Thursday, March 28, 2013

Doin' Just Fine

What can we say, but writing has not been a priority on our “to do” list for over a month. Shame on us. Thank you for sending e-mails asking if we are doing OK. Let us (Barbie will start) tell you of our experiences since the last time we wrote. This will be a long one....stay with us!
Jeff had his doctors’ appointment on Feb. 20 in Valrico and he is in great shape with all of his blood work. The usual, lose weight and exercise, are the same topics that our doctors tell us. While we were at our Valrico house we cleaned up some and got rid of more “stuff”. One of these days we will be ready to sell the “monster home” and feel free to go wherever we want to without having to worry about the home when we are away. We have only been to Valrico three times since we arrived in November for a total of 7 days. I am afraid we will have to spend more time there next season when we come back in order to accomplish the task of getting rid of all of the stuff. What joy that will be!
The biggest thing we did while in Valrico was to sell my 2010 GMC Terrain. We went to the dealership that we bought it from and then to CarMax. CarMax was more than fair, so we sold it to them. We actually got more for it than what we would have gotten on a trade in on another vehicle elsewhere. We are very happy we don’t have to worry about it or pay insurance on it anymore.
We have met some neat people while we have been in Rock Crusher this season. One couple, Debbie and Irv ( with their poodle Penny) are from NY state area and were here for a month. We went out to eat at Kim’s Café for breakfast with them and they enjoyed it even though the service was not up to par. They left for Ho Hum RV Park in Carrabelle, FL which we had told them about from our stays there, and then they went to Tybee Island in Georgia. We just heard from them two days ago and they are coming back to Rock Crusher to stay for two weeks because they say it is too cold to head back north. We can’t believe how many people have actually left for the north. We think they aren’t in their right minds since there is still snow up there and lots of cold weather, but maybe they like a taste of that weather. Easter is coming early this year and for some of them that is the excuse they are giving for leaving.
Our neighbors Roger and Judy who are from Massachusetts are really enjoying themselves. If you are ever in the Homosassa/Crystal River area you must see the Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park  which has manatees and other animals to view. Roger and Judy have been volunteering over there and they always look so happy to share their days’ work with us.  It has been great meeting and talking with so many people. Someone asked me a few weeks ago how I remember people’s names. Well, I now have a notebook filled with names and cues to help me remember what they look like and if they have a pet. I tend to remember people who have pets rather than the people’s names.
We have taken some days trips to some great places. One day we went to Clermont, FL to see my great friends Linda and Bill Forrest.
Barbie and Linda
We met up with them at Sonny’s Barbeque and then went to Lake Louisa State Park, which is 7 miles south of highway 50 in Clermont on Highway 27. It is a huge park that has many lakes to fish or canoe on, a campground that is very nice, and a picnic area on the water that was hard to see because there was a bike race going on that weekend. The day was a great one with Linda and Bill. We only hope that Bill retires soon so that he can join us retirees and have some fun!
We headed for Leesburg, FL a week ago to visit Holiday Travel Resort which we had heard had great activities for a campground that is old. We couldn’t believe how big it is. They have 935 sites on 200 acres and the activities are things that we really could love to do. They have the usual shuffleboard, pool, rec houses, and lots of bathhouses. What caught our attention was the softball field, the tennis courts, and the huge dog park with a dog run on the perimeter of the park. They have a restaurant which serves daily lunches, some breakfasts, coffee and doughnuts, and some dinners for a fee. The campsites are intermingled between park models so it does seem like they are very close together. They also have a marina with boat docks and a restaurant with the canals leading into Lake Harris and Lake Denham. The park is very rustic but very clean and friendly. The older section has trees and the newer sections in the open. After touring that park we headed for Lake Griffin State Park which has the fifth largest oak tree in the US, but not much of anything else to actually want to stay and have a picnic. The 30 campsites were mostly short and tight. We then drove through Recreation Plantation which is the closest rv resort to The Villages. The Villages is quite the area...we'll save that for a future blog. Coming back to RCC we stopped a place called Chicken King, which we had heard about in the paper. It's been a favorite of the locals in Citrus County for years. We now see why. They have great fried chicken with nice sides. But we don’t eat fried chicken much at all so it was a “cholesterol filling treat” for us that we won’t need to get again until next season.
Jeff DJ’ed a dance at a place called Quail Roost RV Campground, which is in Crystal River north on Citrus Avenue. The owners/managers , Randy and Nancy, are great people who have a great campground with dedicated work campers who strive on cleanliness. Their clubhouse is a nice one for a campground that has 72 campsites. The owner Randy is a musician so he has six speakers with an organ and lots of power for us to use. We only used our computer with hookups into his speakers and it worked out great. Their clubhouse has a combination of carpet with a wooden parquet tile dance floor and the acoustics are excellent!
There was a couple who were celebrating their 60th wedding anniversary and they just danced up a storm.
60th Anniversary Couple
There were many people who danced either in line dances, solos or with their significant others.  
Fun Group
Those folks were so friendly and hospitable to us. I wish Rock Crusher’s clubhouse was better acoustic wise. You cannot hear the person next to you talking when that place is crowded with people eating. What a shame the owners don’t put some acoustical tile in there. Oh well!
Speaking of Rock Crusher… there was an event there on March 15th from 4pm to 8pm to benefit a food pantry in the county. There were six food trucks, a jazz group, Corvette car show, Dodge truck display, and RV’s from Alliance Coach to entertain people. They had beer and wine for a price. The place is huge!  It has three walls with the one side facing the food truck area where the amphitheater is located. It was a nice affair. This place could easily hold 500 people and be the place to be for concerts or dinners, if the park wanted to do that.

Kozmo has been in her usual “puppy” mode which means she is hunting down squirrels and “harassing” or kissing other dogs when she goes out for walks. We were concerned with her the past two days because she was whimpering when she jumped on her bed or sofa. We thought her belly was upset but we now think it is her arthritis acting up because of the cold weather. She takes a glucosamine yogurt chew in the morning but we think the cold weather has really affected her. This morning the low was 37 but very breezy which makes it worse. So we gave her a baby aspirin this morning and she is so much better this afternoon. We kept her warm during the day wrapping her in a blanket which she truly loved.

It sure must be tough getting old for a dog, too. She is 10 years old this year but still loves to walk and do all the things those puppies younger than her do. So when she gets whimpering or yelps, we panic and I start to cry. We already decided that if she didn’t get better today ( day 2 of her problems) that we were going to take her to the vet. The last time I took her to the vet was in December for what I thought was a cold. The vet said she might have allergy problems but really couldn’t find anything wrong with her. So of course I felt stupid. But the next time I will take her to another vet. The vets in the Dillard area are very good and care so much for Kozmo when we have taken her there.

We took a ride to Ocala to see our friends who belong to the Roamin’ Rigs, an FMCA group that had their rally at Ocala Sun RV Resort at the end of February. We were so happy to see some of our “old” friends who were playing Bean Bag Baseball and having so much fun. Ocala Sun is the type of campground that is crowded but has nice amenities.
We got out eyes examined last week at Opti-Mart in Crystal River. Jeff’s eyes have not changed but he is going to get tri-focals to help him see that medium range when he is  on the computer. My eyes have changed and I have to take off my progressive glasses to read, so they are changing that and getting rid of the astigmatism factor which I don’t have. If everything goes as planned, we should have them by next week. I don’t know if you wear glasses, but I love trying them on and deciding what new weird frames to get. Plus, we found out our Humana will pay for lots of the costs, which we didn’t know we had until this year. The Humana plan essentially paid for 50% of the costs. Wearing contact lenses for 22 years was nice but since we retired we don’t go that route anymore. My complaint was that I had to put reading glasses on and I really couldn’t see the computer screen that well no matter what type of contact lenses they gave me in recent years. I also was apprehensive about wearing them after I had to have laser surgery for a torn retina in my right eye back in 2009.
Living in the 5th wheel full time puts a strain on the day/night shades that are used everyday. The strings will wear over time and eventually break. The blinds then cannot be raised. We took down one of the shades when we were in Dillard last year and repaired it using fishing line. It lasted not a year. So we decided to replace the now 4 shades that have busted with horizontal blinds. We went to various places but decided to have them custom made vinyl blinds by Bali Blinds, through Lowe’s, and they were 15% off. We got the four blinds in a wheat color to match the valances, for less than $90. Of course we have to install them, but they are very nice and so much better to use.
We have installed one so far and will install the other three when we get to Dillard. It only took us 3 hours to install the one…haha… The way they install the day/night shades inside the valances is crazy. We have been very lucky with things not going wrong with the rig. We are very happy that we have a fifth wheel and not the motorhome anymore. Some of our friends ask us if we bring the fifth wheel with us when we head to Dillard. We say of course, this is our home. They can’t believe we would drive it on the road and not have problems. It is very easy to drive and a lot easier to drive than a motorhome. Jeff says it tracks very well. People think it takes longer to hook up and unhook, but that is not the case. We have more living space in our rig than nearly all motorhome people do. It is very comfortable to live in. The only thing we don’t have is a generator. Since we don’t boondock, we don’t need one. Staying at a truck stop is still an option since we have access to the bathroom and bedroom without the slides out. But we are in no hurry to get where we are going, so why worry about that?
I (Jeff) am having fun managing the River Vista RV Resort FACEBOOK page. The number of persons to “LIKE” the site is increasing as is the traffic on the site. I try to add a post every other day and sometimes each day. I post pictures/events about the park as well as RV topics in general. We currently have a promotion going on. We are closing in on our 500th “LIKE”. For the 500th “LIKE” AND the person who referred them to the site receive a certificate to 25% off site fees for up to 7 days at River Vista. So those of you reading this “LIKE” the River Vista RV Resort Facebook page and tell your friends. I’d appreciate it. I’d encourage you folks to follow the site especially during the “season” up there which is from May through Halloween.
Our stay here in Florida will end April 16th. We are making plans to spend a week in Longs, SC and stay at Willow Tree RV Resort & Campground, which is just north of Myrtle Beach. We talked about going to  Savannah, but we are not in the “history” mood to go there. We still have lots to do before we go if the weather cooperates, we will get out of here on time. We are headed to Valrico for three days to “summer –ize” the house and visit our friends Linda and Bill. Are we looking forward to leaving? Not yet for Barbie because of the weather. Time will tell in the next few weeks how that feeling changes….
Until next time…


where's weaver said...

Barbie...I haven't seen a photo of you for a long time. You look great!

Before we sold the motorhome, we, too, were going to replace our shades with blinds. Just makes so much sense. We have one over the sink window and it works great.

Glad you two are doing super. Looks like you are keeping very busy and enjoying every minute of it.

Margery said...

Good to hear that you're doing well adn about the mischief you have found to keep you busy. So glad Kozmo is feeling better. Hopefully cold weather is behind us so he's not affected by it anymore. We, too, can't figure out why people are in such a rush to return to the north and the uncertain weather. The thought of winterizing the rig would be enough to keep us in the south longer. However, Blueberry Hill has probably emptied out by over 50%, and we understand there will be a mass exodus on Monday. That's why we're waiting until Tuesday to head to Alabama.

Jim and Sandie said...

Good to hear from you guys again. Around our park it's mostly the Canadians who are headed out already. Such a shame they have to go back so early. I'm definitely not going to head north any time soon. Hope Kozmo feels better. It's so hard when our little ones don't feel good and we don't know what is wrong with them.