Monday, 26 March 2012


We left Monroe, Michigan on Sunday morning just before 830AM.  After stopping for gas first thing we were on our way.  We stopped once for Jackson to go potty and that was it.  We rolled up into our driveway just past 130PM.  It was a good drive,  no rain, traffic was great.  The stop at the border hardly was that.  The fellow asked us when we had left Canada, (November 27) how many people on board (2 people, 1 cat, 1 dog) any liquor (bottle of wine in the fridge) and we got a Have a good day.  Thanks mate, Ken said and we were through.  Gotta love those Canadians, a lot easier coming home that’s for sure.

At first I was just going to empty the contents of the fridge and do the other stuff another day, but once we got going just couldn’t seem to stop.  Took us around 4 hours to empty the rig.  I have a process, fill a huge bag, bring it in and put that bag away before loading up again.  Works well for us as there isn’t tons of stuff hanging around then it’s a ‘where do I start’ moment.  I had laundry up to the yinyang.  Thank goodness I have those huge front loaders. 

Now all that is left is to give it a good cleaning and we can drive it over to the storage lot.  Tonight it’s going to be cold and I really don’t want to winterize again, so I’m going to put heat lamps in the water bins and turn the gas furnace on low. 

Sure is just wonderful to be home.  Jackson just about went out of his mind and Arthur acted like he’d never left.  Fun to get away but there really is ‘no place like home’.

Till later then…take care.

Thursday, 22 March 2012

On Our Way

We left Foley, Alabama just after 8 AM on the morning of Wednesday, the 21st.  Our first stop for the night was Calera, Alabama.  Tonight we are just outside of Nashville.  It rained on and off on the way, and just after we settled in here, the skies opened up.  Right now it is just dreary and not raining, but there is more in the forecast.  Tomorrow night our planned stop is just outside of Cincinnati, Ohio.

I think we’re all glad to be heading home.  Jackson is bored out of his cotton pickin’ mind.  Even Arthur appears to be bored.  It was difficult for me after being home for a few days to attend my Dad’s funeral to return back down to Foley.  Ken said I should stay home and he’d drive home by himself, but I think that would be just plain stupid.  I am the navigator, the dog settler, the double and triple checker of things.  As it was the 3 of them were very lonely and very glad to see me.  Nice to be needed….

There will be an awful lot of unloading once we get this baby in the driveway.  Many, many trips in and out.

Well, until, later…take care.

Saturday, 17 March 2012

A Trip Home to say Good-Bye


It’s been a very hectic week to say the least.  Last Friday the 9th I received a phone call from my sister to tell me that my Dad had a massive heart attack.  My Dad would have been 97 on May 7th of this year.  He lasted 24 hours on equipment and when they removed it his heart was so badly damaged that it just couldn’t go on and he passed away very peacefully.  I made flight reservations from Pensacola to Toronto and went home.  After the funeral I flew back down here.  Ken stayed with the fur kids. 

My Mother passed away 15 years ago and it didn’t take Dad long to meet a lovely lady and marry her.  We all loved Mary, she was a gem.  Unfortunately, she developed cancer and 7 years or so after they married she was gone.  My Mom, bless her heart, was a homebody, but not Dad, he was the social butterfly of the family.  He was extremely active all his life.  My sister compared him to the Energizer bunny and that he was.  But Mary, well Mary loved to do all the things Dad loved to do.  Dad was a fanatical fisherman and Mary loved to fish.  They took many fishing trips together.  They loved to hike and walk and both kept very active.  Until she got sick. 

After Mary passed away, again it didn’t take Dad long to meet someone else and marry her too.  Unfortunately, she was no Mary.  None of us really warmed up to her, but that’s another story.

They moved into a seniors complex, not a old age home but an apartment complex for seniors.  Dad helped run all the social events, which was absolutely no surprise to us.  He had thousands of movies, so he arranged movie nights for the seniors.  They played lawn bowling, bean bag baseball, I think they even had nights out.  He ran the bingo and called the numbers.  And Dad helped or completely ran them all.  He just had to keep busy.  And he loved it.

There are 4 of us, I have 2 older sisters and 1 younger brother.  We all said that we hoped that when it was Dad’s time that he went quick because it would have just killed his spirit if he was any sort of an invalid.  Dad was a healthy man all his life.   He had a couple illnesses the last couple years but he bounced right back.  He had no arthritis, no major aches or pains.  He was an incredible man.  He led a charmed life, he really did. 

My Mom &  Dad were missionaries in the West Indies, on a small island called Dominica.  I was the only one born there, but other than my brother, who was born in Canada, we 3 girls were raised there.  My Dad never stopped for a second down there, preaching, helping the people with things, just go go go.  I do believe it was the happiest time in my Dad’s life.  He loved it there, but we came home in 1958 and stayed home.  But Dad continued his go go go.  He never stopped for a second, couldn’t sit still, loved bowling, fishing, tennis anything that kept him busy.  He would walk into a room where he knew no one and within 10 minutes was friends with all of them.  Not a shy bone in his body. 

Up until about 10 years ago he was an avid tennis player. One of the reasons he stopped playing was because he told us all his player friends had passed away AND they were all younger than him and when he found new players he didn’t think they gave him a good game.

So it was not a mourning, but a celebration of 97 years of a life that was well spent and well enjoyed.  There were few tears, much laughter at the funeral home and service.  You cannot mourn a man who lived so long and so well.  I’m sure that where ever his spirit his, he is running something, playing something and absolutely, taping movies. 

As they say, God’s speed Dad. 

Saturday, 3 March 2012

New Home

On March 1, we arrived here in Foley, Alabama.  We are staying in Bella Terra RV Resort.  It is a beautiful ownership resort, but we are just renting a spot.  It is a very beautiful resort.  The heading photo is our site here.  This is what we see out of our front window.
The evening we arrived the owner, who has his rig and a cute casita here on his lot, had a cocktail party.  Although we were tired from the trip and setting up, we walked over.  People are very friendly, and we spent about an hour or so socializing there then headed back home.  Then last night they had a singer and open bar and snacks over at the clubhouse.  We walked over and it was nice.  We left at intermission.  Jackson is not a happy camper being left along.  He hates it.  So we try not to leave him too long.  Tomorrow afternoon they are having a Bloody Mary Bash.  I’d prefer it to be a Bloody Caesar Bash but I’ll take the Bloody Mary’s.

We arrived to beautiful hot weather.  It was lovely, and the very first time this whole trip that I have put shorts on.  But alas, it wasn’t to last.  We have since been plagued with foul weather.  I’m sure you’re heard about the tornadoes in northern Alabama, Tennessee and Kentucky.  It was awful.  We have several tornado watches and warnings along with severe thunderstorm warnings.  Thankfully only the thunderstorms have materialized and RAIN.   Also it’s quite windy, all awnings have been in for a couple days now.  We are RV bound today as the weather is just too nasty.

Yesterday we drove down to Gulf Shores.  A very pretty place and one of the most beautiful beaches we have ever seen.  I have never seen or felt sand so white and so fine.  It’s so soft on your feet.

Well hopefully you are all safe and weren’t in the path of the tornadoes.  Until later …. take care.

Friday, 2 March 2012

Our boy is 5!!!!!!!!!!!!

Five years ago today, our beautiful Golden Retriever, Jackson, was born.  His Mom was a small lovely honey coloured Golden and his Dad was a large white or cream Golden.  He had 9 or 10 litter mates.
Jackson's Daddy 
Jackson’s Dad & MomJackson's Mommy

We always wanted another dog.  We had our precious Maggie, a yellow lab, she was now 7.   She was suffering from a torn cruciate ligament and major surgery and we couldn’t take her to park any longer to run and play with the other dogs, something she loved to do.  Once I retired in 2006, we decided to get another dog as company for Maggie and someone for her to play with and have a buddy.  Boy was that a mistake!
October 13 downloads 037

We went to the breeder, a drive of about 2 hours, to pick out our new furkid.  When we got there, there were 5 puppies in the whelping pen.   We had no idea if we were going to get a male or female, we just thought we’d just go with the flow.
Jackson's in there somewhere..all his brothers & sisters1 
Jackson and his brothers & sisters
(I think he’s on the far right)

We played with the pups for a bit and they were all nuts, jumping and yelping all but one.  He sat there, was quiet, and just plain sweet.  I asked about him and was told that he had always been the quieter one among his siblings.  Bingo!!! this was the one for us due to the fact that Maggie was what we called the ‘puppy from hell’ !  Man she was a bad one.  Papers were signed, instructions given and we were off.  In hindsight I should have put him in a crate but I thought he would like to sit on my lap on the drive home.  He wasn’t comfortable on the ride home, proceeded to upchuck on me.  Poor guy, must be hard, never away from his family, all he knew was that whelping pen and the house and all of a sudden, he’s with strangers, in a weird moving vehicle, no wonder.   As soon as we got home I took him right outside into the backyard where he threw up again, but then once his feet hit solid earth he was fine.
Jackson first day home2Jackson first day home5

We introduced him to Maggie, she sniffed him and walked away.  Jackson was kind of excited, I suppose thinking, ‘great, a 4 legged buddy’.  Maggie, I’m sure, was thinking, ‘when are you taking this guy back??!!’  They had a few buddy moments now and then over the years but not often and only when Maggie felt like it.  Maggie was a bossy, dominant girl and she wanted us all to herself.  She had a beautiful personality, but she had her own mind and once it was set, it was set.

But there was a kind of truce between them, Jackson adored her and Maggie tolerated him, barely.  But he never seemed to mind.  He’s a happy guy, and his main world is Ken and myself.  He did miss Maggie a lot when she died, he moped around, sighed a lot, but in a few months he did get over it.
Jackson & Maggie having a romp May 30.0709Jackson May 2010

Everyone who meets Jackson, seems to fall in love with him.  Not only is he beautiful (I am after all his Mom you know so what else would I think?) but he has the most amazing personality.  There is not a mean bone in his body.  He’s just a big love bug.  He listens well, is a joy to be around.  If I had to find one fault with him it’s that he’s not the greatest of travellers.  Not always the greatest when you RV.  In the RV he’s not so bad but in a car, oh my goodness.  Probably due to the bad start when he arrived home.  He fusses and whines and just is a royal PITA.  He’s a major, major foodie, but then a lot of retrievers are.

He has brought such joy to our lives over the past 5 years.  He was a blessing to have around after Maggie died.  He helped us heal.  Can’t imagine our lives without him. 

Happy Birthday Jackson..we love you.
Jackson Oct 2011 (9)

Thursday, 1 March 2012

We’ve Moved

Today we left Emerald Coast RV Beach Resort.  We left around 10 AM.  It was difficult to say goodbye to our friends.  It’s really something how close you can get to people in 3 short months.  A few tears were shed and we were on our way.  It’s only about 120 miles down the road.    It’s Bella Terra in Foley, Alabama.  We are here for 6 weeks then we head home.  Seems like along time ago that we left home.

The sites here are lovely, large, paved, neat and clean.  They had a cocktail evening tonight at someone’s site.  This is an ownership campground, so these people owned their site.  They had a lovely gazebo with a gas fireplace and they had built a casita on their site.  It was very nice and all the people we met seemed very friendly.  It was a party to get to know everyone as I gather several new people arrived today.

Very tired tonight, took a lot of work to setup everything inside and out.  I will blog more later on with details about the area and the campground.

Until later….take care.