Thursday, November 29, 2007

Thanksgiving and Beyond

We arrived in Siloam Springs, Arkansas Wednesday evening before Thanksgiving. We filled the rv with gas at station on the end of Bob and Dot's street before we parked the rv in their driveway for a week. We were worried that the price of gas would go up while we were visiting.

Thursday we went with Bob and Dot to feast at the methodist church downtown. Many of their friends were also there to enjoy the Thanksgiving meal. We spent much of our time catching up and sharing stories of family and friends.

Bob and his dad decided to go shopping on Black Friday. They found a 19" LCD flat screen tv on sale in the Wal-Mart circular. They planned to be there when the sale started at 5:00 a.m. Not me! I was ready to sleep in.

Wednesday morning, Bob and his dad left at 4:45 so they could get to Wal-Mart by sale time--and no, I did not sleep in, but I didn't go shopping either. They came home about an hour later--each with a new tv. Bob's dad put his in his office and Bob put ours in the rv to replace our 'old-fashioned' tv.

Friday afternoon we all ventured out to do some shopping in Siloam, but we didn't buy anything else of consequence.

Saturday we all went to Fayetteville (about 25 minutes away) to do some geocaching and more shopping. We found 6 caches, had lunch at Arby's and shopped. Bob and Dot showed us the small grocery (Aldi's) where they like to buy their bread. It was a unique store, but on Saturday afternoon the bread was sold out!

Bob and his dad installed the new flat screen tv in the rv on Sunday. They built a shelf to put under the tv as it was 4 inches shorter than the old one. They mounted the shelf in the cabinet, then mounted the tv on the shelf. They made a metal brace to put behind the tv to keep it from bouncing around when we are on the road.

Dot enjoyed cooking for us while we were there. We went through 3 pies (chocolate chip, rhubarb and lemon meringue) and many home baked cookies. Bob and his dad challenged each other to see who had the most. As you can see, it was too close to call!
Geocaching was on the agenda for Monday. We went to Oklahoma to find our next caches. The Oklahoma state line is three or four houses away from Bob and Dot's house. We had not been there in many years and were surpised to see a casino across the state line. We drove about 20 miles into Oklahoma and found 6 more caches.
Tuesday was a laundry day as we were leaving on Wednesday. We had a great time visiting Bob and Dot, but it was time to get back on the road so we can be in El Paso well before Christmas.
Wednesday we left Siloam about 11:30 and drove to Tinker AFB near Oklahoma City. We plan to stay at the FamCamp through the weekend.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

November 18-21, 2007

We stayed at Cane Creek State Park in Arkansas for 3 nights. We arrived Sunday afternoon and pretty much had the park to ourselves as there were only 4 other campsites occupied. Our campsite overlooked Cane Creek Lake.

The Delta Trail went through the woods to a view of the lake and back out again. We hiked the trail Monday morning.
Every time there was a slight breeze, leaves fell like enormous snowflakes from the trees.
If it hadn't been for the yellow blaze on trees along the trail, it would have been difficult to follow.
Monday afternoon we drove east to Arkansas Post National Monument. It was settled in the late 1600s and was the first capital of Arkansas. There was a trail around the area, so we hiked again!
This time as we were hiking we thought acorns were falling off trees and bouncing around us. Upon closer inspection, it was tiny frogs getting out of our way. The leaf this frog is sitting on was about the size of Bob's hand.
This trail also had a water view. We spotted this eagle's nest in a dead tree near the other bank.
When we returned to the car, it was overrun with ladybugs. Arkansas must be the ladybug capital of the world. They were everywhere, even on us.
We returned to the campsite for a restful evening of "24."
There were also 3 geocaches in the park. On Tuesday, we found 2 of the caches along the trail. We dropped off the Jeep travel bug in the first one we found.

The lake was full of stumps and dead trees which made it an excellent place to kayak. We kayaked Tuesday afternoon. We saw ducks, herons and egrets. When we went to find the last cache, we saw a white-tailed deer.

The weather was nice, in fact it was warm. We never turned on the AC or heat while we were there.
Wednesday was a travel day--on our way to Siloam Springs.

Monday, November 19, 2007

An update--finally!

We have been having trouble connecting to internet with our aircard. After calling tech support and going into an area with a stronger signal, here is our update.

November 15
We camped at the Corps of Engineer Park south west of Bainbridge, Georgia—Hale’s Landing. The sites were well kept, but there were no hookups. We were boondocking!
The first night, temperatures dropped to 30 degrees. We used all our blankets and set the heat to come on at 55 degrees. We were nice and toasty in the morning until we got out from under the blankets.

November 16
We decided to geocache today. We found 6 geocaches—including one with a red Jeep travel bug!!! We also drove around Lake Seminole to familiarize us with the area. We stopped at Wingate’s Lodge. I know that Daddy took me there when I was a teenager, but the lodge was too new to have been the one I saw before. When we returned to the campground, we collected fire wood for our evening fire. This night was to be colder than the one before—only 29 degrees at most. We made it through with the propane heater set to come on at 60 degrees and many blankets on our bed.
We had a campfire and enjoyed the fire until it was after dark. Then we watched the first dvd of “24.” We hope to watch the next dvd at our next camp.

November 17, 2007
On this day we packed up and hoped to camp at another Army Corps of Engineer site on the Alabama, Mississippi border. No such luck! The campground was full. We kept driving. We ended up sleeping at the Louisiana welcome center across the river from Vicksburg, Mississippi. The day as a whole sucked! We had electrical difficulties from the get go. The passenger side running light did not work when we hooked up. We stopped and bought a new light, but it did not work either. We found that the brights worked, but were not really bright, so we kept driving. The roads were a little better around Jackson, Mississippi, but they were still under construction. We could not find a good campground, so we stayed in the welcome center at the Louisiana-Mississippi border. When we get to Siloam Springs, we will do a check of all electrical systems.

November 18
After a “semi” restful night with the big rigs at the Louisiana Welcome Center, we proceeded to Cane Creek State Park in southeast Arkansas. We had trouble with our aircard for internet access along the way. Bob talked to tech support when we reached the campground and they said we didn’t have an account!!!!! We had already paid our first bill and used the card for over a month—the first person we talked to couldn’t find a record of our account. Jennifer to the rescue (we called her to access our account number since we couldn’t connect to the internet). We called tech support again and lo and behold they had our account info without us telling them anything. We were in a fringe area and would have difficulty connecting even with our high powered antenna. Maybe we will be able to connect later in the week.

The campground is great! We have a campsite near the water. There is a kayak trail around the lake with many sites marked to see. We hope to do that on Monday. The weather in Arkansas is mild for this time of year. The high on Monday is supposed to be in the mid-70’s. Tuesday is to be even warmer. Lows are expected to be in the upper 50’s.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

November 14--On the Road Again

Yes, we are finally on the road again. After being at home for 2 months, we are headed for Arkansas and Texas. While we were home we made modifications to the rv. Bob added 2 200 watt solar panels to the roof of the rv. We also added a Wilson trucker antenna to receive signals for our new wireless aircard. Due to power fluctuations last summer, we now have a Frank's autoformer to keep our power regular. For those places we stay that have no tv reception, we have Direct TV receiver and satellite dish.

If you read our blog during our first retirement trip, we had trouble with the truck. To remedy that we purchased a new Honda CR-V to tow behind the motorhome. We outfitted it with new kayak racks and a brake buddy for added security when driving in mountains.
Our first stop of this is Grassy Pond FamCamp which is run by Moody AFB in Valdosta, GA. After arriving at Grassy Pond, we walked the 3 mile trail around Grassy Pond.

Tomorrow we are heading for a Corps of Engineer campground at Lake Seminole on the Georgia, Florida, Alabama borders.