Sunday, February 27, 2011

Fun on the Lake

After a really rough week at work, I was really ready for a nice quiet, relaxing weekend. Friday night after eating some cold fried chicken the kids came over and we took a quick ride around the lake. Of course, I didn't take my camera, but that's okay - it was just nice to get out on the lake. It was the first time that the kids had been out on the boat so we just had a nice little ride. After coming back home we talked for a little while then, after they left, Dan and I just read our books for a little while before heading off to bed. A Relaxing and Nice evening.

Saturday morning we got up - sat out on the back porch, drank our coffee and just hung out. Dan did want me to go look at a piece of furniture at a garage sale right around the corner that he thought might look good in the guest bedroom, but when we got there someone was buying it. Oh well - not meant to be. So we left and went down to the Main Street Cafe and had breakfast then it was back to the house for a nice quiet day at home.

Most of the day was spent in the chair on the back porch reading my book - but I did manage to get up and go in the pool for about an hour before heading out on the boat for a nice ride around the lake. The above picture was actually taken the first part of last week - but I thought you might like to see a sunset on the lake - this is not a very good picture - it was really pretty cloudy the day I took this picture and I didn't have the right lens on the camera, but it's a start.

The pool felt absolutely wonderful - love the pool blanket! It has added about 15 degrees to the pool and making it extremely comfortable to be in - even in February! Dan and I are talking about getting in the pool before we go to bed at night since it is so relaxing. It might help us both sleep better.

One of the things that we are amazed at is how much the pups love to go out on the boat - if we just say the word "boat" they are running around so excited and when we head down to the dock they beat us to the boat and jump on board all by themselves - even little Jessie. We haven't figured out if they really like the boat that much, or if they like being with us that much. Anyway, it is nice that they enjoy the boat as much as we do.

Now, what has been going on around here - well, we have all been the the doctor (except the pups- I have to make their appointment with the vet in Lakeland for the last week in March - Spring Break) and I have three tests that I have to go through in March - Colonscopy, bone density, and mammogram - two of the three don't bother me, but I do detest the colonscopy. Not the actual test, the prep for the test - but with the family history, it has to be done. All three will be done during Spring Break - I know, what a way to spend your Spring Break, but I would rather spend the first part of Spring Break doing that and getting them over with than having them hanging over my head. Plus, they will all be done by Wednesday and then I can enjoy the rest of the week!

We have also talked to a home remodeler - he was here last week and took all kinds of pictures and measurements. We discussed what we would like to do (and we found out that we could take every single inside wall out of the house - none are load bearing!) and he is suppose to be working up an estimate on the cost of the work. We asked that he break it down into stages and then we will be able to see what we can afford to do. I REALLY do not want to go back to work at school next year (but I am looking at some other means of income) so we will see what he comes up with and then we will look at our options. Dan really does not want to do the work - all of a sudden he realizes that we are older then we used to be and it is hard work doing remodeling work. Really???? Anyway, I am hopeful, but we will see. Maybe we will have the estimates by this time next week and will be able to make some kind of decision by the end of March. We'll see!

These last two pictures are just a couple that I took while coming in on the boat the other day - I thought you might like to see them. (the last one is the bird rookery, but it doesn't show up very well, once again - wrong lens!)

Anyway, I hope you had a good week and that you have a great week next week. Take care and I'll talk to you later!

Sunday, February 20, 2011


Goodness things seems to be moving at a fast pace right now - last weekend Dan got his new truck - which by the way, he told me yesterday that he "loved" and thanked me for not letting him get the stripped down white truck that he was trying to talk himself into. Now, this weekend Dan bought the boat. Now, don't get too excited. It's not new - but it's a nice used pontoon boat that looks almost brand new. It is not as fancy as the first new one we looked at, but Dan says that he will be happy with this one. It's a little smaller than the new one at 16 feet, but it will fit completely under our covered dock.

These are not the best of pictures, but he beat me back to the house after putting in at the boat launch. He drove the boat home and I drove the truck home. Now, let me get a little off subject for just a second. This was the first time I drove his new truck. Not only did I drive the truck for the first time, but I had to back the trailer down the boat dock and then after I pulled the trailer out, I had to back it up to be able to get out of the park area. I'm very proud of myself, because I don't normally back up any kind of trailer. It just took me a little while, but I did it AND Dan let me do it.

Okay, back to the new boat.
We have, of course, already had our first adventure. We were in the pool yesterday afternoon - yes, I said in the pool, but that's a whole different story - and we both kept smelling gas. Now the guy across the canal was pressure washing and was using a gas powered motor, so we didn't think anything about it. Well, about two hours after the above picture was taken, Dan went out to get the boat ready for our evening ride on the lake and discovered that the gas tank (there on the left of the picture) had a huge split in it and almost all the fuel that we had just bought was gone! So, we had to call around and find a new gas tank - Walmart in Avon Park. By the time we got back home it was after 9 and we decided that we would wait until today to do our first ride around Lake June.

We took that ride today and I must admit that I think I'm going to like this. We even took the pups with us. Now, I know that we will be getting floatation vests for the pups, especially Samantha, as she is the curious one and was up and looking over the sides of the boat. We will get them a vest so I won't have to worry IF they should happen to fall overboard.
Well, Dan and I are going to go down to the Volunteer Fire Department and pick up some bar-b-que for lunch. I'll try and write more later and let you know about all that happened this past week - it has been a busy one! In the meantime - take care and -----------------
I'll talk to you later!!!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

The Last Great Adventure!

So much has happened around here in the last couple of weeks - let me see if I can get you caught up.

First, as you all know, Dan and I have been trying to sell the 5th wheel since last August when we bought the house. A lot of things that we have been wanting to do have all been hinged on getting the 5th wheel sold. Well, it has finally happened, and not exactly the way we thought it would.

Last week Dan and I were up in Lakeland for doctor's appointments - our regular annual appointments that we have been waiting to have (actually, it's my first appointment in almost 2 years, but because of our schedule last year, and the good ole insurance company, I couldn't get my annual before we left for Alaska - so the last time I saw a doctor was in April of 2009!). Anyway, the doctor's appointments went fine - got our blood work done and everything - except I will be going back next week for the gyno. appointment and then in March for my bone density and mammogram. After the doctor's we met Dan's cousins over in Plant City. Norm has cancer and he is not doing well - in fact, he was flying back home to Michigan the next day. So, it was good to see him and his sister, Faye. We had a nice visit before he had to leave to get to the airport and check in with the airlines with his oxygen tanks. Anyway, after the visit with the cousins we decided to go by Bartow Ford and see our friend that works there and see how he is doing.

We pulled into the dealership and saw Marty - after catching up with news we starting talking cars and trucks and one thing led to another and Marty said - "Well, why don't you trade the 5th wheel into us and get your vehicle now." I said, "You'll take the 5th wheel in trade?" and he came back with "We'll take anything in trade except husbands and wives!" Well, to make a long story somewhat short Marty found a dealer to buy the 5th wheel and we came to an agreement on the price as well as a price for the trade in of the 350 dually. Dan picked out a truck that he was interested in and I even drove a Ford Edge. We got all the figures together and told Marty we would be back in touch after we talked about our different options. The truck Dan looked at was a used 150 and pretty "plain Jane". I didn't think that he would be happy, but he kept saying that it would be "fine".

Dan and I talked everything out and decided that our best option at this point was to pick up the 5th wheel and get out from under the debt - I mean, it's one thing when that is your only payment and it's your house - but when it is on top of the house and all the things that goes along with the house it was a little much - so, we decided to call the dealership that had the Montana and give them a figure that they could buy the rig outright (and we wouldn't have to go pick it up either). They took a day and then came back and said they just couldn't do it right then - they had 6 on the lot. So we told them we would be down to pick it up on Saturday. Dan called Marty and told him that we would take a white truck that Dan had seen on the Internet - it was a real stripped down model - didn't even have carpet, but it was a "new" 2010 and a "manager's special". I didn't think this was such a good idea, I didn't think it was much better than the used truck we drove when we were up in Bartow - but it was really cheap and Dan said that he could "live with it". (I knew better!)

Saturday morning we were up bright and early and headed down to Ft. Myers to pick up the Montana. We got there right at 9 am, and they didn't have the unit ready to pick up - they had it closed up, but no keys or all the manuals on the unit, or the remote for the unit. Anyway, it took about an hour to get everything together and get hooked up (they had let the battery run down and we couldn't get the jacks to work - we had to get a jump box to get everything running!), but finally, after an hour we pulled out of the dealership with the Montana in tow.

Dan had planned out the quickest route to Bartow from Ft. Myers, but he didn't bring any map or the Garmin with us because we had everything cleaned out of the dually. So, we are driving down the interstate and he misses the turn - no big deal, we have another way we can go. After 45 minutes on the interstate, we turn off to go toward Wauchula. Dan says that we are going to need some fuel before we get to Bartow, but he didn't seem in a hurry to buy any, so I don't think I need to worry. We head across country and guess what - no fuel stations - nothing but wide open land. Now, if you know anything about Florida you will know that you have populated areas and then you have areas where there is NOTHING - well, we were in the second of those two options. We finally see a mile post and we are 25 miles from Wauchula and 7 miles to empty in the truck. Now, we are both starting to panic - you just can NOT run out of fuel in a diesel truck. We are driving and the truck is saying that we have 0 miles to empty and it is 5 miles to this little crossroads called Ona. I'm praying that we make it to Ona and that Ona will have a fuel station that is 1)open, and 2) have diesel fuel. At this point I was thinking I don't care what it costs! Well, we make it to Ona and there is a fuel station that is open and they have diesel ($3.51 a gallon - not too bad!) - Dan pulls in and almost cuts another car off, but when he gets out he apologizes and explains the situation and the other driver is not upset. So, we are able to put about $40.00 worth of diesel in the truck and make it to Bartow with no further problems. I just had to tease Dan and tell him that he just had to make this outing our "one last adventure" with the Montana since we never just go on trips - we have "adventures"!

We finally make it to the Ford dealership about 1:00 in the afternoon and pull the rig over to the side lot. Dan goes over and looks at the truck and I can tell he is not a happy boy - so I told him to look at other options. So, we look at a couple of used trucks that are completely loaded, but even with the trade ins were WAY too much money. Now, I'm starting to get worried that he is not going to find something he wants and we are going to end up with having to take the unit back to Lake Placid, when Marty said - let's look at another new 2010 truck - Ford is offering some really good rebates on these trucks. So, off we go to the new car lot and Dan falls in love - well, maybe that's a little overboard, but he falls in like with this --------------------------------

A brand new - 2010 F150 - with almost all the bells and whistles. I have to admit, it's a really nice truck and I'm sure that he will be much happier with this truck then with the one he was originally looking at.
So, we no longer own a Montana 5th wheel or, for that matter, a F-350 dually. Dan has a new truck and we are looking at being able to hire a contractor to come in and do all the remodeling work on the house AND there is a very good possibility that I won't have to work next year. If things work out the way I think they can - Dan will even have his pontoon boat this summer - it won't be a new one, but it will be a boat. Hopefully this will all come together in the next few weeks - I'll keep you posted.
While I am sad that one door has definitely closed for us (there is no way that we will go back to the full time lifestyle), it is exciting to think that there are other things that will be happening in the next few months that we have been wanting to do. We might not be full timing anymore but that doesn't mean that we won't travel some and they will still be adventures for us in the future - heh! - I have Dan and life is ALWAYS an adventure with Dan!
Hope things are going well with you all and -------------------
I'll talk to you next week!

Rainy, Dreary Days

Well, I don't know what the weather has been like where you live but here it has been warm, overcast, and rainy.  We are having temperat...