Welcome to our travels and adventures

Welcome to our travels and adventures

Fat Tuesday

1202310 Feb 21 King Getting Ready Queen Waits

Mardi gras is French for Fat Tuesday, referring to the practice of the las1202345 Feb 21 The King Will End The Dayt night of eating richer, fatty foods before the ritual fasting of the Lenten season” from Wikipedia and it has come and gone here at the Plantation. Our gala dinner and skits was the ending to a great 5 days of Mardis Gras celebrations.

Barb & I met the King & Queen at the main entrance to the club house and we were  all dressed up in So1202314 Feb 21 Our Table From The Frontuthern Charm and redneck paraphernalia and I’m sure you can guess who was dressed in what but in case you can’t there were a few pictures! Anyway, after the King & Queen paraded around the room and tossing trinkets to the partiers, we sat for dinner and then entertained with skits. There were too many laughs to recount here so if you’re a SKP, you’ll have to come by the Plantation next year.1202330 Feb 21 Terry The Redneck Barb The Southern Belle

At the end of Mardis Gras, they take the King & Queen away using a skit and this years was by far the best ever – the Revenue guys swooped in and arrested the King & Queen for several tax violations and took them away. Seconds later, machine gun fire 1202324 Feb 21 The King Is Cuffed was heard and the King & Queen escaped. Actually they just took off their costumes and rejoined the party. It was a fitting dethroning!

Wednesday, all things have switched back to normal, Barb & I kicked back to recover from the very busy 5 days. The Thursday meal in the club house was canceled but the campground manager arranged for a special seating for us at the Road Kill Cafe – their motto – you kill it we grill it! They do not serve evening meals, just lunch so it is special for us. Anyway, the instructions said 5 PM so we took two other couple – Bill & Ann and Barry & Lorrie with us so we left the campground at 4:40 PM for the 151202350 Feb 23 Waiting For Seats minute drive to the cafe. We arrived there and all the seats were taken and we had to wait for another table to open up. You can imagine the various comments I made but still no one left! We finally were seated with other SKPs – Don & Gloria and Norm & Linda and had a very enjoyable meal and conversation. It was a good time for all. We kept on chatting and then realized we were the last ones remaining so we left full and happy.

We hope you are happy where ever you are….

Parade Day

I1202248 Feb 20 Back Of Our Float t’s Mardis Gras parade day here at the Plantation. Everyone was invited to participate in the 1202252 Feb 20 Lelah On Her Tractor parade from folks walking, golf carts, cars, trucks, our own tractor club and the local fire department were out to support our festivities. I’m not sure how many floats were in the parade but maybe you will get the gist from some of our pictures. Barb & I were on the ‘Royal’ float with the King & Queen tossing out tokens to the parade goers. All the floats were pulled by our tractor club. The parade started out at the club house and wound through the campground and ended back at the clubhouse for lunch, entertaining skits and the caned chair auction. It was a busy day! The parade started at 11 and the festivities wound up at 3PM after the auction. The highlight of the skits was our very own by the Queen. You can see it here.

1202259 Feb 20 The Queen King On Float

1202266 Feb 20 The Kings Ass 1202265 Feb 20 Ruth Jan In Pink Cart


1202285 Feb 20 King Queen Watching Auction


1202290 Feb 20 A Full House Over 250 People


In the evening, Barry & Lorrie, Barb & I took in the night Mardis Gras parade at Fairhope. To  ensure we found parking and a  spot at the sidelines, we left here at 5:30. We paid for parking to get close and the attendant parked us in first with a car behind. I was not worried about getting out as we could drive forward up a low incline toward the church. At the parade fence, we met more SKPs from the park and waited and watched the parade with them. It is a small parade compared to Pensacola’s but the floats were better decorated and way more gifts were tossed. As the last float went by, we talked about the 8 of us going to dinner – hey why not the Fish River Grill? As we arrived back at the truck, the other vehicle behind us was still there so we jumped in and started going up the small hill – wrong! I didn’t count of the grass being a little damp and the rear wheels just broke the sod and started slipping and we’re not moving forward. Ok, lets back up a bit and get lower on the hill and maybe we can get a small run at it – wrong again! Now we are really trapped and the other 4 SKPs were already in their way to meet us for dinner. I guess all we can do is go back to the parade and wait to the end. Finally, the last float passes and we head back to the truck again. We’re still waiting and the lot is almost empty – our thoughts started seeing the owner going to a bar for the après parade parties! Finally the owners arrived and kindly moved their car – they didn’t leave so we were lucky they came back. So now, off to the Fish River Grill for dinner and apologize to the other SKPs. As we get close, we don’t see any lights – their closed. We wonder what happen to the others and now where are we going to go? Off to the Mellow Mushroom in Foley – we had a nice dinner and found lots to talk about – and why wouldn’t we after this adventure?

We have one more day to go so come on back again for the gala ball.

It’s Mardis Gras at The Plantation

1202147 Feb 17 Our Table As Pages It’s Mardis Gras Friday at the Plantation. This is the day that the King and Queen are chosen after dinner. It is customary that everyone eats a slice of King cake. A small plastic baby is hidden in 2 slices and whoever eats the slice with the baby, is th1202165 Feb 17 Terry Barb The Pagese King or the Queen. Here at the plantation, we use cupcakes instead of a King cake but all else is observed.

Barb & I were asked to be the Royal Pages for the  Mardis Gras celebrations for 2012. Once we finished our meal, we donned our Royal Page costumes and drifted around the room awaiting the King and Queen to be identified. We then whisked them off to the dressing room so they co1202160 Feb 17 Getting Ready For Royal Paradeuld change into their Royal robes to be sworn into service for the remainder of Mardis Gras. The excitement is mounting. Ron Phinney and Mary Moubrey found the baby in their cupcakes and we swoop down to escort them off. It is fun being a part of this years celebrations.

As we exit the dressing room, the crowd stands and the band plays As the Saints Come Marching In, what a hoot. We escort them to their thro1202159 Feb 17 Pages Read Proclaimation From Kingnes and Purple Ray proceeds to ‘swear’ them in and place the crowns on. Ron is taller than Ray so a step ladder was proved so  Ray could reach to place the crown – needless to say that was the first volley! After the ‘coronation’, the King and Queen did the customary parade around the room and handed out beads. Barb & I had to make sure the King and Queen had enough beads to hand out or toss. We settled back at the thrones for an evening of music and dance. It was fun with lots of laughs.

Saturday morning we had to be at the clubhouse early to meet the King and Queen and escort them in for breakfast. Again with the customary parade around the room 1202175 Feb 18 Queen King Eating Breakfast and once settled, we retrieved their breakfasts from the kitchen without standing in the line – there has to be some perks with this job! The remainder of the day was ours so we went into Pensacola with a few folks to watch one of the many Mardis Gras parades going on.  We arrived a little early – remember the night we went to the Christmas boat parade and also went a little early? Well this was even earlier but a whole lot warmer. Anyway, we have the chairs set up and started the ‘tailgate’ party while we waited for the parade. The crowds descended all around us and the parade made it’s way down the street. The pictures don’t really do it justice – lots of stuff  tossed our way. It did rain a couple of times but the party goes on.

1202195 Feb 18 Neptune Throws Beads

1202179 Feb 18 Ready For Parade In Three Hours1202183 Feb 18 Lined Up Along The Road

After the parade, we made our way down to Joe Patti’s, a 1202199 Feb 18 Terry Buying Mauhi Mauhi renowned sea food market with fresh catch of just about anything you can think of. It was the biggest and busiest fish market we’ve ever seen. We picked up a filet of Mahi-mahi while others in our group went for the 1202204 Feb 18 Pelican In The Watershrimp – they will steam them for you while you wait. We got home in time to unpack the truck and get inside and miss the torrential downpour of rain. We were in a flood warning weather alert and got about 4 inches of rain throughout the day.



1202208 Feb 19 Anna Helps The Clown Sunday brought us once again to the ice cream social Mardis Gras style. The staff made Root Beer floats for some and lots of ice cream for the rest. We met the King and Queen out front and the King brought us LED false teeth for the parade through the 200+ guests. We moved through the throngs passing out beads with our teeth flashing! The King was a little over dressed with his fish ne1202238 Feb 19 Sing On Chenillest stockings and bows of ribbons tied on for more decoration – not sure he needs more but great costume anyway! Lots of good fun for everyone. Once the dust settled, we scurried for their ice cream or floats and managed to get ourselves ice cream too – hey we can eat too. After, the local singing group, The Chenilles  gave us lots of laughter with their attempts to sing and then followed by a couple of humorous skits. Everyone is having a good time. Once the amateurs left the stage, the Wayfarers played a couple of sets until 9PM – whew another busy day.

1202230 Feb 19 Our Handsome King And Beautiful Queen Today is the parade, lunch and the caned chair auction so y’all come back for more later.

Deck Moving Week

 So Many Come Out In Cold for Ice Cream Another week zips by in a blink here at the Plantation. Here are a few pictures of the ice cream social on Sunday. As you can see it is always well attended but we haven’t known a food event that the Escapee SKPs don’t attend! Mat Parade The ladies that crocheted rugs from yarn display their projects and you can also see a few of the canned chairs that will be auctioned off on Monday after our Mardis Gras parade and lunch. There will be 21 chairs in all going on the block – wow.

Monday afternoon, Barb attended her knitting class while I faked going over to cane. I made an excuse to leave the club Mats in Front of Caned Chairs house and snuck out to buy some roses and a pot of tulips for Barb. After I set them up in the rig, I went back to the club house to finish caning my chair for theGroup Conversational Heart Swap auction. All done, even a coat of wax to help protect the finish and it looks really good even if I do say so myself. After we were done and finally arrived back at home, Barb was surprised by my sneakiness.

On Tuesday, the quilting ladies had a Valentine  gift swap that they created for each other. Barb made a fabric flower Donated To Care Chair broach and a bag to keep it in. The ladies here show off their prized gifts to each other. When I am in the club house caning, you can hear the ladies are having a good time – I don’t hear many sewing machines working hard but the ladies….Barb's Gift Bag With Reverse HeartsBarb's Swap Gift Flower 

Our Table For Valentines Dinner In the evening we celebrated Valentines with a dinner and camaraderie at the clubhouse. As usual, the food was good and the company is always fun.

Wednesday is landscape day on our site and this day we chose to move the deck! We propped it up on 4x4s and used planks as pry bars and inched it out to where we wanted it. Little did we know that it had a ton of blocks Is it level yet? under it and a couple of times the deck would get hung up on the blocks. So, we doubled the 4x4s and continued to where we wanted it. Barry came by to help and then we were able to lift one side to about 40 degrees and cleaned out all the block and stuff from underneath. Next was the challenge to lower it without dropping it and try to get it level. We lined up some block along the trailer side and then tried to line up a few on each end. While it was up in the air, why not put some block under the frame at the low end so we wouldn’t have to raise that side to place the blocks in the right spots. Good idea in theory but when we started lowering the deck, it scooted out from under us and slide to the Sage Palm and hit it with a thud. Not our plan! So we inched it back and then started the leveling process at each corner then the centre. Great job by all.

Ouch, oooch – it is tough rolling out of bed today! I think I used muscles I hadn’t used in awhile. Anyway, I’m off to the computer group session this morning and Barb gets to stay home – what a role change that is. The quilting ladies cancelled their sewing today as the clubhouse is busy with Mardis Gras decorating. After the computer group, I came home to finish the deck. We had removed the centre boards and then I could place blocks under the deck frame to stabilize it. The first few were difficult then my darling bride suggested I get OFF the deck to place the blocks. Wow, did that make the job easier! All done and now it is solid and level, I just have to drop and attach the anchors so it hopefully won’t blow away this summer.

It’s Friday and after dinner, we crown the king and queen for this years Mardis Gras celebrations. So, tune in next week to hear and see our few days of excitement. Hope all is well where ever you are.

It’s Coming

This is the second time I have written this blog but the PC operator deleted some files because it was r e a l l y slow and he deleted the draft of this blog. So, lets see if I have any recall at all.Barb Hanging Purple Snowflakes

After getting our Mardis Gars decorations, we finally got them up and our site looks a little more festive.

Barb & I have been beating the bushes to see if anyone knows something about digital cameras and the many features they have available to the photographer. We were not successful so we are chairing a collaborative ‘round table’ conversation to see if we as a group can ‘learn’ more about our digitals. On our way back from the office with our poster, we stopped off at Rita & John’s to check out their new window drapes that Barb made for them. They are still happy. A storm looks to be coming our way so we had better get back to the rig – opps to late, about half way home, the clouds opened and the down pour soaked us through, thanks goodness it was warm!

Friday, weTree Growing On Railing take the day off and go over to Weeks Bay Reserve  with Barry & Lorrie. We had a park ranger chat with us about some of the finer points of the park. He mentioned that they recently completed a controlled burn to get rid of dry timber and unwanted ground growth to keep the forest healthy. After wandering around the nature display we venture out onto the boardwalk and of course, lots of conversation. There was lots to see from unusual tree trunk formations, of course Weeks Bay and even a salamander kept an eye on us. Notice the tree trunk growing over the hand rail of the board walk. The blackness of the rail was due to the recent burn but the tree sheltered the rail – that was kinda neat. From the viewing platform, we can see across Weeks Bay to Mobile Bay and have never been out there so why not?

We drove around to Pelican Point, past many nice looking homes – of course, they are looking out onto Mobile Bay. There is not much over at Pelican Point, just a boat launch but another opportunity for us to launch our kayak so maybe another trip there. After all this, it’s time for lunch and a beverage so off we go to Big Daddy’s. We’ve been there many times before and it is a terrific setting, sitting alongside the Fish River watching boats sail by.

Our weeks seem to run Barb Sewing Her Patchtogether as Barb goes to the clubhouse for sewing, knitting and quilting and I am still working on the rocking chair and making good headway. The back is done using the ‘snowflake’ pattern and I have started the seat caning. It’s the same pattern I used last year that I am familiar with but still use the coaching's of  Bob & Roger.




Tuesday night was the Baldwin Pops concert in Fairhope. Six of us – Pat & Carolyn,  Barry & Lorrie all travelled together and stopped for dinner first at the Old 27 Grill. We had good food and the usual southern service – y’all come back now, ya hear. The concert did not disappoint us, the performance was terrific and over too soon. Conductor Starts The Night


Abbots, OBriens Ellis At Old 27



Wednesday, I attended a cooking class. We have a professional cook that is conducting classes a couple times a month. Last year I took her Cajun cooking class and learned lots of neat stuff with some good recipes. This class was on crook pot cooking and after some discussion on food quality, where to buy and preparations, we got down to business and started getting ready for a sumptuous lunch. Miss Barbara, our cooking instructor created most of the crook pot recipes in the wee hours of the day so after we finished the prep work, we all sat for a great lunch.

Never let it be said that I am the sharpest knife in the drawer. We brought one of our chairs down for the Mardis Gras Caned Chair auction and I had forgotten it in the shed. Barb reminded me of it and suggested I put a hold on the rocker and get crack’n at the other chair. Have I mentioned that our Mardis Gras celebration is quickly approaching? Thank goodness I don’t need to refinish the chair – I have a secret sauce mixture from Al, a caner last year that cleans the old crude off and revitalizes the existing finish so Sunday, I applied it to the chair. Monday I put another coat on and wiped it down for a beautiful luster so I can start the chair Tuesday.

Wednesday is our landscaping day and we moved some more garden boarder stone out and dug out weeds and roots on an old garden that we didn’t want. We trimmed some bushes and planned a new garden. We probably won’t get all the work done before our departure for home.

1202061 Feb 10 Time To Check Menus Friday, Pat & Carolyn pulled together a lunch trip to McGuires Irish pub in Pensacola. In the end, 40 of us descended on the restaurant at 11:30 for lunch. Most of the people go for their famous bread pudding – me, I went for lunch! We took Barry & Lorrie and Bill and Ann with us so after lunch, we hit the ladies hot spots in Pensacola – Jo-Anns fabircs and A&E fabrics. The guys, well lets say we’re happy1202063 Feb 10 Barb In Finished Jacket just being there.

In all this activity, Barb managed to complete her quilted jacket. It looks great doesn’t it.


We hope you are well wherever you are out there…..

Too Much to Do

Time just zips by, so much done and so little said. This may seem disjointed writing but I’m having trouble with my rememberer remembering all the exciting things we have been doing.

Barb is very busy with her crafts and quilting ladies at the clubhouse. I have been busy sanding, staining and applying Varathane to the rocking chair to get ready for my caning lessons. Barb learned how to hook a rug using regular knitting wool and they – yes, I said they, she couldn’t stop at just one, we have 2 new hooked rugs to keep our tootsies snuggly at the sink and to wipe our shoes when we come in the door. They look great don’t they? Barb also learned how to apply and embroidery appliqué to fabric and made a couple of throw pillows for the living room. They look spectacular too. She is sooooo talented!
The design was all hand sewn

You remember we trimmed our Sago Palms and harvested about 30+ ‘pups’? Well, we took two that we liked, gave 5 to the park and offered the rest to anyone who needed Palms. They were gone that day and it helped that Ms Barb (a resident here) came over and took the remainder off our hands so she could plant around the park (she has volunteered to plant and maintain the public gardens in the park and she does an excellent job).

We are getting serious now about getting a new grill (BBQ) since we have a shed to store it in. Our neighbor is able to roll his grill in and out of his shed so we have a new project. Yes, we need more to do so we are building a small deck/porch for the shed so we don’t have to lift the grill in or out. A little plan, a shopping list and off we go. Within the day, we have it all done and anchored in place and ready for use. Now what you ask? Well, off to buy the grill and of course, our first cook out is steaks! Yeah, life is good.
Barb & I have been helping a few people having computer problems and learning some new things besides so it works out to be a two way street.

One of the other guys here was teaching how to make bamboo knitting needles so Barb signed me up. She likes her bamboo needles and thought she could save us money if I knew how to make them myself! Isn’t that nice, she is thinking of me and saving us money?

The quilting ladies spent a day fabric hunting in Pensacola. Arrangements had been made to tour a quilting equipment manufacturer, quilt shops, fabric retailers and of course lunch. Apparently, they all had a fun time and I’m sure plans are already in the works for the next one.  I don’t know where we can store all of her new materials.

Barb thought she wasn’t busy enough so she volunteered to make new window drapery for the front window of another Escapee’s motorhome. Barb smoked into it on Saturday morning and burned the midnight oils and finished them early Monday morning before coming to bed! We delivered them Monday afternoon and Bob and I installed them and they are very happy. They are getting the rest of the coach reupholstered but Barb didn’t raise her hand for that one, thank goodness!
Of course, there is always a lunch out. Dan & Barb asked if we like sea food and well, you know my line to that so we joined them at Steamers in Gulf Shores. It was good even if you don’t count the dollar draft! Barb had a couple of filets of Mahi Mahi and I had Royal Reds and Mahi Mahi – they had a special on, 6,6 and 6 – 6 oz each of 2 entries and 6 oz of potato or potato salad along with a tossed salad for $7.99, oh, and a dollar for a draft beer! After lunch, Dan & Barb went to the beach with his metal detector looking for his fortune while Barb & I headed back and stopped off at Ole Time Pottery, looking for a couple of planter pots to add to the deck and plant with ‘stuff’. Saw some nice pots but nothing there spoke to us that we needed it so we’re still looking.

Mardis Gras is fast approaching and the planning is moving forward. You can imagine our excitement, so shopping we go to Toomies Mardis Gras store. We had fun trying on lots of masks, hats and even a wig.  We bought wreaths and ornaments to decorate the yard.

We leave you with a few pictures of some of our neighbors that come around every day to say hello. We hope all is well with you where ever you are. If you have comments, please leave you for us.