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, May 30, 2017

Is This Spring...?....It's Iowa

Monday May 15- Starting off the week trying to get back on schedule with some walking. I love walking around the lake to the boat ramp from here. It takes about an hour and during the week it is so quiet. It also gave me a chance to see what they have done to restore the lake. It is going to take some time to get it back to the level it was, but when it does the fishing is going to be great. So after my walk I made us a big lunch. We are going in to town to get Hailey for gymnastics. We pick her up at school and made our way to the gym. She was excited and wanted to make sure we were watching.

We watched this best we could. After taking her home we came home had a quick bite and watched the weather. The bad stuff missed us again. 

Tuesday May 16- Nothing planned really for today. It is very warm out there with lots of wind. Justin called to see if we could come over and help with the organizing of the basement,also wanted Jeff to fix a couple things. After supper we went in. They are keeping some of the stuff I couldn't get rid of. I decided to go through all of it to see if it still ment anything to me. Good news is I got rid of about 1/2 of it. He is going to take it to Goodwill. While there I missed a call from the bank fraud place. It seems someone tried to use my numbers. Great now I get to call the bank and get a different card. That is going to take a couple weeks. Oh well at least the $350.00 charge didn't go through. 

Wednesday May 17- Woke up today and it looks like serious rain. It was doctor day for us. Jeff had stuff and so did I. On our way in the heavens opened up and it just poured. When we arrived at the doctor it had slowed some. When we came out of the doctor the sun was shining....crazy weather. Since our appointments were so early after we went for breakfast. Before heading home we made a few stops. After putting our stuff away and after lunch we hear a knock at the door. The aren't many campers here and since the wind we have been closing the big door. I open the door and there are Ken and Mary, they volunteer at Jonathan Dickinson with us. They live in Philadelphia and are returning from a trip west. What a surprise that was. Since the weather was still good we sat outside and visited for awhile. They are only staying one night so we had to make the most of our time. We decided to take them for supper at Brogans, down in Palo. It a little restaurant/bar the food is good and the beer is cold...also inexpensive.

We had a  nice supper and good conversation. I looked outside and I mean it was pouring. The rain was coming down sideways. We waited for it to slow down a bit. We decided to head out when the sirens went off. Well needless to say they really didn't understand all that. They don't really have that kind of weather where they come from. We told them we were going to a storm shelter it was just up the road. We took cover and watched and listened to the weather.

Boy it was scarey for a while. I never heard such a weird noise. The good thing was it passed fairly quick. We made our way back to the campground and we had stuff blown around. Nothing damaged just tossed around. Our home  was safe and the dogs that's what matters. The rest of the weather missed us. We just had more rain and the temperature really dropped.

Thursday May 18- It is very cool this morning and looks very rainy. Ken and Mary came over for coffee before heading out. It was a nice visit and we are planning a trip out there way this fall. The rain didn't look like it was stopping anytime soon so we went to the movie. Went and saw The Case For Christ. We both wanted to see that one but both were a little disappointed. It wasn't bad but not great either. When we got home Jeff's friend Lenny called and invited him to join them at there Thursday Jam session. He went and I stayed home and did some quilting.

Friday May 19- Again with this crappy weather....rain, rain, rain. All day long. I decided to go in to Seth and Katie's to get some laundry done. I also told Hailey I would clean her room. Jeff came with. We decided to drive through Morgan Creek and spotted Janie and John's rig. We haven't seen them yet and thought we would drop in for a quick visit. They have been full time rving 2 years longer than us. We caught up some and promised to get together soon. Jeff dropped me off at Seth and Katie's and went to pick up Ashton. They went to see the movie Aliens. I didn't care to see that one so I stayed back and cleaned. Boy what a task that is. How can a 6 year old girl have so much stuff. She hides it every where. Katie helped when she got home and so did Hailey. It was hard for her to part with any of her stuff even if it's been hiding under her bed for months. We got home and it poured again.

Saturday May 20- Brrrrrr it's super cold today and gray. I decided to go through all of my scrapbook supplies and see what I can part with. It turns out I didn't need quite a lot of it. We have had a few issues with our battery so Jeff decided it's time to replace it. Went in and picked up one and some groceries too. When we got back I made some chicken pot pies for supper. With this cooler weather you can make those cold weather comfort foods. It was a super lazy day and long.

Sunday May 21- Guess's cold and gray again. Went to church and came back home to watch the few campers here leave. Since it was so yucky I just stayed in and quilted. The funny thing by about supper time the 6 walk in sites we have in this loop were tagged for the whole week. Looking ahead to next weekend a holiday.

Monday May 22- Woke up and saw sunshine....don't worry it didn't last long. It didn't rain though so I got my walk in. We spent the day inside. Today we picked Hailey up at school for gymnastics. Today it was picture day so we could go in the gym and get some pictures. She wanted me in there all the time.

It was fun watching her show us all she has learned. After class they had awards and did a photo booth. Hailey was proud of her award..most improved. She has worked really hard this year.

It was a good night at gymnastics. We dropped Hailey off and had supper there. They had left over chicken noodles another cold weather comfort food. It was good.

Wednesday May 24- Another cloudy cool day. I'm sounding like a broken record. Jeff made us a campfire this morning. I was still cold. Hung around here most of the day. At 3:30 went to town to make a few stops before our concert tonight. Went to pick up some bird seed and ended up purchasing another really cool outside chair. We kid about this. The store is Theisen's and they have free popcorn while you shop. That free popcorn always ends costing a pretty penny. We had a bite to eat at Panera before heading downtown to the Cellular Center. We were going to see Blue Oyster Cult and Boston. We purchased our tickets on groupon. They were only $25.00 each.

Blue Oyster Cult didn't sound good but Boston sounded great. The crowd wasn't as big as I thought either. I'm not a huge Boston fan but they are great musicians. It was worth the money.

Thursday May 25- A little something different this morning....SUNSHINE! I took advantage of the day. I walked over to the boat ramp and spotted this critter. It was so nice I couldn't hardly stand to go inside. I sat out and enjoyed the wonderful weather. Our son Justin and his friend Jordan are playing an outside gig tonight. We have been watching the weather all week and today was the only day they aren't calling for any rain. The show started at 6. We love those early shows. We made our way to The Blind Pig. We got there early to get a bite to eat and get a good seat. Seth, Katie and the kids are coming so we needed a bigger table. Jeff ordered a tenderloin for his supper, he said was great.

It was a wonderful night outside for a show and they had a real good turn out. Jeff even got to go up and play a couple songs. I don't think he was quite as nervous as last year.

It was a successful show and fun was had by all. The weather even cooperated.

Friday May 26- Guess what..raining again. We didn't think we could stay in all day so went to a coffee shop close by to do some updates on our computers/phones. It rained most of the day but at about 5 o'clock the sun came out. We had talked about going to Uptown Friday Nights. Justin and Jordan have another show tonight too. This one doesn't start until 9 o'clock at Cedar Rapids Landing. Last night they both played guitars but tonight they are doing there new thing. Jordan on guitar Justin on the drums. We haven't seen this show yet and wanted to attend. So first we went to Uptown Friday Nights. The Strays were playing. They played at Justin and Molly's wedding. I think if we would have waited for there show we probably would have been too tired. It was a nice night and both shows were really good. Here are some pictures of the first show. It is at the McGrath Amphitheatre which is located downtown right on the Cedar River.

We left a little before the show was over. We walked back to Cedar Rapids Landing to watch Wellstrung play. On the way we saw this gaggle of ducks. That was quite a group. It didn't take us long to get where we were going. When we got there the place was fairly empty. When they started the show it still was really empty. Didn't care we had the best seats in the house and a private show.

About 10 o'clock people really started showing up. Molly and her family came to so we had quite the cheering section. It was a late night for us but, well worth it. The show was awesome and they sounded great.

Saturday May 27-Had some sunshine today. Our park is full and so the shower house is really getting used. After cleaning we just hung out here for a while. We have been running and having late nights...not so used to that. We had a couple of our windows repaired. The seals break and the window fogs up. It really bugs Jeff. Well when we got them back one of the windows frames was bent so Jeff couldn't get it in. Called the company and we are going to send them back. So we went in to the Fed Ex place and the shipping label wasn't able to scan. So we couldn't get it resolved so we will bring it back another day. We had lunch at Five Guys....then went to Home Depot looking for a few things. I want to replace our kitchen faucet. Found a couple I think will work but didn't get it yet. Next stop over to Justin and Molly's. Then are cleaning up there place to put it on the market. We gave them some help then came back home. Went to check on our shower house and Jeff smelled something hot....our new hot water heater has some issues. Looks like no hot water the rest of the weekend...not going to make anybody happy.

Sunday May 28-It was a sunny day today. We started off the day going to church, we are greeting today. When we came back our park is still full...extended weekend. Since we haven't seen much sunshine I sat out and enjoyed it. I went in later and made some stuff for our family fish fry tomorrow. We had a wonderful dinner tonight with fresh corn on the cob, which was suprisingly better than we thought it would be. We took a walk around the 2nd loop tonight before coming in. Just as I was getting ready to go to bed I hear a big bang...fireworks.....don't like them things. Tomorrow we get together to eat fish.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Back To Pleasant Creek

Saturday April 29- We got up really early, we both are ready to see the family. We had weather heading our way. When Jeff got up the first thing he did was check the radar. We had a small window. We had planned for the weather so we were on the road by 6:30 a.m. We landed at Pleasant Creek a little before 9 a.m. Our site was just waiting for us. There weren't many campers here either. We got set up pretty quick, setting up only what was necessary. We had a problem with one of the back big foot systems again, but we found a way to make it work. We had a bite to eat then went in to town to see the kids. It was about then  when the rain started. The temperature seemed to drop too. It was wonderful seeing everyone. We decided to go our for lunch. Went to Red Lobster and our lunch  was fine but the company was great. Seth, Katie, Justin and kids were there, we were missing Molly. Went back to Seth and Katie's to visit with the kids a bit more. The rain was getting worse, so we headed home. We brought home Seth and Katie's dog Noodles. They are going out of town so we are dog sitting.

Sunday April 30- It seems really cold out there....I'm not used to this cooler weather. We got ready and went in to church. It was nice to be back at River Of Life. After church we stopped at the grocery store. It is raining like crazy again today....all day. We went over to see Justin and Molly since she wasn't there yesterday. We stayed and visited awhile. When we got back to the park we didn't have any power. Now we have had a lot of rain but not really any storms. We patiently waited for our power to come on and it did around 9 p.m.  This rain has been nonstop. I'm ready for some blue skies.

Monday May 1- It is still kind of rainy out there. We had lots of running to do today. Went in to a local coffee shop to do some of our big downloads. We filled up the truck and made the dreaded run to Walmart. We stopped by and said hello to the park ranger, Carl. He gave us our keys so I guess we are now back to work. The good news is we have no campers here so our job looks to be pretty simple right now. The rain stopped so we got the kayaks off the truck. Slowly we are getting things set up. It's pretty tough with this yucky weather. Seth and the kids came by and picked up Noodles so back to just 2 dogs...

Tuesday May 2- We actually saw some sunshine today. We took advantage of that. It's still way below normal temperatures. Spent the morning setting up our camp site. In the afternoon we had to make a trip to Vinton to visit the vet, Dr. Wilson. Belle had to get x-rays because her bladder stones have been acting up and the dog food isn't keeping it under control. We are thinking it's bothering her more just by the way she has been acting. So before our regular vet can do surgery he needs to know where the stones are. The bonus of this trip was a Pizza Ranch across the street so Jeff went and got us a blueberry dessert pizza.

Wednesday May 3- Today we hung around here. We got neighbors today. Dave and Jane Griffey, they are regular campers here at the park and we have gotten to know them. Had to see how there winter went and if they are enjoying their retirement. Got the shower house cleaned today and stocked up on our cleaning supplies. I also called the vet and we have Belle's surgery set up for Monday. Went to watch Ashton and Hailey tonight so there parents could play volleyball. While I was there I used there washing machine.

Thursday May 4- It was cool again this morning. I did my usual and then one of my favorite tasks....defrosting the freezer...(not). I ran in to town and picked up a few things. When I got back we had a visitor. Lenny, we met him here at the park and he and Jeff have a lot in common. Both retired fire fighters, and both play guitar. We have gotten to know him and his wife Dawn. We visited with him and caught up on everything.  Then I gave Belle a haircut because she desperately needed one and also because she will be having surgery on Monday and I'm not sure how long she will take to heal. I don't want to have to stress her out while she is healing.  After supper we went to Justin and Molly's so Jeff could play guitar.  Our son Justin and his buddy were practicing for a gig coming up so Jeff played along.

Friday May 5- Spent a little extra time on the shower house to be prepared for the busy weekend. Then a camper had a problem with his electric so Jeff tried to help him. That took awhile. We only have 30 amp service in our loop. Plus it is really old with ground faults that trip for anything. We were suppose to get 50 amp put in before we got here but it got pushed back until September....we hope. Went into town around 5 o'clock to go with Justin and Molly for supper and a arena football game. First we went to Bricks for supper. Everything was really good. It seems this was the place Justin and Molly went on there first date. After we went to the Cellular Center to watch arena football. Again this is what Justin and Molly did on there first date. We had heard that the Cedar Rapids Titans were horrible. They started off really good but as the game went on they did get horrible. It wasn't really the bad play that bothered me it was there terrible sportsmanship. Two of them were ejected from the game.They had a flag on almost every play. We still had fun but we did leave a little early.

Saturday May 6- We had a big day today. We took a day trip with both grand kids. We packed up everything we thought we would need and headed in to pick them up. We are going to Minnesota to visit Niagara Cave. We put Ashton in the front seat with Papa and Hailey in the back with me. That was a great idea. They couldn't really pick at each other. The trip up was pretty good only a few problems. It took about 2 1/2 hours to get there. The weather was pretty good. The sky was blue and the sun was shining. The temperature was a little brisk especially with the wind. We arrived at 10 and they had just opened. The first tour of the cave was at 11 and after signing up for that we got in a short game of putt putt before our tour was to start.

It was kind of cool playing putt putt but we still  had a great time. Papa even got 2 hole in ones. I still beat him though. We finished up just in time for the tour.

Our tour guide gave us some instructions before heading down in to the cave. We were told not to touch the walls but she had a sample we could touch before entering the cave. I was really impressed with the cave and so were the kids. Our tour guide pointed out a lot of interesting spots and gave us the names of all the different formations we saw. This cave also had a wishing well and a big waterfall.

We all enjoyed everything the cave had to offer. Before we started our climb out of the cave our guide gave us an option...She asked us if we wanted her to turn off the lights. Of course everyone did. So we got to experience total darkness. Yes the kids thought it was cool. Then we made our way out of the cave. The stairs getting out of there were something. Everyone was breathing hard at the top of them. We looked around in the gift shop that I might add was awesome. The kids found a souvenir and I found a smash penny machine. We left and went to Decorah Iowa for lunch. We have camped in this area before and there is a pizza place we liked and wanted to visit again, Mabes Pizza. We liked it and so did the kids.

After eating we walked around the town a bit. It is a wonderful little town. Very clean and well maintained. Lot's of little shops to look in. We got back in the truck for the rest of the ride home. I made the mistake of sitting in the front seat. Had a bit or arguing on the way back. Finally they fell asleep. We made it home safe and sound. That was not the end of our day. Both kids are staying the night. We had a fire to roast our hot dogs over. Also played some outdoor games. They both went to bed fairly early I think we wore then out, or they wore us out, not for sure.

That was then end of a great Saturday...our bed felt extra good tonight, but so did our hearts. Love doing things with those kids.

Sunday May 7- Today we made breakfast for the kids. Then everyone got ready to go to church. Hailey wanted to sit with us instead of going to Sunday school. So both kids sat with us and they were really good. They aren't used to attending church. Took the kids home after church and we came home. We relaxed around here waving to the campers as they took off for home.

Monday May 8- Today we had to take Belle in for her surgery. Both Jeff and I were really nervous. We came back and to keep our minds busy we both went to work. I cleaned the rig and Jeff did some more waxing. I cleaned the inside of the truck out. Then the vet called to say surgery went well. He told me to call back around 4 to see if she was ready to come home. I did call and she was ready to come home. We hurried over to get her and she was still a bit out of it. Soffee was so happy to see her. During the day Soffee kept going to the door to look for her. It was good to have her home. We kept a close eye on her the rest of the day and night.

Tuesday May 9- It's doctor day for me. We try and do all our doctoring early in case we need to take care of anything. It is one of my least favorite places to visit. It was fine. The best part about visiting the doctor is Kathy's Pies which is right across the street. Jeff went and bought a pie, my favorite Bayou Goo....YUMMMMM

We came home to check on Belle, she is doing great. The weather is warming up and I have already filled my bird feeder and hummingbird feeders. They are starting to show up, very slowly. I love watching the birds. The orioles are using both feeders right now. I don't care because they are so pretty.

Wednesday May 10- It's raining again. I mean raining, it doesn't want to stop. I had to meet the plumber at the shower house because we are getting a new hot water heater. I used this day to do some scrap booking. I used to do this all the time but with this lifestyle it makes it a bit hard. I still do some special pages of the kids. Jeff went to town to get some things from stuff. After supper I went in to watch the kids while Seth and Katie played volleyball. Jeff stayed back to watch Belle.

Thursday May 11- Today was better weather wise. I cleaned up my shower house were the plumbers had worked. Then I went for a nice walk. I have become so lazy and I need to get my walking back in to my routine. Lenny came out to visit and this time he brought his guitar. Jeff and him had a bit of a jam session. Nobody complained so I guess they must be pretty good. Today we had to pick up Hailey and Ashton after school. Hailey has gymnastics and both parents had to work until 7p.m. Jeff dropped us off and he and Ashton ran a few errands. Jeff sent in a couple of our dual pane windows to have them defogged. Those foggy windows just drive Jeff nuts. Hopefully they can get them fixed. When gymnastics was over we went to supper at 5 Guys. They have a new one here in town, pretty excited about that. Our supper was good, the kids had never ate here. This one even has milkshakes. They were pretty yummy. I got some news back from the doctor today, it seems my glucose is high. They checked for diabetes.....they say I'm borderline. I'm going to have to get serious about exercise and my diet.

Friday May 12- Today I went over to Justin and Molly's house. He wants me to get it in to shape to sell. I'm kind of good at organizing/cleaning. It amazes me how much stuff we think we need. I spent a lot of time organizing and cleaning, most of the day. Jeff called to see if I could pick up Hailey and bring her out to stay over. So when I left Justin's I went to Seth's and picked her up. We got home and Jeff had supper ready. After supper we walked to the play area to swing. Then we mixed up cookie dough. Jeff and Hailey played memory. She won. Then we all went to bed.

Saturday May 13-Hailey slept in a bit. I was able to clean the shower house before she woke up. It always warms my heart when I wake up to this. Soffee loves having a snuggle partner too.

Our morning was really busy. First she helped me cut Papa's hair, that was a hoot. She did a good job. Then we went back to the park. When we got back she helped roll out the sugar cookie dough and cut out the cookies. We baked them and she even helped with the frosting. She does a great job, finally a helper that I don't have to force to help me.

We had a early lunch and then went to town. Papa had promised to take her to see the new King Kong movie. We didn't like it but I think she did. The popcorn was good. After we had to take her home. It was a busy day that's for sure. When I got home I had to finish frosting the cookies because I ran out of frosting earlier.

Sunday May 14- It's Mothers Day. We will be celebrating over at Seth and Katie's later on today. I put together cheesy potatoes before we left for church. I like making them in the crock pot. We were greeters at church this morning which is always fun. Church was awesome as usual. The worship...loved and the message was great as well. After church went and got a sandwich before coming home. We weren't home very long before we left to go over to the kids. Justin was there and Molly joined us later. Katie's mom Marilyn and Ron was there too. We had a yummy dinner. The weather was nice, it was good to sit outside and just enjoy the family. After eating I hid the kids Easter eggs. Since we weren't here for Easter we decided to have our hunt today. The kids had fun hunting, I think we lost 2 eggs. I guess I'm a good hider, I couldn't even find them.

I also had bought some confetti eggs. They had a fun time breaking those on people. It did make quite a mess though. The guys played some bags. It was a very nice day. Thanks to Seth and Katie for hosting. It's nice to be with family........A great mother's day indeed.