Our Family Visit Comes to an End

The one day I think to get a photo of all the grandkids together & not everyone is cooperative. OH WELL! I'm sure every family has days like this.

The one day I think to get a photo of all the grandkids together & not everyone is cooperative. OH WELL! I’m sure every family has days like this.

(Several of the photos in today’s post were taken by a budding young photographer, our 6 year old granddaughter Gabrielle.)

Our time with family has come to an end. Don, Tucker and I wrapped up our last few days by—

TUESDAY

Don and I had two of our grandchildren for the day while daughter Kristi took care of school registration. Gabby and Ian brought their bikes with them and grandpa spent time instructing Gabby on how to ride her new two wheeler. By the time we returned them to their parents, Gabs was riding her bicycle like a pro.

Gabby shows off her new bike riding skills.

Gabby shows off her new bike riding skills.

Ian, not yet ready to tackle a two wheeler.

Ian, not yet ready to tackle a two wheeler.

In the evening we met up with Jason and Kristi and the kids, and daughter Bobbi-Leigh at the local county 4H fair. The hog wrestling contest was being held at the Grand Stand and our 13 tear old granddaughter Madalyn was an entrant. The contestants enroll in teams of no more than 4 and must consist of all boys or all girls. Team are divided into 9-11 year olds, 12-15, 16-19 and over 19. Maddy’s team was named Mud Divas. She was joined by her friends, Sydney and Maggie P., who are sisters, and Maggie B.

Maddy waving to us as she waits with her team.

Maddy waving to us as she waits with her team.

The goal is to catch and place the hog on top the barrel with their bare hands in one minute or less. All this takes place in a 20 foot pen with 2 feet of mud. What a hoot! (Lost shoes and boots were claimed at the 4H office the following day.)

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The hog won the round but the girls had lots of fun and we all enjoyed cheering them on.

The Mud Divas

The Mud Divas

WEDNESDAY

A quiet day. Everyone was either at work or back at the fairgrounds taking advantage of the pay one price, ride all day offer. Don and I tried to connect with friends Gary and Carole Humphrey, whom we met at the 2010 Escapee Escapade. They live in the Bloomington area. I tried both the cell and home phones but ended up leaving a message when no one answered. We opted to spend our day sitting outside reading and the night watching the Tiger baseball game. I did manage to put together the budget for August.

THURSDAY

The Turners, who we wintered next to in North Fort Myers also reside in Bloomington during the Summer months. We made arrangements to meet up with them on their farm. They raise most of their own produce and get their meat and eggs from neighbors who still raise livestock. Jack and Suzanne sold off their livestock a few years back in order to travel. Jack took Don on a tour of the 100 plus acres while Suzanne and I sat on the back porch swing, shelled beans and talked. I have many fond memories of doing this with my grandmother and Mom Nolie when I was a little girl. Suzanne had made a delicious blueberry pie from scratch and served all of us up a slice ala mode. Tucker even got a bowl of ice cream. Tucker just loves Suzanne, she spoils him rotten. When we departed, Suzanne handed us a meat and squash casserole to take with us. (We ate it on Friday. It was so good I had to contact Suzanne for the recipe.)

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Tucker thanks Suzanne for his ice cream.

Tucker thanks Suzanne for his ice cream.

FRIDAY

I drove into town to do our banking and grocery shopping while Don stayed behind to vacuum the Suite Pea. Chores done, we headed north on IN 37 to our old Greenwood neighborhood. We had plans to meet up with old friends at the new Cheddar restaurant but first I needed to make a quick stop at Camping World. Seems my dad and step mom’s new camper has a high entry step. They were both having difficulty getting in and out when my father decided to place a little wooden bench under the trailer step to aid them. Apparently he didn’t step onto the center of the bench or maybe it was none too sturdy to begin with, but he took a tumble, cracking his noggin on the way down. After hearing the story I told dad I knew just what he needed. So my purpose for shopping at Camping World was to purchase a foldable, heavy duty metal camp step for he and ma.

We spent the evening catching up with the lives of Ed and Kathy Needy, and Jim and Kim Werner. The six of us go way back. It was wonderful seeing them and as always, the evening came to an end all too soon. ( I was negligent at capturing the night in photos. I’m afraid my mouth got away with me and I plum forgot to use my camera.)

SATURDAY

The day dawned overcast with the threat of rain hanging in the air. We could hear the thunder roll south of us. Not a good start for a day when you have a cookout planned.  With steaks marinating and beer chilling, Don and I made contingency plans just in case the sky opened up. As it turned out, the threatening storms passed by us and we passed the late afternoon and evening visiting with past coworkers and friends, Greg and Ginger Mourning. Once again I was guilty of forgetting to take photos.

SUNDAY

Our last day of this visit. In the morning Don washed Suite Pea while I tackled a pile of dirty laundry. Once those jobs were completely we started breaking camp to the point where we’d have very little left to do in the morning. Our goal is to be on the road by 6 am. We have much to accomplish on Monday.

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Our daughter and son-in-law, Kristi and Jason hosted a family pitch-in cookout for us Sunday evening. It gave us the opportunity to say good-bye to all of our loved ones before rejoining the rest of the homeless nomads wandering our nation’s byways. We had a great spread too. BBQ, grilled corn-on-the-cob, garden salad, slaw, watermelon, cookies and brownies. It was nice to sit in the shade of their big front yard tree, relax and spend time chatting for awhile. A great way to end our stay.

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MONDAY

We missed our goal of being on the road by 6 am by half an hour due to heavy fog and darkness. We had a longer drive today than we usually like to do at one time. We knew we’d be on the road at least 4.5 hours, as it turned out it was 5.5. We took a different route than the one we normally take to our destination of Elkhart in northern Indiana. This time we exited off I-465 onto SR 421/29 to SR 25, then took SR 31 on in. Good two lane highways with quaint small towns and beautiful farm filled countryside along the way. This is the only way to travel. This is the way to see America. We made one quick stop in a church parking lot so I could grab us a couple of apples and cheese sticks from the fridge for lunch, then we were on our way again.

Our stop in Elkhart was at Bradd & Hall. Bradd & Hall specializes in RV furniture and interior renovations. I had ordered a couch and two end tables from them last June. Today we picked them up. The estimate we wanted on replacing our pleated day/night shades to the newer roller type was put on hold for a time. When the installer explained to us how he’d have to reposition our valances to accommodate the new shades, we all agreed their appearance would be unacceptable. We’ll wait until our present valances become tired looking, then we’ll redo the whole shebang at one time.

New couch & Amish built end tables.

New couch & Amish built end tables.

Once our business with Bradd & Hall was completed we were back on the road again.

A half hour later and we were checked into a favorite campground of ours for a short stay on our way to northern Michigan.

IMG_4318   Here’s lookin’ at you kid………………………….

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