Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Tennessee, Sevierville - Wednesday, April 30, 2014 - RV Dreams Rally

Monday morning we pulled out to finish our trip to Tennessee.  I wanted to stop at Hobby Lobby and see if they had any good Spring items on sale since it was after Easter.  I did pick up a few things for our decorative trays at the front of the coach.
We also noticed there must have been something special going on at Sportsman’s Warehouse.  Greg said you usually don’t see guys standing around waiting for a store to open unless it is on Christmas Eve and that last minute shopping needs to be completed.

It was rainy and overcast most of the day.  We noticed the further south we got dogwoods were starting to bloom, the redbuds were fading and the new leaves were coming out on the trees in much greater quantity than they were in Indiana.


Jellico Mountain here we come.  The coach did remarkably well going up and down the mountain.  I was glad that the weather cleared off and we actually had some sunshine while we on Jellico.  I understand that the town of Jellico had some really strong winds earlier in the day so I’m glad we missed that!
We are staying at River Plantation RV Resort.  There are 175 people registered for this rally and naturally all of the rigs are situated in pretty much adjoining sites.  It’s fun to talk to other people who are living full time in their RVs and those who are just now thinking about the full time lifestyle.  Greg is always a magnet for guys asking questions.

These are some views of our site #430.  We are located on the outside edge of the resort next to the Little Pigeon River.  The river is just beyond the tree line.
I did manage to sneak up on a group of turtles and get a picture before they went diving for the safety of the water.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Kentucky, Lexington - Sunday, April 27, 2014 - Walmart

We left Timberline Valley RV Resort mid-morning and headed to Indianapolis to attend the monthly meeting for Rolling Thunder Indiana Chapter One.  We’ve been members of Rolling Thunder for over three years.  We are very proud of the work Rolling Thunder does to promote awareness of the issues involving POWs and MIAs who need to be brought home.  The past four years we participated in the Ride to the Wall which is a peaceful demonstration ride in Washington, D.C. on Memorial Day weekend.  The demonstration is to bring awareness to the POW/MIA issues.  This year we aren’t going to be able to participate in the demonstration, but we will be at the sendoff to wish them safe travels.  It was good to catch up with our Rolling Thunder friends.
We have made it as far as Lexington, KY and are taking advantage of the hospitality of the local Walmart – we are staying in their parking lot tonight.  If we are just going to be stopping overnight going from point A to point B this just seems like the easiest alternative.   We always go in and do our shopping and ask permission to stay, so far we haven’t been refused anywhere. 

Since our route today was one we had been over many times, I spent some time catching up on my magazine reading on the IPad instead of sightseeing.  I subscribe to Next Issue and can pick from over 100 different magazines for $10.00 a month.  You can pick as many or as few magazines as you want and you can change at any time, I have picked about 15 I look at.  You have access to past issues too.  Once you have downloaded your monthly magazines you have access to read them without the benefit of the internet so you can read them going down the road.  It usually takes 2 or 3 minutes to download a magazine.  They have just this month added a great feature, you can save pages to your electronic device (just like ripping the pages out of the magazines).  The pages are saved in your “pictures” file and you can work with them from there.  I’ve been very pleased with this service, it is especially nice for those of us who travel and live in limited spaces where we don’t want a lot of magazine clutter.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Indiana, Anderson - Saturday, April 26, 2014 - Timberline Valley RV Resort

 I missed doing a blog on April 18 and wishing grandson Wyatt a HAPPY BIRTHDAY!  We did talk and I found out he had a fabulous party with a lot of his friends, good to hear.
What a gorgeous day!!  The campground is filling up quickly.  We haven’t had too much to talk about since we arrived in Indiana in mid-March.  It’s been too cold to get out and do anything worth talking about.  Hopefully that will change tomorrow.  We will be heading to Sevierville, TN for an RV-Dreams rally.  After the rally we’ll spend some time with friends from Lebanon, TN and then head back to Indiana until at least mid-July.

When we get back we’ll get the bike out and do some exploring in Indiana, looking forward to that.
This morning we returned the car we were using while the weather was cold.  Thanks to our friends Mike and Susan for giving us the loan of that car, it was much appreciated.

Greg’s latest DIY project was a storage shelf for the shower.  The shower head we have doesn’t allow for a shelf to be hung on it.  I had seen a suggestion on Pinterest that said to put a coat hook on the wall and hang your shelf from that.  Sounded simple enough.  But a coat hook didn’t stick out far enough to get past the decorative side wall of our shower so he had to improvise with one of the robe hooks we already had elsewhere in the bathroom.  Of course, that resulted in having to replace two robe hooks (couldn’t have them mismatched).  So it took a bit longer than he anticipated, but I think it looks very nice.
I decided to make some banana bread today so it could bake while I packed up the few things we have to pack before we move.  It turned out very good, so I’ll share the recipe.  This is a lighter textured bread than most banana bread, more like a cake.

Banana Cream Cheese Bread

¾ c. (one and one half sticks) butter, softened
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 ½ c. sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1 c. mashed banana (about 3 large)
3 c. all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. cinnamon
1/8 tsp. ground nutmeg

1 T. butter, softened
1 T. flour
¼ c. plus 2 T. sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray two 9x5x3 loaf pans with cooking spray and set aside.
Cream butter, cream cheese and sugar until very light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.  Beat in vanilla, eggs and banana.

Whisk together in a separate bowl the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg.
Add dry mixture to wet mixture, stir to combine well.

Mash the topping ingredients together until thoroughly mixed.
Divide batter between the two pans and top with the topping mix.

Bake for 50 minutes.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Indiana, Anderson - Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - Timberline Valley RV Resort

Last Friday we started the process of both of us getting to our doctor appointments while we are in Indiana.  So trips to Columbus and Indianapolis are in the future.  We know that the doctors are not going to be happy that we haven't managed to lose any weight since last year so I'm starting to think about some healthier eating habits for us.  We didn't think we had room for a scale in the bathroom but we were able to find one made by Weight Watchers that isn't any bigger than our I-pad and tucks nicely into a corner out of the way.  I know - we need a new screen cover for the I-pad.
We couldn’t have asked for better weather on Saturday.  We laid Dad to rest that day and the warm weather and sunshine was very welcome.  Although it was a sad day it was brightened by the presence of our family and friends.
Son, David, made it home from Kansas and was able to get in a bit of visiting with friends before he had to head back.
On Monday Greg spent all morning at the oral surgeon’s office getting a couple of teeth removed and an implant put in.  He didn’t look too good when we left there Monday afternoon, but he is recovering nicely now, just says his jaw still hurts some.

In a surprise move, grandson Tyler decided to go to Kansas with his uncle David to help him with his farming.  Naturally some tears were shed when they headed out on Tuesday.  We’ll be catching up with them in September when we spend the month in Kansas.
Tuesday morning was a complete turnaround from the nice weather of Saturday.  We woke up to snow and ice!  Naturally, since we don’t have the RV winterized like we did when we were planning on being in Indiana in the winter, our water line froze.  It thawed out by the afternoon so it wasn’t much of an imposition.  We have a heated water hose but it isn’t long enough to reach all the way from the hook up to the coach in this site where we are now so we were susceptible to the freeze.

Tuesday evenings we have been helping daughter Desira and her husband Dan with the trap shooting program they run at Fall Creek Valley Conservation Club.  This Tuesday great grandson Braxton was there “helping”.  He had to take a Cheeto break and I was able to snap a picture while he was preoccupied.

I’ve been going through closets and cabinets, rearranging and sorting out things to take to Goodwill.  I want to get this kind of necessary stuff done before it gets warm so I can go out and play.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Indiana, Anderson - Thursday, April 10, 2014 - Timberline Valley RV Resort

This has been a sad week.  My dad passed away on Tuesday.  Thanks to my brother and sister-in-law who welcomed mom and dad into their home, dad didn’t have to spend his last days in a hospital or nursing home.  We are glad we made the trip home early, we got to spend a couple of good days with him.

The weather here in Indiana broke into the mid-70s today and it was wonderful.  They are getting things opened up here at the campground.  We’ll be leaving here on the 27th for a week or so and then we will be back.  We’ll be going to the monthly meeting of Rolling Thunder of Indiana Chapter One on the 27th to catch up with all of our friends there.  After that we will be headed to Sevierville, TN for the Spring RV-Dreams rally.  This is the second RV-Dreams rally we have attended.  We found they provided a lot of good information, especially for people who travel fulltime in their RVs.

We hope the weather will be warm enough when we get back that we can get the bike unloaded and do some riding around Indiana, catching up with old friends and taking in some sites we didn’t have time to see when we were working here.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Indiana, Anderson - Monday, April 7, 2014 - Timberline Valley RV Resort

During Friday night’s strong winds we heard a terrible noise that sounded like it came from the corner of one of the living room slide outs.  It was dark and he knew he couldn’t do anything in the wind so he had to wait until Saturday morning to check it out.  I don’t have all the details but the job involved taking the slide out cover roller off, removing the canvas fabric, replacing some screws and putting it all back together, making sure the slide out cover would still roll in and out as the slide was moved in and out.  Since this slide out is the longest one (naturally) it was going to be a two-man job and I didn’t qualify so he called in son-in-law Michael to help.  They were successful after just a couple of hours!
The tomato and basil plants we brought back from Florida have been trashedL.  They simply didn’t like their home in the shower.  I think the heat was just too dry for them.  No matter that I watered them, they just shriveled up.  The tomato plant had four green tomatoes on it when we left Florida and they didn’t get any bigger after we got to Indiana.  I’ll replant the container with some Spring flowers.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Indiana, Anderson - Friday, April 4, 2014 - Timberline Valley RV Resort

Wow is it ever windy!  We have sustained winds at 26 mph and gusts at around 40 mph, but those gusts are coming pretty close together.  Central Indiana currently has flood and wind warnings out, looks like Spring is just around the corner.  Lots of campers coming into the campground this evening.  I know we wouldn’t want to be on the road in this wind.
We have TV again.  It’s a good thing they secured the tripod when they installed it. 

Daughter Desira called this morning asking if I wanted to go to Winchester with her to get some pies from Wick’s Pie Company.  I didn’t have anything special going on, but even if I did I would have put it on hold to spend time with her.  We had lunch in the restaurant at Wick’s and then picked out several pies to take home with us.  Greg ordered a sugar cream pie which is their signature pie and I guess the official pie of Indiana.  A gooseberry pie caught my eye.  I used to grow gooseberries and make my own pies, but gooseberry bushes don’t fit into our lifestyle now.  The pies come frozen and you bake them at home, this one looks pretty good, I’ll let you know later how it tastes.
I’m still in my “rearranging” mode.  I decided that I didn’t like the two baskets that contained our travel brochures.  We refer to these quite a bit when we are planning our travels.  We usually pick them up at RV shows and rallies and I like to keep the best ones.  Since we didn’t have TV for a couple of days we had to get out the movie boxes.  I looked at the boxes and realized I had a couple of nice looking black leather covered boxes that had been stuck in a cabinet-what was I thinking!  I think the brochures will fit nicely and I have just the spot for them.  Only problem is since I am putting the movies back in the cabinet without the boxes Greg is going to have to do some work on the shelf.  I find it amazing that some of the cabinetry has such excellent workmanship and then you find a shelf that barely reaches between the shelf supports.  I’m thankful that he can fix all of my little annoyances.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Indiana, Anderson - Thursday, April 3, 2014 - Timberline Valley RV Resort

The track light is up and I think it looks pretty good.  It’s hard to get a picture of it without getting a lot of glare.
We went to Columbus today for our consultation with the oral surgeon about getting Greg’s broken tooth and a wisdom tooth cut out.  He’s going to have an implant put in to replace the broken tooth.  Who would have guessed a tooth could be so expensive!  We should have saved the part that broke off, maybe the tooth fairy could have contributed to this.  I suggested to Greg that we could save about $1,000 if he did without the anesthesia, he didn’t even think about it before he said “no way”.

For lunch we stopped at Tropical Smoothie Cafe and for those of you who are familiar with Greg’s aversion to avocado something amazing happened – he ate a sandwich that had guacamole on it.  I heard him order a southwest chicken wrap, but didn’t really think anything about what it might have on it.  When he set his plate on the table the cut side of the sandwich was facing me and I thought, “I hope he doesn’t look at that before he takes a bite” – no such luck.  I did offer to trade with him but I just had half a chicken salad sandwich and he had a whole wrap so he decided to try it and he said it was good.    Whether or not he’ll eat it again on purpose may be another thingJ
The only thing we don’t like about our new site at Timberline is that we have no TV reception, no Dish, no antennae reception – nothing.  Since we were in the area anyway when we were coming back from Columbus I suggested we stop at Hidden Paradise, the campground where we were staying before we actually headed out on the road.  We left a Dish receiver and tripod there because we didn’t have any place to store it.  We thought other people might want to use it and we didn’t have any intention at that time of every wanting it back.  I said if no one was using it we might be able to retrieve it.  Sure enough, they didn’t mind that we wanted to pick it up.  Greg called the guy that installed it for us in Shelbyville and found out he does jobs in Anderson so he is coming out tomorrow to get us hooked up again.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Indiana, Anderson - Tuesday, April 1, 2014 - Timberline Valley RV Resort

Maybe Spring is on the way, it was in the mid 60’s and sunny today.  The only bad thing was wind gusts up to 20 mph.  It really does need to get and stay warm soon.  We’ve been in Indiana two weeks now and since we’ve been inside because of the cold weather I’ve started finding things I want to change or rearrange.  Today I rearranged the laundry area and the utility closet.  Then a trip to Hobby Lobby was in order to check out some possibilities for a couple of other ideas I have.  Greg is still working on getting the track light like he wants it.  He’s worked so hard on this, I hope he really likes it when it is done.
Yesterday we had to go to Columbus to visit our dentist.  Greg broke a tooth while we were in Florida.  Luckily it wasn’t causing him any pain so he wanted to wait until we got back to Indiana to have anything done.  Going Thursday for a consultation with an oral surgeon to see about getting the rest of it removed.  Too bad Medicare doesn’t have a dental plan.  I know we could have gotten some kind of supplemental plan, but at the time it didn’t seem necessaryL

This morning we moved to a new site here at Timberline.  The site we were in was one of just a few that had a winterized water supply.  Today the water was turned on to the rest of the sites so we moved to one that will be easier for us to get out of and back into again.  We’ll be gone from here a couple of times during the summer so that will be important to us.  This site will also make it easier for us to get the motorcycle off the lift.
This evening we went to help daughter Desira and son-in-law Dan with the trap shoot they are running.  Not sure how much help we were this evening since we were “in training”.  But, we may be of more value the next time.  I think it was 2008 when Desira started trap shooting.  I remember getting e-mails from her where she was so excited to have hit 3 out of 25.  Now she can pretty much wipe them all out.  We are proud of her and Dan, they put a lot of work into this program.
We’ve been visiting with mom and dad.  They have moved in with my brother and sister-in-law and I think this has been good for mom and dad both.  Mom is getting along pretty well.  Dad is bedridden and hospice comes in about every day to help with some part of his care.  He is still aware of who we are and can carry on a brief conversation, and he doesn’t hesitate to let them know when he is hungry of thirsty.

I tried a new recipe that was pretty good:
Parmesan Baked Chicken Breasts

4 chicken breast halves, boneless and skinless
Mix together:
1 c. mayonnaise
½ c. parmesan cheese
1 ½ tsp. seasoning salt (we thought this was too much salt, will probably use just ½ tsp. the next time)
½ tsp. ground black pepper
1 tsp. garlic powder

Put the chicken breasts on a lightly greased cookie sheet and spread the mayo mixture on top of them.  Bake at 375 degrees for 45 minutes.