Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.

Mark Twain

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

At Home at Lion Country Safari

Saturday December 9- Jeff and I were excited for today. Ashton and family are in Minnesota at a hockey tournament. They are going to live stream it. We will be able to watch him play on the big screen. He has 2 games today. Jeff spent the morning making sure we were set up for that. The first game was at was so exciting and Ashton and his team did a great job with a 5-0 win. We even got to see Ashton score a goal. I have to admit this is one thing I miss about being away from home. Technology is a good thing. We hung around the park most of the day. Then we watched the second game. The technology thing went a bit haywire. We missed the first period, then it came on. We were a bit confused because they changed jerseys. We didn't realize that at first. It was another exciting game. They actually had a come from behind win. They pulled it out with a 6-3 win. Tomorrow they will play in the championship game....go Blizzard!!!

Sunday December 10- We had a cold front come through last night. Ruby woke up early and we figured she was cold. It was 44 degrees this morning...brrrrr. This morning we left to go pick up a rental car. We are getting it for a week. I'm flying back to Iowa and leaving out of Punta Gorda. It's a 2 hour plus drive one way. It's going to be better for us all around to get the car. We got a Volkswagen Jetta. We both really like the car. We drove over to park the truck at the dog track and drove over to church. We ended up going to second service which was new to us. We usually attend the first service. We came home stopping at the dog track to get our truck. While we were there we went in just to watch a couple races..

Made our way home, we didn't want to miss that game. They didn't disappoint, Ashton scored 2 goals and they played great. It was a 6-1 win....

Monday December 11- I did some running around today. It is a whole lot easier buzzing around in this little car. I went to the post office and mailed out my Christmas ornaments. I have been getting stuff packed up for my flight on Wednesday.

Wednesday December 13- I didn't sleep that good, never do when I have to travel the next day. My flight leaves at 12:30, they want you there 2 hours early. It takes a little over 2 hours to get to the airport from here so we left plenty early. I'm only taking a backpack with me. Jeff dropped me off and then I sat to wait. Got on the plane it was blue sky and sunny. The flight seemed to last forever. As we were making our way through the clouds to land in Iowa all I could see was gray and gloomy looking skys. Just a little different from what I left. The winds were blowing like crazy so the landing was a bit interesting to say the least. Really happy to be on the ground. Seth picked me up and took me to Justin's house. Justin was still at work but Molly and Maddyn were there. I got in there and couldn't wait to grab that baby girl.

Well the rest of this day was spent passing the baby. You see the parents are both having a hard time sitting her down. I will have to say I had the same problem. She is a princess and so very tiny. I think we'll keep her.

Thursday December 14- Justin and I went to the store last night so I had some things I wanted to get done this morning. Justin took the next 2 days off. I decided to make them some homemade chicken noodles. It's perfect weather for those. Justin did some running and when he got back I took his truck and did my Christmas shopping. I found everything I had on my list.  I got back and then when Ashton and Hailey got home from school I made my way over to see them. They have busy schedules so I needed to slip in there for a quick visit. It was really good to see them and get some hugs and kisses.

Ashton had to get going to hockey practice and Hailey off to gymnastics so I went back to Justin and Molly's to snuggle with Maddyn and make my noodles. There also was a Blackhawk's game so we got ready to watch that. I didn't get to watch it all because I went to pick up Hailey at her gymnastics. That way I got to see her do her routines that she is preparing for competition. 

Hailey has really been working hard I can see a lot of improvement. She loves to have an audience.

I brought Hailey back to her house and waited for Katie to get back for hockey with Ashton. Then I went back to Justin's. It is really cold outside. I'm a big baby. I ended staying up kind of late for me but when you looking at a newborn baby the time flys by.

Tuesday December 15- After staying up late, I got up early. I was the only one up. I got my Christmas presents wrapped and sugar cookie dough made up. Tonight we are going to frost cookies with the kids and do a little early Christmas. Justin and Molly left to go shopping, I was in charge of the baby. I thought I would get some pictures of Maddyn. She is really a good baby.

She is so good that I even got some things done while watching her. They weren't gone that long, just a few hours. Then I got busy cutting out and baking cookies to have them ready for frosting when the kids showed up. I also helped wrap gifts...I love to wrap presents.

Seth, Katie and the kids showed up and we got busy frosting. Then we ordered pizza for supper. It was a great evening. Then Hailey couldn't wait any longer for gifts. We passed them out and had at it.

Everyone had a great time. It was really good to see everyone and give them there gifts in person. Ashton was acting weird, I think he was tired. They went on home. Justin, Molly and I played a game before heading off to bed. Tomorrow back to the airport and home to the sunshine. It was a good visit and I'm glad I got to meet Maddyn.

Saturday December 16-Woke up super early. My flight was at 9:30 and of course they want you there early. Well Justin drove me in and then I waited to board. The flight this time was way better and seemed way quicker too. We took off early and landed early. Jeff wasn't even in the airport when I called him. He had just parked the car. We headed toward home to see the pups. I missed them. We hung around there for awhile. We had to return the rental car so Jeff had planned dinner out after. It was super easy to return the car. Then we drove to West Palm to a place Jeff saw online. It was really busy downtown so parking was tough. We ended up paying for parking. It wasn't the paying that was bad but getting in the parking lot. They had these curbs which made it very difficult getting in without scuffing your tires. We got in found a spot and walked to the restaurant, The Copper Blues Rock Pub and Kitchen. It was packed. We found a place to sit, the live music wasn't our favorite and so loud. We had a pizza and then went to walk around downtown. It was super festive with lights and activities. We didn't know this was all going on...just luck. 

We walked a few blocks and this is what we found. They had snow falling on the hour. They were setting up for a band, so we decided to hang around for that. To our surprise we had seen this band down in the Keys last year. They were really good and it was a fun evening. I was really tired so we didn't stay for the whole show. I was ready for sleep in my own bed.

Sunday December 17- Today we had to go pick up some batteries for the truck. Jeff ordered them on line and was just picking them up at the store. It wasn't without issues, but it turned out fine. We got them in and headed toward home with one stop at the store. I got what I needed to start on my baking for Christmas. Justin sent me some pictures of Maddyn, she had her first photo shoot today and it looks like she did great.

Hailey had her first competition today, Seth sent us videos. She didn't do as good as she wanted but we thought she looked great...what do them judges know? 

Monday December 18- Today was a lot of baking. I got laundry, hair cuts done too. The day went fast but it was a productive one.

Holiday Baking

Tuesday December 19- We started packing stuff up today. We move tomorrow. We put the kayaks and bikes up. Then we have our other stuff. We got a lot done and are looking forward to getting back to Jonathan Dickinson State Park. We are going to be campers until our volunteering starts on January 1. We are going to miss this park for sure. We love all the wild noises. Jeff and I both loved this park and were surprised that we liked it so much....we will be back.

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Living In The Jungle

Monday November 27- We have become really comfortable here. Jeff thought maybe he would get bored spending a month in this park. Today is was a nice day so we hung around here. I decided to give Belle a haircut. She really needs it. I did that first thing so it wasn't quite as hot. She was really good and it looks really nice. I spent some time at the pool this afternoon. I really like the pool. It's super big, heated, and it's not busy. Did I say you can bring your floaties...... Well you can. I have been using my new floating bean bag chair. It is awesome.

Tuesday November 28- Another pretty day, so no movie. We decided to drive thru The Safari next door. We have done this before, but who could not get excited about a drive thru a safari? I got my camera ready and my phone to capture so shots. We really like this place. It's small enough to make it personal. It is not overly crowded so you don't feel as it you must rush. They have 2 lanes to drive on and places to pull over and watch. They give you a C.D. that talks about each area and what animals you will see.

The park is 245 acres, home to over 800 animals from all over the world. These animals are all roaming free,except the lions. They do roam across the roadways frequently so know that the animals have the right of way. As you can tell by the pictures, that is true. Jeff had an ostrich that really seemed to like him. It's also awesome getting such a close view of these critters. It takes about an hour and a half to drive through it. Then you park and do the walk through exhibits. We saw spider monkeys, even a brand new one that was just born in October. There are monkeys. flamingos, birds and giraffes. You can feed the giraffes for a small fee.

The gals at the giraffe feeding station were super nice. It cost $2.00 for 3 pieces of lettuce. Those giraffe know what to do too. It is a blast. They get really close to your face. Such beautiful animals. After the animals we played a game of putt putt there as well. If you have small children this place would be great. They have a petting zoo, a splash pad and some kid rides. All of this is included in your price...well feeding the animals cost extra. We headed back home to check on our dogs. Here are a few more pictures from my camera.

We finished out the night by going out for supper at Outback Steak House. It was good.

Wednesday November 29- Today it actually looks like it could rain. I decided to go to town by myself. I need to go to Walmart. Jeff likes to skip that task. I found it and I spotted some other places across the street from there I had to stop at. I had a list of things to get and I think I got them all plus some. I found a Petsmart, Hobby Lobby and Big Lots. I got home just in time to get my stuff unloaded and me loaded back into the truck to go to the movie. We have been planning on going to the show for a while. The weather man kept saying rain but the sun had other ideas. I guess if you keep predicting rain, eventually you get it right. Well Jeff found this theater online. We headed that way. The place looked a little sketchy but we went in. It was a good deal because tickets were only $5.00. We saw the movie Wonder, we both liked it. Our popcorn was good too. There weren't many people in the theater either.

Thursday November 30- Well we inherited some free tickets to the safari next door. We only had a couple days to use them before they expired. So we went again. The couple told us we have to feed the Lori birds. So we wanted to make sure that happened. It was another beautiful day to do it.

Again lots of pictures to share. It was just as wonderful this time. When we walked in to feed the birds they surprised me. One flew and landed on my head , my arm and I didn't even have any food yet. They know what's coming for sure. We loved the birds. So happy for those given tickets. We would have never experienced those birds. We went home, walked the dogs and just enjoyed the day. We had plans to meet Kip and Amanda for supper tonight. We met them last year while volunteering at J.D. We were on our way over when I received a text saying that the place they had chosen was a no go. So we met them at another place, it wasn't opened yet. So we picked Duffy's together and headed to it. We are in downtown West Palm and it is super busy. Come to find out they are having a tree lighting or something. Well our food was good. The company was what we came for and it was great. Then I had to get dessert, which was marvelous.

When we went to get out of there the traffic was crazy. There were cars everywhere going no where. It took us a bit to get out of the mess and on the way back. We had a great time catching up with friends.

Friday December 1- A new month and the last one of the year. We didn't have any big plans today. Jeff got me an instant pot for Christmas so since it came early we thought we might as well give it a try. We had some stew meat and added potatoes and carrots. It was really good. It was so quick too.

Saturday December 2- Today Jeff washed the truck and I cleaned out the inside. Boy did it need that. When we travel it's hard to wash it because a lot of places don't allow it. This place does and so we took advantage of that. Ruby likes to be where we are so when we are outside, she likes to be in her playpen. After all that hard work I went to relax in the pool.

Sunday December 3- Today we decided to make the trip over to Generation Church. We go to the first service which is at 8:30. The drive over wasn't bad. It took about 45 minutes. As we walked up it was wonderful to be welcomed back.

It was wonderful to be back. The worship...great....the message...great...the people.....great. So glad we made the trip. After the service we went for breakfast at one of Jeff's favorite places...First Watch. He had a omelet, I had a cinnamon roll pecan waffle. Mine was extremely yummy. Jeff will tell you his was as well.

After breakfast we went to Trader Joe's to get some groceries. Had quite a list and managed to find everything I needed. A really good day.

Monday December 4- Happy Birthday to our daughter in law....Katie. Then I received a text from Justin saying that he and Molly are at the hospital. So today we anxiously waited for some baby news. I took the truck and went to town to get some pictures developed and my prescription filled. While out I figured I might as well do some shopping. I went the other direction on highway 7. I found TJ Maxx and Tuesday Morning. They were worth looking at. I found Miss Ruby a Christmas shirt. She looks extremely cute.

It was a long day waiting for news. I kept texting and he would text back but this baby is taking it's time. Finally after waiting most of the day I thought maybe she would wait and give birth on my birthday, but while I was in the shower I saw a text come thru....She's here...Maddyn Jo Marlin. Born at 7:57 p.m. She weighs 7 pounds, 4 ounces and is 19 inches long. She decided to share her birthday with Auntie Katie. We are over the moon happy. Our baby is a daddy. We are so happy for Molly and Justin. We can't wait to meet her face to face. What a super great day.

Tuesday December 5- Happy Birthday to me....We couldn't wait to facetime Justin to see our new princess. Jeff asked me what I wanted to do for my birthday. Well it clouded up so we decided to take in another movie. This time we went to a theater located in the mall at Wellington. After finding the place we got some popcorn and went in. was a nice theater. Only 72 seats because they are all recliners with a table. We felt right uptown. The movie was good too. We went to see Lady Bird.

All day we were on cloud 9, getting new pictures of our princess. Seth and Katie went to meet her and sent pictures. Here are a few pictures of my favorite birthday gift.

On the way home from the movie we stopped at the store, Jeff got me an ice cream cake. We got home and made a very yummy supper, followed by the was wonderful.

Wednesday December 6- The kids and baby were suppose to be going home today. Justin called to say the baby is breathing fast so they want to check on it. Well you know how that can go. They ended up keeping them over night. So we are worried for the kids and baby. Jeff purchased me a ticket to fly back next Wednesday. Seth also called today to tell us Ashton's games this weekend are going to be live streamed. We will be able to watch him play. We were talking back and forth all day trying to figure out what was going on. It was a long day. Justin said she did really good while they did the sonogram.

Thursday December 7- It is a scorcher. Walked Ruby early. Jeff worked on waxing the rig.We spent the day waiting to here from the hospital. Tried not to bother them to much because I knew they had enough on there minds. Late in the afternoon Justin texted saying they are going home. Oh boy what a relief. They couldn't get out of there fast enough. All is right with the world.

Friday December 8- Today a day of relaxing. Miss Maddyn had a good first night at home. It is so humid and hot here. Me, I'm going to the pool. It was more crowded today than I have ever seen. I think the snowbirds are showing up. Took the dogs to the dog park this morning, boy if that isn't something to see. No pics because they are so fast the pictures are a blur. We wore them out that's for sure.