Saturday, October 15, 2016

Busy Week in Atlanta

After leaving Wanee, we headed north for Atlanta where we would begin our time in Atlanta with a weekend of babysitting Avery and Hannah while Crystal and Grant went to the Tennessee vs. Texas A&M game in College Station, Texas.

We began Friday morning, making muffins.  I showed them how to lick the bowl!  Such fun being a grandma!  :)

Our next event of the day was a trip to Costco!  We started with a lunch that cost less than $5 for all of us!

We from past experiences that a successful trip to Costco with two little girls begins with lunch and ends with the promise of ice cream.  We also tried to get our grocery items fairly quickly!  Chuck took Hannah and Avery around the store hugging big bears while I got our groceries.

The girls were great so they got their reward of ice cream after we were finished.

On Saturday morning, I asked them if they wanted to make chocolate chip pancakes and this was their response:

And this was our creation:

We stayed around the house most of the day playing and then making cupcakes.

And then late Saturday afternoon, I took Avery and Hannah to a birthday party for one of their friends.

This is who I came back with.  :)

We had another busy day on Sunday of church and more playing and then mommy and daddy returned home Sunday afternoon after a very fun weekend in College Station.  We all went to dinner at a nearby Mexican restaurant and then Pa and MiMa went back home to Stone Mountain and rested.

On Tuesday evening, we went over to the Van Wyngardens and had a great time playing with Bell, Emmaline and Ruby.  The girls entertained us with showing us what they have learned in ballet, spinning around in circles and then watching them try to keep standing up, and then playing charades.  We were having so much fun playing charades, I forgot to take pictures!  Rrrrrr.  After the girls went to bed, we played a game of Quirkle with Cory and Tafanie.

Thursday was Avery's big day:  her 4th birthday!  She wanted to celebrate by going to Waffle House!  The manager was so nice and made it a very special birthday dinner for Avery.  Not only did she and Avery get Waffle House hats, Avery got a Waffle House pin!

The manager put money in the jukebox and let Avery pick out the songs.  The only ones she knew to pick were Frozen and Happy Birthday.  :)

Then the manager took Avery behind the counter so Avery could help her get her milk.

We had a delicious supper with all the girls having waffles and the guys having sandwiches.

And then the manager had one more surprise for Avery:  two waffles with birthday candles that she could take home and have for breakfast the next morning.

The celebrations continued after we got back to their house with opening presents that included a sleeping bag, a bike and a little sleeveless jacket that I crocheted for her.

Doesn't go very well with pink striped PJs.  :)
On Friday evening, everyone came over to the camper for a cookout of hot dogs and s'mores.  Cory, Emmaline, and Ruby really like our recliners!  :)

Avery had a small birthday party on Saturday morning that her cousins and a couple of friends came to.  They played,

Bell and Emmaline
painted gourds and bowled with pumpkins,

had snacks,

The blond and blue-eyed cousins:
Hannah and Emmaline
and then enjoyed birthday cupcakes.

Bell and Ruby pretended they were unicorns.

And Pa got them to be still for just a few minutes for a couple of pictures.

Bell took this selfie of us.

And then all the girls rode back in the VW van back to their house.  Avery and Hannah were spending Saturday night with the VW's while Crystal and Grant went to a wedding.

That's a load of precious girls!  
I think Avery had a couple of very nice days of birthday celebrations!  And we had fun too!

A New Campground and A Special Celebration

We left Atlanta early Sunday morning and noticed that the leaves were really starting to change -- particularly up on Monteagle Mountain.  It reminded us of our fun leaf-peeping travels with Ken and Bonnie last year from Canada all the way down to Florida.

We had decided to spend some extra time in Nashville in the fall this year but trying to get a campsite in Nashville for an extended period of time is becoming increasingly difficult.  We normally stay at Jellystone but they close about 75% of that campground down October 1st because of the Dancing Lights exhibit and we could not get monthly sites at either KOA or Two Rivers.  We had heard of a new campground being built on Percy Priest Lake and had visited it in the summer while it was still under construction.  When I called them a couple of weeks ago, they had one monthly site left and we took it.  

Our site is nothing special as far as views, but it is completely paved and level.  

First time Chuck has had to parallel park into a site.  Of course, he had no problem at all.

I walked around the campground after we got set up.  Part of the campground is still under construction as they are putting in more sites and are adding a pool, but most of the sites are very nice...

...and have nice views...

...even at night under a full moon.

On Monday evening, we took my mom out to dinner to celebrate her 80th birthday and had a very nice meal at Cheddars.  Because she mentioned she would like to see where we were camped, we came back to the motorhome and had a very nice evening chatting and visiting at the motorhome.  We had a beautiful sunset too.  

My mom sure doesn't look like she just turned 80!  Wouldn't you agree?  :)

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Gutters and Golf

We left Benton, Arkansas, around 7:30 am on Friday, September 22nd, and began heading east toward Ashburn, Georgia, where we planned to spend about 10 days playing free golf!  Woohoo!

The traffic was not too bad as we headed around Little Rock and we saw a beautiful sunrise as we crossed the Arkansas River.

We decided to only drive as far as Tunica, Mississippi, and stay at the Hollywood Casino RV Park because we knew that the park was paved and level and a good place to install the RV gutters on the motorhome that Chuck has been wanting to put on for a long time.

After getting checked into our site and getting plugged in, we covered up with sunscreen and got our wide brim hats and began working on installing the gutters on the motorhome.  It was a very sunny and hot day to do the job, but we drank plenty of water and Gatorade and within about 3 1/2 hours we were done!  Now, the water from the air conditioners drains into the gutters and off the back of the motorhome rather than on top of the slide-out awning toppers.  Hopefully, this will extend the life of those awning toppers.

And, because we got all the hard work done on Friday, we were able to enjoy watching our UT Vols play the Florida Gators on Saturday.  It was a nail-biter (as it always is when watching Tennessee football) but Tennessee pulled ahead in the second half and broke Florida's 11 year win streak with a 38-28 win over those Gators.  We were SO EXCITED!!!!

On Sunday, we left Tunica around 8 am and began heading on I-22 across northern Mississippi and northern Alabama.  We had not traveled this area previously and were surprised by all the hills in the northern part of both states.

Hickory Flat, Mississppi
Guin, Alabama
We took a turn south once we reached I-65 and continued heading south until we reached Montgomery, Alabama, where we stayed overnight at The Woods RV Park in Montgomery.  Chuck, the Driving Man, could have kept on driving but I wanted to stop because I knew we would not arrive at Ashburn until right at dusk and that we would be driving on unfamiliar roads.

On Monday morning, we left around 8 am heading east on I-85 before turning south on Hwy 80 and Hwy 280 to Ashburn, Georgia.  Except for the stop-n-go traffic through Columbus, Georgia, most of the roads were very good four lane highway -- actually better than a lot of interstates we have traveled on.

We drove by lots of pecan tree groves that had old, big pecan trees,

medium-size pecan trees,

and little baby pecan trees.

Of course, we drove by lots of cotton fields and pine tree forests too.  

We arrived at Wanee Lake Golf and RV Resort around noon.  After having a quick lunch, Chuck washed the outside of the motorhome while I worked on cleaning the inside of the motorhome.  The sites are o.k. and some have some leveling issues (like the site we are on) but we had beautiful sunrises nearly every morning...

...and all the free golf we wanted to play so long as we walked the course.  The fairways and greens have improved dramatically since we were here in May because the new owner has really been working on fixing them up.  It is a perfect place for beginners like us to play golf.  We played nearly every day of the ten days we have been here at Wanee and have walked about 7 to 8 miles every day too!  Walking is a lot more fun when you're playing golf along the way!  :)

The weather was sunny and in the upper 80's every day.  We would play nine holes in the morning, come in, eat lunch, rest for a couple of hours, and then go back out and play another nine holes in the evening.  We lost a lot of balls but we found a lot of balls too!  I found this cute little squirrel under a tree when I was looking for one of our balls.

Hope he didn't mistake my golf ball for a nut!  :)
We talked with the new owner, Tommy, and he told us that his dad managed the course when he was a kid.  Back then (in the early '80s), it was a private club with several hundred members.  There were golf cart sheds housing all the members' golf carts where the RV park is now.  Of course, back then, there were a couple of factories in town and a lot more employment than the sole remaining peanut factory in Ashburn now.  

On Saturday afternoon, we watched another nail-biter football game as the Tennessee Vols played the Georgia Bulldogs.  And in case you haven't heard, our Tennessee Vols came back and won the game with a Hail-Mary pass to the endzone at the end of the game!  I was screaming so loud that I probably scared some other squirrels out of their trees!  :)

On Sunday afternoon, we had to cut our game short because of a thunderstorm that rolled in.  It was the only rain we experienced the entire time but it was a doozy.  It rained hard and for a couple of hours.  The next morning, the cut grass on the fairways looked like sand rolls on the beach.  

It's been a very nice 10 days.  I don't know that we improved our golf game much but we had a lot of fun playing!