Carrabelle Fla and great friends

After leaving Cedar Key, Fl we headed to Carabelle which is in the Florida panhandle along what is called “the forgotten coast”.  Ho Hum rv park has great sites (although tight) along the gulf. We spent two weeks here relaxing meeting up with some friends and also meeting new ones.

 

We met Jean and Ron a year ago and have cross paths a few times now always enjoying hanging out with them.  The four of us decided to take a air boat tour of the swamps and had a great time. It was our first time on an air boat and I was a bit worried it would hurt my bad neck but it turned out it was harder on my bladder….it’s hell getting old😉

 

Another day we drove out to st George island and enjoyed a beach walk. We had the beach all to ourselves and they even rolled out the blue carpet for us…..actually I’ve seen similar along the beach and I think it’s for wheelchair access, something I hope we see more of.

A few more pictures of carrabelle

A visit from Tom, Marci, and Bryce who were in the area.

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We also met Steve and Sue and took a ride to wakulla state park for a boat ride. Again, we are so lucky to meet up with such great folks on the road.

 

So many great visits and beautiful sunrises it was hard to move on but we must…headed up to lake city, Fl to stock up and head to Jekyll island next.

 

 

 

Cedar Key

On our way back up to the panhandle of Florida we stopped in Cedar Key.  Cedar key is west of Ocala on on the gulf side of Florida. We had been here a year ago but wanted to spend a few more nights there and explore. We arrived just after noon and headed downtown

After walking around we headed to Steamers  to relax and enjoy the water view. 8 bars/restaurants and one stop sign….gosh maybe we should house hunt here😉

After a bowl of fresh clams we met a great couple (Greg and Lynn, hope we meet up again someday) that were there vacationing and they introduced us to “corona ritas”.  Finished up with some fresh oysters!!12800319_10207527637441566_61455691609986134_n

On the way back to the campground we had to stop at low key highway,a cute little tiki bar just of the island. Great little funky place for great sunsets.

Sunday we kicked back at the cg and Dan washed the motorhome. Monday was just beautiful and we love checking out places during the week, after the weekend crowds, so we had a great afternoon riding around cedar key looking at all the cool beach homes. Then we headed downtown to the main pier12066004_10207529677852575_741329544926014490_n

The last stop on our list was Tony`s award winning clam chowder. It did not disappoint!!!! Love the sour dough bread bowl.12593718_10207530100663145_1319502345008590001_o

Then we headed home for an early night, off to Carabelle, Florida tomorrow.  Don’t miss cedar key if you get the chance….thanks for following along. This started out to be a journal, turned into a travel blog, and sometimes a food blog but we are just enjoying puttering along, taking it easy in the RV.

Cruising the river and wild monkeys

One of the things we wanted to do here at the Wilderness rv park was a pontoon boat cruise. The park has two pontoon boats that you can rent for the day so we packed up a cooler with lunch and headed out. The boat is nothing fancy but at $100 for the day (that includes gasoline) it was well worth it. You launch here at the park and start up the Ocklawaha river and then up the Silver river to Silver Springs state park. The trip is about 5 or 6 miles each way and took us about 5 hours although we were not in any hurry and just slowly cruised along enjoying the sights. Dan took the helm and we started up the river.

The scenery was just beautiful and it wasn’t long before we saw the first of many gators along the way along with turtles, anhinga, ducks and many different species of birds.

Soon we found the first troop of monkeys. Somewhere back in the 1930’s a guy who owned a river cruise here thought he would buy some Rhesus monkeys and put them on a small island on the river to enhance his cruise business but he failed to realize that monkeys can swim so they left the island and have been living and breeding along the river for years now. It’s pretty cool to see them as your going down the river and we enjoyed watching them.

Over all it was just a great day and the silver river is so clear you can see all the way to the bottom and watch the fish swimming. As we turned around at the state park and started back home we spotted a lone manatee. We’ve seen them in many of the springs here but didn’t expect to see one in the silver river.

Just a great day!

Some days you just have to wing it…

Today started out to just be an errand day but at each stop we kept striking out. By that time it was 2:00 and too late to try and get to one of the area springs to watch the manatees so we were kind of suggesting things to each other…

Now I love unusual weird places but Dan…not so much. So I decided we were going to what I called funkytown (not it’s real name, but I didn’t want to give it away). So after getting “the look”from Dan, and putting the address in the GPS, we headed to Gainesville.

I’m pretty sure when we pulled into Satchel’s pizza he had even more doubts but quickly warmed up to the place. A friend in the MH park had posted pics of this place and then when I googled it it was on a list of top 10 pizza places in the US, well hell, I’m in.

When you approach the front of the restaurant there is a great beat up graffiti van that is the most coveted seat on the property. The guys occupying it let me photograph them and even offered to let us join them but there was to much more to see…

Of course I don’t care for wind chimes but one made of hub caps is just too cool, and who doesn’t have a wall of cds

Not a lot of parking and weekends can easily be an hour wait, even if you fly in12733656_10207411702223258_3828804732002499350_n

Water features that are artsy or crazy, depending on your “eye”12743740_10207411701503240_1126065178971214859_n

Even a place to make your pose12745926_10207411700743221_3824797288387331807_n

Of course it was time eat and satchel did not disappoint

When they bring the viewmaster it’s for real and is their desert menu, all homemade.12728888_10207411706263359_3253135784539856646_n

Hope you enjoyed our visit to funky town, . Or it’s real name of Satchel’s Pizza in Gainesville. Before we left I got a big grin out of Dan and a “well, you really hit it out of the park with this one” woot woot, hippy high five😉 peace out!!

Time to catch up…

One of my resolutions this year is to get back into posting on our blog. Lots of reasons why I’ve neglected it but they are boring and whiney so I’m just gonna update in pictures the last 8 months and then start fresh.

Jekyll island -great place to just bike along the ocean.

Savannah, Ga – downtown watching the freighters roll by

Charleston, Sc – downtown market and a great little cg

Myrtle beach – cg. on the ocean and a view from the MH door

Topsoil island, NC – spent 3 weeks visiting my daughter Lisa.

Lake Norman, NC – very relaxing

Lake Lure, NC – Apple valley motorcoach resort & the Biltmore

Then back to ohio for Dr appts and visits with friends. This winter found us again in Destin, FL for Nov and Dec enjoying the beaches one more winter as we are heading to AZ next winter. Today we are in silver springs, Fl until mar when we head to st Augustine then up to Hilton head.

So…I updated to today and I’ll just end here with a few favorites:

 

 

Time for a new Coach…..

After leaving Destin, Fl we headed for Carrabelle, Fla.  There we stayed at Ho Hum RV Park and it was anything but Ho Hum.  Aside from having a gulf front site, watching dolphin from our front window,  and bears in the park at night, we had a 10 ft alligator swim up onto the beach.  The next morning he was discovered under one of the rigs which was exciting, well, not so much for that rig’s owner…

Our Site…

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While there we also visited Wakulla Springs state park to take their nature boat ride

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great ride watching gators, annahinga, and we were lucky enough to see several huge manatee

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Then we moved on to Cedar Key, Fla

We only had one night to stay there but will definitely go back to the tiki bar

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At that point we headed for Tampa….We had a plan.  We decided we wanted a newer, bigger coach so we were on our way to Lazydays Deaership .  Well things took a bit longer there that we had planned but we got our coach and had a great time during our 5 weeks there…

First off our friends George and Diane were in the area and we got to meet up for some Casino fun!!

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Then we headed to st Petes Beach to visit with the Bridges

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Good to see some Millbury faces!!!

We also got in a Detroit red wings playoff game

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The Bolts arena is pretty amazing…

Lazyday’s Crown club pool was very nice …

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Our time at Lazydays Tampa was fun, while waiting for our coach we met so many great couples and will be completely disappointed if we don’t see them somewhere down the road.

And yes, the new coach is fantastic

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Our 2012 40 foot Tiffin Phaeton.  14k miles with 4 slides.  We love the extra room, the stackable washer and dryer, and the residential refrigerator.

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no more Laundromats ..

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and Dan’s outside tv

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Well that got me caught up to May…..I’ll have to do another post on our trip up the east coast, I’ll just say tonight we sitting here (pictured below) on lake Norman in North Carolina and it’s pretty sweet. Thanks for following along…

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Next up, our stops in Jekyll island, Savannah, Charleston, Myrtle Beach, Topsail Island, and where we are today, Lake Norman , NC

Destin, Florida….Our winter home

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Spending the winter on the beautiful sugar sand beaches of the Emerald Coast was the best choice we’ve made yet.  I found this place online and booked it sight unseen except for their website….paradise found!!. After 3 1/2 mos rolling along camping in the woods and state parks it was time to just stay put.  A few pictures of our home from Dec 1st to Mar 7th….

10641030_10204459710185302_8696319527509506483_nOur first site (December)

10636311_10204459710505310_6408136382808026750_n4 sites from the water

10917843_10204781257303779_7877568599618731643_nWe then moved to the waterfront site for Jan and Feb…nice view?? This resort is right on the intercoastal and is run by the ramada resort across the street. We have full amenities at the Ramada including pools, hot tub, gym, beach, and room service.  We do have a pool right behind us here at the resort and it’s wonderfully warm!!

10917316_10204781258663813_4366862519212798881_nView from the door of the Motorhome

1610861_10204762933645699_4220812443727342359_nEnjoying the beach across the street. Most evenings we go over to the pier for sunsets, a few of those pictures to follow…

1798607_10204556766011637_453182042912855859_nChristmas with no snow….psst, glorious!!

1509967_10204480917395469_8069808825411596130_nDancing in the surf, releasing all the negative toxins from the last year and feeling SO blessed to be here…

10845896_10204480200097537_6051848109104020718_nDan soaking up some sun10384512_10204817721455360_8127306627968098457_nSALT LIFE – DAN IS GETTING HIS OLD SALT LOOK ON…”Son of a son of a sailor”….singing it, lol10423302_10204552654708857_6114037894399521081_nof course in Dec we saw our first ever boat parade, so cool10868297_10204552655028865_8803372247647523115_n10805719_10204552653788834_5105878155294756555_nfollowed by fireworks over the water…522094_10204488163416615_7616743205144339995_nHave I mentioned the Food?? Fish tacos….

New years day we bought 2.5 lbs of fresh snow crab and 4 lobster tails ($40 total) at the market, they cook them up for you and package them up hot…home to eat seafood and watch football, wink, living the life…10405621_10204691859388887_739713395590486287_n10882195_10204679525960559_5310907503911251321_n10931319_10204860161276329_1361762847664412803_nan evening pic I took on hwy 30A, says a lot to me…

10917128_10204856023292882_6154102630433156256_nWe are actually in Fort Walton Beach, just west of Destin. This beach is the Gulf national seashore, just beautiful, hard to find beach areas that aren’t overbuilt. That’s the pier we view sunset from and the motorhome is just near that watertower.  The sand here looks like snow but it’ll like walking in powdered sugar.

A few of my sunset shots and hopefully a few more to come, we are here til march and then heading to my daughters on Topsail Island in NC….1502570_10204481061839080_4757529692985344263_n1507208_10204868739970791_6755232889886846036_n1601539_10204766844103458_8963556778644584951_n10362841_10204836135355696_4707826680496212490_n10406470_10204481062039085_2054669908379325511_n10906548_10204836150076064_3109266145525267764_n10926369_10204766844143459_3691687913621041877_n10429413_10204780551446133_6137293660118087896_nWe think this is our spring route….plans are written in jello…but we would like to stop in st Augustine, Amelia Island, Jeckyl Island, Savanna and Charleston on the way to Surf City,NC. Day at a time, counting our blessings, it’s been a great 5 months since we left home…

Feel free to leave us a comment, even if you hate us…….lol, we love hearing from y’all….:)

Loving gulf shores, AL

Not much to write, just happy to be away from Wintertime.  Celebrated our 22nd wedding anniversary and feeling pretty blessed.

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After last Feb, this anniversary was pretty special.  We took a ride and found this beautiful beach bar and had to have a bloody mary (or two)….

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And then fresh oysters for dinner.

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Love the white sandy beaches, especially when it’s snowing at home

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Hope every one had a blessed Thanksgiving.  Moving to Destin, Florida on Monday where we will be for two months. Dan will be getting some checkups and some tests so we’ll be stationary for two months.  Loved this gulf shore area so we will definitely be back someday.  Kris

Tupelo MS – Trace state Park

Trace State Park – what a beautiful setting on a lake with full hook ups.  We were only going to spent a few nights here but stayed a week.  We did take a 40 mile trek into Oxford, MS to get Bailey groomed at a petsmart. Oxford is home to Ole Miss college and they have a very cool downtown Square with shops and bars but traffic was horrible due to a football game so we didn’t stay any longer than her grooming appt.

From Trace State Park we spent some time at the following stops on the Trace:

Confederate Grave sitesconfederate graves

20 mile bottom overlook20 mile overlook 2 20 mile overlook 1Looking down onto old trace sunken path

Hiking at Chickasaw Villagechickasaw hike 1

Of course Tupelo is Elvis’s birthplace so we had to stopElvis birthplace

And a few pic’s of Trace State Park in Tupelo:trace state park 2trace state park 1trace state park

After a week in Tupelo we headed to Brandon, MS outside of Jackson, MS.  After 350 miles of “wooded” Natchez Trace it breaks out of the woods along Ross Barnett Reservoir. jackson msjackson ms 2

We stopped at the Reservoir overlook:overlook

We stayed 3 nights at Timberlake State Park but my favorite part of our Jackson, MS stopover was Cypress Swampcypress swamp 5cypress swamp 4cypress swamp 6

Now on to Natchez State Park and the final 110 miles of this beautiful Parkway….

The Natchez Trace – Our slow trek to a warm winter place

We left Land Between the Lakes and headed to the Natchez Trace.  All backroads today, no highways, 120 miles…..just the kind of short day we like.

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This is just after getting on the Trace.

10414509_10204237543351270_7557190952715704946_n  The Natchez Trace goes 440 miles from Nashville to Natchez, Ms.  No commercial vehicles are allowed on the trace so NO semi’s and the speed limit is only50 mph so you just enjoy the view.  The area is rich in history and there are lots of neat stops along the way. No billboards, no gas stations, no carryouts,  so pack a lunch, lots of  pull offs and great views.  Here are a few…

10629824_10204271180952189_122380680889876719_n10678713_10204271181712208_1838168741795301788_n10641212_10204271185952314_1164601079394185442_n10402688_10204254832063477_2008525645862745697_nThis last one was looking down from a bridge on the Trace.

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1234695_10204251329055904_6803612372858249667_nA pic of the Jackson’s at Jackson Fall’s ( thanks Krya)

and a view of the falls

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We boondocked (camping with no hookups)  for 4 nites at the Meriweather Lewis campground where our friend Kyra was camping also.  We also got to meet up with Malia Lane who is traveling the Trace (in her motorhome) writing about the Trace for Motorhome Magazine.  We really enjoy meeting up with other full timers and had a wonderful visit around the campfire. Hopefully we meet up with Malia farther down the Trace later this week.

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After 4 nites it was time to move on and we headed on down the trace, passing through Alabama

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Another short day, 130 miles to Tupelo, MS.  We are at Trace State Park (full hook ups) since we are gonna have a few chilly nights and the cold isn’t good for either one of us. So we are cozy and warm here for the next week, temps will be back in the 70’s Monday, then we’ll head out Friday.  yep, drive 130 miles, stay a week….that’s how we roll.  below is the new camp, i’ll get a better pic later as this was late in the day when we got here….

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Thank you all again for the wonderful heartfelt prayers for Dan.  We are blessed to be able to head south and get him away for the winter.  Between his heart, COPD, and the paralysis in his right hand, cold weather is the worst for him. Thanks for following along and indulging me on making this journal/blog.  Kris