Sunday, February 23, 2014

Peaceful Blessings

February 23rd - Sunday   A Day of Worship

Saturday, February 22, 2014

A New Table

February 22nd - Saturday 80 degrees rain

Today was the day to get caught up with laundry, housecleaning and odd jobs.  That is exactly what we did.  We both slept in until 8:30 am, which I have to admit seemed pretty darned good.  We were awakened early before sunrise by a downpour of rain.  As Lou said that should wash the pollen away, as I have been having a problem with breathing and today was a bit better; however, the humidity was high.

After breakfast, Lou helped me carry the laundry up to the laundry house, where I put four loads of laundry into brand new washer and dryers.  This is the first time we have had to pay to do laundry since we left home.  We have been very fortunate.  Today it was $1.75 per load to wash and dry.  Lou was in 7th heaven, as next to the laundry room was a pool hall and a fellow just waiting for a partner.  The fellow was also from Pennsylvania, so he and Lou played pool while I did laundry.  We got it all washed, dried, folded and just as we started to carry it home, it started to rain again.

We got all of the laundry put away, bed made up and had a nice lunch and Lou tackled the job of putting our new table together.  We had found this table at Camping World and thought it would work better than the one that we have, as it is smaller and this one we can leave up all of the time and will slide under the sofa and work better all the way around.  After he finished getting it together, he worked on the computer for the rest of the afternoon, while I cleaned.  We finished about the same time and decided we would go out for dinner.

  We had planned on going to the Canada Dinner here at the park, but when Lou found out it was a Dinner/Dance, he decided he didn't want to go.  So we had dinner on Krista and Steve at Cracker Barrel and for dessert Lou chose Chocolate Coke Cake, which is a dessert that he has never had before. This is a dessert that Al's sister-in-law always made and a favorite of our family.  Lou truly enjoyed it.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Our Final Days in Disney

Friday - February 21st  78 degrees

Today was our day to visit Hollywood Studios at Disney and I had forgotten how much I had enjoyed it last time we were there before.  It was much cooler today with the fear of rain, so really it was a nice day to spend there.  We arrived at 9:00 and the crowds were not as great as we had found previously this week.  The first musical we saw was Beauty and the Beast and it was magical and greatly enjoyed by everyone that watched it.  Michelle and I had seen it on Broadway in New York City and she and I enjoyed it there also.

This is a view of Magic Kingdom from the boat on our way over.

The entrance to Dinoland

This shows the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror.  It was a great ride.  We rode a haunted elevator through a multi story house.  The elevator dropped many stories at a time and went around many corners.  Really a neat ride.

This was a bird show, in the Asia section that was amazing.  All were exotic birds that had been trained .

Another stage production that we watch was Nemo and it was also wonderful.

This was a vocal group that entertained us while we were waiting to go into the Hall of Presidents.

This is one ride that we wished we had Wyatt with us, the ride was called  Star Wars, this little guy was one of the greeters as you progress along the way up the entrance.  We wore 3-D glasses as we were buckled into our space rockets and we fought  off the bad guys in space and their space ships, was a rather bumpy ride.  Lots of fun.  Like being in a live video game.
Elephants that we saw on the African Safari 


Well, now that we are through with Disney, we have to buckle down and get laundry done tomorrow and I need to get the RV cleaned up and it will really feel good to get to sleep in a little in the morning.

It is going to take Lou a little time to get caught up on his computer mail.  We haven't had internet in so long, that his mail has really piled up.  We had free minutes at the campsite, but it was very slow and not worth trying to use, so tonight I signed on and paid for several days, so we can get caught up and catch up with the family.

We were so glad to hear that Spencer has returned home safely from Afghanistan, that was an answer to many months of prayers.

We hope to move on closer to my son, Scott now and see a couple of our friends on the other side of Florida next week.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Disney - Florida

February 19th - Wednesday 84 degrees

We arrived in Davenport, FL on Monday at the same camp ground that we had stayed at two years ago.  We were delighted to find a vacancy here, as it is a great place to stay and we always find people from Tioga County here.  It is only a twenty-five minutes from Disney.

Monday night we went to the Jam Fest here at the camp grounds and it was great, it lasted for two hours and great singing and playing.  The time just flew by.

We have spent two days at Disney one day at Epcot Center and today we spent the day at Magic Kingdom, we still have two more days of tickets left and will use them up before the week is up.  We were pooped tonight when we got home, but certainly had a good time.
I took this picture as we rode through the story of The Little Mermaid
This was new this time of Snow White  and the seven dwarfs in living greens
Aren't they pretty?

Camping At KARRS - Kennedy Space Center

Our Campsite
Merritt’s Island - Kennedy Space Center
February 15 th  72 degrees w/ sunshine

We left Mayport yesterday after waking up to 39 degrees and drove south to a new camp ground to us.  This was opened up to retired military after the Shuttle Program was shut down.  It is very open and without individual sewer hookups; however, we do have 50 amp and water, which works for a short term and the nightly rate is only $15.00 and most importantly there were vacancies.

We can stand by the water and see across to the launching pads for the Shuttles.  Lou and I had a nice walk today, enjoying the sunshine and fresh air and getting acquainted with our neighbors.
This was the view from our side window
Astronaut Hall of Fame 

After breakfast we went for a ride, we drove south on route 1 to Cape Canaveral, Cocoa Beach and into Patrick Air Force Base.  We drove onto the base and had lunch there.  That is one of our favorite bases and we enjoyed looking around at the improvements they had made in the last two years.  We were also amazed at the shops that were vacant in Cocoa Beach that must be a result of the lack of employees at Kennedy.

We do not have any internet where we are, so will post this along with the pictures when we reach a spot that I am able.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Happy Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine’s Day
February 14th - Friday

What a nice surprise to go to the Post Office and find mail that we weren’t expecting.

The last time we saw Wyatt, our grandson, I told him that I needed a new picture for my refrigerator, not thinking that he would mail one to me here in Florida.  Well, he did, one of Darth Vadder along with Valentines.  That was such a nice surprise.

When our mail arrived from Krista, she had included pictures that Matthew had done for us also and Matthew and Michelle had done a birthday card for me, so we have lots of nice pictures for our motor home.

It is nice to have “homey” touches to add to the RV, lets us feel like we are connected to our loved ones at home.  Krista and Steve have the job of collecting our mail and sorting it for us and then forwarding it on to us when we are at a location that can accept mail for us.

I have enjoyed the Valentine decorations at the front of our RV, with the lights and such.  I have a heart flag outside, but the wind has about destroyed it and I will have to replace it before it next year.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

A Day at St. Augustine, FL

From the Lighthouse Keeper's house
St. Augustine, Florida
February 12th - Wednesday 49 degrees - rainy and very windy

On Monday the weatherman suggested it might be a good day finally, so we took a chance and dressed in layers and drove to St. Augustine for a day of sightseeing.

St Augustine is the oldest, continuously occupied European settlement in the United States.  As we remember from our first history classes.  Ponce de Leon discovered the area in his search for the legendary Fountain of Youth, in 1513.

We did a walking tour through the Old City and one area I was especially interested in was the Spanish Military Hospital Museum.  The guides did an re-enactment of the daily life of patients and staff in a reconstruction of a military hospital of the second Spanish colonial period.  Five exhibit areas illustrated medical practices of the time and included an apothecary with period artifacts. I was amazed at how many of the instruments used in the surgery suite are still used today.
Our guide and the admitting doctor
Surgeon's Tools

There are many beautiful churches and I couldn’t walk past without snapping a picture of a couple of them.  Memorial Presbyterian Church is located close to Flagler College.  The college was started by Henry Flagler in the late 1800’s.

There were many museums to tour and we started to tour the Government House Museum on King Street, which shows exhibits that blend technology with historic artifacts to tell the story of St. Augustine’s founding based on research by the Florida Museum of Natural History at the University of Florida.  After viewing some of the contents of the museum we checked our time and we were over due for our parking permit and we were unsure how far away our car was, so we left, then we found our car quickly along with a parking ticket, which cost us $15.00.  So we made an extra contribution to the city of St. Augustine!!

After leaving downtown St. Augustine, we drove to across the Lion Bridge to St. Augustine Lighthouse and Museum on Anastasia Island.  St. Augustine’s maritime past is reflected in this working lighthouse and restored keeper’s house.  Lou and I climbed the 219 steps to the top of the lighthouse to enjoy the panoramic view of the city and its beaches.
Some of the tools used in the lighthouse
View from the top of the lighthouse

Highlights of the exhibits included illustration showing the lives of the lighteners and the US Coast Guard personnel who were stationed in St. Augustine during World War 11.  Shipwrecks also are featured along with the history of shrimping in the area.
The entrance to the Lion's bridge

A Ship that was on the River

It was an interesting and fun day and a day filled with sunshine with temperatures reaching a high of 71 degrees.  Indeed, we had picked a good day, as the rest of our week has been very windy, rainy and cold.

On our way home, we stopped and had a seafood dinner at a seafood shack, wasn’t much to look at but the food was delicious, we even had collard green that were cooked to perfection.  So much food, that we brought some home and had enough for our dinner last evening.

Friday, February 7, 2014

Change in Plans

Mayport, FL -  Naval Station - Pelican Roost R.V. Park
February 7st - Friday- 50 degrees w/ wind and rain

Remember how I had said that I was going to spend the next day on the beach, well that didn’t happen, we haven’t had a day above 60 degrees since the last post, so needless to say it has not been beach weather.  We did have one day that we were able to get in a short mile long walk.

We have been without internet, as someone moved into the lot beside us and that took away our signal, so we have both enjoyed our books and our electric heat and the view of the St. John River.
I took this while on our walk.  This is a ship that contains "reefers"  

We did get to watch a Navy ship go out with the crew on board, we had a feeling that is what was going to happen as several cars had parked across from our RV park and children had gotten out and were playing along the river and a little later we saw the ship coming down the river and the children were all waving to their daddy’s, was a nice sight.  Today we saw a Navy ship come in with their crew, that would make families happy also.
Note the Sailors standing on board

Tonight we decided to go to Safe Harbor Seafood for dinner.  This is located across the harbor from us and they procure the seafood from the ocean here.  All of the shrimp comes from Mayport.  We have eaten there before and decided tonight was the night.  We usually eat out on the deck, but decided with the misty rain and wind we would eat inside.  It was a delicious meal.  I had crab cakes and twice baked potatoes.  Lou had shrimp and a crab cake.

A view of the restaurant from the car
You can see from the pictures that it was raining when I took all of the pictures, as is the case for most of the last few days, but at least it isn't snow as they are having at home.  All of our kids have sent us pictures of the snow at home, and Krista has been concerned about our pipes freezing at home, as there has been power outages and therefore our heat tapes wouldn't function.  Steve checked everything out last night about 9:30 after the power came back on and all was in good shape.  Sure means a lot to us to know someone is keeping a check on what is happening a home.

We want to get to St. Augustine to do some sightseeing, but can't do it until the weather clears.  We did do some preliminary planning yesterday and think we will leave here and go to Disney from here for a week then to Patrick Air force Base on the east coast before coming back to the West coast to see our son and friends.

Monday, February 3, 2014

An Afternoon on the Beach - Finally

The bird with the black and orange bill is a Black Skimmer
Cactus about ready to bloom
Lou enjoying the sunshine
February 3rd - Monday - 82 degrees

We took advantage of the warmest day that we have had since we left Pennsylvania and walked to the beach.  We walked over two miles this afternoon and was it ever enjoyable.  If we had realized how warm it was going to be we would have put on shorts and cooler shirts.  Lou finally took his shirt off to enjoy soaking up the vitamin D.  I didn't even take my sand bucket, so didn't pick up any shells.  I did snap some pictures as we walked along.

This was at the entrance to the beach

Krista and Susan take note of this bird it is a White Tailed Kite Bird.  I thought that was interesting.  When we came back from our walk, it had caught something and was eating.
Razor crab shell
This is the only  beach that I have ever seen a razor crab shell and today, I didn't pick any of them up, but did take a picture of one.
Oyster shell
Tonight after dinner, I made a potato salad for tomorrow night and I plan on spending the afternoon on the beach with my new book and my sand chair and soak up the sunshine and enjoy the the sound of the ocean.

A Sunday Drive around the Base

February 3rd - Monday 73 degrees

We awoke to Sunshine this morning, which was a huge surprise, as the forecast last evening gave warnings for severe fog.  This is the first morning that we have been able to see the other shore of the St. John River and it is lovely.

We have not had any internet service here since we moved into our new site, which has been very discouraging to both of us.  I called yesterday and the tech decided it was my computer and I told him I thought he was mistaken, as I could not pick up anything on my telephone or my kindle.....  Today our neighbor left and I tried again and presto I connected, so am going to get a post done quickly before someone moves into that spot.

Yesterday we attended church on the base.  Was a lovely service which was Lutheran, and well attended.  A lovely choir that contained 15 members.  They sang Worthy is the Lamb, written by Ray Bolt, one of my favorites.  I remembered being at this chapel two years ago, as they have wonderful music and a great choir director.  The chaplain was new but very inspiring.  His message was delivered as he moved up and down the aisles of the church, without notes.  He spoke from Luke 2:22-40.  Where Jesus is presented to Simeon, at the time of of purification.

After church, we drove to another Waffle House in Atlantic Beach and as Lou likes to do we drove home a different way, and it certainly was, we used the GPS to get to the WH,  but he drove home by the "seat of his pants" it was scenic.  Can't say where we were, as we don't really know, we did get home before dark!!  We love to do that.  Then we drove around the base to see the some of the sights.
They are dredging the River and putting the dirt on the barge and taking out to the ocean
The entrance to the base
A ship in the fog

Pellican Roost R.V. Park

Bayport, FL -  Naval Station - Pelican Roost R.V. Park
February 1st - Saturday - 62 degrees w/ wind

We awoke to a fog that covered the St. John River, we could hear the horns of the ships as they came in, but couldn’t see them.  Krista called me and told me that they finally reached temperatures above freezing and the timing was perfect as they had been without power for four hours.  Had it been last week, our home would have suffered from frozen pipes.

We moved into our site that we will keep for two weeks, it is on the second row, so we don’t have a direct view of the River, but still can see the ships as they come and go.

Yesterday, we had an exciting day, we were able to view something that we have never viewed before.  We saw a submarine come in for the day and then leave later in the day.  This is a rare occurrence and we felt privileged to have witnessed it.

Yesterday we procured a post office box, so Krista can forward mail to us while we are here, so she and I reviewed all of the mail that we have received since we have left home and she will get it sent out to us.  I got to talk to Matthew to day and he has learned to say Chickadee, as they have been visiting his bird feeder.

Today, I caught up on the laundry again, this R.V. park also has a free laundry, with a lovely clean and well kept area for doing laundry.  The sun did come out for a bit this afternoon, and was able to hang some of our things out to dry, but the fog came back in and they didn’t dry well.