Summing it Up...

Now, that I'm way on the wrong side of sixty, I feel that being true to self is important. "I yam, what I yam." Kindness and smiles are to be given away. Women are strong. Men are more vulnerable than we believe. Husbands may come and go...but one thing I know for sure is that I will NEVAH live without a corgi or coffee in my life if I can prevent it. Come piles of dog fur or hot water!

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

"Ford" Frolics on the 'Gator...

What a blast! I got to drive the 'gator from way up in the park where the lodge and park office are and take it to our camp site after supper.'re thinking...big deal..let me tell ya', this is a big honkin' deal and quite a distance to go AND you have to drive through the "ford," which is now a white rapids fast moving stream thanks to yesterdays and todays rain. Whoowee baby, that was fun to roar through the park with all the s-curves, and then, drive through the water. (Top speed is 15 mph.) There's a speed bump on one side, then the ford, then another speed bump. Oops, while blasting through the water, (you have to rev it up so the 'gator doesn't die in the water y'know) I forgot about the second speed bump. The wood in the back jumped up about a foot, and truly was "junk in the trunk!" Jim was following behind in the car and he said he saw the water "rooster tail" higher than the 'gator, and couldn't believe it when the wood went airborne. Mama's pushin' 56 and can still get her kicks, ba-BY!

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Dog Days of Summer already at White Pines~

Evidently it's going to be a hot, muggy summer here at the Pines. Humidity and high temps are so unappealing, aren't they? Last night we had a campfire, but all sat way back so the heat wouldn't affect us. Crazy, huh? The boys, Phil and Jim, sing each night, "put another log on the fire," and for the past two nights Phil has played his accordion. He has two tunes, both potential polkas with the oomph-pah-pas, learned down pat. He loaned me his squeeze-box, like a mini-accordion, (that they found in Mexico years ago) to get a feel for the squeezing, chords and buttons. The dogs kind of covered their ears today in the RV as I practiced. Addie was under the dinette, but Jake sat right before me, seemingly very interested in the orchestrations of the wheezing bellows. If we ever do meet Phil and Rose at Quartzite, Arizona, in the winter, we'll have to go to Mexico to find a street vendor selling these things.

Jim is on the park's old (John Deere) 'Gator most days picking up trash and cleaning campsites. Yesterday I permitted several sites, and got to them on the 'Gator, blasting over hill and dale,! (It's scary, but fun!) We're going down to the ford one of these nights around 9pm, using the 'Gator, to drive through the water in search of the big-boy bullfrog that comes out that time of night. Jim's seen him several times, and said he isn't shy. Last night, Jim, the corgi-kids and I took a 10pm stroll under the almost full moon which looked so pretty through the pines. The fireflies were out in record number and lit up the 50 to 60 foot white pines like they were Christmas trees. Such a delightful sight. We didn't need a flashlight because the moon lit our way. Today, Tuesday, we had a downpour & thunder. Addie hid in the rv's bathroom. The outside temp has dropped down to 69 degrees. There's only a handful of campers in the park. The lodge's restaurant is always busy though, and locals come up for BB-Q or a good supper out in the woodsy setting to get away from fast food joints in town.
Jim used his day off to fix things in the motorhome, like the noisy water pump, now insulated with foam along the water lines. I made brownies in the convection oven....a first try in baking. Next try will be a meat dish of some sort. It's a little confusing, more so than a regular oven, which we don't have. We have the 3 much needed storage drawers below the range instead, so I need to conquer the microwave/convection combo!

We'll be working at the park entrance gate all weekend. Office phone number is 815-946-3717.
Come visit anytime, or give us a call !
You would really like it here.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Crazy Em pics to make Josh laugh! honor of your 33rd birthday yesterday, I'll put these pics in for you to get a laugh over. Emmy should entertain you a great deal with these photos!!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

White Pines Forest State Park... back again!

Tuesday was travel day from North Manchester, back to the north-west corner of Illinois, in the heart of the Rock River Valley, and Black Hawk Indian territory, where White Pines State Park is located. This park, 385-acres, in Ogle County, is the perfect place if you're looking for a respite in a tranquil setting. The smell of pine welcomed us back to the woods. We listened to coyotes yipping, and heard the turkey gobble as we sat around a campfire cooking a hotdog, and watching the fireflys do their thing in the evening dusk last night. This place is the perfect recipe for family getaways. You can hike, fish, camp (103 sites,) and picnic. There are 7 marked trails, moss covered cliffs and 2 creeks, stocked with fish for the visitors to enjoy. Log and stone buildings built in the '30s by the CCC, have historic ambiance that houses the main lodge with restaurant, dinner theatre, and a gift shop, and rustic cabins, with modern facilities are nestled in the pines. It's not uncommon to see 3 or 4 deer drinking from the creek, or near the roads, through the trees. Squirrels, raccoons, owls, and birdlife are all here. 4 shelters with water, fireplaces, tables, and nearby playgrounds are popular on weekends for reunions and gatherings. The most unique feature of this park are the fords that span the creeks, and which allows the visitor to drive through the flowing streams. To get a better idea, and visuals about the park, visit the website.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

**** A week in North Carolina ****

Thanks to a cell phone umbilical
cord to Jim and the GPS
thingacabob, Addie and I made it safely to North Carolina from Findlay, Ohio, where we were visiting with Mom before heading south.
I've had a delightful week getting to know my beloved granddaughter, and seeing her daily changes and milestones. I've laughed more this week than in the last year! Addie and the cats have gotten along fine, and we've "swiffered" up dog hairs to not lose our welcome in a dog-free zone. Emmy coos, gurgles, rolls, kicks, handles toys, sits up in her high chair with a wooden spoon and mirror, and today practiced rolling over in the middle of her parents big bed. She does tummy time everyday, listens to Mozart, and is exposed to stimulation to make her little brain cells grow, grow, grow. Such a precious little girl, lucky to live in house filled with love, and loving parents. Also....Emmy's eyes are HAZEL, not brown!

Addie and I head North in the morning, and will take Josh to camp on Sunday for his favorite week of the year. Tuesday, she and I will go to Illinois, to join Jim and Jake for our summer volunteer work at White Pines Forest State Park in the northwestern corner of that state until after Labor Day. He's currently enjoying a visit with son David and his family from Florida. They're having hot dog roasts, going fishing, and staying in one of the cabins while visiting with Grandpa/Dad. Have a safe trip home on Friday kids~

Y'all come back now...

Y'all come back now...

Everyone is special, and counts!