Sunday, January 30, 2011

St. Augustine Lighthouse

Went shopping this morning.  Gotta love Publix!  I got 4 A&P (12 oz) for $2 each.  Pretty good bargain and I also got other items for a great price and it felt good walking out with a total saving of $17.
Went back to the park, had lunch and them we drove to one my favorite lighthouses: St. Augustine Lighthouse.  Peter didn’t want to up, so he stayed down stairs with Kia.  If you look real close, you can see him way below on one of the pictures.
Back at the camper we sat outside a little and then it was time to go back in to prepare dinner.  Porterhouse steak, portabella mushrooms and potato salad.  It was real good……

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Saturday, January 29, 2011

Fixing stuff and making the camper ‘home’.

Today, Peter worked on the new camper.  He put in a charge line for the toad, which was a priority, ‘cuz we don’t want to get stuck with a car that won’t start.  Then I got my paper towel holder back into place and a key holder by the door was installed as well.  He also move up the bracket for the Bedroom TV.  Whoever installed it, didn’t use their noodle.   It was right above my feet and I hit against it when I was turning around.  Most importantly, I found a spot to show off our grandkids.  BTW….The view from our window is fantastic.  I love our campsite.  As a matter of fact, all the campsites are very nice here.  I took a picture of an empty campsite to show how pretty the sites are.
After dinner – yes, I cooked- we took Kia for a little walk and noticed some Swiss people that brought their camper over all the way from Switzerland, including bike.  Check out the clothes line

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Friday, January 28, 2011

Our first day at Anastasia State Park

We went shopping today and got hamburgers and other stuff.  I have no idea why I can never leave any store anymore without spending $100 plus.  shopping is no more fun.
After we got back, we drove a little through the park to see where is what.  The park is gorgeous and very big.  I would love to come here in spring of fall sometime when it is warm enough to swim in the ocean.  The beach is nice, as the pictures proof it.

Anastasia State Park Beach

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Thursday, January 27, 2011

On the way Anastasia State Park

After sleeping one restless night at the RV dealership, where they took care of a few minor problems , like the connection for the toad, etc., we were on our way to St. Augustine.   The park is very pretty and I am glad that we came here.  The sites are spacious and very private.  I can’t wait to explore and take picture.

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Monday, January 24, 2011

BBS friends and other strangers…

We had an very unusual and interesting afternoon today.  We had visitors from people that we never met in person before and yet, we had such a great time and wished that the afternoon would never end. 
Poley and Sharon Ann arrived first.  I knew Poley from a camping forum for about 6 years.  He and Sharon Ann camp with their RV in a nearby town, so we thought it would be a great idea if we meet in person after all those years.
Bobbie and Ted arrived next.  Bobbie and I met approximately 20 years ago, before the Internet was really public on one of the local BBSs (Bulletin Board System).  We kind of stayed in touch for a long time and there were a few years in between, when we didn’t hear from each other.  We then got in touch again via Facebook.   Bobbie in the meantime moved to Toms River, yet we still didn’t meet in person.  Bobbie and Ted spend every winter on Treasure Island, FL and now we finally had the pleasure of meeting them today.  We all were sitting by our camper when Cookie and Larry from another campsite came to join us.  Cookie is from Erfurt, Germany.  Later in the afternoon Judy and Tim came over too.  They are volunteers here at the park.  It turned into a great party with Jello shots, chips and dip, wine and beer.  Life is good!

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Sunday, January 23, 2011

We are getting smaller

In 2006 and 2007, we traveled in our van camper throughout almost the whole country.  We truly enjoyed it and saw a lot.  The van camper didn’t have much room and we purchased a 5th wheel which we enjoyed until February of 2010.  We were in California when we saw our Bounder.  We liked it a lot and traded.  It is a nice RV and we truly loved all the conveniences, including the washing machine and the huge shower.  At that point, we thought we would stay at Fantasy Island every summer and spend the winter in Florida.  Things changed and we decided not to be seasonals anymore; instead, we will now travel the country a little more.  Are you kidding?  In the 36 footer at 3-6 miles per gallon?  Well, after a long back and forth, talking, thinking, looking, etc., we decided to go and take look-see what’s available in a size that is not too small, yet more economical to drive. We were here at Hillsborough River State Park, when a friend of mine asked: “Did you know that you are only 14 miles away from Lazy Days?” No…..I did not! We took a ride….just to look…you know how that goes…just looking…...yeah! We saw a RV that we fell in love with. However, we did go back to the park first and slept it over. The one that we really wanted wasn’t in stock anyway, but the salesman said it might come in the next day. It sure did. I guess it is meant to be. The pictures that are posted below. The RV we purchased it exactly the same, except the upholstery has a different design. As soon as we are in the camper, I will take pictures of ours and they will be posted as well.
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Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Two weeks with great friends in Florida

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 Day one
We arrived at Little Manatee River SP this afternoon in one piece.  I hate to brag, but I have to say it…..78 degrees!  YES!
Once we got into our lot we went out to eat and shopping. Totally exhausted we went to our camper and into our PJs.

Day two
It started out with pouring rain, but ended with a pretty sunset.  The temps were only in the sixties, which still beats 30 or less degrees.
The guys went shopping and Judy and I took a long walk and then just chilled at the campsite.  It was great.

Day three
We went to see the Manatees at Manatee Viewing Center.  We were there once before a couple of years back.  I love the manatees and can not see enough of them.
Once we were done, we decided it is time to think about dinner and went on a mission to find Costco.  It was not easy (left the GPS in the RV).  Costco had a good deal on a TomTom  and we purchased it.  I will never drive around any town 5x  again to find a Costco or any other place!  This Costco has a liquor store and needless to say, with those VERY reasonable prices, we stocked up.
Back home at the campground we started cooking dinner.  I really don’t want to write how delicious it was, because I don’t want anyone to get their keyboard wet from drooling.

Day four
We were ‘chillaxing’ today and basting in the sun.  It was nice.  Took a little walk to the lake and then back to the campsite for a few cocktails.  The guys were gone. Peter went to a car wash and and Paul went to play golf.
Dinner was grilled sausage and Pierogies. 

Day five
We drove to Venice today and walked around a little.  We also took a ride to Casperson Beach.  Casperson Beach is know for a place were you would find shark teeth.  People have these While there, we were looking for Mel’s Diner, just to find out that Denny’s took it over.  It was OK, but we were pretty upset that Mel’s Diner doesn’t exist anymore.  Their food was excellent…and Denny’s doesn’t even come close to it.  After lunch we too a ride to Myakka River State Park.  Peter and I were there in 2008 and loved it.  Check out the pictures here.  Back at the park we had a yummy ham dinner and just relaxed. 

Day six
Didn’t do much today.  We took a ride to the next state park we are going to be Thursday.  Looking good, but the one we are at right now is by far the best one.  We then went to CVS for prescriptions, Walmart for ‘stuff’ and home for cocktails and a Ham Stroganov dinner.  It is sooo good and a favorite of mine:

Left over ham, cut in strips
1 can of cream of mushroom soup
1 pint of sour cream
1 small can of mushrooms
1 package of fresh mushrooms – I used portabella
1 medium onion
In butter or olive oil saut├ę onions and fresh mushrooms, then add ham and heat.  Then add the can of undiluted cream of mushroom soup and can of un-drained mushrooms.  Once that is all heated, add the sour cream.  Heat, don’t let boil and serve over wide band egg noodles.

Day seven
Ahhh…relaxing in the sun!  It’s a good life.  We took advantage of the last warm day, because it’s supposed to be a little colder on today and Thursday.  After that…..back to normal…Yay!!!
We will be moving to Hillsborough River on Thursday.  I will miss Little Manatee River.  It is very quiet and relaxing here.  Lot’s of privacy on your own campsite.  I highly recommend this park if one just wants to relax.
I forget to mention, that with the newer digital TV system we approximately get about 30 channels here.  Our TV in this RV here is as old as the RV (4+ years) and it needed the converter box.  However, if you have a newer TV, the box is not necessary and the picture with both systems is crystal clear.  Love it!

Wednesday
High: 55
Sunny...cooler. Highs in the mid 50s. North winds 10 to 15 mph. Wind chill readings 30 to 35.Tonight
Low: 28
Clear...colder. Lows in the upper 20s. North winds 5 to 10 mph.
Thursday
High: 55
Mostly sunny. Highs in the mid 50s. North winds around 5 mph. Lowest wind chill readings 18 to 23 in the morning.
Thursday Night
Low: 35
Partly cloudy. Lows in the mid 30s. North winds 5 to 10 mph.
Friday
High: 65
Mostly sunny. Highs in the mid 60s. Northeast winds 5 to 10 mph.
Friday Night
Low: 42
Mostly clear. Lows in the lower 40s.
Saturday and Saturday Night
Low: 48 High: 70
Partly cloudy. Highs around 70. Lows in the upper 40s.
Sunday
High: 72
Partly sunny. A 20 percent chance of showers in the afternoon. Highs in the lower 70s.

Day eight
Stayed home to wait for the repair guy for Paul’s broken Jack and he never came. Oh well, no big deal.  Hopefully he’ll be here tomorrow, because we are supposed to go on to the next State Park.
It was somewhat chilly and we just relaxed, took a little walk and had a delicious haddock dinner.

Day nine
Today was moving day.   We left Little Manatee River State Park to Hillsborough River State Park.  I can’t wait to explore this park, because it looks like here is a lot to see.   Once we were settled, we went out to eat at a Golden Coral about 9 miles away from the park.  The food was good and it was very reasonable.  Back home at the camper we had an after dinner cordial.  Nice day, nice ending.

Day ten
Finally!  It warmed up somewhat today and we explored the campground a little.  It really is very pretty here and I can’t wait to see some more.  Next time I will take my telephoto lens with me.  There are huge turtles in the water and other creatures including alligators.  The river rapids are very pretty, as you can see in the pictures and if you look closely, you can see the one turtle on the rock and another one swimming.

Day eleven
70 degrees today….YAY!!!!  The day started out slow for me today…was in my PJ’s until 11:30 am.   At 2PM we took a tour to Fort Foster.  It was pretty educational and a good way spend an afternoon.  Dinner over Paul and Judy’s today.  We’ll have filets.  Yum!

Day twelve
We walked the dogs, went a little shopping, just relaxed and ended the evening with a campfire.  It was my turn to cook dinner and here is what I made with linguini and shrimps.  Of course I added garlic bread and a salad.  It was so good and I will share it with everyone:


Alfredo Sauce
Things You'll Need:
1 Pint Heavy Cream
8 oz Shredded (not the powder stuff!) Parmesan Cheese
8 oz Shredded Romano
16 TBS. Butter (not margarine) = 2 sticks
6-8 Cloves Garlic, Crushed, Pressed or Finely Chopped
1 Shallott
Large Saucepan
Whisk or Silicon scraper/stirrer
Patience
SERVES 8-10 AVERAGE (depending on final usage)

Melt the Butter slowly in the pan, add the Garlic and Onion then bring the temperature up to just above medium low heat, allowing it to fry a bit. Stop the frying and bring the temperature back down to medium low before the Butter browns.
Once you have the Garlic, Onion and Butter ready, leave it on medium low and get ready to stand there awhile ;) . Add the Heavy Cream and the Parmesan and Romano Cheese.
Stir it regularly, the trick is simple as that...do NOT leave it. It will scorch. When you do not see any more solids and it is think, it is ready, add to any of your favorite pasta' s or to a pizza shell to enjoy!
Enjoy the fact that you have convinced two cheeses that don't want to melt in almost direct flame to melt into Heavy Cream, that likes to scorch easily, then blend that with Butter, a fat that wants to separate from everything, and all rather easily!

Day thirteen
What can I say?  It was raining cats and dogs until about 4pm.  Peter had to dig a trench  so that we could take out Kia.  The water was standing right by our door.  Needless to say that we didn’t do anything, but watch the tube the whole day.

Day fourteen
Gheez…..finally!  What a pretty day.  It was warm, sunny and downright gorgeous.  We went to Sam’s Club in the morning to get the food for the night.  Dinner over Paul and Judy’s.
Then the boys went to get a new TV for Paul and Judy’s bedroom.  The old one was fried last night.  Judy and I stayed at the campground and walked about three miles all together.  It was a good walk, mostly on trails.  I finally got to see the suspension bridge in the park.  It wasn’t what I expected at all, but it was still nice anyway.  We saw a few turtle and three armadillos.  We also passed the pool.  It is unusual that state parks have a swimming pool and this park must have the biggest one I have seen in a long time.  Too bad it is closed for the winter season.
for dinner we had salmon cakes, potato salad and asparagus.  Delicious!

Last day with our friends…
Today was Judy and Paul’s last day here and we took a ride to go the the largest RV dealer in the area.  WOW!  The inventory….UNBELIEVABLE!  Sigh….drool….
After we were done drooling, we went back to the park, took the dogs for a walk and then off to the Outback Restaurant.  As always….it was delicious.  The Blooming Onion, the steak, the shrimps. loaded baked potato….YUM!  Best part ALL free – courtesy of Paul and Judy!  Boy I am going to miss them….especially all the free meals……  LOL


Tuesday, January 4, 2011

On the way to Florida

We left New Jersey on Monday.  We were supposed to leave already on December 27th, but because of the blizzard, we weren’t able to.
We had a late start – left around 10:30 am.  When we arrived in Washington, we landed in a huge traffic jam.   We found out that there is a Red Skin – Giant’s game….gheez…GREAT!  The traffic was unbelievable.  Once we were passed Washington and drove through Alexandria, we hit even more traffic.  There was one accident after another and then of course all the traffic from the people that went home after the holidays.
We finally arrived around  8 pm in Emporia, VA.  The campground was not real great.  There was a rail road right next to the campground.  You would think that I am used to it from Fantasy Island, but I will never get used to trains passing by.  Thanks God for ear plugs!
We left Emporia around 9 am and arrived after a pretty smooth ride in Darien, GA at 6 pm.  Inland Harbor RV Park is on of our very favorite stops.  It is a very clean campground, with mostly pull-throughs and it also is reasonably priced.
We waited for our friends Judy and Paul to come and they finally arrived around 4 pm.  After they settled, we went to grab a bite to eat at DQ.  Tomorrow we will be driving together to Little Manatee State park in Florida.  Hopefully it is a little warmer there.  The temperature here is currently 60 degrees.
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