Thursday, December 29, 2011

Happy New Year!

Just taking a brief moment from all the festivities here at party central to wish each and everyone a very Happy New Year!  After the 1st I will share some info on a new project Billy is tank sensors.  Most of us know how unreliable most internal tank sensors can we decided to try out some external sensors.  So see ya after the New Year!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Zoo Trip

Visited the Tampa Zoo the other day and I have to say I have been to better Zoos, but I did find some interesting critters there.....
Would you believe this "baby" rhino is only 12 days old?
This little fellow is a Cloud Leopard...not sure how old she is, but she is a young that sweet face.
This really got my attention...I have seen many a Pink flamingo but never a grey and white.  I know that flamingos get their color from the coral they eat, but I assumed they would be all white...guess not.
This meercat seemed to love posing for the camera!
I fell in love with this beautiful white tiger.....and 32 years ago today I fell in love with the man of my dreams and truly the love of my Billy...."Happy Anniversary, Honey" and yes, you can still curl my toes.....LOL!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Yet...another project

Just what have we been up to this past week?  Well besides enjoying the company of family and friends, Billy decided to track down a leak.  Upon flushing the black tank, the interior of our basement has been getting a good soaking.  Fortunately, it is happening somewhere along the "flush" line so it is clean water.....unfortunately, Billy had to practically dismantle our basement to track the mysterious leak.  First thing was to remove a portion of the under siding, that took a grinder....eeek!  Upon pulling down the insulation, Billy found a dead mouse...(eek again!)... and a million acorns.  Yeah....acorns!  We are assuming those came from our summers up at the river property...where squirrels rule!  Next, he needed better access to the black tank so up came the floor of the basement. 
We had to remove this panel to be able to lift up the floor and expose the black tank.....
Here is is....Billy replaced the spray nozzle.  Not sure if that was part of the problem or not, but only want to do this once.  Where we found the actual leak....yes, WE...I crawled under the fiver too!  The flush line comes into the fiver and then splits to run up inside the wall where there is a "check valve" and then back down to the black tank.  Found out about the "check valve" by calling our RV Guru back in Indiana.  We had leakage where the line split and we suspected the "check valve" was no longer functioning causing the leak where the line splits.  Billy eliminated the check valve all together by placing a ball valve at the split which he can manually open and close as necessary.  Leak be gone...we are dry!  Now comes the task of putting everything back together....but that is for another day.
I'll leave you with this......
This, I believe is a Kingfisher.  He comes everyday and everyday I try to get close enough for a good photo....still not close enough...but I'll keep trying
Caught this guy taking a "fishing break" and scratching that itch!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Busy Times!

We have been so busy, since our arrival here in Tampa.  We spent the first couple of days at my Uncle's marina catching up with family and friends.  Then we moved over to Rice Creek RV park for a couple of avoid the "parking crowd" at my Uncle's annual Christmas Party.  This is a huge event that 100's of folks attend to eat, drink, and be merry!!
Here is our spot at the flamingo welcomes everyone to the "Goode Castle"!
 "The Boys" are seen here putting up the big top for the party!
 One of Santa's reindeer stopped by to read us all a bedtime story.....LOL!
Some of the local wildlife stopped by.....and as promised...
here is one of those beautiful sunsets at the marina.....

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Toilet Repairs

Sorry about the delay in posting on our new toilet install, but I needed a day of rest!  Here is a photo of our old toilet....
 What I like about this one is the china has a lip on the inside and it comes up high enough on the back to hide all the hoses.  We don't have it on here, but there is also a plastic piece that wraps around the bottom area and hides all that as well. 
Here is the new you can see the china bowl does not come up to hide the plumbing in the back and there is no "skirt" for the bottom.  It has a side flush.
 A closer look....Billy installed a shut off valve where the water line comes in.  That was a little exciting....he somehow manage to put the valve in backwards.  When the water was turned back on it was a regular fountain back there, I went running through the fiver screaming, "shut it off, shut it off!".  He turned off the water, but we had quite the mess to clean up.
 This toilet has no rim at the top.  I'm not sure about that yet...don't know if it will be a problem or not at this point.  
My biggest pet peeve is this....sticking up in plain sight.  
As you can see, the toilet seat that came with it has the molded plastic piece attached to it to hid the tubing.  I don't like anything about it.  The plastic is all very thin and flimsy.  I decided I would rather have the better "seat" so I opted to put our old "seat" onto the new toilet and live with seeing the tubing.
As to function....well so far, I do like the way it flushes.  The foot pedal doesn't take as much force in stepping down to flush.  The toilet also does a little better job of rinsing than the old one and this toilet is also a little taller....Which makes getting up and down from it a bit easier on the old knees....LOL!  I guess function wins out this time.  Our old toilet was a Thetford, the new is a Dometic.  In the four years we had the Thetford, we took it apart and replaced different parts on it at least 3 times.  I'm hoping the Dometic does better....time will tell.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Tampa Florida

We are currently residing in one of our favorite rv uncle's marina here in Tampa Florida......SWEET!  I have not had my camera out yet, but I will and wait till you see the gorgeous sunsets we have here almost every night.  
On a more serious note.....our toilet, for the 4th time I think, stopped working.  This time the foot petal game way.  Hard to tell where the break is without taking everything apart.  Billy swore the next time the toilet had "issues" it was headed to the trash heap.  So, yesterday at 4pm we were out buying a new toilet.  That is where things get a little dicey.  At this point, I'm not calling out brand names.....but I think the replacement toilet is not nearly as nice or well built as the one we are throwing out.  I don't like the way it looks and I'm not sold on the way it operates.  Billy overruled my objections, which made for an unhappy household last evening.  Billy will install the new toilet today....we have been using the marina's facilities in the interim.  I'll have a full report next blog with photos.  I have resigned myself to the fact that even "this toilet" is better than no toilet!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Mt Dora Florida

Yes, we made it to Mount Dora last Tuesday.  We are staying at the Woods-n-Water Rv Park.....well sort of.....we are actually staying on the owner of the park's property.  He has two sites available for short term stays.  It is very nice here, but the set up is a little tricky.  We had some tight turns and a couple of low branches to get by and then we found that the fifty amp box was at the front of the site instead of the back.  Our cord would not we just used the 30 amp which is at the back of the site.  We also had water and sewer.  The actual park is located right next door which their daughter manages.  There are very few sites available to rent...most of the park is full time residences. sure and call ahead if you think you might want to check this place out.  The folks here are super nice and will make every effort to accommodate your needs.
 Here we are tucked back against the trees with the lake to the right.  We did get our direct tv up and running without a problem and our verizon card had 4g service available.  There is no cable or internet service available through the park.
 The "Cranes" also came by to welcome us.....LOL!

Yesterday we took an evening stroll through downtown Mt Dora.  If you have never been to this quaint little town, I encourage you to put it on your list.....especially at Christmas time.  They go all out lighting up the town is beautiful......carriage shops and nice restaurants....plenty of unique little shops to visit too!  I'm sorry I didn't bring my camera last night.  
Today we are heading over to Tampa.....looking forward to seeing more family and friends. 

Monday, November 28, 2011

Jacksonville Florida

Yes, we made it.  We are at another Passport America Park called Pecan Park RV Resort.  It is a nice park, close to shopping and the Jacksonville Zoo.  It is also close to the there are a couple of times during the day when the planes are a bit loud, but nothing too bad.  You are also right next to a flea market.....don't waste your time there...yuck!
Here is our site....all concrete and nice spacing between neighbors, plus all are pull throughs.  Our only problem is the concrete table and benches.  Although nice to have....really not enough room...we are going to need to be very careful when we pull out.
Ok, enough about the site on to the Zoo!  I loved it!  Lots of green space....clean and well maintained.  It definitely caters more to young families then some.  Train rides, carousel, and large playground area.  But all but the train ride is contained in one loop...the rest is all dedicated to the animals and some beautiful garden areas.  
Speaking of flowers.....didn't pay attention to what these were called, but they are stunning!
 Here is a catfish lounging around on a bed of fallen fall leaves....yes, he is underwater!
 Here is another underwater guest!
 A Florida Panther....catching some zzzzzz's!  Not the best photo as I had to shoot through glass....which does add a bit of distortion and fuzz.
 I think this is a Jaguar......very cool!
This guy is a black leopard, again the photo is taken through glass so not the best.  What I wish you could see from the photo, is that the "leopard spots" are still there...very faint, but still there.
I spent the entire day at the zoo....I was so tired last night that I was in bed before 8pm.  Today I gave the furballs a bath and we made plans to head for Mount Dora, Florida tomorrow.  One of my brothers lives close by and there is a really quaint downtown shopping area that I enjoy.

Friday, November 25, 2011

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving yesterday.  We certainly did!  Spent the day with my cousins at their beautiful home on St Simons Island.....very nice!
Today we are just kicking back here at the black Friday crowds for us.  I promised some photos of our site here at the RV ya go
 We are lucky right now....don't have anyone next to us on our door side.  
The photo above shows just how close your neighbor can be here.  The only reason we are staying here is convenience and it is a Passport America park.  Its an "ok" park for a few nights. 
We will be leaving here tomorrow (Saturday) and heading to Jacksonville Florida for a few least that is the plan for today....LOL!  My cousin Linda mentioned yesterday that the Zoo in Jacksonville was very nice.  I checked it out and decided it might be worth a visit! 

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Tybee Island

We enjoyed a simply lovely day on the Tybee Island beach on Sunday.  The weather could not have been more perfect
The sun sparkled and danced across the water.....
We saw quite a few surfers out on the water....all in wetsuits cause that water is mighty chilly!
 I loved watching the seagulls....I think these guys were having a meeting.....wonder what about??
 Little Sandpiper picking his way through the surf.  These guys are really fast and so much fun to watch as they move in and out of the surf
 A couple of Seagulls out for a Sunday stroll......
 Just never know who or WHAT you might find lurking on the!
After our walk, we had a great dinner at a little seaside restaurant.  I ate 2 whole pounds of fresh was sooo good!  
Monday morning was a travel day......short one...we headed south down to Brunswick where we will be spending our Thanksgiving on St Simon Island.  Found a Passport America park called Golden Isle.  I'll have some photos of our site for next time.  Today, I'll leave you with one last photo.  A visitor came by Monday morning as we were preparing to leave.....
 Cute little Eastern Bluebird.....came by to say "goodbye"!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Bonaventure Cemetery

If you are a regular follower of my blog, then many of you will not be surprised by our destination yesterday.....
 It is not the oldest cemetery in Savannah, but it is one of the most both the living and the dead.  You can read more of its history here.  
Bonaventure Cemetery is hauntingly, beautiful.  Full of history....and secrets...yet to be discovered....come see for yourself....
 "Hauntingly, Beautiful" bares repeating.  You are surrounded by large moss laden oaks everywhere you turn.  Its the cemetery's envelopes you, keeping you close within it's sheltering arms.  
 Does she ponder what lies ahead or think of the life she left behind....
 What does she she silently waits.....
 Angels abound here......guiding the way....
 Beautiful and elaborate carvings.......
 Each unique and waiting to tell a release its secrets....
 Do you see what I see...I doubt it was the artist intent, but it does make you smile.  A sweet little doggie face, greets all who pass by.....
And this is "Gracie" one of Bonaventures more famous inhabitants.  A sweet child of six, who left this world to soon....
 It was a beautiful day...quiet and peaceful....a day of reflection...a day well spent. 

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Savannah Impressions

We made out trip to Savannah without any problems...I think it was around 2pm when we checked into the Hardeeville RV Park.  Hardeeville is actually in South Carolina, but it is only 10 miles from downtown Savannah and you can't beat the price.  They currently are running a special for Passport America can have that special rate ($21 for 50 amp) for as many days as you like.  I checked several of the Savannah rv parks and they were all in the high 40s and 50s.  The park is very nice has internet and cable, but that is about it.  Here is a photo of our site....
 As you can see, nice level site, gravel and nice patch of grass for the furballs.
Yesterday we headed for downtown Savannah our first stop being the visitors center.  The folks there were very helpful.  We found we could leave our truck parked in their parking area (first hour free, $1 an hour after that) and jump on the "blue dot" bus for free to travel around the city.  We caught the bus and headed for our first stop....Lafayette Square....
 Beautiful!  We decided to just walk from there to some of the other "squares"....exploring the historical downtown.  It is a mix of beauty and the not so beautiful as you often find in downtown areas.  We enjoyed our walk, but watch out for the is constant and everyone seems to be in a hurry!  
This is known as "The Pink House" restaurant and tavern.  Billy and I decided to have lunch here.  It was delicious and the atmosphere was wonderfully romantic and peaceful.  A welcome break form all the hustle and bustle of the outside traffic.  After lunch we walked down to the riverfront.....I didn't really enjoy that much....kinda of dirty....steep stairs....and uneven cobblestone streets that were very hard to walk on, but still I'm glad we saw it.  We headed back to the truck and then back to Hardeeville and two furballs who were very glad to see us especially since it was an hour past their dinner time....LOL!  Today we will venture out on another that may surprise some of you!