Welcome to our travels and adventures

Welcome to our travels and adventures

It’s a New Year

Well, we’re all winding down from our Christmas excitement. Many ‘Mercans’ do not ‘celebrate’ Boxing Day here – it’s just the day after Christmas and everything, shops, businesses and routines go on as usual. Of course Barb & I educated our friends with a bit of Canadianisms, making it a holiday.

Our DVR died on us and if you know us, you know we use it extensively to record our favourite shows so we do have to be tormented by the crazy amount of commercials. I opened the case to see if the fuse was ok but that’s as far as I could go to fix it. Call around and all the repair shops I called said throw it away and buy a new one! So, being a frugal minded or as  Barb would say – cheap, I surfed over to the manufactures web site and found a service centre not far away in Mobile. After a brief conversation on the phone, Barb & I are on our way to the repair shop. After a 90 minute return trip, we just step in the door and the repair guy called to tell us the unit is repaired and ready to go – just had to replace the power supply board and at half the cost of a new one! So, where are these other shops coming from? Are they too busy to do the simple jobs, they only want the high end warranty repairs? I digress, we went back on Dec 30th for pick up.

1312100 Dec 31 Everyone Has ArrivedThe park has a New Years Eve party at the clubhouse but when they sing Auld Lang Syne at 9 PM, I find it too racy for me so we planned a party at our place. We invited 3 other couples over for a pot luck and beverages of course1312101 Dec 31 Great Last Meal Of 2013. We had a great time with Ann, Bill, Marcia, Dick and our new Canadian friends, Simon & Sandy. Good food, good friends, what better way to ring in the New Year.



1401013 Jan 01 And Out They GoNew Years day was different for us. After we witnessed the ‘polar bear plunge’, we wandered through the campground with various stops, toasting the day. We ended up at Simon & Sandy’s and some one (can you spell Simon) kept filling our glasses and soon enough, it was difficult to aim Barb up the road to home – yes friends, she was toasted and feeling no pain! This is a most unusual state for my bride but she was having fun anyway.

Simon & Sandy are fairly new to the Plantation and have not experienced some of the attractions of the area so we decided to take them on Jan 2nd to Pensacola to do lunch at McGuires Irish Pub – Simon likes his stout beers – and then over to Joe Patti’s for some fresh sea food. Going to Joe Patti’s is a different experience that should not be missed if possible. Well, word travels fast around the park and soon we were expecting about 14 people to go to lunch! Unfortunately, Simon had come down with a flu bug and he was unable to go but the rest of us – we’re there! Not too many folks turn down a trip to McGuires! Of course, the girls decided that they would rather hit a few quilt shops instead of the fish market and would meet us at home!

On Jan 3rd, there was a quilt shop having a ‘going out of business’ sale in Ocean 1401020 Jan 03 Group At Our TableSprings, Mississippi – I guess the girls didn’t buy enough there last year. Anyway, 10 of us thought it was a great opportunity to meet the girls at The Shed for lunch, that’s a 90 minute drive each way! Anyway, the 5 ladies, Marcia, Ann, Mary, Marsha & Barb headed out at 9 so they could be the first to scoop up some of those ‘you just can’t miss’ deals and the guys, Dick, Bill, Dick, Bud & me left at 11ish to meet them at The Shed BBQ. It’s a unique experience and again, one of those local attractions that one should not miss!

1401031 Jan 08 Laura Nowles Quilt Top Completed



And of course, all this time while I’m trying to catch my breath from the trip down and setting up, Barb continues to knock out beautiful quilt tops like this one.  She took a Craftsy course this year with Laura Nowles and this is the finished product from the class.  Now all that is left to do is the Free Motion Quilting.




1209063 Sep 06 Gerry Anne At Front Of House

It is with great sadness that we learn of my cousin’s passing. Gerry and Barb & I were the same age and he was more a brother to me than he was a cousin. Gerry & I grew up together, hanging out, playing hockey and spending the summers at our cottage, water skiing, fishing and swimming as if we were in our right minds.  As we grew up and had families, we picnicked, partied and spent holidays together.  He and Anne were enjoying a vacation with two of their grandsons in Cuba when he left us.  We will miss him deeply.

Back in LA

1312046 Dec 18 Pat LaPoint On TractorIn our last post, we talked about frozen water lines but we were lucky and did not suffer any damage. Our second night of the trip down, we stayed in a Walmart in Clanton Alabama. It was a few miles off I65 and was not a super store but they allowed us to stay anyway and it was warm and quiet, what a treat! From here, it was a short run down to the Plantation. We arrived just before the annual Christmas tractor parade – we prefer to think they were having the parade just to welcome us back! Since many of our Plantation friends did not expect to see us this year, we had m1312049 Dec 20 Terry Cleaning Our Roofany of them stop by to greet and welcome us back. It was a very warming arrival.

Now that we are all set up in our site, we try to tend to things that are becoming 1312050 Dec 20 Barb Raking Up Gardensroutine – raking the gardens, washing the roof of the rig and then the sides and of course, digging the shorts out of the cabinets! It took us a couple of days to catch our breath from the escape from Ontario, the long drive down and acclimatizing ourselves to the temps here. But once back on our feet, we’re back into the swing of the activities in the campground.

With Christmas looming and since we have 1312052 Dec 21 Barb Terry With Their Bikesalready celebrated with our kids back home, it is kinda anticlimactic now but we’re celebrating with a clubhouse full of other campers with a Christmas eve party and then dinner on Christmas day. To help get us in the mood, we went shopping and bought ourselves new bikes. When we decided to drive to California for our cruise, we stored our bikes, thinking we were not going to be 1312054 Dec 21 Barb Gets Her Christmas Cardstopped anywhere long enough to use them so why drag ‘em around. Once we changed plans not to drive west, it was too late to retrieve them – does that sound reasonable? Anyway, new bikes for Christmas, just like when we were kids. I’m sure you also know our Christmas card ritual – we take the camera and exchange cards in the isle at Walmart and take pictures of the occasion – this way, we can ‘spend’ as much as we want to for the card without spending our hard earned cash!

One event we try not to miss is the Fish River Santa Claus boat parade 1312058 Dec 21 Supper With Simon & Sandywhich was on Dec 21st. So using last years memory of timing for the parade, we went for dinner with Simon & Sandy at the Old 27 Grill and planned to be at our usual viewing point at the boat launch by 7PM. Well, not a lot of good things to say about my memory here….. after dinner, we arrived at the boat launch and were surprised at the number of available parking spots – this was a hint! 1312061 Dec 21 Parade Boat Going HomeOppssss….. the parade has already gone by! We got the refreshments out anyway and met a nice couple from Silverhill, a town just north of the Plantation. We did manage to get a few pictures of some boats on their way back to where they launched from so not all was lost – we saw a few decorated boats and met nice folks too.1312065 Dec 24 Finger Food Table

It must be Christmas, it has turned cooler to get us in the mood. On Christmas eve, we went to the Christmas party at the clubhouse. There was a Plantation music group to lead us in some carolling and after, we had our usual ‘secret Santa’ ritual. Everyone with a gift sits somewhat in a circle and a ‘host’ reads a short story and when she says right, you pass your gift to the right, left you pass your gift to the left. There are many instances of right and left so some times you might get a little lost and that makes some fun. You are in an Escapee park so you know there is lots food available. Everyone had to bring a finger food for the buffet table – wow, so much great treats! We even had Mr & Mrs Claus there checking who were being naught and nice. You notice I wasn’t in the picture!1312072 Dec 24 Getting Our Picture With Santa

1312070 Dec 24 Lots Of Gift Players







Christmas day brings us back to the clubhouse for our Christmas dinner at 2PM. We were with 10 others and it was a great time – lots to eat, plenty of wine around and the desserts were over the top. Our table stayed after clean up to carry on with the chatter and of course, we were the last to leave – turning out the lights as we departed!

1312075 Dec 25 Barb Ready For Dinner


1312074 Dec 25 Barb Adding Gifts To Table1312076 Dec 25 Meeting In Clubhouse For Christmas Dinner







1312079 Dec 25 Ready To Eat Dinner1312089 Dec 25 Socializing After Our Meal1312091 Dec 25 A Circle Of Men







Hoping all is well wherever you are and all the best in 2014….