Sunday, December 30, 2012

Welaka, Florida

We left Low Key Hideaway last Thursday and headed east and a little north to Welaka Lodge and Resort, (www.welakalodge.com) in Welaka, Florida.  The weather was perfect, sunny skies and cool temperatures.  After one stop for lunch we arrived arrived 1400.  The office was closed but a work camper told us to set up and pay later.  

We're in site # 9 with the sun on our patio in the afternoon.  That helps keep us warm when Jim leaves the awning up.  There are 15 RV sites here and 5 cottages.  The sites are 'grassy' with a cement pad for the patio and each site has a picnic table.

On Thursdays they have a pot luck dinner around 1800 and we were invited.  We met most everyone but remembering names at this time isn't an option!  I'm horrible with names.  There was a big campfire and because it was cold that's where we sat most of the time.  The food and drinks were set up in the outside kitchen/dining area next to the pool.  I'll get some pictures of this because I think it's super!

We've settled in, even drove around a bit making a grocery run into Palatka and Jim got some propane down the road.  This is not a tourist destination unless you're into boating and fishing.  Just a laid back, old Florida type of campground.

our Christmas cards...





This cottage overlooks the Saint Johns River


The Tiki Bar is on the river with docks that you use...but it isn't open!  Not sure if this is good or bad....


There are a lot of old oaks just dripping with Spanish Moss!  Also palm trees and orange trees that I've been getting some tasty oranges from


Even though the day we arrived was chilly there was a guy fishing and this lady just bundled up enjoying the view

We're here until the end of February and I for one am enjoying it so far
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Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas

I hope this day is filled with family, festivities and fabulous food!

We have been enjoying our stay here at Low Key Hideaway.  This place is just made for relaxing.  We did drive over to Williston on Saturday to visit with friends.  The RV park, Williston Crossing is huge and has some nice amenities...but I'm thinking it won't be on our itinerary any time soon.

Today Jim and I had dinner at the Island Hotel and it was delicious.  I had the Mahi Mahi while Jim chose the Beef Tenderloin


 
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Saturday, December 22, 2012

Winter Solstice

Boy did winter come storming in!  Thursday evening as we sat at the Tiki Bar we all kept an eye on our phones, watching a storm approach.  Will we get rain?  Cindy says no, it never rains here in Cedar Key, it always moves around us...oh no!  What's this?  There's some drops of water on the windows.....and the wind is picking up...

Jim and I left before the worst of the storm hit and the wind and rain continued through the night.  I don't think we got that much rain, but the wind!  It made the temperature drop and continued to blow with gusts up to 35 mph and coming across the water made for a chilly day Friday.  The Sun was out and except for the howling wind it was a beautiful day.  Jim took Boo out for a walk, bless his heart and I stayed in, keeping warm.  

We got a knock on the door and a lovely young lady delivered some yummy treats from Cindy and Pat, though I'm sure Pat didn't help in the making of them.  I had heard Cindy spent three days making cookies and candies for gift baskets...and we were lucky enough to get some.  Alas, half of them are gone and I've eaten enough sugar for the month!  Not sure the goodies will last much longer...

Speaking of Friday, December 21st...the Winter Solstice and according to the Mayans, THE END OF THE WORLD....well that obviously didn't happen!  But we had a good time celebrating with friends at the Tiki Bar.  I made some marinated mushrooms and most everyone brought something to eat.  There were ribs, pulled pork, buns, slaw, orzo salad, bacon wrapped goodies, stone crab claws, dessert platter, etc, etc, etc...I think everyone ate their fill!  Of course having a party at the bar means the alcohol and beer were flowing....We went over around 1700 and came home a couple hours later.  Once the sun went down that wind just froze us half to death!

Sometime during the night the wind let up.  As I type this it's 41 degrees outside with a wind chill of 36 and the winds are out of the north gusting to 25 mph.....yep, winter is here!  But from now on the days get longer!

Friday, December 14, 2012

Cold and Chilly here in Cedar Key

Well, we've been doing a whole lot of nothing!  Our weather has continued to be cold and damp.   So we mostly stay indoors venturing out only to do necessary things....like head to the Tiki Bar!  Actually we've only been a couple times and seeing old friends and meeting new ones is fun.  They've installed a wood burning stove to help keep it warm but the small bar is hardly sealed.  Pat has filled in all the window gaps with bottles and it's a great place to sit and just take it all in.

 Yesterday we went to the Pickled Pelican, www.pickledpelicanonline.com, for lunch.  Jim had a shrimp po-boy and I had a veggie burger.  Both plates came with home made chips and a pickle.  Of course we washed it down with a cold brew...

The pictures below show how foggy Wednesday was.  I thought everything looked cool


 




Pat has been busy with the bottles and 'little men'!  This is the water side of the Tiki Bar
 


Not sure if all these action figures are trying to get in or waiting for the tide to come in so they can swim out to sea

This bottle wall is part of the fence that gives Cindy and Pat privacy from the motel grounds.  They do recycle in Cedar Key but a lot of empties are finding a home here at Low Key Hideaway!


New at site 5 is this deck, we've actually sat out there once or twice!


Across the way is this beautiful green house that overlooks the water.  Shrouded with fog it looks better in black and white.

Yesterday after our lunch we drove into Chiefland to get some groceries at Walmart.  We finally broke down and bought a carpet cleaner....yuck!  I look forward to the day we can rip out this carpeting!

My heart is sad tonight....the senseless shooting in Connecticut of the children and adults just breaks my heart....


I keep thinking about all those gifts left unopened this holiday.
 Or all those trips not being taken. 
All those parent's, grandparents, family members, not having a 'Happy Holiday'. 
I think I need to burn a candle on Christmas for everyone that lost their life today, that way I won't feel so..... I don't know the word for it but I don't want to be so 'happy' when they are so torn apart. It's not fair. My heart aches for everyone there....
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Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Whew!

Last week was a whirlwind of activities for us.   Visiting with Sonsearae and Chris in Tallahassee is always fun.  We swapped meals and ate out.  Of course they had to work too so I'm sure they were exhausted by the end of the day.

Jim and I also spent what seems like days of shopping.  We'd been at a COE and needed a big city to restock and buy ahead for our stay in Cedar Key.  I even managed to lose weight despite all the good food we ate. 

I turned 65 on the 8th and Jim and I were treated to dinner at Harry's, a New Orleans style restaurant.  Boy was my dinner good!  I had crab cakes and they were very tasty.  Everyone cleaned up their plates and three of us got dessert...Key Lime pie for me and the slice was huge!  I could only eat part of it...no matter, it tasted just as good yesterday when I finished it off.

Monday we left Tallahassee and headed for Cedar Key.   A short drive on I-10, then a right on highway 19 and we were passing some pretty country side.   The farther south we got, the darker it got and we ran into the first raindrops in Chiefland.

I was hoping we'd arrive before the rain but that wasn't to be.  Jim had to set up between rain showers.  I popped over to the office to say hello to Cindy and Pat and soon after the rains came down in earnest.




I did manage to get one shot of my favorite boat...

This morning I awoke to overcast skies, the sun did try to come out but it failed and before long the fog started rolling in. The tide was out and I enjoyed watching the birds catching their breakfast. It's still foggy as I type this.  All we need is a fog horn sounding off in the distance.

Jim has been busy cleaning compartments and the truck bed.  The pass through compartment was untidy so he took care of that.  The truck bed isn't water tight with the cover so he's removed and dried what he could.  I've done laundry and dishes...

We'll be here until the 27th, I only wish it could be longer.  We both love it here and the people we've met have become friends
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Saturday, December 1, 2012

Sunsets

Wow!  It's December already and you know what?  In one week I'll be 65 years young....I don't expect gifts but give me a mention on Facebook...

Tuesday we started and ended the day with rain.  We stayed in and read books on our iPads and played games on the computers.  Don't recall what we ate but Jim did dishes for me all day...He also took a nap, not sure if he was tired or bored.  :-)
Of course Tuesday is NCIS night.  We're in the Eastern Time Zone and I went to bed at 2200 my normal bedtime.  At this rate I'll miss some late TV shows, but they'll be on again in re-runs.

Wednesday was still damp and chilly so we stayed in except for a run to pick up some groceries.  Since there wasn't much to watch on TV we watched The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel movie that Sonsearae lent us.  What a good movie!  I hope I got the title right.  If you haven't seen it, check it out.
The skies cleared and we had a beautiful sunset



Don't remember the exact day, but I made some delicious vegetable soup with my home made broth.  I don't think Jim has tried any, but I do have some frozen for future use.  Thursday we decided to go for a drive.  This are is quite lovely with all the pine trees and the lake is huge! 376 miles of shoreline.  We didn't go all the way around but we did check out some of the other COE campgrounds and just enjoyed being out of the house.
Again, we had a lovely sunset


Yesterday the temperature was in the low 70's and Jim spent some time outdoors cleaning the windows on the truck and cleaning the trikes.  Apparently this wore him out so he took a nap...

For dinner I made a veggie stir-fry with onions, celery, garlic, yellow bell pepper, broccoli and button mushrooms served over white rice.  For me this is comfort food.
Friday's sunset was gorgeous!


This morning I was up at 0630....I think I may have adjusted to this time zone...time will tell
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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Made it to the Eastern Time Zone...maybe



The hour or so it took us to drive here yesterday was easy but we missed a turn and had to double back to Chattahoochee, Florida to get to Lake Seminole Eastbank Campground in Georgia.  Confused yet?  

Somewhere we crossed into the Eastern Time Zone...I think.  Our cell phones keep bouncing back and forth between the zones and we have to look at an actual clock to be sure of the time.  Also, our cell signal goes from 1x extended network to 3g with a couple bars.  Staying online is tricky to say the least!

This is a Corps of Engineer park so we don't have sewer hookups but it's a nice trade  off for our view




There's a dam over there we need to explore.  But not today as it's raining


Some of the trees are still showing their fall colors


Here we are in a crescent pull through with quite a big front yard.  This is site 24 and it's supposedly the best site here!  Gravel area where the table is, lantern hanger and fish cleaning station.  There's also a fire ring and a grill.  All this can be yours for only $77 a week if you are a senior!


The Canadian Geese are entertaining but can be a bit noisy


This heron seems to like  this spot  I can see him wandering around right now.  Our sunset last night was gorgeous!  I so glad we had yesterday afternoon and evening.  


Today we have rain...it's a good day to stay indoors and read a book.
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Monday, November 26, 2012

Pine Lake RV Park


Very chilly this Sunday morning at 0600!  Only 34 degrees out there.  They forecasted a freeze and Jim disconnected the water last night just in case.  But I didn't see any frost anywhere.  The sun is starting to top the trees so it should warm up soon.


Jim spent some time outside airing the tires in preparation for our move tomorrow

Watching the Viking/Bears football game while Jim reads.    Boo is sleeping on my lap which makes typing a bit awkward!  I've been simmering a pot of veggie broth using a recipe from the Happy Herbivore.  Sure smells good in here!  I'm going to make some corn chowder later using a recipe from The McDougall Quick and Easy Cookbook for our dinner and I'll use some of this broth.
 


What's Sunday without some football?  We had games on all afternoon but we really only paid close attention to the Saints lose to San Francisco.  That wasn't what we wanted to see!  During halftime I made the corn chowder and baked some French Rolls from Alexia (find them in the freezer section of your grocery store).  I liked the chowder but Jim said it was bland..
Monday morning and there is frost out there!  I took these pictures around 0700...not the best but folks it was to cold to linger in my jammies!!!
hood of the truck

grass out back

Today we head a wee bit north to  Eastbank, Georgia.  This COE park is on Lake Seminole.  I wonder how many others will be there?   
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Saturday, November 24, 2012

Skyfall and Thanksgiving

Wednesday we did our morning chores and eagerly awaited the arrival of Sonsearae and Chris.  Jim tidied up the truck, making sure the windshield was clean.  I knew we'd be driving after dark and I don't like a messy windshield!  When Sonsearae got off work they headed west and arrived in early afternoon.  It was so good to see them!

They brought a couple boxes of mail for us and a bag of goodies, mostly for me.  Jim got his coffee from Green Mountain and we got our Escapee mail.  Sonsearae keeps magazines and catalogs and usually mails them to me.  This time she delivered them in person.

We visited for awhile and then they left to check into the Holiday Inn Express on Panama City Beach.  About an hour later we followed after having some coffee and feeding Boo.  From here to there was 50 miles.  We met them at Pier Park at the Red Brick Pizza Cafe.  We've been there before and we all had pizza.  We ladies shared a veggie pizza with Daiya (vegan cheese).  To our surprise they picked up the tab. Jim had a margarita pizza and Chris had a pepperoni pizza which smelled and looked so goooood!

After dinner we headed to the Grand 16 to see Skyfall at the IMAX theater.  It's been awhile since we've been to a movie and I was shocked at the price!  Senior price for two was $25.50.  I'm not sure why the cost is so high and we'll have to save our money for the next time.

Skyfall staring Daniel Craig was excellent!  Sonsearae and Chris had already seen it and we all enjoyed the movie.  Jim and I were impressed with the humongous screen.  My eyes were tired by the end of the movie.  Nothing like having the screen right up in your face!

After saying our good-nights we headed home and by 2300 we were showered and in bed.  That's an hour past our normal bedtime.  LOL

Thursday I tried to sleep in but that didn't work.  After breakfast we dressed and headed back to the beach, a mere 44 miles, to visit with them in their room at Holiday Inn Express.  I wanted to see the view from their 14th floor room. The balcony overlooked the Gulf and it was breathtaking!  My pictures do not show the beautiful color of the water here.




There were some folks out in the water and enjoying the white sands.


There were some people enjoying the swimming pool too and I liked this area with the palm trees and tiki huts


Around noon we left the hotel and headed to Breakers for the Thanksgiving dinner buffet.  They had the usual turkey and all the fixins' plus prime rib and a roast pork, I think.  I was to busy eating to take note of all the food!  I had a couple bites of Jim's prime rib....mmmm good and I enjoyed some turkey and shrimp.  I don't think any of us stuffed ourselves but we weren't hungry when we left!

What I liked best was spending this day with Sonsearae and Chris and we didn't have to do dishes...Oh and they picked up the check...again!

After dinner three of us went out back to check out the beach.  Sonsearae wanted to see how cold the water was and I wanted to take pictures


Back deck of Breakers


Sonsearae and Jim watching the beach goers


Me and my beautiful daughter


pelicans and a jet...if you click on the pictures they will open on another page


Chis waiting for us on the deck....

The four of us headed home after dinner.  We stopped for fuel and they dilly dallied so we could all arrive at the same time! We watched some football, chatted and enjoyed the afternoon.  They headed out around 1600 to drive back to Tallahassee.  We ended the day with some popcorn.

I can't remember the last time we had a family Thanksgiving and this was our first one with Chris.  Makes the day more special when you share it with family

Friday we rested...we even tried to nap but Boo wouldn't let us.  He just kept nudging and whining...Dinner was enchilada bake from Happy Herbivore

So far today we're just chillin'.  I've done some laundry in an effort to keep it done because next week we'll be at a COE park.

I hope that wherever you were for Thanksgiving, you shared your meal with family or friends.


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Fountain, Florida

We left Eglin AFB Monday around 1010 after making a stop at the dump station.  Hated to leave but we had reservations for Pine Lake RV Park in Fountain, Florida.  Our drive was an easy one mostly on Highway 20.  Small towns, very little traffic...and scenic in spots.

We arrived just before noon and in no time at all we were all set up and sitting outside enjoying the sunshine and pleasant temperature.


There are over 100 sites here and all have electric meters...but there's no one here.  A lot of the rigs look like they live here.  It's a nice place in the middle of nowhere.  

Not sure why I can't sit here and get a blog typed!  I do compose in my head....

Tuesday we headed to Panama City Beach.  Our first stop was the Navy Base.  You see, my military ID card expires at the end of this month.  We had renewed them last year in Tampa but I turn 65 in December and apparently there is some sort of designation on the card to that effect....who knows.  Any way we tried to get one at Eglin but the problem with the fridge (circuit board) made us forget about the card.  So we thought we'd get er done Monday morning.  Alas they only open Tuesday and Thursday for ID cards...

So we stop at the Navy Base and we're given the news that they won't be ready to issue cards for awhile...so they told us to go to Tindall AFB.

By this time I'm hungry.  Although this campground says it's a 30 minute drive to Panama City it takes longer.  So we're close to the beach area and Jim finds a restaurant and Ethyl takes us there....but it's closed for the season. We find another and it's just down the road and it too is closed for the season!  Reminds me of our good friend Ed Dray!

Third times a charm and we had a lovely lunch overlooking the beach at Pineapple Willys.  After lunch we drove east a bit and found a park we could stop at and walk on the beach


Not to many people were out and about and all the bird tracks were fun to see

 


I think there were more birds than people!


After this relaxing interlude we drove over to the AFB and I finally got my new ID card....the picture is awful!  Be sure to ask to look at it...I look like a criminal...

From there we drove home only stopping at Winn Dixie for a few items.  I think we put over 100 miles on the truck
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