        Some great photos of animals are something we enjoyed!  Coati’s and mountain lions are at the top of the list, but the birds here in AZ continue to amaze us.  The southwestern corner of AZ is home to more breeding birds than any where outside of the Amazon!!   The Crested Cara Cara, the Long Billed Dowitcher, the numerous Flycathers and many more are still amazing to us.  This is the only place in the USA you can see 4 species of quail, the Scaled, Montezuma, Gambel’s and the endangered Masked Bobwhite.

·        One of the things we are doing is keeping our eye on the election process.   Sure seems like our country has some limited choices this time.   Choices I won’t make is Hillary or Obama.   McCain is not my first choice, but it looks like it will be my only choice…..I am waiting to see who he picks for his VP.

·        Things here as far as gas, hit a new high this weekend with diesel being $3.95 a gallon.  Most of us driving FTRV rigs are trying to get somewhere and stay for a while.  Places along the way that count on volunteers like us, are going to see some big changes if this keeps up.  Most of us will need to go to a spot and STAY and possibly not go home, OR go home and not come back out until gas prices drop to more reasonable prices.  The cost of gas has influenced where we will be trying to go for the summer.  We really had planned to return to SD, but the cost of getting back there is about $1500.00 in fuel,  and then the cost to get from there back to VA is about 15-20%  more!!

·        On another note, Jackie’s husband Wayne was diagnosed with cancer this month. Please keep them and their family in your prayers.  Wayne has 3 sisters and a brother also undergoing cancer treatment.  

We will be here until April 5th,  then we will pull out and head to Phoenix for a week to 10 days.  During that time Fran is coming to see us!!  

Take care and have a great March!!

 

(BIG HUG)  

January 2008

The month started off with us wrapping up our time in Patagonia.  Our last day was spent at the Visitors Center and it was fairly busy!   We had our exit interview with Jenn and then loaded up the last few things and headed to Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge.

Due to the Arivaca Road having 106 dips and turns from  Hwy. I-19 to Hwy. 286 South, we decided to go the extra distance into Tucson , Valencia Road Exit.    It took us about 3 hours to get there from Patagonia. 

When we arrived the first person we saw was Wally.  He is a friend of some other people we knew from Patagonia and is a really nice guy!   When we pulled in , we chose the site near the Community Center.  Shortly John and Joanne were there inviting us to the Pot Luck that evening (which was great, because we were beat!!).   It was great meeting everyone.  Gary and Fran are at the Education Center in Brown Canyon, Judy and Steve are from NH, Carol and Russ are from NH,  Wally is from the Baha , Mexico.

Our back window faces the grasslands, but in a short walk to the Grass land Trail we can see the Aquirre Pond and Baboquiveri Peak. 

We headed to town, which is almost 2 hours from here to shop.  It is like the old ranchers must have felt, because, I had to try to stock up for an entire MONTH!!   We will be volunteers for 3 days a week, but do not want to spend our time and money running back and forth to town.  We will be able to pick up milk, bread ,eggs in Sasabe or at the Arivaca Market.  

We were just pulling back in for the day when we heard from Bonnie .  Jeff wanted to talk to Larry about the office in the shop and the changes they wanted to make.  So Larry headed off there and I started putting up supplies.

After we met with Bonnie the next day we both had an idea of what we needed to do.   Larry headed out to meet with Jeff and go with him to Secondino House, which is a ranch house that is part of the Refuge where staff live.   I started investigating the Cienega Information and getting familiar with the Visitors Center.  Steph , who is in the VC ,is from Perry County in PA!!   I shared the apple butter we got for Christmas from Sue with her!  A real taste of PA!  Also, Bonnie loves horses and LOVED Lynn’s “Night Before Christmas with Pyro” .  She took it to share with her horse trainer and a vet.

Buenos Aires has 118,000 acres!!   There are over 300 species of birds that migrate through here each year.   Also, they have mountain lions, bobcats, javelinas, jaguars, pronghorn, mule deer, white-tail deer, and many more animals!  Lizards and snakes, many species, are here!

As the month roles along, Larry is very busy working on the shop project.   I also spent a lot of time working on the education projects and at the VC.  We really like it here.

The closeness to the border presents a number of challenges for the Border Patrol.   Sasabe is a HOT spot for illegal (UDA’s) immigrants and drug smugglers.   The Refuge  at one time had over 2000 a night traveling through, but the number is reduced significantly now.   There are helicopters overhead during the day and at night.  In addition, Hwy 286 is lined with Border Patrol and Wackenhut buses.  

It is not unusual to see large groups of UDS’s at the buses in handcuffs. 

Other volunteers spend hours each week trying to overcome the effects of the illegal traffic by picking up huge amounts of trash left behind.   John and Joanne have been doing this for 5 years each winter.  In one day recently they picked up 65 black garbage bags of trash!    This is not uncommon.  Joanne also takes all the usable clothes, washes them and turns them into local needy groups to be recycled.     The ranchers here do not have volunteers to pick up the trash, repair the fences, or repair other damage. 

If you drive off the road here, you will see the trails the illegals have made from coming the same way so much.  The BP is all over them, but many of them still come!  

I guess, we all need to ask our congress representatives, what are you doing to STOP this problem?

Bird watching here is great!    At the cienega (100 waters in Spanish) and a wetland in the desert, has many special birds!

Flock of mallards

Hermit Thrush

American Coot

Canyon Towhees

Red-Tailed Hawks

Green-Tailed Towhees

Northern Harriers

Abert’s Towhee

American Kestrel

Curved-billed Thrasher

Gambel’s Quail

European Starlings

Sora

Common Yellowthroat (Pair)

Virginia Rail

Rufous-winged Sparrows

Marsh Wrens

Chipping Sparrows

Bewick’s Wrens

White-crowned Sparrows

Killdeer

Brewer’s Sparrow

Great Horned Owl

Black-throated Sparrow

Mourning Doves

Song Sparrows

Green Kingfisher

Cardinals (Pair)

Gila Woodpecker

Pyrrhuloxia  (Pair)

Red-Shafted Flickers

Short-billed Dowitcher

Western Meadowlark

Gray Flycatcher

Other Wildlife

Say’s Phoebes

White-tailed Deer

Black Phoebes

Coyote

Loggerhead Shrikes

 

Yellow-rumped Warblers

 

Ruby-crowned Kinglets

 

Mockingbird

 

Common Ravens

 

BANWR is the only place in the USA where there are 4 species of quail.  Scaled,  Gambel’s, Montezuma and the endangered Masked Bobwhite. 

Jack really likes it here and when John and Sue arrived they brought him a friend named Darby!!  They sometimes play for hours!    Sue and Chris have a dog also, it is Sparky.

We play cards , a new game John and Joanne from Minnesota , taught us.  It is called “Hand and Foot”.  It is SO GREAT to have someone to play cards with.  It reminds me of the times with Ronnie and Sharon.

We hear from home often, because my cell phone picks up here pretty good.  It would be great to have the internet, but I still can not justify the expense of that in the RV.   Moma and Daddy are about the same.   We miss home, but we are grateful for the new friends.

We heard from Rain, William and Charlie, . Denny , June, Rob and Astrid, Chris, and Jose.  June may come to the USA! 

Jenn and Marcella came to see me and we had a great time!   We went for a walk, had lunch and toured around the VC.

Fran is coming to AZ after we leave here!  We will be here until April 4 and then, we will travel to one of Lou’s favorite places, The Lost Dutchman State Park.   Fran will come the 11th!.  We are going to tour around Phoenix, the Grand Canyon and other sites in AZ. 

I will write monthly journals, unless something really exciting happens.

December 8, 2007

It has been a while since I gave an update on things here in Arizona.   

At Thanksgiving we ate with the volunteers here.   It was a nice dinner and nice time.  I have to admit, I missed cooking at home and I especially missed Rachel coming over on Wednesday night and spending the night cooking with me!! We called home to everyone.

The next week was very busy.  I started working on the Christmas newsletter and DVD and got them all mailed out.   I wanted to get them out to some folks before the Nall Family Party.  Since then I have heard  from several folks who got them how much they liked it!    I still have a few more things to get out to people this week. 

We have has some great folks coming through here as RV’ers  in the “baby boomer” generation.  Some are just traveling, some are birders and some are on a quest to get to some specific place.  It is amazing the stories they have to tell! 

·         One couple celebrated their anniversary here and the man told us all how she was the prettiest girl in the whole county (still was) and the best majorette and baton twirler ever!!  They spent the day on a boat rowing around the lake look at birds!

·         One couple, a little older, told me they were originally from Hawaii and remember the day Pearl Harbor was bombed.  She had lost her first husband to the war (he was in Europe) and she met this husband after the war. 

·         One couple, mentioned they  were from Ft. Walton Beach, and we had a great time talking, because we had a common friend there, a former POW in Viet Nam.  I do hope to see these guys again…..who knows maybe we WILL go to Cuba someday!!  Paul R. would get a kick out of that!

·         One couple came back, after just spending one day here and stayed for a week!  They were tent campers from Tucson, and had a BLAST here!  

·         There are many people from Canada coming in.  We had a couple that spoke mostly French and we had a great time with them.  

The boat tours continue and the birds we see are still increasing!

·         Pyrraluxia

·         Brown Pelican (very unusual site here)

·         Merganser

·         A few hummingbirds (Costa’s)

·         Black capped Gnat-Catcher

·         Red Winged Blackbirds

·         Woodpeckers….

·         And the list goes on….

Kelly and her boys brought in a beautiful flower arrangement in appreciation of the hospitality here.

I hope they will find the time to come back one more time before Christmas. Harland and Nathan REALLY enjoy coming camping and fishing!

 Lou and myself went to Sierra Vista to a WWII evening and the people there told stories about their life here during the war and also the experiences they had in the war.   The Museum had a very nice exhibit of many things including ration stamps, letters, advertisements, uniforms, and recipes!!  Lou will be leaving for Lost Dutchman Park on December 12.  Adrian and Tom will leave the next day.   Ron and Judy have left to go back to Colorado, but will return on the 16th.  They bought a place in Patagonia.  New volunteers are arriving, Jim and Sally and 2 more couple in the next 2 weeks.  We will remain here until December 31. 

We did the Mountain Lion presentation on Thursday the 6th!  It went good and we had 12 people.  It was also Ashley’s 22nd and Sharon’ s (we won’t say how many) birthday!  Bryan turned  4* on the 7th!

Today is Moma and Daddy’s 57th Wedding Anniversary.  I called and Jackie was there.  Daddy got a cak for the celebration!  My connection was lost before I got to talk to Moma, but I will try again later today.

We got a package from Jim and SD Parks and Tourism.  It was a very nice surprise!  Awards for being good volunteers!!  I cried.  I really did enjoy SD. Larry is still planning on going up there to ice fish!

Fran is still SO busy!!  I wish I could see her Christmas Pageant!  

Today Larry is cooking spaghetti sauce!  Tomorrow we are going to Rob van’s for supper.

October 14-November 9, 2007

October 14, 2007

Today we did training at the Visitors Center.  We learned how to open and close the center and about some of the daily responsibilities.

After the training, we went to town to get some sinus medicine .

When we came back the other volunteer couple was here.  They live on a boat all summer and then live in an RV here in the winter!  They are a very nice couple, she is a music teacher and he worked for the post office!

I did not hear from any one today.   I guess everyone at home was busy also.

October 15, 2007

Well….today was our first day at the visitor center!!  It went really good.  The boat tours will not start until Wednesday and our first one is Sunday.  

Jack did pretty good, but when the Dish man came, he did not like dogs, so we had to come get him and put him up.

Larry had a good nights sleep and no headaches!!  PTL!!

 

October 16, 2007

Larry was not so lucky last night.  He had a couple of headaches.

This AM I am going to work on the Quick Ref for the boat tour.  Larry is going to go to the Sonoita Creek with the rangers to clean out the crayfish traps and count the species.

I also want to clean up some.   It will be too late to go to Tucson today….maybe tomorrow.

I saw 3 deer out grazing along our site and there have been a number of sparrows at the bird feeder that Lou put out.

The weather is very nice!!  Sunny, a light breeze and dry!

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

October 18, 2007

Today we had another group of children to come to the Visitors Center to test water. 

When we finished about a noon, Larry and myself wanted to drive to Buenas Aires National Wildlife Refuge to check it out and see what information we could find.  

It was about a 2 hour drive and Arivaca Road is not the greatest!!   There were a lot of turns and dips and the altitude increases all the way, but it is a beautiful drive.  Arivaca has a little store and a library.  We saw 9 vehicles from the Border Patrol here.  You may have heard on the news recently that Buenas Aires is an area where they need to put up a wall for Border Protection. Based on what we saw , I think it is needed, or some deterrent is needed.

Rebecca passed away.  I know that Sandy is devastated.  Rebecca was a very nice woman. Erlene loved her so much.  Now they can be together.  Daddy is the only living child from the family now.   Moma fell and broke her arm and Daddy is having trouble with his eye.  Daddy asked me to try and reach people, so I got in touch with Peggy and she was doing pretty good.  She is always SO positive!!  It was also good to talk to RC.  She gave me an update on Aunt Katie and it sounds like she is also having daily struggles, similar to Moma and Daddy.

Then we arrived at the Visitors Center it was a nice building and area.  On October 27th  there will be a festival there!    I met Stephanie and her boyfriend and another young woman , but Bonnie was out in the field.  We took a lot o information about the area, and the animals.   On our return we continued to see Border Patrol and the BIG BUS, which usually means they are pretty sure there will be some people going back to Mexico.  

There are warnings in this area NOT to approach anyone you see when out in the open areas and if they approach you, be cautious.   More and more illegal activities are occurring.

October 19, 2007

Today we had another group of children at the Visitors Center.   While I was gone Larry washed the sheets and was ready to go over to Rio Rico.  We have not been there in a long time. 

Boy did it bring back memories!  The first time I was ever there was with Jerry and Michelle.  Later Karen, Sharon and Charlotte were all there and Patti,  Pat, and others too!  The area has really built up since we were there!  Some of the houses are $200M+.

After we got back, I took a nap!!  I don’t know why I was so sleepy!!

I fixed us some supper and then decided to take Jack or a little walk, even though it was beginning to get dark.   Larry turned the outside lights on for us and we started out the door, and about the time I got to the bottom step  I heard a   ratttttttttttttttttttttlllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllleeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!

I grabbed Jack’s leash!!  There on the gravel was a 

RATTLE SNAKE at least 4 feet long!!

It was coiled and standing tall  - ready to strike!!

I yelled for Larry and came to the steps with the broom and shoved the rattler!!   It went under our truck!!

It then crawled out and went down the hill into the cactus’!

My heart was racing and I must admit , I was REALLY scared!!  

The Adventure of a Lifetime Continues…….

PTL , I was paying attention!!   Jared would have loved it!!

October 19-31, 2007

Things here have been very busy!! 

We have been getting used to the area .

We drove over to Buenas Aires National Wildlife Refuge and took a look around.  We went via Arivaca.  It is a traditional old Arizona town, but there is a lake near by that attracts a lot of people and also the Coronado Forest attacts many hunters in the fall. 

Another group that is attracted is Mexicans crossing the border.  It seems there is a growing group of Mexicans that are drug dealers coming through this area.   Not all Mexicans trying to come to the US are this way, most just want a better life for their families.   The ones that are coming for illegal purposes are really making a mess in some of the areas.  The US Border Patrol is everywhere and sometimes the National Guard.

We loved the visitors center at Buenas Aires.  Larry did not get too much of a look, he started having a headache, but I did.  I met Steph and another lady that works there.  There is a special celebration on October 27th to celebrate the new armadas and the cienga work!  I hope we can go! 

On October 21, we had a very busy day at the visitor center!!  We had a group from Africa and all together over 130 people! Me and Larry were whipped.

Larry has really been enjoying going down to the creek to gather crawdads for Bill.  He has to measure them, count them, and ID if they are male or female.  Then we log them into a spreadsheet for them to use for reporting to Arizona Game and Fish.

There are so many birds here!!  Over 90 species have been seen so far!

We met a really nice man on Monday the 22nd named Rob van.   Can you believe it , he has many things in common with our other Rob van, Joris’ dad.   He was in a motor cycle accident, had his leg and foot messed up pretty bad, had many problems with it, but was not as fortunate as Rob van #1, because recently , he lost his foot to amputation!  He is doing really good with it!  He is a REALLY good birder and is helping me and Larry a lot.  He plays in a band called the “Hog Canyon Band”.

We had Boat Safety Training.  Jim and Chip would like that for us in Mobridge!  It could help at the fishing tournaments.  Steve did the training and it was really interesting.

I heard from Renee!!  Sarah and her team made it to the Nationals in Paint Ball and will be going to San Bernadino , CA!!   I hope they do great there!!

Larry had a quiet 60th birthday, but he had many phone calls.  Most of them we missed, because the reception is not so good here, but we were in Nogales having breakfast and Kari got through and then later in the day when I was in Nogales getting the truck washed, Libby got through also.  We cooked him a steak out on the grill, but I think we REALLY got spoiled on SD beef!!  No beef is like it!  It is the best!

November 1-3,  2007

Today we have both been very busy.  Tonight we have a presentation on Mountain Lions for the Visitors Center.     ( It went really good!!  A small group, but it was nice! )

I checked on Moma and Daddy.  They are both doing about the same. 

We drove to Ruby, AZ , a ghost town.  It was not much to see.   However, we did really enjoy the very remote canyons and roads.  We saw deer and birds.   We went on to Arivaca Lake and then to Arivaca.   Judy and Ron are going to present information on ghost towns at the visitors center in a couple of weeks.  On the way we saw horse back riders and most of them were from Hamburg, Germany!  I pictured, Lynn and Bill doing this!  

I finally got my cell phone to work, but it was later in the day.  I did finally get in touch with Delois!  She sounded great! 

On Saturday morning I took Jack for his morning walk and he had a BIG BOO BOO!!  He spotted something to chase and took off!!  He wrapped the leash around a cholla (teddy bear or jumping cholla , AKA)!  I had to get into the brambles and untangle him!!  Poor Jack had cactus stickers all in his legs, face and feet!!  I got what I could out and we went back to the RV, where me and Larry had to pull them out carefully with tweezers!  He was so pitiful!   I think he learned a valuable lesson! 

We went to Nogales, right at the border, to hear the “Hog Canyon Band”.  It was great!!  They did a variety of music.  There were a lot of sales, but I was not shopping! 

Then we went up to Paton’s in Patagonia to look at hummingbirds.

Tomorrow we have the boat tours and the visitor center work.   

November 9, 2007

Happy Birthday Bongo!   61 years YOUNG!!

Yesterday we went to San Pedro House and Fort Huachucua.  I really liked it there. 

We stopped at McDonald’s and got Larry a fish sandwich.  I hope someday to have a lunch at Wendy’s , but not today.

Fran had a nice birthday and she is always so busy!!  I do hope sometime we can sit and talk when my cell picks up good and she has time.

 

I talked to June and we had a great talk.   She was in shock about the rattler!!

I hope to do better in the next couple of weeks on the website.  

We stay very busy!! 

 

I am also working on our Christmas DVD to send home.   

 

(BIG HUG )

October 8, 2007
This morning we heard from Cheryl and we had a great conversation. If we get back this way again in November, we are going to go to Gary Springs.
We got away from Las Cruces about 11AM and headed down I10 West.
The traffic was pretty heavy until we got about 45 minutes down the road. There are signs that warn about dust storms.
We made a stop at Rock Hound State Park. It has HUGE pecan trees. Th
I called Jen and she said it was OK for us to come on in today. Our site is not quite ready yet, so we will just grab a campsite until tomorrow afternoon. She has the training for the Education program on the 15th tomorrow, so we will be able to make that!!
I tried to call Pyro’s Mom, but missed her AGAIN!!
I can always tell when I am close to Arizona because of all the Schneider trucks.
Rachel made a pillow with little dogs on it before we left and it has really came in handy for Larry to keep his left foot on. Thank you Rachel!! Sarah called me last night and wanted to use a video camera. I don’t have one anymore.
The name of this highway is the Pearl Harbor Memorial Highway. We just crossed the Continental Divide and the elevation was 4585’.
We are seeing more and more sotol (desert spoon plants) but have not seen and other cactus yet.

Welcome to Arizona 1:25PM MST
State Capital Phoenix 48th State February 14, 1912
State Flower Saguaros Cactus Bloom
State Motto God enriches
State Bird Cactus Wren
State Nickname Grand Canyon State
Well, we did it. We are finally in Arizona. It is 83 degrees and 7MPH winds!
We are near Exit 362 and Ft. Bowie Vineyard. 1000’s of walnut and pecan rees and grapes are on both sides of the road.
There is a train with 92 cars on the track beside of us. Remember when we were little in Greensboro and we would have to sid an wait on the rain near Lee St. and we would count the cars?

We are near Cochise Stonghold Exit 31 and we see a big lake and a smoke stack. Exit 331 is for 119 South Sunsites/Douglas .
We came through Texas Canyon where some of the most beautiful cactus bloom in the rainy season. The rock formations are placed one by one by God….no other reason makes sense to me at all!! WE stopped and got some cold drinks and let Jack do his thing. There were 2 other couples on their ways to other places in Arizona. One of them had a little black cub bear on his roof ladder!! It was the cutest thing!! I have to have something on mine now, but I do not know what it will be….maybe a Mountain Lion or maybe a bird…..!!
We are getting ready to take Exit 302 on I10 to Fort Huachuca . From this view we can see Benson and a long ways…..it may be some of Tucson!!
We just crossed the San Pedro River and it is dry as a bone.
We are on 90 South and just passed Kartchner Caves!! WE will come back when we are not hauling the RV. We may see the Specks there!!
The elevation is climing again and we are at 4600’. The mountains are surrounding us!!
As far as we can remember this is the first time we have ever came in this direction. There are some huge mountains on both sides. Larry saw some people riding horses, but I did not look quick enough.
We waved to Ft. Huachuca for Bobbi and Jack!! In Sonoita we think we saw the steak house that Jack and Bobbi like!!
This is one more beautiful valley. We saw 13 antelope!! We are honored to be a part of helping them take care of this!! There are some really big houses that have been built in here recently!!

We are in Patagonia!! 4PM MST!!! We crossed Sonoita Creek and it is DRY!!! Lets pray for rain and water!!! Elevation 4050’
WATCH FOR ANIMALS warning signs are up!! Larry said earlier we will definitely see some great wildlife , because we have time to do it!!
We passed Pattons Hummingbird place. Lois and Jose and June loved it there. My Moma would too.
Just so you guys kow we are on the Mexico Border. There is a border patrol set up ahead. 4 trucks and guns. I am thankful they check not so much for the :Mexicans, but for the other people that may be headed to Ft. Huachuca. We passed….God Bless America!!
Watch for falling rocks signs are up and hiking signs.
We pulled into Patagonia State Park at …4:15PM MST and 4200’!!!
Thank you Lord for getting us here safely!!! Thank all of you that prayed for us!!
Cows came out on the road to greet us!! To the left we see the lake and the very beautiful mountain side.
We were met at the gate by a man named Ben. His wife’s name is Sheila! The volunteer site is not ready, so we picked a site to stay on for a day or so.
After we got set up, we got a cola and the pistachios and sat t the picnic table and rested. Jack seems real happy!! He is just glad not to have to be in the truck!!
I took Jack for a long walk and went to where the visitors center is and the bridge. There is a really nice marina with paddle boats and a store that reminds me of Mrs. Carlton’s , only bigger.
The air is fresh and clean!! Jack and me met a nice couple that will be at the art show in Patagonia this weekend. They will only have art and jewelry. Lois would be in heaven!
Jared called us to check on the package! He said Mobridge was foggy, cold and windy!
We called home to let Moma and Daddy know we had arrived and to let Lisa know. I have tried several times to reach Renee and only got to speak with her briefly one time.
The coyotes got fired up after dark. Jack joined in and was not too happy about them!
October 9, 2007
We were woke up by the phone at 5AM. Nothing wrong, just need to remind friends and family that we are 2 hours different!
Jack and myself went for a long walk while Larry was still resting. It was so quiet here and there were many ducks on the lake.
This AM I am going to a training to help with the Field Trip from the school next week. It starts at 9AM , I assume at the visitors center.
The training went well and I met some very nice people. We had lots of mail waiting for us and a package from June Bug with a St. Christopher necklace in it for me!! Also, some nice artwork from Bryonny and Harvey.
There were birthday cards also from Metash, Tezak, Pegg Rd., Carretta and Jackie!!
Larry was getting things together for us to move and about 1:30PM, we moved “up the hill” the marina to the volunteers site. We are on the end site and behind us is the Sonoita Creek area, in front of us is the Marina and Lake with a view of Whipple Observatory and beside of us on each side is the park view of the mountains. Larry parked the RV like a pro and within 15 minutes we were up.
We did not get everything put out, but most of it. We will have time to do it the next few days. We fixed a light supper with sandwiches and salad and sat outside looking at the stars. There are not many lights here and the stars look very bright. The coyotes howled off and on. They got Jack’s attention, but he stuck beside of us.
October 11, 2007
I woke up early and me and Jack went for a walk! It was a cool and beautiful morning. The sun comes up at the back of our RV over the mountains. I think this is going to be a routine for me and Jack every morning. Larry did pretty good last night. His legs are improved also, with the help of the stockings and the massages.
I went to the visitors center for the children’s workshop. 56 children came and the program was on Water Quality and the Environment. I did the Reflection and Pollution segment. The kids were great and seemed to really enjoy it! We finished up about 1PM.
Larry came to pick me up. When we got to the RV we dove into getting everything out of the storage compartments and cleaning them out! How does SO MUCH dirt get in there, when they are closed and we are going down the road???
We decided to put the awning out, the first time since it blew off in Mobridge!! It looks really nice, but I am afraid it will block the view from the windows. Larry said it is easy to put in and out, so we will just see how it goes.
Both of us have wanted a screen house since we started this, but in Mobridge, it would have became a giant parachute…..so we did not use one. Here we can do it!! Larry suggested we put it off to the side, put a picnic table under it and we could set up some of our things to cook with there. I love the idea, because I would much rather cook outside! We could also use it for a neighborhood get together place for us volunteers.
In the hottest part of the afternoon we took a break sitting outside on our patio rug (that Pyro’s Mom gave us) eating some New Mexico pistachios. Then we took off to Walmart in Nogales to pick up a few things. Nogales has really grown a lot!! It has everything!
After supper, we sat outside and looked at the stars again. We saw the Kentucky Lady and the Metal Art Work Lady out walking. I am going to try to go to the festival they are in at Patagonia on Saturday after our training.
October 12, 2007
This AM we are going to the Doctor in Nogales, to get Larry set up with the Coumadin clinic and checked out by the cardio specialist there. The Dr. from VA has already been in touch with them about Larry, so it should go pretty good.
Jack and me took off for our walk and it was really nice again this AM. Today is Bama’s birthday and I called her. We both want to lose a few pounds, so this walking up and down these hills every day can’t hurt me!
Things went well at the doctor. Larry’s BP and HR was good and he said what we were doing for his legs was exactly what we should have been doing. (Nurse Beck tried to tell him!! ) His PTINR was in range also…..and although they would like to have something for the cluster headaches, there is nothing to do except wait till they are over , or go to the emergency room and be knocked out with a shot if it gets too bad. (Same old story for years) What I had found for the sinus problem “NeilMed Sinus Rinse” and saline spray was also the best that he could use, due to all the meds and issues he has, so we were on the right track. Now we do have a Dr. contact here, if anything happens.
We only get 1 TV station, which drives Larry nuts. I don’t care. Dish Network is coming out to set us up. It is the first time we have ever had Dish. So far, I have not been impressed with their customer service. I hope Monday will change my mind. I just hope they don’t have Rush on it!! The man makes some valid points, but I can not take HOURS of listening to him!
We drove up to Patagonia to mail some things. I try to send Moma and Daddy a mail pack at least every 10 days with photos and notes. I went to the Library to do email and the web. While we were there, the school was having some type of festival parade. It had 4 floats.
Lew , another volunteer arrived this afternoon. We had a chance to visit with him for a few minutes and he is a nice guy! He is from Washington State.
Both of us wanted some good Mexican food so we decided to do that for supper. It was at a place called “Tequila Charlie’s” and was great!! They had a mariachi band too!!
Jack loved the leftover burrito!!
October 13, 2007
Larry had headaches last night. I got up about 6AM and me and Jack went walking. He is resting and I want him to sleep as much as he can, since this AM we are going for volunteer training.
• Customer Service – Visitor Center and Arizona Parks
• Boat Safety
• Blood Borned Pathogen
• CPR
• Gator Driving
• Programs and Trail Work (There are LOTS of Programs)
• Ethics for Parks
I am glad to get the training. It will be helpful everywhere we go and at home, no matter what we do.
Jack has to stay at the RV, but he will be inside in the air conditioning and I will come back at lunch to let him out. Then we will go back until 4PM. When we get finished I will take him for a LONG walk and maybe to Patagonia.
We will be there for 2 days and then on Monday the work starts. Monday AM Dish is coming, and we do not work.
Our first day at the Visitor Center is next Sunday and then Monday. Tuesdays we will work trails for 4 hours.
I am hoping to go to Tucson on Tuesday. SAMS Club and other shopping I need to do there, like at Camping World.




October 11, 2007
I woke up early and me and Jack went for a walk! It was a cool and beautiful morning. The sun comes up at the back of our RV over the mountains. I think this is going to be a routine for me and Jack every morning. Larry did pretty good last night. His legs are improved also, with the help of the stockings and the massages.
I went to the visitors center for the children’s workshop. 56 children came and the program was on Water Quality and the Environment. I did the Reflection and Pollution segment. The kids were great and seemed to really enjoy it! We finished up about 1PM.
Larry came to pick me up. When we got to the RV we dove into getting everything out of the storage compartments and cleaning them out! How does SO MUCH dirt get in there, when they are closed and we are going down the road???
We decided to put the awning out, the first time since it blew off in Mobridge!! It looks really nice, but I am afraid it will block the view from the windows. Larry said it is easy to put in and out, so we will just see how it goes.
Both of us have wanted a screen house since we started this, but in Mobridge, it would have became a giant parachute…..so we did not use one. Here we can do it!! Larry suggested we put it off to the side, put a picnic table under it and we could set up some of our things to cook with there. I love the idea, because I would much rather cook outside! We could also use it for a neighborhood get together place for us volunteers.
In the hottest part of the afternoon we took a break sitting outside on our patio rug (that Pyro’s Mom gave us) eating some New Mexico pistachios. Then we took off to Walmart in Nogales to pick up a few things. Nogales has really grown a lot!! It has everything!
After supper, we sat outside and looked at the stars again. We saw the Kentucky Lady and the Metal Art Work Lady out walking. I am going to try to go to the festival they are in at Patagonia on Saturday after our training.
October 12, 2007
This AM we are going to the Doctor in Nogales, to get Larry set up with the Coumadin clinic and checked out by the cardio specialist there. The Dr. from VA has already been in touch with them about Larry, so it should go pretty good.
Jack and me took off for our walk and it was really nice again this AM. Today is Bama’s birthday and I called her. We both want to lose a few pounds, so this walking up and down these hills every day can’t hurt me!
Things went well at the doctor. Larry’s BP and HR was good and he said what we were doing for his legs was exactly what we should have been doing. (Nurse Beck tried to tell him!! ) His PTINR was in range also…..and although they would like to have something for the cluster headaches, there is nothing to do except wait till they are over , or go to the emergency room and be knocked out with a shot if it gets too bad. (Same old story for years) What I had found for the sinus problem “NeilMed Sinus Rinse” and saline spray was also the best that he could use, due to all the meds and issues he has, so we were on the right track. Now we do have a Dr. contact here, if anything happens.
We only get 1 TV station, which drives Larry nuts. I don’t care. Dish Network is coming out to set us up. It is the first time we have ever had Dish. So far, I have not been impressed with their customer service. I hope Monday will change my mind. I just hope they don’t have Rush on it!! The man makes some valid points, but I can not take HOURS of listening to him!
We drove up to Patagonia to mail some things. I try to send Moma and Daddy a mail pack at least every 10 days with photos and notes. I went to the Library to do email and the web. While we were there, the school was having some type of festival parade. It had 4 floats.
Lew , another volunteer arrived this afternoon. We had a chance to visit with him for a few minutes and he is a nice guy! He is from Washington State.
Both of us wanted some good Mexican food so we decided to do that for supper. It was at a place called “Tequila Charlie’s” and was great!! They had a mariachi band too!!
Jack loved the leftover burrito!!
October 13, 2007
Larry had headaches last night. I got up about 6AM and me and Jack went walking. He is resting and I want him to sleep as much as he can, since this AM we are going for volunteer training.
• Customer Service – Visitor Center and Arizona Parks
• Boat Safety
• Blood Borned Pathogen
• CPR
• Gator Driving
• Programs and Trail Work (There are LOTS of Programs)
• Ethics for Parks
I am glad to get the training. It will be helpful everywhere we go and at home, no matter what we do.
Jack has to stay at the RV, but he will be inside in the air conditioning and I will come back at lunch to let him out. Then we will go back until 4PM. When we get finished I will take him for a LONG walk and maybe to Patagonia.
We will be there for 2 days and then on Monday the work starts. Monday AM Dish is coming, and we do not work.
Our first day at the Visitor Center is next Sunday and then Monday. Tuesdays we will work trails for 4 hours.
I am hoping to go to Tucson on Tuesday. SAMS Club and other shopping I need to do there, like at Camping World.
The training went good.
We took out the Pontoon Boat and practiced where we will drive and went over all the procedures.
October 14, 2007
Today we did training at the Visitors Center. We learned how to open and close the center and about some of the daily responsibilities.
After the training, we went to town to get some sinus medicine .
When we came back the other volunteer couple was here. They live on a boat all summer and then live in an RV here in the winter! They are a very nice couple, she is a music teacher and he worked for the post office!
I did not hear from any one today. I guess everyone at home was busy also.
October 15, 2007
Well….today was our first day at the visitor center!! It went really good. The boat tours will not start until Wednesday and our first one is Sunday.
Jack did pretty good, but when the Dish man came, he did not like dogs, so we had to come get him and put him up.
Larry had a good nights sleep and no headaches!! PTL!!
October 16, 2007
Larry was not so lucky last night. He had a couple of headaches.
This AM I am going to work on the Quick Ref for the boat tour. Larry is going to go to the Sonoita Creek with the rangers to clean out the crayfish traps and count the species.
I also want to clean up some. It will be too late to go to Tucson today….maybe tomorrow.
I saw 3 deer out grazing along our site and there have been a number of sparrows at the bird feeder that Lou put out.
The weather is very nice!! Sunny, a light breeze and dry!

 

October 4 , 2007

This AM it is sunny, but cool….about 55 degrees here in Valentine, Nebraska.  Larry had a not so good night.   He is sleeping now and it is about 8AM.  L

We got on the road about 10:30.   As we drove down 83 south you see sand hills that look very similar to the sand hills you see near the outer banks.  The settlers called this area the sea of grass and you can see why!!    There are some very nice lakes and ponds that you can see from the road.   You see a lot of cattle on the grazing.  Since Omaha is known  for its streaks….I guess that is understandable.

Jack is taking a nap…..and gets up once in awhile to look out the window.   Larry has found Rush on the radio….oh yeahhhhh!!    It is not coming in so clear.  I think I will put my ear plugs in.  (The station was lost)  Now that he is flipping through ALL the channels!!

We heard from Lois and she said that Bobbi and Jack are doing OK, since Bobbi’s Mother died.  She was almost 104 years old!!  They are preparing to go on a cruise.  

I am watching the time, because I really want to catch up with Pyro’s Moma today!! They just got back from Arizona.    WE had hooped to see them there, but since we were delayed in leaving Indian Creek, we could not do it.  

We are seeing a caravan of cattle trailers coming this way!!  Guess they are headed to the market.   One thing we do not understand here and in SD , they leave the hay laying in the fields.   I hope to find out why they do this.

The route we are taking is not the most direct route, but it is easier for pulling an RV the size of ours, due to the most direct route is more through the mountains.  We are gaining altitude slowly. 

We heard that Jeff is doing good and will know more Friday about his arm and if they got all the cancer.  The doctor said it could have came from the sun or from his tattoo. 

Rachel went to the Virginia State Fair yesterday with the Future Business Leaders of America.    Roger has a ball game tonight. 

When I talked to Jeremiah over the weekend he was doing good at GTCC and Devin and him had been “hanging out”  together.  He said Devin was doing OK, but Devin had told me the Taurus had an electrical problem.   Sarah is doing good in school this year.    Ashley and Brandon are still adjusting to moving to Greensboro.  

I called Debbie to share about Jeff and she said they were all doing good.  Her boys and Tammy’s are growing up so fast!!  Bongo is feeling better and is still recovering from his fall.

I got a note from Jennifer and she said her and Bobby and the boys were doing good.  Her grandma is still struggling with the sudden loss of her grandpa. 

We just saw a mail box that looked like a covered wagon!!  First time I have ever seen that!!

We crossed the Dismal River in Nebraska.   The hills are getting taller and there are more trees here.  We have not seen any wild life or birds.  Only cows. There is an older road that is running parrell to this road that looks like it is only one lane.   It may be used as a service road now, but it must have been some rough riding and tough travelers in this area to usgffe hat road!  Alls the power and phone line pols ru along it.  

Larry has found a radio station.   Oh yeahhhhh.

We just crossed North Platte Rver. North Platte is bigger than I expected.   Diesel was 3.09 here and that is the cheapest we have seen it!!

Devin called and he was on his way to class.  He is doing well.  He is going to work on the car this weekend.   He said he had seen Jeremiah and he was doing well also.

Kari called us yesterday evening!!  Her and Brian did good in the competition.   It was good to hear from them.   I hope they will stay in touch. 

Well, we have found a place that is more wide open than anything we saw in SD!!  We just crossed into Frontier County  in Nebraska, and you can see for MILES and MILES!!   The Who must have been here when they wrote/sang that song!!   Corn, wheat and pasture land as far as you can see in every direction!!  The only visible building is a grain elevator.

 GPS is 40.39.27 north  and 100.38.14 west  ….Google it!!

McCook, Nebraska is the next town. 

We called Chip and told him we miss SD and its busy country side!!  He laughed….and we got cut off.  Cell phone reception is not the best in these places.

I tried to reach Pyro’s  Mom, but got her voice mail!! 

Larry and I, both continue to be amazed at what is in this wonderful USA that we know as home!!   It is a amazing what you can see n every state.  We are near a place called Red Willow Dam and Recreation area and we can see a big lake from here. 

We just saw a McDonald’s sign…!!.Maybe Larry can get his fish sandwich and I will get Jack a hamburger!! 

McCook  has over 8000 people people!

Wendy’s….the first one since we were in Bismarck on May23rd.

WE stopped at McDonalds and had lunch and got gas.   It was a nice break.   If we stop at another fast food place, I hope it is Wendy’s .   Jack really enjoyed  his burger.

A few facts about Nebraska:

State capital                       Lincoln  and is the 37th State ( March 1, 1867)

State Bird            Western Meadowlark

State Flower  Goldenrod

Motto                   Equality before the law

Nickname            Cornhusker State

Welcome to Kansas

Kansas Facts

State  Capital                      Topeka                                 34rth State                          January 29,1861

State Bird                            Western Meadowlark

State Flower                      Sunflower

State Nickname                Sunflower State

Motto                   To the stars through difficulties

Things really don’t look any different so far.   

We saw THOUSANDS of cows!!!   It is still just a lot of rolling hills with grass!! 

It is approaching 5PM , so I am looking for a place for the night.  Let me tell you….this is ONE REMOTE place!!    We are coming into Garden City and there is not campground coming up on the GPS.  When we stop for gas, I will check with the people in the station.

The little Mexican girl gave me a map and there is a place called RJ’s RV park fairly close.  The Lord was watching after us!!

We got there and it was all drive through and easy in and easy out, but no wifi.   That is OK.  We both are tired and right on time, Larry started having a headache. 

We met some very nice people from Texas.  

October 5, 2007

Well It is about 9:45 and we are on the road.  Larry had a headache at midnight and another one about 4AM, but they did not last long. PTL!!

We are headed toward Liberal , Kansas which is right on the board of Oklahoma.   We will only be in Oklahoma for a short distance.   I wish we were closer to Tulsa, I would like to be able to stop in and see Kenneth and Mary Ann.  

83 is a VERY LONG road!!   We have seen a number of oil wells and as we come out of Garden City  there is a field that probably has 50 in it.

Dodge City, Kansas is near here.  I wonder if they have a Long Branch Saloon? 

There are huge combining operations going on in the farms we are passing.   The silos are huge!!  

One thing Kansas has in common with PA is the holes in the roads and rough railroad crossings.  

We buckled up (yes, I wear my seat belt now) and said a prayer for protection and for our family and friends. 

We are finally off of 83 South and we are on 54 West.  

Welcome to Oklahoma!!!  11:30 CST

State Capital                       Oklahoma City                   46th State                             November 16, 1907

State Nickname                                Sooner State

Bird                        Scissor Tailed Flycatcher

Flower                  Mistletoe

Motto                   Labor conquers all things

Oklahoma on 54West is a steady incline.  

I called and talked to Mary Ann, Kenneth’s, wife, and she said they were doing fine.  Aunt Katie is improving and doing well.  That was great news!! 

 

 

Welcome to Texas !!!  12:30 CST

State capital                       Austin                   28th Stat                                December 29, 1845

                                                Seceded  2-1861                               Readmitted        3-30-1870

Bird                                        Mockingbird

Flower                                  Bluebonnet

Nickname                            The Lone Star State

Motto                                   Friendship

I always liked Texas and I have never have been bored there not one single minute!!  I will never forget the days I worked in El Paso with Hummel’s Heroes and BEPL.   There was a place on Industrial called Ernie’s that had the BEST breakfast burritos EVER!!!   The tortillas were awesome there.  Jerry  & Michelle sent me tortillas from there for Christmas!! 

You should see all the corn piled up here in huge mounds!!  The harvest is so great, it will not fit in the grain bins, and there are not enough train cars to carry it all!!  Last night I heard trains all night long n Garden City!! It reminded me of Bensheim where when the War on Iraq was starting, I heard trains all night….they were coming from Darmstadt and Rheinheim AFB.   

The very first thing we saw was a windmill farm for electric generation.   17 of them!    

This is one more lonely place….and it would be a challenge to love here.  Kari….stay in Selby!! .

Larry found Rush on the radio…..We did listen to XM for an hour or so this AM.  

We are headed to Tuscamori, NM.  It is about 90 miles and NM is about 40.  

We just saw a more cows and I bet it was 5000!!  It smells like it too!!   The were on the left and on the right. 

The terrain is starting to change. We are seeing  desert like area with scrub bushes.

Welcome to New Mexico!!   2:15 CST

State capital                        Sante Fe                             47th State             January 6, 1912

State Bird                              Roadrunner

State Flower                         Yucca

State Motto                       It grows as it goes.

State Nickname                                Land of Enchantment

We continue to gain altitude slowly on this road.    4200’ as we crossed into New Mexico.   It is a road that is a much more gradual incline than going some of the roads closer to Colorado. 

We downsized some in Mobridge, but we also added a few things there.   I am going to down size again in Patagonia by either giving away clothes or getting a big box and shipping some of them home.  My advice to anyone doing this….pack what you think you will need, cut it in half, then look at it and cut it by 10%!  

Well, this is where Brandon is from and this is where Ashley and him will come for Thanksgiving.   They will fly into Albuquerque  and we hope to hook up with them for1 day there. 

When we were here with Lois she loved the jewelry she saw.  The turquoise here is some of the most beautiful you will ever see!!  

This is also the state where Jose wrapped the snake around her neck and got her photo made!!  June wrote that she loved Oklahoma, but New Mexico was truly the Land of Enchantment!! 

One of my memories is when Janice, Angela and myself went to White Sands from El Paso and almost got arrested!!   Also, the time that AET and myself went there and there was a HUGE and SPECTACULAR storm!!  I still smile when I see the look Janice had on her face in my mind and tremble when I think about that storm!! !   If you have never been to White Sands , you need to go, but remember to go in the correct way and if you don’t ,stop and WAIT , at the guard station!!

The security there is still tight.   During WWII the research that went on there for the atomic bomb was top secret.  In July 1945, the scientist tested the first A-Bomb there, which was about the same as 15-20,000 TONS of TNT.  The atomic age had arrive for all of us, born in Los Alamos.

Native American traditions have endured more in New Mexico than any other state.  In 19 different  pueblos, the tribes cultur, religion and language live on.  It is still restricted  in many areas , and no photos are allowed. 

The oldest continuously habituated house in America is in Sante Fe.  It was built by the Spanish in 1200.  In 1821 the first wagon train arrived in Sante Fe with the settlers.   

The minerals mined in New Mexico include,  gold, copper, uranium, zinc , lead, and of course turquoise.

We just crossed the Canadian River and there some beautiful rock formations …..so typical of New Mexico.

As we approached Tuscamori, we saw that OLD Route 66 was part of the path we were taking!!  Do you remember that show Route 66?    I remember this girl name A. Ivery that was friends with P. Tew that loved that show when we were in school!!    Everyone wanted a Corvette!!

We were really low on fuel, but it was the cheapest we have had it….3.05.   So far we have spent over $500 for gas and Big Blue 350 is getting about 8 MPG hauling this rig….but when I think of all the hills ….I guess that is pretty good!!

This area has been involved in dinosaur fossil finds!    

We are off of US 54 and now we are on I40.     It is a lot more traffic.   We are 171 miles from I 25 and we are now in the Mountain Time Zone , so we gained an hour today.   Altitude is 4174’

We just got to Cuevo, NM and we topped 5000’.

We just got to Santa Rosa, NM  and topped 5200’.

We are getting into Albuquerque and the Balloon Festival is this weekend!   We will stay outside about 25 miles, but I hpe to be able to see some of the balloons!!  Ruthi  I am sure will be watching from a great vantage point in heaven.  I remember the day she went on her ride and she said, if she died tomorrow, she would be happy!!  

We are about 30 miles out of Albuquerque and we just topped 6000’.

We  are at Exit 221 on I40 and we just topped 7000’.

Well, Ms. GPS really got us into a mess!!   .We were going to ZIA Campground.  HER directions said go to exit 226 take a right and then a left.  We ended up on a DEAD END service road.  I had tried to reach ZA by phone, but it went into voice mail.    I called back and got them and they said the GPS was wrong…..we needed to be at Exit 203!!!  PTL for Larry’s driving skills.  I got out and told him how far to come back and he backed this rig up, turned it around and got us going back in the right direction!!!   

We finally got to ZIA and it is pretty nice.  

I fixed some spaghetti for supper.   Met some really nice people. 

October 6,2007

We woke up to a beautiful morning in New Mexico…..warm, with a little wind, but not like the wind in South Dakota! 

Larry had a bad headache last night.  We were all up at 3AM, including Jack.  I was up about 7:30 and I am letting him sleep until I have to get him up.  Check out is 11AM . 

In Moriarity, New Mexico they are having a Pinto Bean Festival!!  It is a real gas, don’t you think so? 

The balloons set off this AM , some 700 of them !  You can not see them from here, but it was on TV.  

I met a really nice couple from Altoona, PA!!  There is also a camper on the end from CHAMBERSBURG, PA!!  I wonder if they know Jim and Doris there?

We decided to head South on 41 , West on US 60 and connect into  I25  all the way to Los Cruces.  To make sure we are set for the night, I called and made us a camp site reservation.   We are going to stay there until Monday.  On Sunday we are going to Three Rivers and Ruidosa.   I hope to meet up with Cheryl while we are here.  I left a voice mail for her.  

41 South had some small farms on it.  Pumpkins mainly and some alpaca. 

I finally got into email before we left Zia and I had a note from Jen and she sent our schedules.  It looks like in October to November 15, we will work Sunday, Monday and ½ days each week.   She also sent an evening schedule, but I did not get a chance to see it.  

We are approaching a town called Mountainair, New Mexico.  There is a mission near here (Salinas Mission).  They have a very pretty Baptist church. .  

There are a lot of trees as we come through Mountainair.  The scenery looks much different from 41 South.  There are some really nice houses setting back off the road and it appears they have horses.  

Some things I meant to mention….

·         At Zia they had the cutest flower bed!!  They had taken an old headboard and footboard and dug out an area and truly made a “flower bed”!!

·         They also had these REAL old boots full of dirt and had planted some marigolds in them!! It made me think of Jackie because she told me one time she would like to have bought this old boot at a flea marker to put flowers in, but passed it up.  I always think of Jimi Lynn when I think of flea markets.   She told me she really like to go to them and just watch the people and explore.

The rock formations are looking different and are more red and stratus with many mesquite trees.  We are dropping in elevation and are about 5800’ now.  We are approaching the mountains and ABO CANYON.   (San Mateo and San Andres Mountains are in the distance. )

34.25.29 North       106.48.30  West    We crossed the Rio Grande.  There was some water in it!  Google it!!

We are now on I25 headed South!!   Patagonia…..here we come!!  

We just passed Soccoro and the exi to Bosque Del Apache National Wildlife Refuge.   It is supposed to be one of the most awesome in New Mexico and is part of the flood plain of the Rio Grand.  Thousands of birds are seen there each year.  

We just passed the Gila Cliff Swellings area.  It is on the right and the Caballo Percha State Park is on the  left. .  We just crossed the Rio Grande again.  IT really seemed good to see it running with water….even if it was very muddy!!

We are near Upham, NM the future site of the New Mexico Space Port.  I don’t know what this is…if you do , fill us in!!!

We arrived safely at the Las Cruces KOA and it was a very easy set up.  

Larry was feeling pretty good and wanted to go to Cattle Baron’s for supper, so we did.  It was great, but expensive.

Tomorrow we are going to the Pistachio farm and Pecan farm.   We also may go to the Chili place and drive to 3 Rivers.

 

 

 

 

 

October 3, 2007

Well, last night we ran out of propane and it was COLD!!  We had to use the little fireplace in the den area.   Jack kept me warm.  

After a light breakfast, Larry took off to fill the truck and the propane tanks.   I started getting everything put away for us to pull out.    Larry had one small headache last night, which is really good.

I loved having wifi at the campground!!  I updated the website and also burned some CD’s to mail later of what we saw yesterday.

One thing I forgot to tell was Larry saw a Mt. Lion in Custer State Park!!  It was bigger than Jack!

We finally pulled out about noon and headed toward Rapid City.   We will connect to  Interstate 90 and then to US 83 south…when we get to Murdo , SD.   By going I90 we will be able to go to Wall Drug. 

We saw 13 turkey’s before we got to Crazy Horse.  So far, we have seen 19 turkey’s today and 2 dead white tails o the road.  

Jack was ready to go!  He is such a good traveler!!  Maybe he knows his snacks are in the back of the truck!

We are on I90 and it is about 1:15PM.  Already we are seeing the signs for Wall Drug!!   It reminds me of the bumper stickers we used to see in Boydton about the drug store there, before it closed.   The signs could also be compared to South of the Border signs….of course, I am not too found of that place.

Larry has Rush on the radio.  Another 90 minutes…….

The land here looks more like Mobridge, flat farmland with lots of wheat!   As far as you can see….it is farmland.

We see a lot of campers, fifth wheels and motor homes going in both directions.  

Larry wants to stop at a McDonalds and get a fish sandwich.  He has not had one since April, when we were on our way to Mobridge.    Sounds good to me.   The past couple of nights, we have had light suppers. 

I miss Indian Creek and some of the people.   I left a message for Bama today.  I got an email from the Library ladies…..and  Linda has her surgery today.   I hope Chips mom is doing good.  

We have just made it to 83 South.  3:15PM ….and it is now 4:15PM Central time. 

At 5PM Larry had another headache.    It lasted a short time , we stopped got gas, and continued on.

We crossed into Nebraska at 5:40PM.

Nebraska is Home of Arbor Day.   The first ting we saw was an Indian Casino for the Rosebud Sioux Tribe.

We saw 29 turkey’s today.  

We will be stopping in Valentine, Nebraska for the night,

250 miles today.    

Valentine is a nice place and has many surprising aspects.  

Center of a  diverse region of quiet lakes and sand hills…it has a national forest, 2 national wildlife refuges and the biggest surprise is to find out they have waterfalls and Nebraska has over 180!!  Glenda would love it!!  

They have many kayaks here!  Bill and Jeannie would be in heaven!  Niobrara River has many streams feeding it!  It is one of the top 10 canoeing rivers in the USA! Smith Falls River Lake and Snake River Falls should not be overlooked either!

The sand hills look like a sea of grass.  The cows in the pasture out number the people.   The county is about the same size as Connecticut, but only has 6000 people!! 

Check it out   www. VisitValentine.com   Also, if you are camping, Fishberry Campground is very nice, very clean, friendly, easy in and out and pull through sites  and they have Wifi!! The price is right also!!  866-376-1662.

We had some supper and me and Jack went walking around the campground.  It is very nice here and the sunset was one that will be remembered forever.   Jeremy and June would have loved to see it!  

 

October 1, 2007

Well, this is the day we leave Indian Creek.  Larry’s headaches are better, but not gone.  This is typical for cluster headaches.    We had planned on leaving September 10 th and I would have gone to an Outdoor Womens Conference, but it just was not possible with him having his headaches.

We were up early and started getting ready.   Chip came by to see us and spend a few minutes before we had to leave and he had to go to Polluck.   All of this preparation still makes me a little edgy.  It has been a long time since we did all of this. The last time we moved was May 23rd!!

I am excited and I think Larry is too.  Jack knows something is up and has been making sure the truck door never opens that he is not there!!

Today Jeff Is having surgery on his arm.  Fran called early and she had a great time with her Sunday School Class at the beach this weekend!!   Lisa checked in on us .  She had called yesterday afternoon and told us Moma Dog died.  We really did not know how old Moma Dog was, but we think about 14 years old.  She was a sweet dog and the luckiest day of her life was coming to our house!!  Lisa and Carl tool such good care of her the past few months. 

We were ready to pull our about 10:30.  We said a prayer of thanks for our time here, our family far away , and for guidance and protection on our journey.  We had a special prayer for Jeff and all the Brown family.

We stopped at the office to see Desiree and leave a note for Kari.  Jerry and Harry the Labradoodle came to see us.  We had just pulled out onto 12 West , when Sam pulled up behind us!!  His brother is in Arizona and we hope he will come to see us while we are there.

We just crossed the Missouri and are passing Wakpala.  Jack is hiding!!  (ha ha)

We should get to Custer about 5PM.   The road we are on cust through some very small towns and remote areas of South Dakota.

We saw a herd of antelope and shortly after that we saw 3 deer  (does). This is definitely where tehe deer and the antelope roam.   Are in Faith, SD.  This the home of SUE the largest t.rex ever found in the world!!!  It is in the Smithsonian.    It also has a large Catholic church.  St.  Joseph’s.  This would make Anne happy!!

We arrived in Custer Park about 5PM.  The drive to Blue Bell was very pretty and very steep.  Big Blue did a great job!!   When we arrived a Blue Bell we were in for a surprise.   The sites were very small and very limited.   We talked to the host and hostess and they shared, it would be better off to go somewhere else.  They were really nice!!  It turns out they are headed to Kartchner Caves as volunteers for the second year!!   We will probably see them there and they will probably come down to Patagonia. 

We headed back up and down the mountain to go back into Custer.  By this time, we are both pretty whipped….it has been a long day.   We saw a KOA and pulled in there for the next couple of nights. 

Jack was thrilled to get out and I took him for a walk while supper was underway.  

October 2, 2007

This morning we took it kind of slow to start and headed out on our trek to see the sights about 11AM. 

We went to Jewell Cave Monument and it was a BEAUTIFUL drive up there!!   The cave has many interesting aspects, but we were more interested in getting to Crazy Horse and Mt. Rushmore.

The fire scenes from the fire several years ago were something to see!!  I have never seen anything like it before.  We thought of Jim and how much he talked about fire fighting here in the Hills…..it scares me to think he was in something like this!!

As we started toward Crazy Horse Monument, we saw 26 wild turkeys and 9 mule deer!!  I got photos of many of them to share on the website!!  Then on the right we saw it…..Crazy Horse Mountain!!  It was awesome!!   563’ tall!!   We went to the visitors center and checked out some of the items there and saw the movie about how the monument was started, its current status, and what is coming up for the future.   All Americans should be proud of this, especially the Sioux Indians and Native Americans.

After we left Crazy Horse, we headed to Mt. Rushmore.  The drive on 244 to it was so beautiful.  We saw deer, antelope, sheep, …beautiful rock formations and trees……I could drive it everyday and never be bored.  One of the most over whelming things was as you are driving along you come up on the rock formations that are part of Mt. Rushmore and they are so awesome, it just takes your breath away.  Both of us just had to stop and take it in!!  When we arrived at Mt. Rushmore National Monument, we were disappointed in the wasy it was set up.  Yes, Mt. Rushmore is marvelous….but the way the area is around it for people to enter through , takes away from it.  It took some photos.  We continued to drive down the road to Keystone and totally enjoyed  the drive.  I took many photos. 

We stopped in Keystone and gave Jack a break and got some ice for our colas. 

We continued on to Bear Country, USA.  We had a blast there!!  We saw many animals and I took many photos.  You stay in your car and drive through as the animals are free to roam around your car.  We had never seen black and brown bears so closely.  The baby land portion was the highlight for me!!! We saw mountain lions,  buffalo, wolves……Jackson would have loved it!!  Lisa would have too! 

I could just see Renee and Lisa when they were kids seeing this and going nuts!!   Renee was always so good about knowing things about animals!

We went back via Mt. Rushmore, just for the scenery and enjoyed the ride even more the second time!!

June would have been in heaven seeing all of this and Jose and Jacque would have flipped over all the animals!!   Larry said that he would never have believed how much he would have liked this and he knows  now why Jim loved it here!  

Also, every present here is the SD spirit!!  As we were coming through Keystone, there was a 6’7” cowboy with a whip walking down the street in a cowboy hat and chaps!  

Tomorrow, we will start our trek to Arizona.  

Keep us in your prayers.  

 

 

 

August 22, 2007

Can you believe it has been almost 4 months since we arrived in Mobridge, SD?   Time really does fly in the Retirement Time Zone!! 

It is hard for me to believe that we are making plans to leave and go on to Sonoita, Arizona already!!  Yesterday I started to make our preparation list for leaving.  There are a number of things to do before we leave.  As I did that, the names of all the people we have met and will always be special to us came to mind. 

·         Kari and Brian                                        Jack”Chip” and his family       Harry the Labradoodle

·         Lynn and Quinton                   Ione and the Library                Mel and her family

·         Jerry and Jan                                          Jim                          All the team here

·         Denise and her family                            J.T. and Aaron the Toad Boys Jared the Snake Boy

·         Jared and Tyra                                        Terry the golfer                       Heather the Aussie

·         Carol                                       The Bee Keepers from Adee                  Linda the Grandma

·         The twin boys                                         The triplet boys       The ND cousins- Card boys

·         The 4 sisters and baby brother                              April and Sarah and Allen      

·         The Scavenger Hunt Kids – Nick and his girl cousins            Dawn and her family

·         The people that locked their keys in the RV          South Dakota kids…..lots of them!!

·         The Grays and the first walleye fish we ever ate!                The little blue truck people

I could go on….it is always the people that make it special.

I know we will miss lots of people.  Also, the fresh smell of a SD morning, the huge fields of sunflowers, wheat and hay!    I don’t think I will ever think of wind the same way as I did before we came here.  Now a breeze is 30 mile an hour wind!!  

However, we are getting excited about going to the Badlands from here and then on to Sonoita!! 

We have not been to the Badlands before and  can’t wait to see the sites there!!  We have been to the Sonoita area before, but we are really looking forward to getting back to Arizona.   It is one of our favorite areas for many reasons.

We received the package of information from Jenn and have been reading it and looking up all the birds, plants, reptiles, amphibians  and mammals mentioned in the script we received for the boat tour.   The amount of wildlife they have in that area is amazing!!  We hope to have the time to see it all in person and to share it with the people we meet at the Sonoita Creek area!!

We got a great surprise!! Lois sent us Duke’s mayo and some self rising flour!!   Thank you so much!! 

We heard from Zizzo and she is doing good!!   Jack and Bobbi were in touch and so were Paula and Bob.

Larry is working on our route to Arizona.  

I talked to Terry and he said they are all doing OK .  This is not an easy time for them.  (BIG HUG) to all of them!!

Sharon sent us a note and it had David and Barbara’s itinerary for the trip to SD.   David broke his arm and Marvin fell from a ladder and is still having some problems with headaches.   

When I talked to Moma and Daddy they were doing good.  I wonder about Peggy and I dropped her a note yesterday . 

Take care!! More on our next adventure, next week!!

July 22- July 26

July 22

It is VERY hot!!  106 degrees today.    We stayed inside most of the day , but I still sold firewood to the few campers that decided to stay even though the heat is awful!!

Mel and her family are here.  Her husband Randy, was in the Rockin’ on the River  contest!! He was “Brandy”.  All the guys dress up as girls and sing songs.

We heard from Lisa today and she is doing good and so is her family.  Devin called and he is going to eat with Ashley and Brandon.   I did not hear  from Renee today, but I wish I had.  

I called Moma and Daddy and they were doing OK.  Moma seemed better today.   I talked to Jackie also.  Laurie called and Jamie is doing OK.   

Fran called and we had a nice chat!!  I do hope that we will always be in touch.  

I tried to reach Lois, but had to leave a message.

 

July 23, 2007

It is another hot one!!   109 degrees!!   There are still people coming to the river to swim in this heat.  It amazes me!!   A lot of these people are not campers, only here for the day, and I have never seen them before.  I can not take the heat!!   The humidity is high for this area, 30%, but it is still very hot!!

We stayed in for most of the day.   Jack went out about 3 and did not come back!!  I went to look for him and could not find him.  We looked until about 11:30PM and did not find him.  Me and Larry have been in the truck and the cart and can not find him!!   I am afraid someone took him.

I am praying he comes home in the morning.

 

July 24, 2007

Today is Lisa’s birthday. She is 39 today!   I am still frantic this morning.  I hardly slept at all.  At 5 AM I was up making posters with Jack’s photo on it!   I made a copy and put it under Mel’s window in her car, to see if she could put it on the radio for me!    I left in the truck at 5:30 AM to go to Blue Blanket and to check the B loop again.  I saw Chip and he said to go to Wakpala, he may be there.  

He was not a Blue Blanket, so I headed to Wakpala.  I drove all around, but did not find him.  On the way back, Larry called looking for me.   I went to Revheim, I stopped at 2 shops and put up posters and went by the office to leave a poster.   Everyone was very helpful, except the people at Gas and Stop.  I will NEVER go there again. 

We continue to look and look.  Larry took me out to breakfast, but I started crying and he got upset with me.  I just can not believe that Jack could be gone.  I prayed that God would help me find him. 

I went to the Library because Larry had to go to the clinic for bloodworm.  Ione at the Library had heard about Jack.  She and her friend were praying we would find him.   Ione had a woman there from Perth, Australia that was supposed to be at Indian Creek, but ended up at Revheim, where camping is not allowed.  Her name was Heather.  We talked and when Larry came back, Heather went with us and we got her things from Revheim and took her with us to Indian Creek.   She has been traveling down the Missouri River with people she knows here in the States and is on her way to a pow wow in Little Eagle and then to Pipestone and then to Minneapolis to go back home.    She is a criminal detective.   She set up here tent near us. 

A lady called the office and she had seen Jack at Blue Blanket Monday afternoon.  Larry went over and I stayed at the campground.  He ran into a man named Terry that camps with us sometimes and he also saw Jack on Monday afternoon at Blue Blanket and said there were a bunch of kids there with him.  Jack loves to play in the water with the children.   Larry called me and came back for me and we got posters and started going from farm to farm looking for him.  We saw a car run into the Blue Blanket Road and we asked the young boy and girl had they seen Jack and they had seen him also the day before.  We drove back into the Blue Blanket area and there were several cars there. .  I got out and start to go car to car showing his photo.  I could hardly believe it!! One of the boys said he had Jack at his house!!  He lives on the Indian reservation!!  WE took off with him immediately to go to his house.  When Jack saw us he was so happy….but he was also too hot!! He had been outside the entire time in this awful heat!   I just cried and cried, I was so glad to see him. 

When we got back to the RV, I got him fresh water and he drank 3 big bowls full!!  He was starving also!!  I made him some fresh eggs and gave him his normal kibble.  He then went to sleep and he slept for 5 hours!!   When we got him back, they had already taken off his collar and tags.  I don’t think it was intended for them to get him back to us!!  If we had not been praying so hard, it would not have happened.  Bryan was praying for us and Lisa also.

July 25, 2007

Heather needs to find a car.  There are no rental places in Mobridge.  WE looked, but there are no cars that are in her price range.   We started to look at the possibility of a rental in Aberdeen or Bismarck.  They are expensive.  Also,  how will she get there?  We are planning to go to Butte, Montana on Thursday Morning.   I decided to go to the Chamber of Commerce and ask about Bus (Coach) transportation.  As it turns out, they DO have a bus that goes to Bismarck.  It stops at the Gas and Goodies!!  It only comes on Mondays and Thursdays.   Heather called the place and let them know she needed to go to Bismarck on the bus.

We went to the Library and tried to find a better deal on a car for her, but with no success. 

Jack is beginning to feel better.  This AM he did not act like he felt good.  I think he was traumatized!!

When we got back to the RV, Jack went swimming again and he acted like he was getting back to normal. 

Many people called to check on Jack.  Lynn came to the campground.  Her nephew was so upset when he heard Jack was missing, they came to help look for him.  Everyone is very relieved when they find out he is back!!  Jerry and Harry were glad to see him also.  Jerry said we were very LUCKY!!

We had “reruns’ for supper.  Heather joined us for supper.  It reminded me of when June had supper with us.  I think June would really like Heather.    After supper we went for a drive and Larry showed us some land that he had seen with huge fields of sunflowers.   They were so BIG and pretty.  I always think of Lisa and Rain.  Both of them love sunflowers.  I picked one, so  could try to dry it. 

They are predicting storms tonight.  I hope they are wrong.  Sheila called and they were at the beach in Virginia.  They want to go swim off the dock this weekend.    We told her….send us tomatoes!!

 

July 26, 2007

Well, the weather man was correct.  I woke up about 4AM with lightning, rain and thunder.   I progressively got worse, so about 5:30, I got in the truck with Jack and we went to Heather’s tent, blew the horn and she got in the truck.  I am glad we went when we did, because it really kicked up with more wind, thunder, rain and Lightning.   We just stayed in the truck and talked until about 7AM.  Then she went to get ready and I did too.

About 8:30AM, I left with Heather to go to the Gas and Goodies to meet the bus.   When we arrived, she went in to check the schedule.  We sat outside and waited until 9:30 and the only bus we saw was the “Sitting Bull College” bus.  She went into check again and it was the BUS!!  However, the driver said  he was not going to Bismarck from here, he was going to Rapid City and would come back about 4 to go Bismarck.  Hearth was not sure that would work for her, because she has to get the car and come back to Mobridge.  The driver was very understanding about her problem and said he would check to see what they could work out.  He was a very nice driver named James.  He found out that he could take her to Fort Yates and there, someone would take her to Bismarck in a VAN!!   We were so happy they could help her.  It only cost $20!!  We hugged and she went on her way and I headed back to the campground to finish packing to go to Montana!!   

Larry was just about ready, but he wanted some breakfast, so I fixed us a bacon sandwich and then we headed to the clinic for his blood work.   While he was in there, I called Lois and they were doing good. 

Finally, we are on our way to Montana. !!

We went through Wakpala and shortly past there we saw a rattler on the road.  We stopped to check it out and it was 43” long!!  It would have made a great skin, but it was torn up from being hit!!   I got a photo.

As we are driving, Larry stops at all these little post offices.   

We went through Lemmon, SD, which is near Faith, SD, where they found the largest dinosaur skeleton ever found in North America!!    

We are Highway 12 and there have been some very rough spots.  I am glad we do not have the RV.  

Jack is sleeping through the entire ride!!  

Crossed into Montana at 3:15. 

Welcome to Montana!!  Helena is the state capitol!

Immediately the scenery looks different.  Tall, big pines on hill sides and mountain tops stand so tall; they look like God’s sky scrapers!! 

The altitude is going up and as we approach Mile City, it 3500 feet.  There is a range here called Range Rover Mountains.    We are seeing several oil wells in the middle of pastures.  

The Yellowstone River runs along the I 94 highway. In some places it is hardly visible and in others it is like a sleek, majestic still sheet of water!!    It flows into Yellowstone Park, and it also joins the Cheyenne River, which ultimately flows into the Missouri.  There is not very much traffic, even on this road. 

When we got to Miles City, we stopped at a McDonalds for a break.   We saw a car from NORTH CAROLINA!!!  These guys have moved out here to raise their family and they love it!!  We got back on I94 and we are going to head to Billings and spend the night there. 

Mike and Rachel W.  came to mind ….because I remember how much Also Griff….I hope he is doing OK.

Lynn and Bill would love to see all these horses!!  They are beautiful!! 

WE just saw antelope grazing!!  6 of them!!

We just crossed Little Big Horn River and it is in Yellowstone County.  Also, this is the site of the Little Bighorn Battlefield, near Hardin, MT.

Now we are in Custer, MT.   We are stopping for gas.   

When we got to Billings we tried to find a place to stay, but the fair is here, so it was a challenge. 

We ended p finding a place that was near a Texas Road House and that was great!!   Lynn and Steve had given me a gift card when I retired, so  we used it!    “Thank you again, Lynn and Steve”

 

We were both very tired and so was Jack!  We went to bed early.  I called Linda and told her where we were and how excited we are!!

 

July 27,2007

We took our time this morning and had a nice breakfast and lots of coffee!!  I did email and made a few phone calls.

Peggy has been in the hospital and is not doing so good.  She had a blood infection.  Please keep her in your prayers.   She NEVER complains!!  What a girl!  We said that Grandma Lila Simpson had somepretty neat grand daughters !!  Do you agree, Brenda, Sheila, Sandy, Judy, Sherrill, Jackie, RC, and on and on…. And on also some neat GREAT and GREAT GREAT granddaughters!!

We just saw our first sign that said  “Yellowstone Park”!!!  I can not believe it!!  We are so close to it!!  WE will be back here!!   

There are signs along the way here of a forest fire.  If Jim were here , he could tell us more about that , I am sure.   I really think his heart in in fire fighting!

We did not get away from Billings until  about 9:30AM.

We just saw a sigh “Beartooth Mountain Range”  and we are at 3700’.  

There are a lot of RV places here.  I guess camping is a big thing here in Montana. 

I wish you all could see this incline we are on now and the sights of this mountain and the Yellowstone River running at the base.  The hiflls are rolling and green , there is a horse farm in the valley with beautiful horses grazing,  the tall pine trees are standing so tall, we ca not even imagine how tall they are.  There is a Ranch Called the Eagle Nest Range with huge rolls of hay surrounding it.  Off in the distance you can see clouds that are just barely touching the tops of the mountains.   Oh…..Big Sky Country is something to see.  It makes a chill go over me to think of how beautiful this is and how God has blessed this country with so many wonderful and awesome places.    

Kari called us and tomatoes arrived today from Tony.  She opened them up and put them in the frig for us.  Of course we will share with Kari!!   I can hardly wait to eat a home grown tomato and a BLT!!  June Bug would be jealous!!  Anne and June used to come in La Collina for BLT’s for supper and we all really cowed down!! 

We are crossing the Yellow stone River again.  It is very winding and follows I 90.  There is a sign that says Ranch ACCESS…..because of the distance the ranch is off of the road. 

Larry has just found Rush on the radio.  Oh , yeahhh! 

If we went south from here we would go in through the west entrance to Yellowstone. 

One thing I have notices is that almost all of the farms we see have a USAflag flying.  I like it and Lisa would LOVE it!!

We are seeing a lot of bee hives placed in the fields. 

We are not at 3894’ elevation.   This is an area that Lewis and Clark traveled on , when they returned from the Pacific  They stopped in this area looking for trees to make canoes out of and ened up using cottonwood trees.  The Indians had been using them and they worked great for them.

We are approaching Prairie Dog Town State Park.  Based on what I know about prairie dogs, I don’t think I want to go there.   There is a big white cross on the hillside. 

 

We are now in the Crazy Mountains.  I am not sure why they call it that.   Christine would like it here, because she likes rocks and there are many different rock formations here. 

I have just seen the first wind generators I have seen since getting to SD.   I still can not believe, SD does not have these everywhere with the wind they have. 

Crazy Mountain is in the distance and it is huge.  11000+’ high.  It is on our right.  Directly in front of us is part of the range and it is an awesome sight to see.  We are at 4275’ according to my GPS. 

 

Heard from Anne  that Randy  had a problem with his stint.  This is Physical Invy week for those guys.  Doug sent me a note on it also.  Sure am glad I am not taking inventory!! 

Do you rmember the trees that were in the beginning of the show Ponderosa?  That is what these trees remind me of.  WE are 19 miles from Livingston, MT .North of us is the Lewis and Clark National Forrest and “South of us is Gallestin National Forest.   To the southwest of us , there are the Rocky Mountains.  I remember AET and also Martina and me talking about crossing them.   So far we have not seen anything we could not maneuver with our 5th wheel, but just for this short of trip, it would have been a lot of work to unhook and put everything back like we had it.   Chip is keeping an eye on it for us. 

Jack is sleeping away in the back seat.  Occasionally he looks up as if to say “Are we there yet?” and lays back down!   I am so thankful we got him back!!   I ordered him a GPS tag.

We just saw 3 bucks with HUGE antlers grazing!!   Evan and the boys would go crazy over them!!

Roger would love it here too because he liked the mountains so much in Pennsylvania and in Arizona!! 

We just saw another sign…”Yellowstone National Park”!!   There are huge snow breaks along this area that are used to keep the snow from blowing on the road here in the winter time.  The river is going south now, so I guess this is it!!   We will start clibing the mountains!!

4635’ and climbing!!

Yep…this is it!!  Signs flashing saying “Be Alert for Falling Rocks in Canyon Areas”.

It is beautiful here!!! 

4925’ and climbing!

There are some houses and there are signs about Ranch Access.  We just passed a Fed Ex truck pulling 3 short trailers!!  I have never seen that before!!

5411’ and 100 miles to Butte!

We are seeing areas for Chain Up Areas.

These are called the Bridger Mountains .

5500’

We can see the pines closer now and they are 60-70 feet tall!! Some are taller!!

WE are surrounded by mountains and tree!! There a  lot of campers and bikers on this road!!  We have seen many 5th wheels.  Only 2 as big as ours.  One being pulled by and f350 dually and 1 being pulled by an F450.  If we ever upgrade, that is what we will get. 

We just saw our first sign “Butte , MT – I90”.  I think from the GPS we have a bout 80 miles to go. 

We are just entering Bozeman, MT now.   The elevation is dropping.

Another thing I see here in Monatana and in South Dakota is strong support  for Right to Life.  Sighs saying “It IS a heartbeat”, It IS a life” It is KILLING” are along many highways.  We also just saw a sign that said “If God is your co-pilot – SWAP seats!!”  We both liked that a lot!!

4500’ and we just saw a sign that said Amsterdam!!  Sure is higher than in the Netherlands!!  Amsterdam, Montana…..a nice spot for our Dutch friends to visit.

Another sign….”In God we ALWAYS trust”

Did you know that the entire state of Montana has 945,000 people!!  Less than a MILLION!  South Dakota has 750,000 people.

We are passing the Missouri Head Waters State Park and crossing the Madison River. 

Crossing the Jefferson River.

3 Forks is 3 Rivers named after 3 Presidents.  We have seen Jefferson and Madison…….I don’t know what the other one is.

I hope Linda is excited about us coming.  It has been 2years since we have seen them.  I have not seen Gahrett except for photos and now he has a little sister on the way!! f

Lewis and Clark Caverns are on this route also.   I don’t remember ever reading about them being in caverns. 

Where we are at now, looks like Mobridge!!  Rolling hills and much drier.   We are climbing in elevation again.

4500’ and 43 miles to Butte!

We just topped a ridge and you can see for miles!!  Huge farms with herds of cattle and fields full of hay and pasture land! 

Renee would like it here.  I am going to ask about paint ball here. 

One thing we notice about the people out here is that they act different in restaurants and places.  They are more laid back and it is not unusual for them to holler out and stuff.  It is like they live life a lot fuller and for the moment more.  It is an Aussie  attitude “No worries, mate”.  Maybe it is still a touch of the wild west in them!  

We have now crossed the Boulder River.  There is a place here called Pipestone Hot Springs.   We are approaching some more mountains and they are called Tobacco Root Mountains!!

We are finally getting to Butte…..15 miles!!

Tony just called to see if the tomatoes arrived!  He was very happy we got them and we can not wait to eat one when we get back!!

5000’ and 14 miles to Butte

We just saw a truck pull over with steam rolling out of it and all the trucks are flahing their emergency lights. There is a big motor home pulling a trailer and it is struggling!!  Big Blue is just clipping along and we are getting about 14 miles to a gallon. 

6000’ and 10 miles to Butte

WE are going down and incline now.  There was no sign to say what the grade is. 

The view is truly a MILE high and you can see Butte in the distance!!  

There are a lot of people here looking for dinosaurs!  The rock formations look much different here. The sand and dirt is lighter and looks much more sandy than what we have seen earlier. 

 

Larry is pretty much whipped.   I think we both need a break.   

The Boss, TRAP, called and while I was on the phone, Linda came to lead us to her place!  Evel Kneveil is EVERYWHERE!!

I saw Joni and Jeri and their children.   Joni is expecting a little girl in October.

I got some photos and hope to get some more tomorrow.

July 16, 2007

This past week we were excited about the possibility of seeing Devin here in SD!!  We made plans to go to Brookings, SD to see him and his friends before they left. 

All week long we stayed in touch with Lisa and Carl is improving.  He is still at MCV, but hopeful to come home soon.  Laurie, my sister called, and her husband Jamie was in the hospital in Greensboro with a possible heart attack.  He had a cath and seems to be OK, but he is on some medication now.

Moma and Daddy are doing OK.   I did not get to talk to Jackie this weekend.  I also missed talking to Fran.

Lois called me and she said she got to pick some blueberries.  Lisa also has got to pick some.  Hank and Kathy called and the figs are hanging, so Lisa , Katherine, Kathy and Lois are going to be busy with them!!

I called Peggy and she is such an inspiration. She has had her first chemo treatment.  Please keep her in your prayers. 

When we got there on Saturday morning it was so great to see Devin!!!   Aaron, Nino and Devin have had a great experience on this trip.   We had a good breakfast and some great conversation.  Larry took them photos of his latest rattlesnake.  They headed out to go back to NC and we headed west on Highway 14, so I could FINALLY go to the Laura Ingalls Wilder home place. The replicas were nice and so was the gift shop.   Jack made his self at home by watering the fence post.   We went into town and saw the surveyors house.   It is a small house.  I could just picture Laura and Mary , Ma and Pa there.  My girls and Rhonda always loved Little House books and the TV show. 

After that we continued on 14 and along the way we saw huge sunflower fields and also wheat being combined.  There were 18 wheeler trucks waiting with huge bins to put the wheat in and then they transported it to the train depot into box cars.

Malissa had her baby!!  It is a little girl named Emilee Faith.  Birgit is still in the hospital, but doing good.  Keep her and her little one in your prayers. 

There was a big family having a reunion this weekend in the campground.  They had the same last name as Alan from the post office.   We also had Carol back with a NEW 5th wheel.  She gave us some awesome green beans, beets and onions.   The IRS lady and Mark were back.  They caught their limit on walleye, but have decided to eat them as fast as they catch them.  I don’t blame them!!  Fresh walleye is great!! 

A man and woman from Georgia gave us some home grown tomatoes!!  It was like getting gold!!  They were so good.  

John and Gaila are here and they are Full Timers from Texas.   They were sharing with us about their Baby George Foreman Rotisserie.    The chicken they cooked looked great!!

We cooked a small ham in the convection oven.  I wish it had been a butt portion, but instead it was a spiral cooked ham.  We made potato salad and had green beans.

Kari made me a Survival Stick.  It is a used and broken fishing rod with a nail in it!!  I can kill a snake, pick up trash and fend off enemies!!  We are thinking of doing an info- mercial on it!!

A bus came in yesterday from WOW Ministry (Walk on Water) and they were baptizing people in the river.  I thought of William and Charlie in the Susquehanna in Harrisburg.  

We are starting to plan our trip to Montana and the Black Hills.  

July 1 -9, 2007

Bob and Paula are here from Boydton with us in Mobridge!!  They have had many good experiences in their travels the past couple of months.   The pictures Paula has of the round up they saw are awesome!

We keep planning each day to cook walleye outside, but the wind is NOT cooperating.  Bob and Paula told us about the wind they had in Idaho, but it was nothing compared to this wind!    

I and Paula decided to enter the Pongo tournament.  Neither of us had ever played before, but thought it might be fun.  After we got over there, Larry and Bob came too and we had a great time.  Another couple Carol and Tom joined in also.   You can check Pongo out from the office, so maybe we can play again. 

Ashley and Brandon called us.  I was glad to hear from her. 

July 2, 2007

The day started off with a real BANG!  A thuunnnder storm (as the weather lady says) occurred in the middle of the night.  I woke up about 4:30AM with the wind whipping.  I really don’t think I will ever get used to it.   I check the TV weather and what I saw was not good.  A bad storm was all around us and looked like it was coming our way.  I decided to make a pot of coffee and to watch the storm I had started to put my clothes on when my cell phone rang and scared me half to death.  It was Chip and he had just got the call from the Police Department, we needed to get the campers into the shelter.  Larry heard the call and got up.  He would take B Loop and was on his way there in his car.  B Loop had only 5 campers, but we have had a travel trailer turn over there already this year.  It is on a hill with not very many trees to protect them.  We are in A Loop and it was about 30% full.  There was a family in 4 tents behind us.  They had 8 children.   I grabbed the flashlight and told Larry to pick me up at site 3 and headed down there.  The wind was gusting up to 50 MPH then!  When I got to the tents, they were beginning to blow in and collapse!  I shined the flashlight and called out to them “Park Management”.  I had already told them that the bath house was the shelter in case of bad weather.   They started to get out and were wrapping up in their blankets and sleeping bags and we moved on.  Time was too short to get in and out of the truck, so I ran as fast as I could site to site.  I banged on the sides of the campers and called out to them also and told them to go to the shelter.  We had one motor home with a person in a wheel chair, so I went to that one next. By this time the wind was REALLY whipping!!  There was not so much rain, but the wind was blowing it so hard into my face it felt like sand or rocks.   People were coming out and going to the shelters.  The tents in the 40’s section were the next place to go.  Larry was flashing the lights in the truck and some of the people were already waking up due to the wind and starting to come out on their own.  As I started to get out of the truck the wind caught the door and WHAM…it popped!!   Oh well…Big Blue was getting its first ding!   The rain was really coming down now. 

Chip caught up to us in A Loop and went back to our road to get the people we had not got to yet.   We went to the shelter to see about opening the middle doors up.    The people were all OK.  By 5:30AM it was mostly all over.  I was wet skin out….not a dry thread on me.  My face and arms were all red with marks from where the rain was hitting me.    We helped some people get their tent back up.  The people behind us stayed in the shelter until it was more daylight.  Everything they had in all but one tent was down and wet.  The tent that stayed up through all of this is called a “BUG A BOO” tent.  It is really odd shaped, but there was not even a tablespoon of water in it!!  One of the shock cord poles actually cracked from the bending, but it held!!

Limbs were every where AGAIN!   Bob and Paula were OK.  Most people went back to bed, but we were both a little rattled, so we just stayed up.  

I asked it they baptized all the camp host rookies like this!!    This is 3 times we have done this now.   This was one of the worst ones though.

We went to the buffet for supper.  It was not so good.  Bob did not feel well.   Larry was really tired.

 

July 3, 2007

I and Paula went to the Laundromat and I ran around and did some errands.   Larry and Bob went to get a hair cut.   The lady that cut it did a really good job. 

Today the wind is not so wild.  That is a good thing!!   The campground is really filling up. 

This afternoon we played Washers.  It is a game where you have a board with rings on it and you toss large washers into the holes to get points.  We had fun playing it.

Jack went to Harry’s (the labradoodle) birthday party!!  Patti and her boys in PA would have been happy.  They had special treats and Jack stuffed himself!   I never knew anyone else that had birthday parties for their pets, but Patti!  Maybe she has started a trend!

Metash called me!! I was so happy to hear from her, but sad to hear about her Rex having a real hard time and that his cancer is progressing.     (BIG HUG) for her and Rex!   We sure did have a great time talking and catching up!   We promised to always stay in touch!!

We had some Bar B Q we brought from home.  It is Stamey’s, so you know it is good.  Bob and Paula came over and we had that for supper along with some fresh corn on the cob.  It was really good.  I thought of Linda and Henry, because they love Stamey’s.   So does Lisa. 

July 4, 2007

Tonight we went to the Rodeo!!  I have never been to one before, but Bob and Paula have family that are in the Rodeo.  We really enjoyed it and the clowns were really funny.

I took lots of photos.   We got one of all of us together. 

We finally got to cook some walleye for supper!!  It was really good. 

July 5, 2007

We were all up early.  Bob and Paula will be leaving today and head to NC to camp with their kids before going back to Boydton.   I sent some things to Lisa and the kids.    I made a CD of all the photos for Paula and Bob and one for Lisa also.

I was sad to see them go.  It was a real pleasure having them here with us.    I will miss them. 

Today we were really busy with the campground.  I sold 23 bundles of wood.  That is a lot!!

The weather was hotter and less wind.

July 6, 2007

This afternoon Jack took off after I came back from the store and I could not find him.  I looked and looked and called and called.   No Jack.   

It is really hot today and I came back to the RV to get something to drink and cook off and June Bug called me.  Carol was buried today.   At least she is not suffering any more.  June knows this, but she is still quite sad.  (BIG HUG for June)  While we were on the phone someone came with Jack!  He had been to the river playing and swam into the river.  They were on a boat and picked him up and he had been on the boat with them and out riding the tube with their kids!!  I was so glad to see him!!  He was exhausted!!   

I went to sell fire wood and he came with me.  While we were gone, Larry had to go to a site to kill a rattlesnake.  It was about 2 feet long.  

Larry went to Pizza Ranch and got us some chicken for supper and we fixed some veggies to go with it.  It seems strange to me that Pizza Ranch sells chicken, but it was the best bought chicken we have had in a LONG time!

There was a movie in the park tonight on dinosaurs.   We popped pop corn for the kids.

Lisa called tonight late.  I talked with Rachel and Roger also.  They are 2 special kids.

July7, 2007

I can’t sleep.  I got up at 4AM.  It is still dark outside and I can hear birds chirping.  There is a robin’s nest outside our kitchen window and we watch them everyday. 

Jack is lying here beside me sound asleep, still exhausted from his adventure yesterday and Larry is sleeping.    I think he knew I was upset about him being gone, because I was crying when they brought him back to me.   

Larry is going to fix us some spaghetti today.  I hope it will be a quiet day, at least until this evening when it cranks up for the firewood. 

There are some really nice people here this weekend.

·         There is a couple here and he is a carpenter.  They have a 3 legged dog.   

·         A really nice family from Aberdeen that brought me fresh fried walleye to the cart last night.

·         A really nice family from Minnesota.

·         A really nice  Mexican family with several children

·         A really nice  Lakota family with 6 children that speak Spanish and are going to teach me to count in Lakota

·         Winston the terrier and his family are back

·         A family with a  son that reminds me of Mary Anne and Keith in Clarksville

I went to the Scavenger Hunt this morning.  Jasmine, Haley and their Momma’s were there.  We walked around in the park finding nature items.   It was nice.  

July 8, 2007

Today is much cooler and not as windy.   People are pulling out very early.

We have a family from Cologne, Germany here in a motor home they rented in Denver, CO.  They are seeing the Dakotas and Montana.   

Kari came by a couple times today.   I really enjoy working with her.  We did the picnic tables and got up limbs and trash.

Jasmine and her friend Haley will go home today.  They along with Jasmine’s brother Tanner really surprised me this morning!  When Kari and I went down in there section there they were with Wal-Mart bags picking up trash and cans!!  They are 5-7 years old.  On Saturday we had talked about litter and how if everyone did this with trash, it would really be bad for the parks.  I guess it made an impression!!  I went to the office and got them a sticker and a coin “Caught you doing something good”…and an icy pop and took it back to them!!  They were so happy and I was too!

Lisa called and Carl is in the hospital in ICU.  We checked on flights and we are prepared to go home if we are needed.    Please remember them in your prayers.

Devin called us and he is driving to Minnesota with 2 friends!!  We are so excited.  He will be about 4.5 hours from us.  We will drive to him or meet him half way.

June 9, 2007

Carl is better, not out of the woods, but better.  Thank the Lord!!   Please continue to pray for all of them.   

Today should be a quiet day.  We have 12 campers.   

Devin called and he is 110 miles from home!  He definitely has a ways to go!   Based on what we know, it looks like a 1300 mile trip.  Do you think he has some sand in his shoes like his grandma?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

June 19-28, 2007

Wow, this past week went by very fast!!   Even though there was no fishing tournament, there was lots of work to do due to the high winds and storms we had over the weekend.

Jack joined the National Guard this week (swimming).  The Guard was here doing swimming exercises and he saw them and tried to rescue and swim with them!!   They brought him to the office in the National Guard truck.   Jack the Wonder Dog……we do wonder what he will do next!!

We had 2 cute little fellows in B Loop …..I called them the Toad Boys.  Aaron and J.T. chased toads and found us the best specimens ever for the program on snakes and amphibians.    Aaron and his Mom had to leave on Friday.  I was really sorry he could not stay for the program.  He is a bright young boy with immense knowledge of wildlife and biology for an 8 year old.  J.T.  was able to stay for the program and stole the show at Indian Creek and at West Whitlock!!  What a great little guy!!   

Jared came by also and I was really glad to see him!!  He is a person in this area on call for the police department and 911 for snake calls.  He has been snake bit before……I can’t imagine!!   Larry really likes him a lot.   He is about as laid back as you can get!! 

The weather has turned hot.  It still remains very windy.  10-15 miles and hour is considered calm.

Dawn and Dale came this weekend with their families.  This will be the last trip for them to Indian Creek.  They will be camping at other sites for the remainder of the summer.  I feel fortunate to know them.

On the 25th, we had to go to all the campers again with a warning on storms.  

I have not been good about writing this week.  Every day I had too many things to do !!  I did get mail off to several people.

(BIG HUG) to everyone!!  I will try to do better next week!!

June 28, 2007

We have had an interesting couple of days!   Lynn came from Pierre and Larry met her, which was probably an experience for her.  He was his regular “crazy” self!   

I went to Pollock with Kari and Jack.  We had to do maintenance there.  Me and Kari rode together and we laughed and laughed about all kinds of things.   She just got back from Rifle Competition in Atlanta.  Her and her husband Brian placed 2nd in Olympic Qualifying.   Please pray they make it on the team and go to Beijing!!!  I gave them a “Friendly” from Beijing for good luck!  Chip bought us lunch!  They did not have Indian Tacos!  We were all disappointed.

Ohhh….how I have thought of Rain and Lisa the past few days.  Larry showed me huge fields of sun flowers!  Speaking of flowers…..mine are doing good at the Bath house A and B!!  Fran would crack up if she saw me out there pulling weeds and watering them!!  My idea of a nice yard is green concrete and an artificial palm tree!    I have NEVER had a flower garden before now!!  

Guess what??? Bob and Paula are coming here today!!  They are on their way from Montana.   They will have the site beside of us!    I will take photos of us all.    I called Marliyn and checked on her and Ken and  told her Bob and Paula are coming. 

Lois called and they had a GREAT time at the beach.   The girls are really growing up! 

This week we had another full time couple we met here.  Carroll and Barb.  They have a SMALL freezer!! I ordered us one!!   They have been doing this for 16 years.   They drive an F550 crew cab…..very nice.  I think if we cross the mountains….we will need that. 

Kari and Brian brought us some turnip greens last night.   I was up until 10PM washing them and they are cooking now.   I can’t wait to eat them.  I made another banana pudding this AM.   I got up at 5AM. 

Larry and myself had just came in from the shower house.  On the way there, we found an 8 foot bull snake and a garter snake!!  Before that, one of our little campers, Jared the cattle boy, walked up with a bull snake about 5 feet long!!   We took the garter snake to Aaron (who came back to the campground yesterday).  He was thrilled.  He had already found a baby rabbit that had blown out of its nest!

While we were talking to Brian and Kari, Brian looked at the front right leg on our RV and said, what is that??? It was a 24” RATTLESNAKE!!   Much bigger than the one we had in the demonstration.  NATURALLY,  Larry caught it.  We called Jared , rattlesnake man, and he will come and get it today.   I can hardly wait!!   Today had really been a SNAKEY day!!

I have to tell you again that SD mornings are very nice.  The air is so good and it is so quiet.  I really love it.  Jack does too.

Jack had a hard day yesterday because I had to leave him.    He will not let me out of his sight this AM.

 

June 14, 2007

 Good Morning from Mobridge, South Dakota – Indian Creek Recreation Area!!   

This morning is very calm and little wind and mild temperature.  It reminds me of the way it felt in May in Holland. 

Jaime and Emily, my two little nieces, won the rattle snake rattlers!!    I hope they will be able to use them in school for a science project.    Currently we have a bull snake in a 5 gallon bucket, waiting for a program to be done on Saturday for the children here in the park on herpetology.   Jose would be screaming  yahhhhhh …..yahhhhhh……yahhhhhh.

 

SD has won the first award from the US Government for the park that promotes health and fitness.  Here in Indian Creek it is evident that these people love nature and the outdoors and their children too! They are outside playing all the time and these folks LOVE to pitch a baseball!!

 

Yesterday we saw a horse as we were coming into the campground up on the hill by itself.  It was acting different, so we got the binoculars and took a look.  It had just had a foul!!  The foul was still on the ground and was trying to stand up for the first time!!  It still was covered in the birth sack.  The mare was nudging it and it stood up and was wobbly for just a few moments and then starting following its momma!!    In the background there were buffalo grazing and some cattle.   I could only imagine that when the settlers came and there were buffalo and possibly wild horses, this is the sight they would have seen. 

 

The rain we have had improved the crops and the level of the river and lake.   Everything is very green.  After 8 years of drought the people here are very happy to have all this rain.   Carrie’s family raises wheat and it is doing really good.  I don’t know about the wheat, but I have to tell you , the collards Carrie brought us they grew were delicious!!  Larry’s Mother would have been real happy with them. 

 

I made a banana pudding for these guys here in South Dakota.  They had never had one.   Carrie is from Alabama and she said because she was  GRITS (Girl Raised In The South) she could smell it for miles!  I made her and Bryan a small one, just for them.

 

Lisa is sending us a care package.  (BIG HUG) to her!!  We need chow chow, House Autrey fish breader, Old Bay Seasoning,   and our tomato knife.    Later, we will probably need Duke’s mayonnaise and other things.   BTW- Lisa had an article in the Richmond Times!     

 

The Alaska Man went out fishing and got a lot of fish!!  His wife will be coming with friends to Akaska.  I hope them come back to see us.   They are in the process of downsizing also and moving into a 5th wheel and his dream is to go to Alaska and be a boat captain!!  He has been to Alaska 15 times! 

 

I had an article in the Mobridge Tribune about the ATV track!! 

 

This coming weekend:

The 3M Walleye Tournament is this weekend.  We will have lots of campers and fisherman.

 

 Also, the National Guard will be doing their exercise here with the bridge.  I will take photos and I hope to do and article on it.  The Singapore Air Guard will be participating with the US South Dakota National Guard!!  I thought of Kah Hui , Andrea, Michael, Jia Lin and Wee Lee.  The Colonel came to the campground and he told me the Singaporan’s will be flying the helicopters. 

 

June 15, 2007

Larry caught a rattlesnake near the bath house!!  A little boy came to our site and told us he saw a snake.  Larry is keeping it for the demonstration, but I have to tell you , I am not happy about it. 

Firewood sales are brisk today!! There arelots of people coming in getting ready for the tournament. 

 

A couple from Little Washington, NC arrived today.  They are bicycle riders and they are riding the Louis and Clark Trail this year.  Loretta and Tim would have a great time talking to them!!

 

June 16, 2007

 

Today we had the 3M Tournament and we shuttled people in the golf carts to and from the boat docks.

 

They had 60 teams and caught a total of 950 pounds of walleye!  The biggest walleye was 4.20 pounds.  Eric won second place!  He is the first person to ever give us any walleye to eat!

 

The weather for fishing was great. The rain did not come until the weigh in started. 

 

The National Guard demonstration was awesome!!   Over 200 cars came through the gate to see it!  The people here are very patriotic and family driven! 

 

I headed out to sell firewood and it was a record day!!    I think these campers are going to burn up all the wood in SD this year!

 

June 17, 2007

The morning started early….1AM with a  huge blast of wind at 60+MPH!   Tents were blowing over, pop ups had to be shut down, and we had a small tag along camper blow OVER in Campground B.  It hit again about 3AM.   Jerry had 4 docks break loose, but they were shoved into the bay and not into the lake!  That is a good thing!  

 

At 6AM I got up and outside things were blown all over and tree limbs were everywhere!!  The rattler Larry caught and had put in a Rubbermade container had BLOWN AWAY!!!   Larry got up and we both went out looking for the container and to see what damage there was.  He found the container and it was still closed and the rattler was still inside!   Talk about a tight seal!!    The rattlers from the dead snake BLEW AWAY!  We looked and looked, with no luck.  Emily and Jaime will have to wait until the next one to get their prize!!  Sorry…..this SD wind is WILD!!!

 

Jack, Sadie and Harry had a great time down at the bay “helping”  Jerry!

 

Most of the morning we spent cleaning up the wind damage.    The Alaska Man and his wife and friends came by to see me!  It was really nice of him to come back!  I hope our paths will cross again, maybe in Alaska.  His wife is just as nice as he is!  Then we went to ride on 1806 to see what we could see!!  Very remote and huge cattle ranches.  There is one called the Wilder Cattle Ranch and I wondered if they were related to Almonzo.  

 

The temperature heated up to 87 and then about 7PM it started cooling quickly.  I sold wood and Jack went swimming in the river . 

 

A group checked in late and was putting up tents and the wind was kicking up then. 

 

Aw we had supper, it was really starting to rock again.   I went to the new tent people and told them with  all the children they had if we had wind like the night before, they needed to get into shelter.  Come to the camper and I would let them in the cabin.

 

William Wu called us!!  I was so glad to hear from him!  They are all doing good.  Joy is growing up so fast.  They are preparing to move into their new place very soon.   He said Charlie and his family were doing well also.  Bonnie is doing good too! 

 

Jim called shortly after and told me to go warn the campers, a severe thunder storm warning with high wind, hail and lighting was headed our way!!  We did immediately and I went and opened the cabin for the tenters.    Luckily, we were on the out skirts of the storm, but Selby got hit a lot worse!  

 

June 18, 2007

 

This AM things are call, but we are in a high wind advisory for today.  Tomorrow is supposed to be better!! 

 

Tonight we will go for the buffet!

 

 

 

 

June 7, 2007 –  The past few days have been very interesting!!  We have had some wild and windy weather here.  We saw a boat dock floating down the river with 5 boats attached to it.   It came from Jerry’s and there was no way to get it out of the water.   It finally crashed into the west bank.  This happened on Thursday.  Friday morning they got 4 of the boats out.

Wednesday evening JK called us!!  We had a great time talking!!    

I made my first kuchen.  It turned out OK….but not that great.  It is a German pie with custard and fruit.  It is also SD’s state desert.  If NC or VA has a state desert, let me know!  I never heard of that before.

We had Chip over for supper and I made a meatloaf using Betty Jean’s recipe.  It turned out real good even in the convection oven.   I think I am finally getting the hang of it!

There was another rattler killed on Thursday.   It was small, but they are all deadly.

June sent us a card from Scotland and AET sent one from Denver!   On Thursday, man that checked into the campground from Denver.  He is very nice.  His first name is Forrest ….like Forrest Gump…. And his last name is my maiden name.   I was really surprised!!

Renee let me know that Jason has a diagnosis on his arm!!  They are so relieved…..I do hope that it going to be OK.

On Friday Chip and Straightman came over for supper.     I sold fire wood while Larry got the supper going.   The weather has improved a lot and Saturday is supposed to be very nice!

I have thought of Devin and Jeremiah many times in the past few days!   Saturday is a BIG day for them!

On Saturday they are going to open the ATV track at 11Am.    I will go over to take some photos.

June 9, 2007      The ATV opening was fun!!  I rode on the track in a 4 wheeler with Chip.    We met a lot of nice people!

Dawn won the BAE Walleye tournament and we were winners too, because she shared the fish with us!!    Walleye……UMMMM Good!! 

We went to the Klien Museum Open Air Market.   It was real nice.   I saw some postcards I really liked.  I scanned them in to share.  Rain and Lisa would really like the sunflower one!!  SD has LOTS of sunflowers.

There were quite a few campers tonight.   I sold firewood.

I met these guys that were Prairie Dog hunters.  Prairie Dogs are destroying the farmland and pastures here.  They produce like rodents and can take over an area quickly.  Horses and cows step in the holes and break their legs!!

We tried to fix the solar light, but no luck.  I guess I will send it back.  I still think it is the inverter and not the light. 

Also, the lights I got from Camping World are stinky!!  They don’t burn half the time!  I am calling them on Monday!

June 10, 2007

Today we went to Timberlake.  We passed Trail City.  Larry wanted photos of the Post Offices.  I will send them out tomorrow.  It is a very small town.  517 people.    

June Bug called and she had a good trip to Glasgow.  Derek and everyone there was doing well.  

We cooked fish tonight in the cooker outside.  Fran and Moma called while we were cooking.  After supper, I went to sell firewood, pick up tickets and see some of the campers that are left here.

Roger called me and he had a great time in Atlanta.  I was really glad he had a good time.  Lisa and Rachel had been to Greensboro to Jeremiah’s graduation. 

Moma said they came to see her and Jackie told me Lu, Brenda and Ed came to see Moma and Daddy. 

The weather was great today!  90 degrees and no wind.  There were lots of people on the lake!

Larry is all packed up to go fishing first thing in the morning.   I hope he does well.    

 

 

 

June2, 2007

We have another Walleye tournament today.  The people are from Warner, SD and most of them are volunteer firemen.  The weather has been cold and rainy for the past few days.    This morning it is still cloudy and cool, but no rain.   All the fisherman are out. They will come back in at 3PM to Jerry’s Bait Shop for the weigh in.  I am going down there to take photos for them.

We saw the Jensen’s on Thursday and she shared that the church services at FWC is back to normal!!  They have SO much going on and so many people wanting to share what God had done and the gifts they have it is hard to get it all in.   Somehow, I think God is so pleased to see their enthusiasm he is not worried about having a “normal” service…..just one that gives him glory and allows people to see Him at work in peoples lives, and that is what I see at FWC!! 

Sure met a nice couple last night from a town about 70 miles from here.  There last name is Vogel (bird in German and Dutch).  They have a ranch with cattle, wheat, corn and soybeans.  No sunflowers.  In August I hope to see them harvest the sunflowers.

Sharon could not have the movie due to the weather last night.  They show it outside, similar to what they did in Worcester, MA at Wachusetts  Park.     I hope they will be able to have it tonight.    The screen is really small…..sure wish they could have a blow up screen like they had in Worcester! 

I am just sitting here looking out the window I see 4 rabbits and a striped gopher.  That little gopher is a pain in the butt!   He has dug holes all over the place!!   It is a quiet morning.  Larry is still sleeping and I am drinking coffee and listening to XM Channel 34, so I am happy as a bug in a rug!!    Jack is right here with me.  We have already been for our walk and he got to see Harry the labradoodle.   Yesterday there was a double rainbow.  I got photos.   It was soooo pretty.   

We talked to Lisa and Moma this AM.      Lisa is WIDE open as usual and Moma had updates on all the family.  Laurie’s little girls got the Technical Award for their grades at school.  Jackie’s grandkids are doing great and they all came over and went swimming.  Wayne is feeling better.    I tried to reach Renee on her cell. 

We got the invitations to Devin’s and Jeremiah’s graduations Jeremiah sent a photo.  It is hard to believe they both will be graduating in a few days.   Both of them are nice young men.  I hope they always stay like that.

The people that we have met from Warner are really nice people.  There is a lady behind us named Carol that I really like.  She has been to Trier and I we talked about it a long time.  Tammi and Dean were with me there.   

There is a man in a small motor home that is traveling the country fishing all the lakes he finds interesting.  He is a Korean War veteran.  I think he must have just lost his wife.  One afternoon I, Carol and he had some great conversation!!  I told them about Jia Lin’s parents working in the plane factory in Harbin.  Sure hope Jia Lin and Annie are doing good. 

When we went into town, I met Gary, the pastor at the church at the Indian Reservation.  He came over and was talking to Larry and gave him a tract.   He has been here for 33 years and is originally from Bedford, PA!!   Small World!

 For lunch we went to a place called Ricks and had an Indian Taco!  Chip went with us , because he had told us about the Indian Tacos.  They are really good!!  They are a type of bread that is deep fried, thicker than a tortilla, with chili, onions, lettuce, peppers with a special sauce and sour cream.

June 3, 2007

The walleye were not biting like the fisherman like, but they still caught some.  The winning team caught over 25 lbs of fish!

The campground is not so full this weekend due to the weather.  The little girl behind us is having her 12th birthday.  Her and some of her friends came over to see how to cook “snakes” over charcoal.  They laughed and laughed when they found out it was a canned biscuit rolled into a long roll and wrapped around a marshmallow stick and then dipped in honey or cinnamon sugar.  I called them Dosnakes that were not poisonous or dangerous. 

Jonathon, the boy from Mitchell, that was in the tournament came over and set outside with us around the fire until almost 11PM.  He had a good time today, but wished he had caught more fish.

Today there was a rattle snake killed at site 41!!  5 feet long!  I missed it!  Darn…I wish I could have gotten photos….but not too close up!!  Larry really wants to see one alive here! 

 

June 4, 2007

This AM I took Jack out for a walk.  I also started using some of the pine cones Lisa sent me to make some sample owls.   

Straight called and we went to Revheim.  Larry was very happy to go.    Straight wants to get the ATV Course ready for the Grand Opening.   He groomed snowmobile trails before and he likes this type of thing.   Brady showed up.  I really like him.   He has to go to National Guards in one week.  I will miss him.   Larry really likes that Rhino 4 wheeler.

I came back to the RV and fixed some lunch, but I got a nice surprise!  Steph got Jack a Volunteer Vest!! I have to make some adjustments to it, but it works great and he looks so cute!  I took photos.   You should have seen the people looking at him!!  He is so popular!! 

Carol and her family are leaving today and we had a chance to say good bye.  I hope they will come again. 

Dale and I had a great talk!  He is a Korean War Veteran and has many of the same work experience I have had in the past.

There is a robin building a nest outside the window!  I have noticed as soon as Sunday evening comes, the birds and animals come out!

Larry is tired tonight.  I am going to take Jack for his evening walk, go check out the flowers at Bathhouse A- I can’t wait for Fran to see them!!  I did not kill them.

There is a new man and woman camping in a motor home.  They have some baby jack rabbits they are raising!!  The mother was killed by a car.  I would like to get some photos tomorrow.

South Dakota gives me a feeling of adventure and a free spirit.   The 3 R’s here mean – Riding, Roping and Rodeo.   There will be one soon.  We want to spend more time on the West Side of the river, maybe at a place called Timberlake.   While in China I told the people there that I lived in a wide open space…..I did not even know what that meant until we came here.  You can drive 20 miles (+) and never see a house a car or a person.    If you as a child, like me, watched Roy Rogers (my sister Jackie LOVED it) you see the west, but you can not “feel” it.   I wish I could capture or find a word that describes some of the spirit I see in the people here.  Is it passion?  When someone at work told me I was “passionate”  about my work, I can only tell you, here is where I would not have stood out as being passionate.  The children, the parents, the more mature generation, all have it.    I have thought several times as I approached retirement, I did not want to leave this life with the “music” still in me or as a “flicker” in a flame.  Here I feel the music again…..I feel the flicker beginning to become a flame, once again.  I see this in Larry also….not physically, but mentally.   

I really believe, if we had come here earlier in our lives, we would never have left.   When you hear the advertisements for the Dakotas that say “Discover the Spirit”……they mean it.   South Dakota spirit… I wish I could send it out in a bottle!!

 

 

 

 

May 23, 2007

This morning we are up early and on the road to Bismarck, ND to Capitol RV.   Today we hope to get the underpinning fixed; the awning fixed and let them look at the slide out as a precaution.  

We have to be there at 8AM and it is a 2 hour drive, so we were up at 4:30AM to get ready to leave.  As I was laying there after the clock went off, I had a flash back of getting up to go to work that early almost every day!!   AHHHHHHH!    Now I am on the RTZ (Retirement Time Zone) I can not imagine doing that

This morning at 1:30AM there was a beep…beep …beep that woke us up.   I started to get up and Larry said he thought it was a camper complaining about the noise.  Nope….it was just the walkie talkie’s beeping because they need to be charged!! 

We are traveling on 83 North to Bismarck and the sun is coming up.   The rain we have had the past few days is a welcome sight here in this area.  They have water in areas that have been dry for years!!   The road feels like we are back in Pennsylvania.  Bumpity….bumpity….bump..   There are green fields and big ranches. We have seen several sets of large bee hives.  Bucky would like that.    

We just went through Mound City…..in about 30 seconds.  They have a city park and a steak house.   Speaking of steak…..I have to tell you that the Straight Man is right……SD beef is the BEST!!  We love it. 

Now we are at our last stop in SD.  Herreid.  If you buy $50 at the gas station, you get a free shower.   They have a nice Veterans Memorial.   There is also an interesting antique shop.                

Of course, so far we love SD!!  The mornings are crisp and fresh smelling, the days are mostly warm and sunny (SD used to be the Sunshine State along with Florida); the evenings are cool and relaxing.  The spirit of the people is “can do” and laid back.   People wave at you on the street.  There is definitely a conservative and family driven spirit.

Welcome to North Dakota.   The Prairie Region.   They have a town named Strasburg.   Speaking of names of towns….SD has Harrisburg and Gettysburg.  Actually Gettysburg was founded by 200 soldiers that were survivors of the Battle at Gettysburg.    The road is better in North Dakota.  Sort of like going across the line into Maryland from PA.   The National Guard is a big organization here in SD. 

Just got a message from Louse Z. and her Mom is getting naturalized today!!! I am so proud of her!!

Jack is still sleeping.  He was wide open until he got in the back seat with his duck.  Then he went right back to sleep.

We just passed the Lawrence Welk birthplace!!  There were no bubbles or music, but it is a pretty area.    It was near Emmons County.

Some ND facts:

·         39th or 40th State.  SD and ND came in at the same time, and no one would tell which paper was signed first.

·         Bismarck is the capitol.

·         Agriculture is the main business.

·         The State Bird

·         The State Motto

Now we are getting into Hazelton.   Am I in ND or PA??    They even have a café named the “Lions Den”….Nittany Lions…..I don’t know.    Wow….they have a Golf Course…..John C. would like that!!    

We are about 10 miles from US94 and as far as you can see there are fields, but no houses.  Way in the distance you can see the tops of several huge silos.    There are 2 types of planting here in this area.  Till and no till.  The no till is where they treat the land chemically and plant again on top of the ground.  This is supposed to prevent erosion.  The till is where they till the land and plant.   There is always discussion on which is the best.  Some people think that the no till will cause other issues with the soil and that if you till, plant properly and monitor your crops, it is the best way.   We have seen both, so I am interested to see how they compare in growth patterns .  Yesterday on the news they said that 92% of the corn in this area is planted.  The last time this occurred this early was 1987.    Corn prices are up due to Ethanol, but it is also raising the price of beef.

We just got on 94West.  The speed limit is 75 MPH. 

Oh…..I can not wait!!  A WALMART and SAM’s Club are near  to the RV place!!  We have MANY things to get!  Things are more expensive in Mobridge for some staples that we use.    I have a HUGE list.   I also want to go to Staples and Home Depot (maybe).       

We dropped off the RV and headed out to see Bismarck and to do some shopping.

We went to :

·         Menards

·         Sams

·         Wal-Mart

·         Lowes

·         Dollar Tree

·         Best Buy

We stocked up on many things at Sam’s Club.     Then we went to Wendy’s for lunch.  We wanted to go to the Texas Roadhouse, but they did not open until 4PM.  Maybe when we come back in a 8 weeks.  We hope our supplies last that long.  We should only have to get fresh veggie, dairy, eggs and meat at the local market. 

I wanted to find us a sign to put outside our RV to say welcome or something, but I could  not find one. I did get some solar lights and a string of red and blue rope lights to add to the ones I got from camping world that were white, for the weekend.  

Brenda Q.  Sent an email about Johnny.  Things are not good.  Our thoughts and prayers are with all of them and especially with James and Becky.  They lost their Mother less than 2 weeks ago and now they face losing their father.  

I checked in with Moma and Daddy and they were updated on the situation.     I remember when Johnny and Daddy were younger…..Daddy really  thought a lot of Johnny. 

It took all day to get the RV fixed and I have to tell you RV Awnings are NOT cheap!!   Everything looks good and I hope that this is the last time we have to go anywhere for repairs!!   I can also tell you to go to the Camping World site on line to buy anything you want and expect it to be at least 30% cheaper than any RV store I have ever been in!! 

Baby Love is on the radio!!  It sure makes me think of my German guys in Langen and Bensheim!!    They would like here in SD!  There is such a strong German influence and there are German goods and even a café that serves German foods.   We just passed a place called Schmaltz’s Meats and Grocery and now Schumachers’s Ford and Pfeife Auto.    See what I mean about the German influence??? 

We got out of Bismarck about 5PM and called the Straight Man and let him know we were going to be late and Larry may not be able to hook up with them at 8AM tomorrow morning.   No problem…but we did not want him to think he had 2 slackers for volunteers!!  We ran into some rain…but not much and now the sun is shining…..but OOOOHHHHH the wind is really whipping AGAIN!!   We many NEVER user our awning again!!  We can’t afford it!!

Jack is taking another nap!!  He has been a good boy today.  We got him a Jr. Bacon Cheeseburger at Wendy’s and they filled up a chili cup with water for him.   He was sooo happy.   

On  the way to Bismarck we used GPS.  Anna (the GPS lady) gave us the directions, but on the way back, Larry wanted her to shut up.    I also took the hint!    I unplugged her….and me. It has been a long day for both of us.

Oh….we just passed a place called Ashley, ND!!      There is a place named Zeeland, ND like where Kees came from in Holland!!              And the Hague!!   Dutch and German influence!!  I noticed several people with the last names van der ***** and Vogel and Vos.    They also call their children “Jungen’s” .  

We are back in South Dakota!!    We saw the word EXPRESS spelled out in rocks on a hill.  I have no clue why that would be there.     There is not a house in sight!

We have seen 4 trucks ( 18 Wheelers) for Wal- Mart headed toward Bismarck!!  I did not buy that much stuff, I know!! 

Larry saw a rainbow!  I did not see it!!

As we approach Indian Creek, I feel it is like going home.  I remember the first time we came this way and the anticipation we had as we approached making that turn into Indian Creek.    Neither of us knew what to expect, what it would be like, who we would be working with or what we would be doing.  God is so good.  Here we are in a beautiful, clean location with great people and able to enjoy what we do as camp ground host and hostess.   Thank everyone for your prayers and keep them coming!! 

I wish you all could see this South Dakota sunset with the mix of blue sky, white/gray clouds and green grass.   It is truly something to behold!!    I can only imagine what the settlers and Native Americans saw here, when the buffalo roamed, the covered wagons and horses were the transportation and the barges were the only way across the river.  It is breath taking now, but I am sure then, it must have been for them also.  We must not forget that the dinosaurs roamed here also at one time!!    

There is a jack rabbit!!  Sitting up on top of the hill about 2 miles from where we turn.  Chip and Straight Man told us that they were making a come back here.   No photo….but maybe later.   

May 24, 2007

We spent most of the day putting things away and organizing.

We put out the patio mat that Lynn W. gave me.  It looks great.  I hope to get some photos this weekend.

Larry did not feel good at all today.   

May 25, 2007

Today started off VERY WINDY!!   I went to get wood and I loaded up the truck and the cart!!  The wind almost blew me and Jack away.

Larry was not doing well today and stayed inside.  When I got back he had washed the dishes and tied to make up the bed, but could not finish it.  He was in Atrial Fib again and was not doing well at all.

The remainder of the morning we took it easy.    Brenda Q.  called and Johnny Q. had passed away last night about 11:45PM.   At least he did not suffer long, but I can not help but think of his children, James and Becky.  The have lost their Moma and Daddy within 2 weeks.

Today was a great mail day!  I got a card from Sharon, a post card from Anne and a package from Lisa!!

In the afternoon Larry was feeling some better , so we went for a ride.  There was a huge dust storm (I got photos)  and we saw buffalo grazing (more photos).

Carrie came by and we talked about the Olympics.  I do hope her and her husband qualify.  He is in Munich now. 

Chip stopped by and visited  before supper.  He tried out the Kuchen I got at the local bakery.   I hope to get his mom’s recipe. 

We got some rain and it was really strange, because the way the wind was blowing,  one side of the RV was wet and the other dry!   The wind calmed down for about 1 hour and then started up again from ANOTHER direction!!  Welcome to SD , it is like Holland, the weather changes in a heartbeat!!

Sharon S. called and we are set up for tomorrow to do the bait casting contest and then head to West Whitlock for a Dutch Oven demo.   The movie was cancelled for tonight. 

I did not sell firewood…..who in the world would want to be outside in this wind!!   

 

May 16-20, 2007

Things are really busy!!   All the seasonal team is here except one person.    Everyday there has been a lot of activity getting ready for the weekend. Jack really made a big mess for us fishing on the 16th.  He tells the story on his page.  Check it out.   He is a lucky dog.

Friday the 18th was really hot and there were a lot of people coming in.  I took off to town to pick up supplies for the weekend.  Larry was helping with the yard on the mower.    When I got back we loaded up more firewood and got ready for the evening firewood run.  I bought a little horn to blow to get peoples attention for firewood.  It worked great! Today they were planting flowers.  I thought of Fran, if she was here she would be in heaven!!  I did not plant any, because they wanted them to live.

There is a girl on our team that is going to be on the US Olympic Sharp Shooters!!  Mary Ann in Harrisburg would be impressed. She is a nice young woman.    Sharon came by to see if I could help with the Fishing Tournament for the children.   We had a nice time visiting.  

May 19th we slept the latest we have slept in years!!  I did not get up until 9AM!!!  After breakfast, I took Jack for a walk and to see what was  going on.   As we approached one of the cabins there was a BIG snake all coiled up.  It was a bull snake, but it scared me half to death!!     

There were lots of campers and I sold lots of firewood on the cart!   I met a really nice girl named Jackie and her family.   There was a group of women with a rented camper in front of ours and they were really nice also.  The ladies granddaughter was with them and she LOVED Jack!! 

I went to Campground B and the baby robins have hatched out!!  I got a photo without disturbing them. The fishing tournament was a big success!!  There were about 50 people and 35 children.   They caught all kinds of fish- walleye, white bass, carp, and others!   The kids really enjoyed it.

 May 20th I went back to the Family Worship Center.  Today was very exciting there.   They had a special Sunday where they had a Ministry Fair!!  After the minister spoke on how we need to use our gifts daily and be on the team for Jesus everyday  (Romans 12:4-12) everyone visited booths on different ministries and how they could get involved using their talents!

There were booths for:

·         Buildings and Grounds and Maintenance

·         Foster Care for SD

·         Women’s Prison Ministry

·         Small Groups Ministry – Different Topics every 6 weeks

·         WOLF-Women of Living Faith Prayer and Ministry Group

·         Saving Grace Ministries- Our purpose is to share Christ’s love with girls.

·         24/7 and M Power Kids

·         Mexico Missions

·         Prayer Ministry – Meets each day with different groups

·         Moms In Touch, Internationally –www.MomsInTouch.org (800-949-MOMS)

·         Many more….

It was great fellowship and a great learning experience.  

After I got back to the RV we went to Hidden Lakes State Park.  It was very nice there.  We saw a moma duck with 12 baby ducks!!

Then we went to Java, SD.  We took a photo of the post office…..Larry still has a thing for Post Offices!! This is where the “thunnnder storm” lady broadcast from.  It was a very small place and we did not see the weather area, but we did see some HUGE ranches. 

When we got back to Indian Creek, we sat outside and watched the birds in the trees building nest.  StraightMan came by on his bike and we visited for a few minutes and then we took the cart and rode around the park checking out who was still here and who had gone.  We were going to the boat ramp and Larry saw a Kill Dee and it was on eggs!!  I would have never seen it.  I got photos.  Then we headed to Campground B and we saw a rabbit and checked on the baby robins.

We saw a family that were in a truck with and ad for better TV reception, so we stopped to talk. 
What a nice family -  Sarah, April and Allen are the kids and they LOVED Jack…..I know he has told in his page that he does not want to sound conceited, but he is SOOOO LOVEABLE…..and he is!

While we were talking he took off to the river, jumped in and came back with a WALLEYE!!  He caught a

 

May 11-14,2007

May 11,2007

The past few days have been busy.  I think that there must be a time zone  RTZ (Retired Time Zone) because, time does fly in retirement.

Straitman and Chip and Larry have been spending time all week getting ready for the weekend and for the our first fishing tournament.    Things for me this week have been a slower, but I have continued to try to work on the GPS trails.   I understand GPS and how it works, but I have to admit, I am not the greatest at directions!!    I still have to try to get the satellite photos and plan to go back to the Mobridge Library today for that.

On Thursday evening,  we had 2 visitors to the RV.  Josh and Travis came to see Jack….seems like Jack is already famous here.   Josh is 10 and loves animals.   He played with Jack a long time and while he was another couple from Michigan rolled in from Reno to get set up.  

Larry caught 2 more cat fish, so we hope to have fish this weekend for supper.  

Tonight the DRIVE IN THEATOR opens in Mobridge!!  It has been years since we have been to a drive in!!  When the kids were little we used to go often .  We would put them in their pajamas and put their blankets in the back seat and they would go to sleep while we watched the movie.  In the summer when it was hot, we would take our lawn chairs and a blanket for them to sleep on and sit outside the car.  It only cost $1 a car on the nights we would go and we would take our own popcorn and drinks.   We won’t get to go tonight because there is a another survey today that starts at 2PM until 9PM.   However, we will go another night and I will let you all know how it was.

The news has photos this AM of Aberdeen and the flooding from last weekend.  They really have some problems there!  There are people from all over SD going there to help them.   The difference I saw here than from Katrina, is they are not on the news  waiting on someone from the government to clean it up for them…..they are just doing it!  

Larry’s Mother had given me cleaning rags a long time before she passed away , 8 years ago,  and I was still using them.  Some of them were really worn out, so I put them on the camp fire pile to burn.  The birds here went nuts over them!!  They started trying to take the whole rag for their nest which had to weigh more than them!   I tore them up in strips and put them back on the pile and they took every piece….down to the last string!    I really enjoyed watching them.  It would make Ruth happy also, because she believed in making use of everything and not wasting anything!

Yesterday the Jarman’s came to fish again and they caught catfish and walleye.   Around here, only walleye count!   Mrs. Jarman says that the Northern Pike is her  favorite.   So far, we have not had either type to eat…..so I hope to know soon.  I am going to their Church on Sunday.

We are excited about the tournament on Saturday!   I hope they catch a lot!

The survey went really well and we sold a lot of stickers!   There were a lot of people coming in for camping also.     It was fun to meet all the people, their children and pets. 

I borrowed a book from the Library about Hutterites, a group of people here in SD living in a commune.  At first I thought they were similar to the Amish, but I think now, there are distinct differences.

Some things I have learned about the Hutterites:

·         They came here due to religion and they are Anabaptist

·         They started with 1874 in SD with 400 people and now there are 22,000 in SD and Canada

·         They live in a Bruderhof ( Place of brothers) , have a strong ,very efficient, work ethic and have been compared to bee hives

·         In 4 centuries, there has never been a reported homicide in the Hutterite communes

·         The men wear black pants and bright shirts, the women wear long  dark skirts , bright shirts and polka dot bandanas

·         They came from Austria, Moravia, Czech, and Russia and were refugees.  They speak a dialect similar to Carinthia in Austria.  German is taught as the first language. 

·         John Hutter was a key person in their formation.  They struggled for the first years in SD and actually were supported some by the Amana Colony some (from Iowa)

·         They have a “little” school for children under 6 and a “big” school for 6-12 .  It is the task of the school to teach the children the Hutterite ways , the parents count on this.

·         They came to SD and settled in Yankton, but moved up the Missouri River

·         They are conscientious objectors and this created them much pain and criticism durint WWI and WWII.   WWI was especially difficult.

·         SD passed a communal Act in 1935, it eliminated State and Federal Taxes for the Hutterites, which helped them financially

·         Hutterites are not saved by his profession of faith or beliefs alone, but also from the proper social relationship.   They stress personal suffering as a necessary condition for following Christ and place emphasis on the Second Coming

·         They have strict weekly routines for daily chores

·         Strict Church dress rules

·         Baptism by request- Signifies submission spiritually and to the commune life style   

·         They have arranged marriages and the women are taught to be in submission to the man.  The woman makes all the changes, by moving to where here husband is.  

·         They are recognized as hard working people

·         They use electricity and power items and trucks.

As I learn more, I will share what I learn.   I may get some photos

 

May 12, 2007

This morning we met Chip at 6AM at the office and headed to Waltham Bay for the Walleye Tournament.   We were there only a few minutes and the Game Warden came to audit the boats before they could put in. They check the live wells for fish and we check for the stickers on the pull vehicles.

There were people from Wyoming, ND, SD, Iowa and Minnesota in the tournament.    Walleye fishing is a big deal here!!  The boats usually have 2 motors and a trolling motor.  The motors on the back are from 150hp-250hp and the small motor from 9hp to 12hp.   

Strait man brought us some coffee and helped check the boats.   After they were all in we went to a café and had biscuits and gravy!   It was not quite like Hardee’s, but it was good. 

Strait man told us about the fires in the Black Hills last year and Chip told us about the one in Mobridge.  It was much drier here last year.

Larry is “chomping at the bit” to go fishing this afternoon.     I will get some firewood on the cart and go around and sell it.   He is doing pretty good, but he can not get up and down to the area for fishing without some help.   He has to have a chair to help him keep his feet from swelling up.  Once we get him set up with his chair, rods, cooler and bait, he can stay there for a couple of hours with no problem and then I can go back and get him.   Sure hope he catches some fish…..still waiting to eat some walleye!  

We went back over to see the weigh in on the tournament.  It was really neat to see all of those fish!!  These guys caught a lot of fish.  The biggest one we saw was 5.99 pounds.  

 

May 13, 2007

It is Mothers Day!   I called Moma first thing and talked to her and she told me Daddy had got here a really pretty cake with  “Happy Mothers Day – Sheila, Laurie, Jimi Lynn, Jackie and Bryan”  . That was very thoughtful of Daddy to do that.

 

I went to church at the Family Worship Center in Mobridge.  It was very nice and there were so many young people and children!!     I plan to go back there next week.

In the afternoon we went fishing again, but with no luck.     It was a very nice day.

 

 

 

May 4-8, 2007

May 5, 2007

On Friday  night after we went to bed it rained very hard.   The wind did not blow as hard as I expected. So , here on Saturday  AM as we listened to the weather and there are high wind warnings and a flash flood watch.  SD weather is sort of like Holland…the only thing for certain, is it is certain to change.

I gave Moma and Daddy a call.   Also, Devin and Lisa.  I left a message for Renee.  It  seems like everyone is doing good.  Rachel and Roger both won their soccer games!!  Devin got into the college he wanted.  I got a note from Jeremiah and he is doing well also. 

We decided to head out and do some sight seeing.   We went across the river to the West side, which is Standing Rock Indian Reservation.  Sitting Bull is buried there.  He was born here in Mobridge.  His monument overlooks the river.  I took several photos.  Sacagawea has a monument also and she died near here.  She was only 25 (est).   There is a movement underway to improve the monument and it has just been added to the National Heritage Monuments list.

On the way we saw some Indian Ponies!!  The ponies were so cute, running and playing in the pasture.

As we drove through this country, I could not help but think about what it must have been like for the settlers that came here and also what it must have been like for the Native Americans to see them arrive.    As we looked across the rolling green meadows, in my mind I saw herds of buffalo and antelope roaming easily through here.  I thought of how the life to the Native Americans must have been challenging, but also fulfilling.  They had fresh fish, buffalo meat to eat and hides to keep them warm,  lush fields and rich dirt to grow vegetables…….and there was plenty for everyone.   How shocked they must have been to see fur traders slaughter so many buffalo at one time, they layed in the prairie drawing flies.   What a magnificent land God created here for all of us to enjoy……enjoy together.

We stopped at Jerry’s Bait Shop to check out the fishing supplies.  Larry wants to get started fishing, but it is too messy today.    Fran called while we were there and gave us an update on how things are going and we both are excited about Michael D. and his graduation.   We will talk again tomorrow after his party!!  I pray that Karen and Michael will have a great life together!!

We drove up to the Pollock Park site.   On the way we saw a Wild Turkey, a dead rattle snake, a hawk and several pheasant.  It is beautiful there.   369 people live in Pollock.  We stopped at the West Pollock Resort.   You can check it out at www. Westpollockresort.com  . 

The area is beautiful all around here with the green rolling hills and river and lake.   Fishing and hunting are the biggest activity around here.   

When we got back, Larry and Jack took a nap.  There are only 4 campers in the camp ground.  Tomorrow afternoon, we will do a survey as people come and go to see where people are coming from to visit the park and how many people come.

Wow….did the wind start to kick up.   The “Thunnnnder Storm”  lady and Arnold were really busy making announcements on new watches and warnings for Central North and South Dakota and the surrounding area.   The wind was rocking the RV really bad AGAIN.   The people across from our site from Minnesota had put up a very nice, big tent.   The wind blew it down with them in it.  FLATTENED IT!!   The lake is white capping and hitting the shore like we are at the beach!    The sky is so dark to the South…..where they are calling for numerous tornadoes and to the West, it is layered, the water, orange and a pink layer and a white cloud layer and a BLACK cloud layer.    I keep flipping to WB 1650 and back to the TV 11 where they have a running update with the latest warnings.  It is driving Larry nuts…..he says that I am a real WHOOS!  I was not crying or anything….but I was PRAYING!!!    

I put on my GPS and told it to find me.  It did.  However, the RV was rocking so bad, that it said we were going   1  MPH!!    We heard on the WB 1650 that the wind was 28 MPH with gust up to 60 MPH!!   I think it seemed like more 100 MPH!!   WHOOS or not, my knees were knocking!  I thought OZ was going to be the next stop on our adventure and I am certain Jack thought so also!!

We put in “Band of Brothers” and turned it up load, so I could not hear the wind!!  Captain Winters always has a good affect on me. 

About 11PM it started to slow up!! PTL!!      We finally went to bed, praying for the best.

May 6, 2007

This morning is MUCH calmer, but still windy.   I had just started the coffee and the Chipster knocked on the door.   Seems like there is a place called Hidden Lakes that he got a call about a problem and wanted to see if Larry wanted to ride over there with him to see what the damage was.

They took off and I gave Moma and Daddy a call to see how they were doing.  Daddy said his arm is just a little better, but gout is not something you get over quickly!   Moma was doing pretty good.  

Jackie called later and we had a good talk.    She always has a lot going on and is always trying to do her best for everyone.   I pray that she will take care of herself.  

Larry and Chipster came back and I made them blueberry pancakes and link sausages.   Then they took off again and I went to the office to start taking the survey.  Count the car, get the plate, the number of people and if they have a boat, bike or ATV.  It was very windy , so Larry and the Chipster pulled a truck around to the front for me and Jack to sit in!!  I was so glad!!    Larry and the Chipster  took off to take a look at some boat docks and other sites.   

There were about 30 cars and 60 people that came today and it was bad weather!  I met Mr. and Mrs. Little Bear from the Lakota Tribe.  I hope they come back and visit with me again.

As the evening went on, the wind died down and it is one of the most beautiful sunsets we have had since we have been here. 

We got a phone call from Squirt and we told her if Josh and Dillon came here they would never go back home!! Since I had free minutes I called a few people to catch up on the latest news at home.     Martha S. fell and broke her arm!!    June called me and we had a nice talk and she gave me an update on the Mackay Family in Scotland.  Baby and Mom are home now!!  Way to go Sarah!!    I tried to reach BA and Patti….missed them and Anne.  Also, I got to talk with Lisa M.   Fran said Michael’s party was a huge success and a BIG surprise for him!! 

Larry says that Jack has gone to the “Dark Side”…..meaning that he only wants to be with me and not  with Larry  (ha ha).  I think this is a sign of his high intelligence.  (ha ha) He is a great dog and lots of company to me.  

May 7, 2007

 The weather is beautiful today!!   Several people came to the park.  There are 3 campers set up.  We met a very nice couple that are retired and fishing here.  They caught some really nice catfish, a couple of wall eye and a silver bass.  The guys from North Dakota that were here last week, were back again today.  They had some nice fish also.  Walleyes and Silver Bass seem to be the biggest catches of the day.

The Chipster and the Strait man came by this afternoon.  It was our first time to meet the Strait man who is the new campground manager.   He seems very young…..but lately I have noticed more and more people seem very young.  (ha ha)  The rain has caused problems with some of the docks in the other parks.    Photos we saw on the front page of the Aberdeen, SD newspaper showed severe flooding in many areas.

Today we tried to hook a booster up to our TV to get a better signal so we could see more of the news, but  I could not get it to work.   We took  a look at satellite, but I am not convinced that I want it.  I really don’t miss the TV.  We get PBS and we have XM radio.  Larry misses his news shows, I think.   We have lots of DVD’s  and I found out yesterday that the library here has DVD’s that you can check out for free for 2 days.   They have a pretty decent selection.   I am sure we are supposed to have a built in booster, but I need to find the book.

Daddy said his gout is a little better.  Moma was doing good.    I contacted Alltel and I can now call and receive calls after 7 PM everyday, instead of 9 PM.   That will help some with the time difference.  15 miles down the road we are on Mountain time.    Terry N. called and we had a great time talking.  His family is doing good and he liked “Jack’s Signature” page on the website! 

Larry really has the fishing fever bad!!  He went into town and got what he needs and is preparing to go first thing on Tuesday morning.   I hope he has some luck.  If he does we will eat fresh fish for supper on Tuesday!!

 

 

May 8, 2007

I woke up early this AM.   I decided to go ahead and make some breakfast, so it would be ready for Larry when he got up.  I am sure he will want to go right away to the lake fishing!!   It is supposed to be a beautiful day again today and the “Thunnnnder Storm”  lady has not mentioned wind or bad weather!!  YEAHHHHHHHHH!!

The UPS man came and brought our ice maker!!   It is a portable unit and makes up to 29 pounds of ice a day.  It is about the size of a bread box.  We tried it out and it works great.   At first we thought it would be better to buy ice, but with a smaller frig, we need to keep colas in a cooler, plus if we go fishing we need ice for a cooler to take and the freezer is smaller, so ice trays take up too much room.   We have been getting ice about every other day and it is not summer yet, so we thought this would work better, if it did the job as advertised, and it was a one time expense. 

We went to the shore and started fishing.  We had a couple of bites….but no fish.  About 1PM  we moved to another spot…..but no luck.  After 3 we moved to another spot and Larry caught 2 catfish, 1 walleye, and many shiners (not eatable).  Jack caught a fish too!   He is a trip trying to retrieve every thing we throw …..including our lines!  I finally had to put him on the leash.    We did not have enough for supper.  So, we went to Dairy Queen!! 

While we were at DQ, we met a group from all over the USA and Australia that were here building and refurbishing a home for homeless Vietnam Veterans.   The Veterans Coalition is the name of the group.  You can reach them by www.vnw.org or 1-800-843-8626.  I hope to go to where they are working and get some photos to post on our site.   Remember, Veterans Day is EVERY day that you have your American freedoms!!

Well, another experience with our RV.   We do have a Winegard antenna and it “should” have came with a booster…….so we could see at least 1 TV station…..but we can not find where the booster is!       I read the book and I see the diagram and there is nothing like that in our RV.   You can bet, we will be on the phone AGAIN tomorrow with Forest River.    My advice…..NEVER let the people that sell you an RV rush you through your pick up!!    

Both of us got a lot of sun today and we are both tired tonight!   Fishing is tough work!!   I think based on what we caught and what we spent to catch it, each fish cost about $60!  This included the rods, bait, chairs, etc., but we had fun, sooooo that is priceless!   

Tomorrow is a survey day!   I hope we have a lot of visitors!

 

May 1 –May 4 , 2007

May 1,2007 was a beautiful sunny day, but with the wind picking up in the afternoon. 

The Chipster showed Larry around the area more and I spent some time “nesting” at the RV.

Do you know how many bugs can get on an RV from Virginia to South Dakota?   A lot!!!  I washed down the entire RV!!  Sure wish Dave H. was here to help me!!    I had a brush with an extendable pole and a squeegee, but it was quite a chore getting all the bugs and black streaks off.  With all that rain in iowa, the streaks seemed to be really bad!   It took me most of the day.  

I decided to pull the hose around the RV , but Larry told me not to do it, but it was too late.  I had already pulled too hard and I pulled it loose from the connection.  I had to go to the hardware store and get another end for it and repair it.  Right again, Larry. 

I also used my little Bissell carpet cleaner and cleaned the carpet.

Jack stayed with me and we did take a couple of breaks to go walk along the shore.  We saw some pheasant and he went nuts!!  He had a blast chasing them.

As I was driving the golf cart to meet the Chipster on a GPS site, I saw a dead bull snake in the middle of the road.  It was 5’4” (same height as me, but PTL not as BIG around ) and it looks like a rattlesnake, with the wrong head and tail.  I DID NOT get a photo…..and Larry will NEVER let me forget that!!   

When Larry got back we went over to the fish cleaning station where some guys were coming in from Lake Oahe (oh wah hee)  in a really nice, big boat!  2 of the guys were guides and one was a customer.  They had quite a catch of walleye fish.   They clean just like a catfish.  We watched  them fillet all of them.  This make Larry want to go even more to get the rods!! I gave them a  map of Buggs Island lake and we talked about South Dakota and Virginia.

I gave Moma and Daddy a quick call.  They had received some photos I sent them via “snail mail” and were very happy.  Tomorrow is Jimi Lynn’s birthday.  She would have been 49!    I know it won’t be an easy day for them.   It is never easy for any of us.  Stop Domestic Violence.

 

May 2, 2007

Larry took off the first thing to go up to the maintenance shop to get a mower to mow around the RV.   I took the chance to put down some of the plastic carpet cover on the high traffic spots in the RV.   Larry got to talking and did not get back here until 10AM!!   I did not call him Doris, but I thought about it. (Doris is my Moma and she likes to talk a lot.)

We will go to Bismarck on May 10 to get the under side fixed and the awning arm .   We heard from them today.  We will have to be there at 8AM and they will fix it and we can come back to Mobridge.  While we are there, we will go to Sam’s club. 

The wind was really whipping again today.  It shakes the RV it blows so hard!!   If we use awning , we will have to take it in at night every night.   Also, the Chipster said people do use screen houses, but they really have to be tied down and secured.   Our original plan had been to have a screen house over one picnic table and use it for cooking outside and all of our supplies for outside.  I guess we will see how it goes.   

Today I spent time with the GPS again.  There is a spot they want to put a vault toilet for the primitive camp area, but before it can be done, an archaeological report has to be done.  They use GPS for the determination of the exact site.  I used the GEKO unit and my PC GPS to get the coordinates and make a map of the area.    Also, the Chipster would like a way of identifying the places where the spraying is done and logging it on a map on line.   I worked on something using the GPS from my PC, but will try to perfect it tomorrow after I go to town and get can get on line.   They have Alltel here, but I have not invested in wireless connection yet.    As long as I only need it for personal use, I can go into town and tap into a wireless site.    Larry has found a couple more of the tags for the geo caching and I have been taking a look at the waypoints set up by Aaron last year on the hiking trails.     Tomorrow , I hope to do more with it.

“Big Blue” needed a bath!!  So, today while Larry mowed around the area, I  washed the truck.    “Big Blue” was very buggy also!!     

We went to a shop to get Larry a fishing rod for wall eye.  He could not find one like he wanted.  Now he wants to go to Pierre to look.

Time flies when you are retired….before we knew it , it was supper time!!

May 3, 2007

This morning I woke up to very WINDY weather!!  We get the Weather Band Station-WB 162.50 radio.   WXM 40 . The sky was red….”Red sky in the morning….sailors take warning.”     

There is a lady that talks about the weather on WB 162.50 and Larry makes fun of the way she talks (can you believe that?) .   Some people here - just look at him when he talks.  I was always remember the little Chinese girl,l named Chris,  that said “Sheila, what language does he speak?”   The weather lady says “thunnnnder storm” .    The guy that talks on the station….sounds like Arnold Swartnegger!!

The total snow fall for the year is 27 inches.    The Chipster told us to watch the lake and you will know the wind speed.  Calm  10-15 , no wave…..15-20 some waves……over 20 it is white capping  and if it is rolling…..30 plus.

A wind advisory means that 35 mph winds are expected.  Today they are saying secure all items, be careful traveling with high profile vehicles, watch for gust.   30-40 mph with gust up to 55mph from the SE.    A wind advisory from 8AM this AM to 1AM Friday.  They are calling for over the weekend there will be” thunnnnnder storms” with   70 degree temperatures.    Understand why I think we will NEVER use our awning again??  A RED FLAG Fire Warning is also in effect.  This means that fire danger is high and can spread very quickly.   

Today is Aunt Rebecca’s birthday.    Rebecca and Daddy are the only children of Grandma and Papa that are still living.  www.simpsonbuds.com  shows all the children.  Lynn and Tori have done a great job with the site.  (BIG HUG Sandy)

Larry went to the Mobridge Clinic for PTINR testing and the people were SOOOOO nice!!  They will send Dr. Assefa  the report and Ann will let us know if there is anything we should change.  

We got back to Indian Creek about 10 and Larry headed up to the shop and I went back to town.  I wanted to do email, check out the satellite for Google of this area, update the website, get some groceries, fill up the propane tanks, go to the Post Office and get ice.   

I had lots of email!!  I heard from lots of family and friends!  

The wind continues to pick up and the lake is actually white capping!

I got a lot done on the PC at “my” wifi spot  , but my battery went dead before I could finish! Phooey!!  I will try again tomorrow!    

I stopped at the mail box and Jack Beck received a package from Patti and her boys!!  It is a doggie First Aid kit!!  Thank you Patti, I have put it with Jacks box where we keep all his meds and information from Dr. D in Clarksville.   

Larry and I sat outside and had a late lunch.  Chipster stopped by and visited.   Larry went back down to where the shelter is and I put together a package to mail to Dave Z. and a fax I needed to send. 

Jack and I went back to the office and while we were waiting on Larry loaded up some firewood on the back of the truck.  If the weather is nice and the campers show up, they will need it.  It will be easier if it is stacked up at our site.   I stopped and took some photos of a bird’s nest Larry found in a small pine tree and some of Larry mowing the area around the camper.  I also took some photos of a bird nest that was built in the grill at the office!    

Larry tied down all the things outside because the wind is even worse as the evening approaches.

I have now tuned back into WB 162.50.  At 5PM - Cloudy, 72 degrees with South East 25 MPH wind and gust to 35 MPH.    A wind advisory is still in effect.    They are still calling for  “thunnnder storms”.   They need rain here desperately, so pray for rain.        A RED FLAG warning is still in place for critical fire weather conditions.      25-35 MPH wind with gust over 50 MPH are expected until after midnight here.

Now it is time to fix some supper.     

Do you remember the movie “Over Board” with Goldie Hawn?  There was a part on it where a guy lived in a trailer and he had a sign in his window “Don’t bother knockin’ if the trailer is rockin’”……..well I don’t think he lived in South Dakota, because this trailer rocks all the time, but from the wind!! (ha ha)

(BIG HUG) from both of us!! 

May 4, 2007

Well, we did not blow away…..but there were a couple of times I was beginning to wonder!   Jack sat right beside of me and I told him, “We are not in Virginia  anymore”, just  like Dorothy and ToTo were not in Kansas anymore!

The weather lady is still calling for winds that will gust up to 45 MPH and “thunnnnder storms”  off and on during the weekend.    

This morning is calmer and we did get some much needed rain,  PTL!    The lake is calmer.   I took a look outside and everything is still there!  

If you have XM Radio and get a chance, tune into 34!  What an awesome station to wake up to in the AM!!    Larry’s Mother would have loved it!!  The Kingsmen were singing this AM “He’s a Good, Good  God”   and “He Holds Me in the Palm of His Hand” during the storms……  What a great reminder!!  

Larry wants us to list things we have learned (I think he mostly means me:

·         Chock  the right wheel in the back and the left wheel in the front.

·         Don’t pull on the water hose too hard, it is easier to pull it under the RV

·         Don’t leave the awning out at night in South Dakota

·         Don’t put the chock and leveler blocks in the back of the truck, even if they are muddy.

·         Always take photos of any snake you see, dead or alive.

 

 

April  30, 2007

Today is our 40th wedding anniversary!!  It started off this AM about 3 with a BIG BANG.  Here in SD, storms, BIG wind storms can blow up unexpectedly.   And  it was a biggie and it was scary!!  When we went to bed the weather station had said winds up to 10-15 MPH.  Actually, they winds went to 35 MPH with gust up to 52 MPH.  Well, lets just say the the awning de flappers we got were useless, because the wind got under that awning and it banged and banged!!  There was no way to get it down!!  If you remember on “Little House on the Prairie”  where Pa looked like he would blow away , well it was for real!!    At 5:51 AM I saw the final gust grab it, bend the holders like toothpicks and put the awning on TOP of the RV!!   I was praying and pacing!!   I know that the pioneers must have had tremendous faith!!

 

We waited it out until abut 7AM and the wind was beginning to die down a little and then took a look.  There was no way I could reach it and Larry could never do it alone.  Than goodness we had the “Chipster’s” cell phone number!!  We called him and he said he thought of us and wish he had told us that here in this area, this type of storm can blow up in a heart beat!!  He said if we came through that one, we have seen some of the worst!   He said he would be over shortly and he was!!  Together, me, Larry and the Chipster,  got the awning down.  We think the awning assembly is the only problem.  Everything else seemed to be fine and the awning rolled up fine and with now tears or damage.  We were very lucky!!  Once again, God had watched over us!!  There is an old saying that things happen in threes, so, I think this should be it!!

 

We wanted an adventure and we have had it!!   Please keep us in your prayers.  We got a beautiful card from Jean and Danny for our anniversary.  We also got a card today from Rafal and his family from Poland!!   I never got to check the website today…..or do email.  I am sure there are greetings there also.  Thank everyone for remembering us!!

 

After we finished with the RV, Larry and the Chipster went to see some other areas in the truck.  Chipster is a wealth of information about this area!!    We are fortunate to have him for a friend.

 

He told me to go up to the office and go in and take a look at the working area and at the PC.   He also brought me a Geko GPS handheld unit to play with  and to see how we can use it on the Geo Cache hiking trails.    I went up to the office and the Chipster has a screen saver of a BLACK BEAR that he saw with his sister at Yellowstone!!   Jack and me checked out the space and I took a photo.  I will post it on the sight!!   Jack can go with me to work!! Isn’t that cool???

 

While they were gone, I cleaned the floors and spots on the carpets, the bath room, vacuumed out the truck and wiped down the interior of the truck.   It was about 1:30PM before they got back.   Larry and myself worked on getting the details together to give to the RV place for the parts replacement.  We hope to go there and be back in one day.     After that we headed into town to mail a few things.  

 

We went to the local hardware store (I LOVE hardware stores!) and got a really nice nozzle for the hose, so tomorrow I can work on cleaning the outside of the truck and RV.  We will be going to Bismarck, ND on May 10 to get the under side of the RV fixed, so Larry will be talking with the RV place about ordering the awning assembly and getting it done at the same time.  

 

 

We went riding around the area and saw some very pretty sights near the lake!!    Check the photos.   Larry seems to really enjoy this!! It reminds me of how it was when we first got married and he would take me out to Aunt Katie’s to the dump to shoot rats. (fun time right?)  Actually, we did a lot of talking out there!  We were in a “traffic jam” due to construction on the way out here and the couple in front of us was making out…..and I asked him “Why aren’t we doing that?” – He almost choked on his cola!!  

 

Today we had a good day; however, Larry’s legs were very swollen today.   Not enough rest last night and too much activity today.  He will need to go to bed very early tonight.   Sure hope the wind is calmer tonight!

 

We fixed a simple supper and had a quiet evening.  

 

Our 40th will be something to remember.  We thanked God for keeping us together  for 40 years and pray that he will help us to enjoy our next years together!!  I know He will…if we allow Him to do it.

 

We heard from Lisa today and she was doing good!!  We got a “News Progress” from home and she was on the front page again!!  Rachel had a great time at the beach.  Lisa said Renee was doing good.   

 

We certainly never dreamed in Dillon, SC 40 years ago, we would ever do anything like this!!

 

Tomorrow Larry is going to go with the Chipster again and I will work on the truck and RV and if I have time go to the office and start to organize it or as some call it, give it the “Beck Effect”. 

******************************************************************************

  April 28 and 29, 2007

We worked getting the RV set up and went into town.  We had a nice big juicy hamburger for supper.  

The wind blew hard last night, but not like it did in Iowa!!

We work up to a sunny morning after a really good nights sleep.   We asked God to watch over us and our family that is far away.  

Larry started taking a look at what we need to do to adjust the awning and I fixed breakfast.    I talked to some people here and they told me about a baptist church in Selby.  I will go with them next Sunday. 

We straightened up the RV and are sort of in a holding pattern until we hear back from Forest River on if we will go to Aberdeen, SD on Monday or Tuesday.  We don't want to put everything together and then have to tear down AGAIN!!  

We decided to ride into town and get a few things we need at the family dollar store.    When we left there we crossed the MOBRIDGE (Missouri Bridge) over the Missouri River.  Just as we crossed June Bug from GB called to share that Colin and Sarah have a daughter, Caitlyn.   She will update us later on the progress, since she is 3 weeks early. 

Along the river Native Americans are fishing.  Larry watched them and is now "chomping at the bit" to get some bait and do some fishing, so I have to type VERY fast!!   We are tapped into the local motels wifi again! 

Tomorrow we will be married 40 years!!  Please remember us in your prayers!!  Thank you all for your notes , prayers and support!! 

Love, Sheila and Larry   Phil 1:3  

 

April 27, 2007 Continued

We left Huron about 2:30PM.   It is very windy now.   No rain, but windy!

We are on I14 West and it is very remote!!  So far we have seen NO campgrounds.   Tonight we wanted to stay at Lake Whitlock Recreation, near Gettysburg, SD, but it is another 80 miles.  There is definitely no Wal-Mart to pull into!! I have searched and searched GPS, but the ones that are available are miles (40+) miles off the route.  We are talking about going to Pierre, but that is about 45 miles in the other directions, so it would probably be better to just go on to Gettysburg.       

Soooo after a quick stop for more gas…..we are on to Gettysburg. 

No more future news on pheasants……they are very common here, as common as sparrows at home.  Larry has counted 15 in the past 1 hour!!  We stopped and took a photo of a male in a field.   I will post it later.

We are now on 83 North.  It is very remote.  As far as you can see are pastures.  Then all the sudden you see a farm house.     We can see a water tower way off in the distance.  

We got on  212 West to got to West Whitlock Recreation Area.   Larry said…”Gosh, it looks like we are dragging a plastic bag….I’ll pull over and you take a look.”  So I did.    Boy, did we have a BIG SURPRISE. 

There is a plastic pan (panel) that fits under the RV that covers and protects the tanks that has insulation in it.  It is mounted on the frame and pops in , sort of like a LEGO.  There is a wooden piece across the middle with screws to stabilize the panel.   There are 2 sections and both of them were dragging the ground and the white insulation was blowing out!!   I went back to the truck ant told Larry  to get out and come because I thought we had big trouble.    To say I was a little excited and scared is an understatement.  Here we are on the side of the road in a very remote area with the bottom of our RV hanging out!!   AHHHHHHHH!!!

Who you gonna call???   We left Eric the RV man in Iowa!!  I got the cell phone and started calling the Forest River Emergency hotline number that Steve Hicks had told us about.  I got a very nice lady on the phone and gave her our GPS location and told her the situation.  She would contact someone and have them call us back. 

Meanwhile, Larry takes a look and thinks we may be able to get back in and secure it. iback in the track if we take out the insulation.  So, I take out the insulation.  Larry is laying on the ground underneath the RV on the left side.  Several BIG trucks passed us and did not stop.  I was afraid they would hit him, so I stood in the road.   Then I had to go on the right side and get down on the ground under the RV and try to fit the panel up there.  I was able to do it and we got it back in.  Larry took heavy rope out and we ran it through the storage compartment and under the RV to secure it.     The only thing to do was try to go down the road like this. 

The RV center called back and we told them what we had done .  They will try to find a service center and be back with us first thing in the AM.

3 miles down the road, I hear a big pop.  We stop and I get out again.  The back panel is on the ground again!!    The panel has pulled the valves for the tanks , so we have no choice , but get it off.  Larry  had a pair of pruning shears , and we started cutting the best we could to keep it from damaging the panel or lines.  We got it off and re-secured the rope on the front panel.   Both of us are pretty uptight at this point.  We still have a ways to go to get to West Whitlock. 

Everything is OK…..4 miles more to go to West Whitlock…..and the scenery here is beautiful.  I am holding a compress on Larry’s right hand as he drives with his left…..he bleeds very bad when he gets scratched and it was a good one….when he was getting that panel cut.   We have 9% inclines here!

We see Lake Oahe and green lush hills.   No time to stop….we have to get to a place we can park. We see the park!!  Yeahhhhh!!!!  

It is beautiful here!!  Deer are grazing and birds are singing and the pheasant are everywhere!!

We found a place and get set up.  Larry takes another look at under the RV and it looks like the handles for the pulls to the tanks are bent.    We will let them know tomorrow, for now we need to fix some supper and get some rest!!  We are the only ones in the campground , but we do see a truck , they have a tent to set up. 

Last Friday, it was the slide out problem…..not anything we did, but the door fro the cabinet jammed the slide.  That is main reason we stayed so long in Iowa.  Waiting on repairs and parts. This Friday , this happened.  We are getting broke in good.

What this proves is that we can handle it and not kill each other!!    It also concerns us that we have had 2 things like this happen in a brand new unit.     Lets see what tomorrow brings. 

We know God was watching over us.    PTL.   Continue to keep us in your prayers!!

April 28, 2007

   This morning was another beautiful morning!!  The sun is shining!  Now I know why SD was once called the Sunshine State.  

We took our time, had some breakfast , checked out under the RV  and then took a short  walk along the lake.  There is a Akarara Indian lodge here.  This is one of the areas that Lewis and Clark stopped at during their expedition. 

It is very beautiful here!!   Quiet and nice !   Jack and I did some exploring and went in the Indian lodge.  I got some photos of the lake and of the lodge.  I will post them as soon as I can.   

We headed out of the park about 9:30.  “Big Blue”  did us a great job again!!   I wish Steven and Bobby could see this thing pull!!

Oh my…..we just passed a sign Mobridge 24 miles!! My heart is beating fast!!

It is drier here!!  The fields are more brown.

We just topped a hill and we can see Mobridge!!  It is awesome with the river or lake in the back ground. 

 

Jack called us and we told him we are on our way!!

Let the Adventure begin (continue) !!!

We just pulled into the road to Indian Creek Recreation Area at 12:25PM 4-28-2007. 

Jack met us at the gate!! 

We will be busy today setting up.

Please continue to keep us in your prayers. 

I got our golf cart and Jack P. (in the future I may call him Chip) asked us to put some firewood in it and take it around to some of the campers.  I sold $7 worth!!  

Larry and I are going into town to check out where things are and see if we can find a wifi spot.  (Guess you can see we did!!)

We love all of you.  (BIG HUG) 

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April 26,2007 and April 27, 2007

We left Oxford about 8:45AM.   We checked our checklist twice and still we missed one thing, which was to make sure the connection to the truck from the RV was secure.   We stopped along I80 West and secured it.

We stopped to meet Eric and pick up our book from him and he gave us an update on how his day went yesterday afternoon!!  Never a dull moment for the RV Man!! 

We asked God to watch over us and our family today and I read the devotion from one of the books that the Pennsylvania  WOW  group gave me for retirement.

We passed the Iowa Speedway.  It is very nice looking.  I thought of Jackie’s family and Harold and MiMi.

As we approached Colfax/Mingo , Iowa,  we saw lots of fields flooded.  Prairie City  had fields on both sides  of the road completely under water.  

It is still raining and it is 10:30AM , but it is light rain and the  wind is not   whipping like it was yesterday.    We are just taking our time and being careful. 

We stopped at a rest stop and my invisible sign on my forward must have been flashing, “ Ask me, I’ll help you.” , because there was a little old lady there that needed help with the water  in the ladies room and then she started telling me about her 10 children and how they were all living except one son, that was killed in Viet  Nam.   She said she was coming all the way from Cedar Rapids to Des Moines to go to the dentist and seemed absolutely shocked when I told her we were coming from Virginia on our way to SD.  She reminded me of my Moma and how she would have been!!   

We passed the North Skunk and South Skunk River bridges, but , PTL , did not smell a skunk!

Larry saw another Cedar Creek RV headed  East.  I missed it.  It was the first one we have seen since we left.   We did see a Motor Home by Forest River in West Virginia.

We reached Des Moines about 11AM.  Still raining!!   Sure  pray it stops soon!

Lisa and Carl will never believe it, but we saw a Schwan’s truck on I80!!

Time for Rush Limbaugh……Larry’s hero.   Another 3 hours of broadcast excellence on EIB. 

We just crossed the Middle Raccoon Creek and it is definitely out of its banks.  It is the birthplace of John Wayne (June Bug would like that) and there are covered bridges here in Madison County and where the movie “Bridges of Madison County” was made . 

Things we learned about Iowa:

·         25%  of America’s richest farmland is here in Iowa

·         They are the number one producer of corn, cows, and hogs in the USA.  The only states that produce more food are Texas and California

·          When it rains , it pours……and like Holland, the weather can change many times in one day.

·         People are friendly and hardworking, like baseball , football and NASCAR and making babies.

·         There is a geological wonder here with quartz silk.  The only other one similar is in China.

We stopped in Stuart, Iowa at Casey’s General Store for gas.  It was $2.74 per gallon.  We got free coffee there because we bought diesel.  We have traveled on our trip as of this moment 1567 miles.   

Larry had to make a “pesky” visit to the men’s room (as Cheryl Crowe would call it…).  I did not ask him how many sheets of paper he used to check and see if he saved the environment. (ha ha)  According to her women could save the planet if we only use one sheet when we go for NON “pesky” visits.   Who in the world has ever called pooping a “pesky” visit to the toilet???   

We had lunch at McDonald’s.  Larry had a hankering for a Fish Filet sandwich.   We got Jack a plain hamburger and he was thrilled!! 

We are approaching Creston, Iowa and it has finally stopped raining!!  I think I actually see some sun trying to break through the clouds!!  Water is still standing in the fields we are passing, but not as bad as it was when we left Oxford.   

Along this part of I80 we are seeing a lot of wind mills for businesses and homes electrical generation.   We brought our solar lights with us for use at the campground.     If I use it all the time, maybe I can use 2 sheets for NON pesky toilet visits and not feel guilty!!

Iowa is a traveler friendly state.  It has wireless internet at all the rest stops.  On the signs that show gas and food stops for exits, it has a large yellow button with  RV Friendly, if it is easy access for RV’ers.

We are going up in elevation again as we go toward the South Dakota border.   1375 feet near Anita, Iowa.   Large pastures are more predominate here in this area and less corn fields.  There is a large community of Danish people in this area.  They have a Danish Museum here.

Rachel is on her way to the beach today with her Future Business Leaders of America.  Sure hope she has a good time!!   

Last night I watched “Facing the Giants” again!!  If you have not seen it, it is a great movie.  Good family movie or for a youth group!

It is 1PM CST  time.  My cousin Brenda and myself agreed to pray at noon DEST time for persons in the family that need prayer for their health.   When 2 or more are together…..even in different time zones….He is there for us.

We are approaching Omaha, Nebraska.  We will connect to I29 North into South Dakota!!

 

 

Welcome to Nebraska!!

Nebraska facts:

·         37th State

·         Cornhusker State

·         Only state with a National Forest totally planted by people –Near Halsey, Nebraska

·         Mammoth crops of corn, wheat, rye barley (Over $8 Billion Annually)

·         Huge cattle ranches (The farmland looks so dark and rich!!)

·         Birthplace of Pres. Gerald Ford, Fred Astaire, and Marlon Brando

·         Father Flanagan started Boys town.  It is still in operation for over 500 children.

·         You can still see the wagon wheel ruts on the Oregon and Mormon trails from the wagon trains headed west in the mid 1800’s .

At 1:20 PM we saw our first sign that said Sioux City!!   

3 miles from I29 , we saw a herd of deer grazing in the corn fields.

1.5 miles later,  we saw 2 turkey’s and a pheasant!!    We saw something big and black moving in one of the fields, but I could not make it out.  Larry said it was a bear….. oh well.  Guess we will never know for sure.  (Larry says he is sure it was Smokey!!”)

We are riding through what they call the Missouri River Valley.

Along the highway we saw a red fox dead.  Red Fox Farm in Skipwith came to mind.

We just saw another Cedar Creek 5th wheel headed South!!   

If you want t o dr I ve  o n some  ver y b ad roads  not in PA, go  to I29  fro m Om aha to Siou x  Cit y!!

Bump ity  bum pit y bum p!!!  It e ven  wok e up Jack!!

We had a really nice stop at a rest stop where we met a lady named Sandy.

We are going through Sioux City, Iowa along the Missouri River.    We saw a monument to Sgt. Floyd the only man to die on the Lewis and Clark Trail.   There are river boats that look like casinos along the river.     

The  sun is shining and it 61 degrees. 

We are trying to decide where to stop at for the night.  It is about 3PM.    

Welcome to South Dakota!!!

We did it!!

We just crossed the SD Line!!

 

We stopped at a SD rest stop and got our photo made!  I will post it on the website (although Larry fussed because he does not like to get his photo made).  We will be staying at the Sioux Falls KOA. 

Just as we were getting out of the truck to get the photo, Mary called to check on us!!  I told her to tell Fran we had just crossed the SD border!! 

This is the site of the Sioux Tribal headquarters.    I am not sure what that means.  

This is the same road that goes into Watertown, so I pictured Dirk and Ajay on this road and how they must have thought about how remote this place appears to be.  Ajay told me about the ice fishing here and about the water skiing later on the same lake!  

There are Amish here!  We just saw Holtzhaus Amish Furniture.

After we checked into the KOA, we met a very nice couple.   They told us they had been to Mobridge and it is very nice and lots of Indian culture. The park only has a few campers. 

While we were in the Browning Campground we got a hitchhiker…..a mouse!!  We saw it a couple of times and we bought some Decon Pellets yesterday.  Larry put a few in a place Jack could not get to and we checked this AM and they were gone.  However, after supper we saw it again!!  I thought if it ate the pellets, it would die.  I said , “Oh my, is that the same one?”  and Larry in his smarty voice said,
“I don’t know, it does not have on its name tag.”   I cracked up!!!  I could just see see those little mice with  tags like we had at Tyco!!  Larry put more pellets out and again this AM,  they were gone! 

I wrote some post cards to some people and a short note to Moma and Dadd with some photos of us as we crossed into South Dakota.  No Wifi here , so I will update the website later. ************************************************ *********************************

April 27,2007

We woke up this morning to a beautiful sunshine morning in South Dakota.   Larry did not have a good night and is not feeling that great this AM, so I am glad we will have a short day traveling.    I fixed us a sausage sandwich with our Jimmy Dean Sausage….probably won’t be getting that out here!

Once again, we thanked God for his protection and people he has put in our path and asked that we become people in someone’s path that they too, can be thankful for.

About 3 miles from Sioux Falls , we saw this beautiful old , big , white church.  It looks like one out of an old western movie. 

We are headed north on I29 North  and will get on I 14 West .  Jack is already taking his morning nap. 

Today we will stop to see Laura Ingalls Wilders house.  Renee and Lisa loved the show and the books.  So did Rhonda.  I still enjoy the reruns on TV and hope we will not be disappointed in the site.

Larry has found a really good 50’s station on the radio and they mention Mobridge weather and news!! Guess we are really getting close!!    Oh no, Larry is starting to sing!!  I guess this will really be a test  for my patience!!   Good thing I have my Tyco earplugs!!  (ha ha)

We saw 2 pheasants as we crossed into Brooking County, South Dakota.  We also passed the US Geological Survey Point.  This is the point that has been determined to be the center of all the 50 States.

Facts about South Dakota:

·         39th or 40th State

·         Used to be the Sunshine State, but now is the Mt. Rushmore State

·         Motto – Under God, People Rule

·         Chinese Ring Necked Pheasant  is the State Bird

·         10 people per square MILE

·         Dinosaurs (saber tooth tigers, tiny horses) roamed this area

·         Each of the heads of the Presidents is 60 feet across, but the head of Crazy  Horse, is as big as all of them together!

·         The Old West is alive in Deadwood, where Wild Bill Hickock was killed in a poker game

·         Sturgis is the site of a huge Harley Davis Rally that is known all over the world.

WE stopped at a site where there was a Motel 8, Holiday Inn and Applebee’s. The wifi for the hotels over rode Applebee’s , so I could not do my email.  Oh well…. We can try later.

We just passed Dark Side Paint Ball Field!!   Renee and Jason and Sarah may have heard of it before!

We are on the Laura Ingalls Wilder Historical Highway –I14W in South Dakota.   I can’t help but wonder if Laura and Mary ever came through this way.  It is very flat and we are near a place called Lake Preston.   Houses are few and far between.   10 people per square mile….is probably about right.

We just saw 6 very nice doe’s!! 

The dirt looks different here….it is not as dark and sandier looking.   They have had a lot of rain also, because water is standing in some of the fields. 

We just saw a sign Laura Ingalls Wilder Homestead!!  WE also saw a large dead coyote.  

The road into it is gravel and there has been so much rain here water is standing  on both sides.   It is too risky to pull the RV down this road.  We will come back another time.    I spoke with a lady at one of the shops when I went in to get some brochures and she said, she thought it was not a good thing to talke a trailer down that road at this time.   

We have headed on to Mobridge.  WE probably will stop in West Whitlock State Park for the night.  Mobridge is just 50 miles from there, so we could be there early Saturday morning.    

We got fuel in De Smet.  It was $2.84 per gallon.  We are averaging about 10.5 MPG.    “Big Blue” is a hoss….a hoss that requires a lot of feed!!  Would never made the trip without it!!  Thanks to Dave H. ……always listen to him when it comes to RV’s and trucks to pull them with!!    “Big Blue” is comfy to ride in for us and Jack.  Jack has the entire back seat.  I have the passenger seat .  

·         In the floor board I have a Hyatt Bag with the Atlas, AAA Trip Tek, print out of the map from “Streets and Trips”, the Fromer’s  SD book and the Fromer’s RV book. 

·         On the dash, I have my cell phone and notebook.

·         On the floor in the center or either on my lap, I have my PC sitting in a leather file box with drawers, that I got at “Office Depot”. The PC is plugged into a convertor and the GPS locator for “Streets and Trips” is plugged into a USB port.    I can sit the PC on the floor or on the center console.  Larry covered it with a large mouse pad and a silicone type glue, so it will come off with no damage to the console.  It rides perfect!!

·         In the back floor board, we have a slim line cooler with colas and to brace it is a plastic container with our snacks.   I can reach it all easily.   I place the PC red bag behind the seat and Jack’s leash beside of it. 

Larry has the drivers seat and today I offered to drive again, because we are on very straight and non busy roads, but he said nooooooo……he would do the driving.

We have seen LOTS of cows!!  We have seen several deer killed on the side of the road. 

We have pulled over in Huron, SD.  Larry needs to rest.  It is the site of the worlds largest pheasant.  I took a photo.  I will try to get it on the site later.

I can do wifi here, so I will update to here.

More later….. for April 27th. 

****************************************************

 

 

April 25,2007

Today we have been on the road for 1 week!!   I think for our first week we did real good, but Larry said that is was the pits!!  Driving 3 days and sitting 4 days.  Someday we will tell you all the "Rest of the Story", but for now it is just between us.    Lets just say that today in the middle of one of  rain, wind and Jack, we had Eric, Kevin, and Dave  here at our RV.    It was really a hoot when Eric quoted Jeff Foxworthy!!  We continue to be impressed with the people here in Iowa!! 

We learned from Eric about Morel mushrooms here in Iowa that grown in this area.  We did not get to eat any , but you can find more about them at this site :  http://www.fresh-morel.com/

Today Mango Lady and Beth were at the office.  We talked about crafts and cooking.    I will always remember Sleepy Hollow RV park and the people here and if we ever do come back this way, I would stay here!  

Jack has been a good boy today.  It is not easy for him when it rains, rains and rains some more.   

We picked up supplies, got things organized and if the weather report is correct, we will be on the road again tomorrow.  We hope to make it to Loveland, Iowa or Sioux Falls, SD.   We will travel through a small portion of Nebraska.

Keep us in your prayers.

April 24,2007

Today it is raining and they are calling for severe weather in the direction we are headed, so we took this opportunity to clean up the RV and start being organized for the next leg of the trip. 

We took a ride to some local areas and saw more farming.  There is HUGE (biggest I have ever seen) farm equipment here!

Tonight we are going to eat "reruns" and clean out the frig in preparation for the road. 

Larry saw a Post Office and thought of the guys in Cville and Bville!!  We had a couple of things to mail for insurance and for Moma and Daddy, so he went into Oxford, Iowa to do that and I stayed here to clean up. 

Once we get back on the road, I don't know when I will update this again.  I will definately do it after we arrive in Mobridge, SD. 

Take care.  (BIG HUG) to all of you that are watching us and emailing your thoughts and prayers. 

April 23,2007

Today we are still in Oxford , Iowa.  We had a nice quiet breakfast.  Larry will still not let me fix biscuits, freeze them and pop them in the microwave since April 5th!!   I do have to admit, I am still in the mode sometimes of "Doing, more, better, faster...."

We heard from Iowa friend Eric, a great guy that we have met here and that is an RV Mobile specialist.   We are glad we have Eric and his friend Kevin!!   These guys in Iowa are underappreciated.  Iowa is definately not just about corn, but values!!  

We were debating on going to the Herbert Hoover Museum or going to the Kalona Village - Iowa Amish People.  Larry and myself both enjoy the countryside and seeing the old ways of farming, so we went to Kalona.  It was a beautiful ride.  Once again the Iowa people are great!! 

We drove along the country side and stopped at an Amish farm for fresh eggs.  They are not "golden" eggs like the ones I purchased in France,  and MUCH nicer.  $1.00 USD a dozen.    T.  Klinger would be proud of me and also the guys in Holland!   We saw all types of farming and animals and of course this time of year many young fouls and piglets, lambs and kids. 

There was a cheese factory in Kalona also.  You could see the cheese being made there, but it was a small operation, compared to Appenzellers, where S. Gutt took me!!  However, the cheese is good , the people were friendly and it was interesting to see all of their varieties.  We will enjoy the cheese in the Amish eggs as an omelette tomorrow!

This morning, I called Joyce, who turned 70 today!!   Kevin C.  turned 40 today, but I did not give him a call, but I bet Kyle and Keith made up for me!   My nieces also had birthdays this week!   Jaime and Emily are growing up too fast!!

Larry saw a pheasant today, but we could not get a photo!!  Phooeey!!

I am putting a link on here to a page of photos.  Enjoy!! 

Take care!!  GBU!!

Sheila and Larry

 

 

 

 

April 18,2007

Today we pulled out of Rudds Creek Campground and left Boydton, VA and Buggs Island Lake in the background.  Our  daughter Lisa and her family were there.  The tears were there, but we always know that  even though we are far apart in miles, we will be close in our hearts.  

Larry has the plan for the trip and we headed south and west on I40 through Greensboro.     We went down Business 85 and pulled over at Kivett Drive.  My Moma and Daddy met us there to say good bye.    They both got a chance to see the RV and check it out.  

After we got on the road I called Fran and tried to hook up with her, but with no luck.  Down 311 and onto 40 we went!!

My sister and brother in law played a joke on us and left a message that the Sheriff’s department was looking for a runaway RV!!   We all got a big laugh out of that!

Friends and family called to check on us several times and we even had one call from GB from “June Bug”.   Yesterday we heard from Andrea in Singapore…..I am lucky to have many friends all over the place.

We made the switch to 77 North and it was a beautiful ride seeing all of the farm land and horse farms.  I thought of Lynn and Barb!   “Big Blue”  did a great job getting us over the mountains.   I hope tomorrow will not be so mountainous.   As we approached  Beckley, Sharon called.  We got off on 3 East and found out the campground that we wanted to go to was not one we could use.   The road was VERY narrow and it would have been impossible to get out!!  We flipped around in a parking lot and headed to 3West.  The road was also narrow and very curvy.    Both of us were getting sort of nervous, but then we came across the entrance to Lake Stephens Campground.  It is on a small lake, all pull through sites with full service!!    We were able to set up and have a nice supper.   I took Jack for a walk and Larry was able to get Jeopardy on the TV!!  We met a nice couple and Jack made a new friend.

We left at 8:39AM and we pulled in to the campground  about 5:30PM. We had stopped many times and walked  around .  We did not visit any sites today, but we are looking!! 

I am excited, but sometimes my stomach does a little flip!  This must have been. what the pioneers felt also!!    Only they were braver than me…..they had no GPS, no PC, no AAA TripTik, or comfortable ride.

Tomorrow we will head toward Charleston, WV and then to Cincinnati, OH. 

Day one was definitely the beginning of an “Adventure”.

Keep us in your prayers!!

 

 

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April 19, 2007

This morning we left about 8:30 again.  Before we left, we said a prayer thanking God for his protection and guidance and for it to continue.  We will make this part of our daily routine.  It was an easy setup and we had full service there, so no dumping was needed.   

The tire gages to verify air pressure worked great.  We had all GREENS.   Every thing we have read , emphasis tire pressure is critical.   

We traveled on 3 East back to Beckley.  I had the bright idea of pulling into Bob Evans for a biscuit, but the turning was not what we expected.   Larry did great!!  He never yelled once!!

We traveled along Painted Creek.    We also saw coal mining and thought of BA and John.  There was a Memorial Tunnel  at one of the coal mines and I thought of the many times in China I had heard about many people losing their life also.   There were barges pushed by tug boats full of coal near Fields Creek. 

After we got on 77/64 we encounter more mountains.   One thing we will do as soon as we can is down size for weight again.   Our “Big Blue” F350 Dually has been awesome!!  We have used the Tow/Haul feature while on the mountains.  It is not the best fuel economy, but it is awesome how the truck handles the inclines and declines!! 

Jack is riding in the back and when he wants to sight see, we put down the window.  He appears to be sleeping, but if he hears a rustling of paper or even a cup, he opens his eyes and looks!  He has FESE….Food Extra Sensitive Ears.  (ha ha)

We passed Yeager Airport in Charleston, WV and thought of Patti and her boys!!

After we headed toward Huntington, there was a lot of beautiful forest and scenery.   The land was a lot more flat.   Yesterday we were at elevations over 3000’ and had inclines and declines of 5-9%!! Talk about getting broke in good!!

When we came through the tunnels I thought about the time my Daddy came up to WV and worked on a tunnel.   It was also very similar to the tunnel in Boston.

Getting diesel in this rig is an experience!!  We went to a Pilot…..it only had off road diesel that we could get to.  We continued on toward Huntington and tried a T/A which had a special area for RV’s, but there was a motor home smaller than our rig that could not make the turn, soooo we went on to a GoSmart.   Finally!!  Jack was happy also, because he needed a break!!  Diesel in Huntington was $2.99.   We are still getting low mileage due to the inclines and declines and the use of the Tow/Haul feature, but the next leg we are expecting better mileage.   Larry wants me to add that the Flying J is not so great!!  I had read it was a good place to go, but it was not at all what we expected (so far).

As we approach our exit for Ashland, WV, it has started to rain.   Wow….first time pulling in the rain.  Larry has done great and we just take our time and he drives carefully and courteously.  

When we left 64W we got on 52West and traveled along the Ohio River.    The traffic was calmer and even though it is raining, it is still interesting to see the barges along the river.  We passed a bridge that we could have gone into Ashland , KY.     We stopped at an Ohio visitors center and I read some information on Youngstown, OH……and naturally Louise’s family came to mind.

At lunchtime I got a call from Fran , that I missed AGAIN!  Tried to reach Lisa and she was busier than a one armed paper hanger, so I will call back later.  That girl never stops!!   I left a message for Renee also.   Sure hope to catch up with her in person this week!  That girl never stops either!!  Wonder who they get that from??? 

As we have crossed, WV to OHIO to KENTUCKY…….the flags at half staff remind us about the tragedy at VA Tech.  When we came through Huntington, WV, home of Marshall University, there was a sign in one yard…..”We understand VA’s Pain”. 

I offered to drive when we were on 32West headed to Cincinnati……but Larry said nooooo ……he was fine.  He wants me to wait until  we get to SD , so I do not see any other cars for a long distance.  We are 56’ long……I figured that if anyone saw me coming they would get out of the way. (ha ha)  Tezak can relax……I am not terrorizing the USA with my driving!!

We are going to take the loop around Cincinnati.  Then connect on 52  to 74 and we will be in Indiana!!  Indianapolis is the next big city we will see.   I am looking for a place for us to stay tonight.   Hopefully with Wifi. 

Well, we ended up at Brownings Campground.  The site was easy and was full hook up, but no Wifi.   The people are friendly and they even have a buffet and a breakfast!! 

Tonight we ate Larry’s spaghetti !!  It was good!!  We both are tired.

Larry did a great job today driving.  We stopped often and we did experience a lot of traffic sometimes, but he was careful and watched carefully!

April 20,2007                                                

 Today we will head for Indianapolis.  We got out of the campground about 8:45AM.  We had a little experience leaving.  The road we went down was a loop road in the campground that we could not loop on……so Larry had to back up all the way back down the road, about ¼ mile!  I could not look!! Larry told me to sit still and be quiet and I did!!   

We have a check list of items  to do before we pull out everyday.  This AM we had a lot of things to do and  I assumed the responsibility of putting down the TV/RV antenna (#1 Insurance claim for RV’s).   Well, I did not get it completely down, sooooo when we left , we took a guys phone line with us. (BIG OOPS)  I guess he  was not a “Happy Camper” when he found that out.   When we got down the road about 100 miles and stopped  we saw the antenna was still up some.  Then Larry was not a “Happy Camper” either.

We had quite a discussion on the directions, since “GPS Lady”  said one thing and our map showed something different.    Finally, Larry told her to shut up…..and we went 421 North.  It worked great…connected into 74 West  then to 465 West around Indianapolis and connected back into 74West toward  Peoria. 

Along 412 North we saw some really pretty farms.  We stopped there and asked God to watch over us today and to be with all of our family.  Jack really enjoyed sightseeing.  Te speed was slower so he could look our his window with it open.  He is being a good dog!!

Welcome to Indiana!! We crossed a time zone today into Indiana.  We came into Danville and saw Lynch Rd and we thought of Vicky , Stevie and Randy at Tyco!!

We had a voice mail from Bryan.  He added us to the prayer list at his church.  Feel free to follow his lead!   All Prayers Accepted!! 

As we roll through the edge of Illinois to Iowa, it is CORN,CORN, CORN!!!  The  terrain is much flatter!!  We saw some motorcycle riders here with NO helmet!!   They were on 74 West going 60+ MPH!!    

When people pass us, they look at us.  I hope it is because they think we look good!!  With this big rig, a dog  looking out the window, me typing on a computer and wearing  my Cocoon Glasses, I guess we are a pretty interesting sight!   Maybe it is the Virginia license tag, CNUS49, that attracts their attention. 

Today I am reading the “Vista for Dummies” book.    Big adjustment for me from XP.  Sure wish Johnny, James and Jack were around.  If I owned my own company, I would want them working  in it!!

When we stopped at the last rest stop in Illinois, we made some tuna fish sandwiches for lunch in the RV.     I thought of the lunches me and Fran had with Dusty. 

There were a few blips today with our preparation, that caught us by surprise, but the  Boydton PO, Lucy, Michelle, Fran, Dave, Sandy and Lisa stepped up to help us solve the problem!!   Thank you guys!!

(BIG HUG)

Welcome to Iowa, Home of Bill P. and Phyllis R.!!!  We are on 80 West toward Des Moines.   Just as we entered Iowa, I got a text message from Rachel and Roger.    

Very techie state…..advertising Wifi at the Visitor Center…..but I have to make a choice, get to the campground we talked to, or stop here.  We are going on to the campground, so it won’t be so late. 

We stopped at the “World’s Largest Truck Stop”!  It was clean and friendly.  While Larry was getting gas, he drew a crowd!  A couple of guys looking at the truck,  some at the RV and some at Jack.   They also talked about fishing and camping.

We passed the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library.  It had already closed by the time we got there.  We also passed a VA Hospital in Iowa City, it reminded me of Billy and Dale.

We  decided to stop at the Sleepy Hollow Campground in Oxford, Iowa, Exit 230 off of I80 West,   and it has WIFI!!!!   Yeahhhhh!!!  I have been having withdrawal pains!!  

I can’t wait to share with all of you!!  

We both are getting tired and ready for a break.  Tonight we will have Pizza Hut and Wendy’s that I bought while Larry was getting gas and entertaining the locals.   Every night, I have been fixing supper, but I need a break.  

April 21, 2007

We got a good nights sleep until about 1AM.   Jack needed to go out and Larry got up to take him.  Jack got tangled up in Larry’s feet coming down the steps and Larry ended up in the middle of the kitchen floor!!  I heard this big BANG….realized he was not in bed and jumped up to see him lying in the floor!!  It scared me to death!!   PTL, He was OK!!  A little shook up….but OK.   Jack jumped back on the bed….as to say “Forget it…..I am not going anywhere now!! “  For a variety of reasons decided to stay at least one more night.  We may stay until Monday!

We both have been most impressed with the people in Iowa.   The campground staff has been great, the people in the stores are friendly and fun, the service in the stores is SOOO good…..we have not had our groceries carried to the car in YEARS!!  

We went to Ketelers RV in Cedar Rapids for a few things.  Very nice!   After that we headed back down 318 South and stopped at the National Czech and Slovak Museum and Library.  It was surrounded by what they called the “Czech Village” where many people from the Czech and Slavic areas have settled here over the past 50 years.    You would not regret going to visit the museum and learn about the culture of the Czech people.  Martina S. and AET  would be very proud.  There were some photos of Czech couples and I remember seeing one similar of AET’s f grandparents.

www.ncsml.org  ……..check it out.

Then we headed to Amana Colonies.   It was a German settlement and was very similar to many villages I had seen near Bensheim.  Great German food, bakeries and breweries (with beer and root beer).  Sure did make me think of my German friends, Joerg, Heiko, Uli, Benny, Jim Volker.....and many more! 

www.amanacolonies.org …….check it out also.

Then we went to a market and got food for dinner.  Sure could not beat the Fairways market in Coralville!!  Great butcher shop, fresh veggies and friendly faces!!

Sleepy Hollow RV Park is really great!!  If you are ever in this area plan to stay.  Sandy the owner is really on top of things and her daughter Beth is a real sweetie!! We have had many questions and she has had all the answers.

End of Update for April 21,2007
April 13, 2007

Today is 8 days since I made the final phone calls and sent the final emails before becoming officially retired at Tyco!! 

The weeks leading up to retirement were so busy with lunches, dinners, family , moving and orgainizing it was like  a whirlwind.  The last week I was at Tyco I spent the week with Fran and there was NEVER a dull moment!!    It was a great opportunity to be able to go by to see Moma and Daddy each day.   At work, I was trying to get things all wrapped up.  Patti got a new puppy!!  I heard from many old friends and the last email I sent was a “mass” mailing to many special people.   After 35 years, it was hard to say good bye to so many wonderful people.   I do hope we will be able to stay in touch!!  

The retirement parties were so great and so special, just like all the people I worked with and that came to help me celebrate!!   I will try to post some photos of each of them. 

So far , we  have been soooo busy getting things ready, I have had not had time to even think about being  a retiree.   We are still busy preparing the house and packing the camper.     There are so many things to take care of also for the day to day things !!  Everyday is going very fast.     Too fast!!   It may be hard to believe, but I have NOT done my email since I left Tyco!!   No withdrawal pains either!!  Who would have ever believed that?????

On April 9th Larry , Rachel, Roger and myself took the camper to Campground.  We have been staying there at night since then and working on the house, the camper and all of the preparation since the move.  Rachel and Roger have been such a blessing!!  Each of them have came and helped me and Larry at the house SOOOO much!!   What would we have done without them???

Our original plan was to leave on April 15th for Indian Creek, but it looks like we will be delayed leaving until the 17th.    We will still be able to stop and smell the roses along the way and get there a few days early and we really are going to need to have the time to finish up and to get some rest!!

Jack really likes the campground!!  All the kids here love him and already know him by name.   Every morning we go for a walk and every night!!  It makes him happy and I hope it will make me skinny!  (ha ha)   When ever we go to the house he runs around with Moma Dog.  Moma Dog knows something is changing , but she is not sure what it is.

Well, it is getting late , past 10PM (REALLY late for me)!!   I will try to post again the day we pull out!!

Keep us in your prayers.

(BIG HUG)

We will be leaving early, so we can take our time getting there and enjoy the scenery on the way. 
 
Activities we have on going are:
Larry is defining the route.  We have GPS and he has the printed version, but he wants to make sure we take the best route for us to see some things along the way.
 
Larry is exploring all the information on RV's  and RV maintenance.  He has a huge book!!  
 
Larry is also in charge of packing the storage compartment on the 5th wheel and the toolbox in the truck.
 
I am busy cleaning out closets!!! How in the world could 1 person (Larry claims he has no part in it - but we have NOT started on the garage at the lake yet) have so many things.  If you see us, do not mention panty hose, shoes, tote bags, or suitcases.  This will only cause you to have to listen to Larry for a LONG time describe how I will never have to buy another one of these items as long as I live.
 
Deciding what to take and not to take is sometimes not easy!!  There are space and weight considerations.    When you have 100's of books, 15 photo albums, CD''s , tapes , food, fishing equipment, crochet supplies (don't mention yarn either), clothes for both of us (although at this time Larry only has 2 small drawers to put his things in-ha ha), computer supplies .....ohhhhh.  What I have decided is that we had tooooo many things and that both of us are pack rats.
 
We have many things to take care of personally before we go in preparation.    We (me) have list of things to do.  
 
Both of us are getting excited.    We have been out in the truck with the PC practicing with GPS and with wireless internet services.    I think Larry likes taking directions from the GPS lady better than me!!   Should I be jealous? 
 
Jack is getting prepared also.  He has been to see Dr. Dahl and has all his shots updated.  We will go back one more time to get his health certificate to take with us.   We are taking him on a practice trip in March.  
 
As we do all these things, it has been a trip down memory lane for us personally and for me as a 35 year employee of AMP/Tyco.   There have been moments I jumped for joy when I found a photo of someone special that I have not seen in a while and other times I feel a little funny in my stomach and sad when I find one of someone that is no longer in this life.   I have found myself making contact with many people I have not talked to in a while.   "Old" friends ......they are special.  Leaving behind AMP will be a big change for me.   However, I know there will always be people I am in touch with for the rest of my life!   
 
We will be leasing our house at the lake as vacation rental property through www.kerrlakerentals.com.   Bluebird Orchard is a very special place for us with many memories.  
 
The grandkids are all excited about this adventure and there is discussion on when they will come to see us, summer or Christmas.   I have a friend that her grandparents did this when she was younger and she visited them on the road and she says it was the most amazing experience she has ever had!   I hope it will be the same for my grandchildren and children.
 
Our countdown of days is 45 at this point!   
 
We will update again in 2 weeks!! 
 

Update  03-17-2007

 

 

This past week was very busy.

 

We went to Harrisburg, PA.   It was a combination trip for me.  Some work and my “farewell” retirement tour.

 

Jack went with us and he did great!!  He is a very good rider.  When we stopped at rest stops, he waits patiently as we put on his leash and he does not move from the seat until we give the OK.   He made many friends on the way, because where ever he goes, everyone LOVES him!   He knew when we stopped to get gas and get colas, he would get a snack too.  When we arrived at the hotel, he was very funny on his first elevator ride.  He was not sure what was going on!  While we were there, he was a perfect gentleman.   We think he is going to be a great FTRV dog!  

 

During the time I was there, I visited several plants and offices where I had worked over the past 35 years.  It was great to see old friends, but also very emotional for me.  During the time I have been here, the people have been the special part of everything I did.  There are so many here in the USA and all over the world that I will never forget and will always remain special to me.

 

Everyday it was lunch with someone special.   After work, there was some time to get to go have coffee and enjoy catching up with some other people.

 

On March 14 there was a retirement dinner at Gilligan’s  where I got to see many of the current people I work with and some of the ones from the past.  It was great to have a chance to catch up!  There were some stories shared about my past work experience and some other personal experiences!    When you come to a company as young as I did, there are more stories than can be told.     Some people participated from a long distance.  I was pleased and surprised to see the Worcester guys names on the card that accompanied a very generous Gift Card.   

 

The next evening was a girls night out with the WOW group (Women on Warehousing)  and other special friends from previous work experiences.    Ivy, Patti, Sharon, Lynn, Sue, Tammi, BA, and Deb.   Lisa could not be there because her dog Rex is not well at all and he needs her attention.     The girls put a lot of thought into some very unique gifts to take along on our adventure. 

  • Walkie Talkies that reach 12 MILES!!
  • Flashlight – that floats and is VERY durable
  • Daily Devotional reading
  • Small Bible
  • Leather bound journal to keep track of our trip
  • Address book with all their addresses

 

The greatest gift they all have given me , is their friendship and love.   It is returnable.

 

The next 3 weeks will be filled with final activities at work and preparation.

 

We continue to downsize!!    We will tackle the garage in the next week!!! 

 

Our countdown is 29 days!! 

 

Check back soon!    Click the link before for photos!!

 

Sheila

 

Update  03-28-2007

 
Well....48 working hours and counting!!
 
Larry has a huge list for today to get done!!  My list is still long....but getting shorter!!
 
This weekend is GARAGE weekend!!   Should be interesting!!  I know there are no panty hose there....but I wonder how Larry is going to explain MANY tackle boxes and fishing gear!!
 
We are still shooting for an April 15th pull out date.  Larry is working on the route and trying to decide exactly what we want to stop to see.  The only place I have insisted on is DeSmet, SD to Laura Ingalls house.
 
Continue to keep us in your prayers.
 
Shortimer,
Sheila

Home in Virginia
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Click for Rental Informaton "Blue Bird Orchard"

Retirement Fun and Photos

We'll try to make this page a photo journal, rather than just a photo album. That is, we'll try to tell the story of our stay using both words and pictures. Although this takes a little more effort than just posting photos, it gives a fuller sense of our experience. (There will be lots more pictures on the photo album pages.)

Here are examples of the type of information we may include on each of our destinations.
 
History
Weather
GPS
Food
Fishing

Fun at Blue Bird Orchard
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Home
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