Monday, November 29, 2010

Back Home- Rock Crusher Canyon RV Park

Since last we posted, we left Pine Mountain, GA, on Thanksgiving morning and traveled 4 hours to reach Ho Hum RV Park in Carrabelle, FL. The guests at Ho Hum were finishing up their Thanksgiving meal outside the main building when we pulled up. We got our site assignment and they encouraged us to hurry back as they still had plenty to eat. Barbie had already planned our meal and had already prepared some of the meal and just had to heat it up. We set up the rig and then enjoyed our view and our meal which consisted of: turkey, stuffing, garlic mashed potatoes, broccoli au gratin, biscuits and sweet potato pie. Barbie did a great job, everything tasted superb.

Ho Hum is right on the gulf and is is an older park. They have about 15 choice sites that in a motorhome you pull straight in and you are essentially just feet from the water.


The remainder of the sites are all within 300 feet or so from the water and the 200 foot pier.

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The home page of the website shows a great overhead picture of the campground. They advertise on their website their slogan:  “ We Cater To Seniors and Adults In A Quiet Relaxed  Country Atmosphere.” There is no pool or amenities that kids would enjoy. The cable tv was great, about 70 channels and the wifi was free albeit a tad slow. Not a whole lot happening in that area of the panhandle nor are there many restaurants or grocery stores. We did have a good meal at a local spot in Carrabelle by the name of 2 Al’s Cafe. My shrimp basket was good and Barbie enjoyed her oyster basket. Carrabelle is best known for having the world’s smallest police station.


We took a ride to Apalachicola, which is about 30 miles from the campground. For a couple of days to unwind and enjoy the scenery, you can’t beat this area of the panhandle. We’ll go back. While there we got a visit from Barbie’s great friend from Mann Middle School, Linda,  and her husband Bill, on Saturday morning.


They stayed and chatted for an hour and a half before continuing their drive home to Auburndale after spending the week at Panama City Beach. I’ll leave you with one last shot from Ho-Hum with St. Georges Island in the background.


Sunday morn we packed up the rig, hitched up the Terrain, and left Ho Hum RV Park at 10:15am for Crystal River. We arrived here at Rock Crusher Canyon RV Park at 2:00pm. It was great backing into our site again. We pulled out of here on June 21 on our trip to Dillard, GA. We got all settled in here for the next 5 months or so.


But, as has been said before, as retirees, those plans are extremely flexible and subject to change at any time. We certainly understand that concept as we hadn’t planned to spend ALL the time since June in Dillard. Of course we’ll take periodic trips to Valrico for a couple days at a time. 

‘Til next time………

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Thanksgiving Eve 2010

We sit here on Thanksgiving Eve at Pine Mountain RV Resort in Pine Mountain, Georgia where we have been since arriving Monday at 1:35pm. We will leave here tomorrow morning to travel to Ho Hum RV Park in Carrabelle, FL. Yes, we’ll be traveling on Thanksgiving Day, but we are thankful for being able to do just that this year. We hope you find time to give thanks to all the blessings that have been bestowed upon you and yours.

So what have we been up to in Pine Mountain you ask? Monday after arriving we just “chilled.” Tuesday we drove around the area and explored a little before going to “Fantasy in Lights” at 7:00pm-an hour before our time to report. When you register you have a choice of riding their trolley or driving your own vehicle. We chose to drive ourselves. And, that was a good thing because a trolley started in front of us and they lost us quickly. Barbie drove slowly so we could take bunches of pictures. We were a bit concerned initially as it began raining when we were leaving the motorhome to get there. But, by the time we got the go to begin our drive (it is all coordinated by staff) the rain had stopped and we were able to put the windows down to hear the music and take pictures. I’ve never seen anything quite like this-except maybe Disney World. There were themed areas and of course the lights, figurines and music were all appropriately coordinated. It was about a 45 minute drive from beginning to end. I took 90 pictures myself and Barbie took a bunch with her camera. Below are some of my favorites:

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Good stuff huh? If you click on the picture, you should see a larger version. So that was last night’s excitement. Today we were able to use our ticket from last night and get entrance to the park. We drove around and checked it out-the place is huge. We also took a ride over to F. D. Roosevelt State Park. It was only about 8 miles away. We drove thru the campground area and they were full. Everything from tenters, to pop-ups, to travel trailers, to fifth wheels to class B vans, to class C’s to the 40 foot diesel pushers were occupying sites. Before coming back to the motorhome we ate dinner at the Country Store Restaurant at Callaway Gardens. We had a great country style meal believe me.

Well, I’ll leave ya with one last photo from last eve.

“Til next time…….. , with the good Lord willin’ and the creek don’t rise, -   from Carrabelle, Florida………….


Sunday, November 21, 2010


This is Barbie writing  to you today!!Have you ever been so “pumped up” about doing something that might not be the greatest thing in the world to do, but you know that once you do it you will feel good? Well, that is how I have felt the last two days. I knew I had to wash the windshield and put Rain-X on it but the hassle of getting out the “hidden” ladder in the basement and facing the possibility that I wouldn’t be able to reach the very top of the windshield made me feel stressful. I don’t like to feel stressed and retired at the same time. So, I took on the challenge and made it a two day event. After getting under the basement and finding carpet after carpet plus all the other “stuff” that I put in there before leaving Dillard, I felt a huge accomplishment to be had. I cleaned the windshield first and it looked so good that I cleaned the side windows, too. I cleaned out the last basement where all the cleaning supplies were located and got rid of stuff that we didn’t need, like Jeff’s underwear that we used as cleaning rags. Yeah, I know, underwear isn’t a pretty thing to have in your hand while cleaning but it beats paying for rags at the store, right? Back to the ladder…..a very sturdy one at that but very hard to  lengthen without the use of a hammer and silicone spray. I managed to open up the ladder and stand on it applying the Rain-X without any difficulty. Rain-X must be applied with a clean rag in a circular motion and then cleaned off with another cloth. It looked great and Jeff was waving at me inside the rig while I was doing it, which only encouraged me more to get that brilliant glow! Project done, the ladder had to be put in its compact mode and put away. That was a problem. I put my left arm in the wrong place and pinched a little area …. oh that smarted! Now I have a black and blue mark to remind me of my greatest accomplishment. But, the ladder is now away and the windshield is ready for rain that hopefully won’t appear while travelling to Pine Mountain tomorrow.

Being “pumped up” to do the job was invigorating because the task was boring but the outcome was “priceless”. It is the little things in life that mean so much to me now that I am retired. I felt so “pumped up” on Thursday before we left Dillard because I had accomplished major tasks by myself. I cleaned the sewer hose, put away the water hose and filter, and with Jeff’s help learned how to connect the Brakemaster system to my car. Sure it was work, but just being outdoors and so ready to get on the road made it all worthwhile!

As Jeff mentioned  to you in yesterday’s blog, I went to Characters Barbecue in Adairsville and got us our dinner. I got Jeff some pulled pork with baked beans, potato salad, bread, iced lemon cake, and a drink all for $10. I got the same thing except my meat of choice was chicken. Superb meal! It is just a hole in the wall with mainly take-out and a few picnic tables outside but a place that we would go back to if we get in this area again. Today we went out to the Cracker Barrel for “lupper” and it was a great meal. The place wasn’t crowded at all.

We really like Harvest Moon RV Park. I did one load of laundry today and was so pleased with it. You see, it is free! The washing machines and dryers are beautiful and so easy to use and FREE!!! I went into the office after I did the laundry and complimented them of the nice perks that they offer their customers, like the free laundry and the free popcorn upon arrival. This is the type of rv park that we will visit again even if there isn’t anything to do around here.

I leave you with some pictures that I took with my camera.  Remember…enjoy the moment!


Site 16 , Harvest Moon RV Park


Harvest Moon RV Park, Adairsville, GA

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Harvest Moon RV Park, Adairsville, GA

We left River Vista Mountain Village in Dillard at noon on Thursday. Our plans were to head west across northern Georgia to get to Adairsville and not follow most mapping programs which say to head south to I-85, take I-285 to I-75 and turn back north to get to Adairsville. I had no desire to get in the Atlanta traffic. I prefer the scenic route even if it takes a little longer. We were in no hurry. We fueled up in Rabun Gap, just 5 minutes from River Vista. It was a great travel day and in three and a half hours we pulled in at Harvest Moon. I had designed our trip using Microsoft Streets and Maps 2010 but also programmed the trip in our GPS to compare the two.


Both worked well. The only incident that occurred on the trip was when I tried to wash the windshield off. I turned the wipers on and tried to squirt fluid on the windshield. No fluid, and the wipers moved about 6 inches(right to the middle in my view) and stopped. I drove a few miles but the wiper was splitting my view and aggravated me. I pulled in to a Home Depot parking lot in Ellijay so Barbie could get out and give them a gentle boost. My thinking was that not being used in 5 months maybe they needed help. Well, that didn’t work but Barbie was able to move them so now they are extended to the far side so they do not split my view. We’ll address that issue later.

When we arrived at Harvest Moon Barbie went into the office to check in. A few minutes later she walks out grinning with 2 bags of popcorn in her hands. You see this place besides the full hook-up sites with free wifi, free cable, free laundry (first time I’ve seen this too) and all the other amenities, they give you free popcorn at check-in. Nice touch I’d say! And the popcorn was good too. As I waited for Barbie to check-in, I saw the pool was closed for the winter but adjacent to the pool was a great fire pit area with chairs. I’m sure some tall tales have been told around that fire pit.

IMG_0120 The campground was packed but that was because there was a Georgia Good Sam chapter (Covered Wagon Sams) rally here for the weekend as well. We traveled on the gravel road to our level gravel site and set up. We got everything set up and settled in for a relaxing evening. Yesterday (Friday) we took a drive around the area. There is not a whole lot in this area but the usual fast food stops and a few businesses you’d find at an interstate exit. Today, I’m sitting here watching the South Florida vs. Pitt football game and Barbie cleaned the front windshield and is currently off picking up barbeque from a local business the lady at check-in recommended highly. So with that said I’ll quit for now.

‘Til next time………….

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Finalizing Plans for Departure

We have been here at River Vista Mountain Village, Dillard,  in the NE Georgia mountains since June 22nd. That wasn’t the plan but my back issue grounded us as you know if you’ve been reading our blog all summer. I’m thankful for the recovery I’ve been able make to this point. We saw the leaves change and the weather is getting cold so the timing is right to begin heading south. With the rain the past two days, the preparations to leave have been limited to the inside of the motorhome. I believe Barbie has been thru every cabinet and storage area we have cleaning and organizing them all. We got out today to return some library books and pick up some groceries. Barbie was nearly in tears as we left Ingles. She loves that grocery store. The rain is gone so tomorrow we finalize the exterior tasks so we’re ready to pull out Thursday morning. We decided during the past week to leave here a few days early and make a stop prior to us going to Callaway Gardens “Fantasy in Lights.” We’ll spend 3 days in Adairsville, GA at Harvest Moon RV Park before moving on to Pine Mountain. My Microsoft Streets and Trips routing claims it will only be a 2 hour and 45 minute drive. I figure that’s long enough of a drive since it will be my first time behind the wheel since June.

I got a call this morning from the new Activity Director at Rock Crusher Canyon RV Park (RCC) in Crystal River. RCC is our “home” rv park in Florida as we purchased a site there nearly 3 years ago.  Judy said she had heard of the dances that I had DJed last year for New Years Eve and Valentines Day from some of the folks already there for the winter that were there last year. Apparently they had a good time and to make a long story short, I know what I’ll be doing and where we’ll be on New Years Eve. Judy asked me if I would do the dance, I accepted, so it’s on the RCC  calendar. Once we get down there she also wants to sit down with me and add some other dates for dances for the park for the season. My agent has already begun the promotion for New Years Eve. LOL

jpeg new year 2011 RCC So for those of you who don’t have plans for camping at that time of year yet, come join us on the Nature Coast in Crystal River. If you want more information make a comment at the end of the blog and I’ll get back with you. It is a great part of the state to spend some time. Come check out “Monkey Island,” swim with the manatees, or share some steamed shrimp and a drink with us at The Freezer. It don’t get much better, I’m tellin’ ya. We’re gonna have a blast!

‘Til next time………………….

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Veteran’s Day Remembered

You can find many tributes to veterans if you search the internet for sure. Below is one of my favorites:


The Best on Earth:
A Veteran's Day Tribute

If someone has done military service,
They earn the title "veteran," and more;
They earn our deep respect and admiration;
That they are special no one can ignore.

They sacrificed the comforts we enjoy;
The list is long of all the things they gave.
Our veterans are extraordinary people;
They’re loyal, dedicated, true and brave.

When terror and invasion were real threats,
They showed us they could handle any storm.
We owe our freedoms and our very lives
To our veterans, who served in uniform.

Our veterans should be celebrities;
They’re exceptional; no other group compares.
We’re grateful for the many things they’ve done;
They’re always in our hearts and in our prayers.

We owe our veterans support and friendship;
Let no one ever question what they’re worth.
These men and women served us and our country,
Our veterans--the very best on earth.

By Joanna Fuchs


Thanks Dad and all the other veterans out there.

Patroit Jeff

‘Til next time…………………..

Saturday, November 6, 2010


I woke up at 5:30am this morn and took a look at the thermometer that shows the outside temp. The outside gauge is located on the back of the motorhome near the ladder to the roof. It read 28 DEGREES for the temp! That is the low that  Intellicast (my favorite weather website) predicted for last eve. Thank goodness the inside temp read 64 degrees. The Vornado was working hard to keep us at that temperature. But, we were comfortable. Well, the projected low for tonight in Dillard is to be 24. Geez, and we won’t be leaving here until the 22nd. We did somewhat firm up the travel plans. I made our reservations for Pine Mountain RV Resort near Callaway Gardens for Nov 22-25. We’ll check out the Gardens and their “Fantasy in Lights” show. Then I made reservations for the Ho-Hum RV Park in Carrabelle, FL, in the panhandle, for Nov 26-29. Ho-Hum is between Tallahassee and Panama City and  they claim “To Cater To Seniors and Adults In A Quiet Relaxed  Country Atmosphere.” Sounded like a good fit to us. It is also right on the Gulf of Mexico and our site is to face the water. Check out their website and you’ll see what I mean. I found this place on one of the blogs I regularly follow. After we leave there it is “home” to Rock Crusher Canyon RV Park in Crystal River.

The paint crew will be back Monday morn to put the final coat on the deck. It really looks great. The knots and grain in the wood are clearly visible through the stain. I’ll post pictures mid-week. We also will have new chassis (starting) batteries installed in the motorhome Monday. We knew they were weak when we arrived here in June and would need replacing but we planned to wait until it was time to move on down the road. We’re told starting batteries in a motorhome last about 5 years and we’ve had the coach since ‘04 and have never replaced them so I don’t feel bad about this expense.

Wednesday eve, we went up to Franklin, NC, and had a “send-off” dinner with great friends, Pat and Sandie, at MiCasa, a Mexican restaurant. They’ve been up at their rv site in Franklin, 20 minutes from us here in Dillard, for nearly 6 weeks I believe. They headed home to Brandon, FL, Friday morning.

Finally, I can also say I finished reading a book on the JFK assassination that Barbie had checked out of the Rabun County Library for me. That subject has always intrigued me. In this book, from witness statements and the documents that have been released, the author pokes holes in and refutes the Warren Commission Report. It addresses how the assassination went down, from where the shots were fired, to the how and when of JFK’s body arriving at Bethesda Naval Hospital, and to the autopsy itself. I’m currently working on UFO’s- Generals, Pilots, and Government Officials Go On the Record. That’s another subject that has always fascinated me. And finally, Barbie checked out Kathy Reichs, 2006 Bones, for me. She is the author that is the inspiration for the FOX TV series, “Bones”, which is a favorite of mine. So I’d better quit this and get busy reading if I plan to finish all before we leave Dillard!

I’ll leave you with some “cold” pix from here from a few years ago. Stay warm wherever you are AND don’t forget to turn your clocks back tonight!

‘Til next time…………

Barbie in snow Jeff in snow

Helen ice fountain Bridal Veil Falls


Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Gettin’ the Itch

Well, here it is November. It’s hard to believe we have been here in Dillard a little over 4 months. Of course, I feel like I lost about half of that time being grounded with my back issue. But now with my physical therapy ongoing, although cut back to twice a week now, we are trying to tie up some loose ends because we are getting the itch to get on the move. We are kicking around the idea of leaving here and going to the Pine Mountain, GA area to check out “Fantasy in Lights” at Callaway Gardens. “Fantasy in Lights” runs from November 19 thru December 30, 2010. Nestled amidst the wooded landscape of Callaway Gardens, Fantasy In Lights is the Southeast's most spectacular holiday light and sound show with more than eight million twinkling lights celebrating the holiday season.  This spectacular show has attracted almost two million visitors since it opened in 1992.  Now in its 19th year, Fantasy In Lights has become an essential holiday tradition for many families, as much as a part of the season as caroling or attending "The Nutcracker."

Fantasy of Lights

Now in its 19th year, Fantasy In Lights continues to be the most incredible holiday light show in the South they claim. Larger-than-life lighted scenes, music, a 22,000-square-foot Christmas Village, holiday decor and more make this one of those special experiences you'll always treasure.

  1. Fantasy In Lights opened in 1992 with five scenes. Since then, it has grown to include more than a dozen lighted scenes with music and many with animation.
  2. The total show includes 8,000,000 lights. This is equivalent to the number of lights on 26,666 standard 6-foot tall Christmas Trees.
  3. To make music an integral part of each scene, speakers are used.
  4. It takes a lot of electricity to keep the lights burning. To deliver that electricity they use 3,500 extension cords!
  5. To provide sound and power to all the scenes, they use more than 32 miles of cable.
  6. 12 million cable ties hold all the cables in place.
  7. Three of the scenes are controlled with digital show controls, just like those used in Broadway productions.
  8. If you connected all of the light strings used in Fantasy In Lights, they would stretch 731 miles! That means you could outline the state of South Carolina with them or stretch them from Callaway to Baltimore, Maryland!
  9. It takes 3,900 man-hours to install Fantasy In Lights, 1,780 man-hours to maintain it during the duration the show is open, and 1,020 man-hours to disassemble it.
  10. It takes six weeks to install the entire show. Each scene takes three to four days to install.
  11. The newest scene, Enchanted Rainbow Forest, has 410 controlled images. This has almost three times the number of images used in The Twelve Days of Christmas.
  12. 99% of the frames used in Fantasy In Lights are custom designed and built just for Callaway.
  13. To turn on the show, more than 1,000 switches have to be flipped every night. It takes two workers at least 45 minutes to turn on all of them. Then, it takes another 45 minutes to turn all 1,000 switches off at the end of the night.
  14. Each scene receives a major overhaul every three to four years. This process includes rewiring and restringing with new lights.
  15. In January, Fantasy In Lights is stored in a 6,500-square-foot warehouse where it remains until the elves visit them again in the Fall to begin another year of the show!

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You see why we want to hit this event? If you want more info click here "Fantasy in Lights"

Saturday we went to Waynesville, NC with the purpose of going to a Best Buy store to purchase a new 32” Sony Bravia LCD TV for the motorhome. We’ve been kicking around the idea for awhile now so we decided to get it while on sale. We already had the lumber cut to build a stand to fit over our steering wheel area and Barbie had already stained it. We just needed to assemble it. Well, wouldn’t you know the Best Buy  had no more but “the truck” was to arrive Thursday with 6 more. Of course that was of no use to us so Barbie suggested going next door and check out the WalMart. Wouldn’t you know they had the same tv for the same sale price as Best Buy. We bought it, assembled the stand Monday and were watching “Dancing With the Stars” on the new tv last evening. It is sweet for sure!

Finally, Jamie Avila and his paint crew were finally able to start re-staining our deck, shed and landscape timbers yesterday. He was to have started last week but the rain prevented them from starting. These fellas are efficient. They pressure washed everything first. Then they are sanding everything before applying the first coat. They will add a second coat as well. It looks great now and they haven’t put the second coat on yet. This crew has painted most of the cabins in Falls View and they do a great job. When they finish I’ll post photos.

‘Til next time…………………..