Thursday, November 28, 2013

Turkey Flavored Peanuts?

Okay, inquiring minds want to know. Is there any such thing as turkey flavored peanuts? Since it's Thanksgiving, Gary bought some peanuts to feed the squirrels here at our campsite, and he SWEARS they are turkey flavored. Is he pulling my hitch, or what? I really do think he's kidding, but I just HAVE to find out for sure. Anyway, there was one squirrel hanging out here while Gary made himself breakfast. Gary gave him a couple of the "special" peanuts, and moments later, there were several more squirrels begging for their Thanksgiving handout. I think they all got their share, and everybody seemed pretty happy. Between them, they ate a half pound of peanuts. I had a blast watching them. As you all know, squirrels are my favorite thing. But, the question remains.....turkey flavored peanuts, or just regular peanuts? Somebody HELP me!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

My Fifth Thanksgiving At Tomoka State Park

Well, here we are once again at Tomoka State Park. This is my fifth Thanksgiving in a row here. Gary camped here twice before he got me, so this is his seventh year in a row. As always, we're in campsite #10. Gary kind of angled me in this time, so my door side is more visible from the road. I'm not sure why he did that, but it works for me. We arrived here around 10AM this morning, but we couldn't get into our campsite yet. It was rented last night, and was still occupied when we arrived. So, we drove through the park to kill some time, making frequent stops for photos along the way. We visited the camp store, various picnic areas, and most importantly, we stopped to see the vintage Chief Tomokie art sculpture. That is just the coolest thing, and a must see for anyone visiting the park. It's a shame that it was vandalized years ago, and funds aren't available to fix it. Nevertheless, it's still a very cool "old Florida" kind of thing. It was 12:30 before we could get into our campsite. Gary got me settled in, and then he left to do some sightseeing around town. He was gone for about three hours, came back and cooked some dinner, and now he's over taking a shower. I have no idea what Gary is doing tomorrow, but I plan to sleep as much as I can. I missed my nap today, and I get grouchy when I don't get enough sleep. And Gary will be the first to tell you that there's nothing worse than a grouchy Toaster! Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Meet Jacqueline (Jackie) & Caroline

I wasn't expecting to be blogging until we go on our next round of camping this coming week. But there has been some excitement around here that I just have to tell you about. Here's the scoop. Gary came across a pair of 13ft. 1961 Serro Scottys, got a good deal on them, and brought them home. Looking back, if anybody thought that I was in bad shape when I arrived here at the Green Acres Garage, well I've got to say that these two trailers make me look like I was in mint condition. Sure, I had my issues, but these two are downright pathetic. Like a lot of trailer fanatics seem to do, Gary tends to look right past the ugliness, and sees some sort of beauty and potential within. He did it with me, and he's done it again with these two. I'll have to admit that they are kind of cute, at least as far as their size goes. They are TINY compared to me, and I'm pretty small. Gary brought "Jackie" home on one day, and "Caroline" the next. He was thinking of names for them on the way home, and came up with Jackie and Caroline in honor of the Kennedy girls. Both trailers were born during President Kennedy's short time in office, and since this year is the 50th anniversary of JFK's death, the names just seem to fit. I have no idea what Gary plans to do with them, but at least they have a nice home here. I went outside to meet the girls. They don't talk like I do, and that's probably a good thing. Not many of us trailers can actually speak, and as you all know, I talk as much as a dozen trailers would. I don't think poor Gary could stand it if more than one of us talked. Anyway, time will tell what becomes of Jackie and Caroline. Gary still has my brother Scotty in the garage, waiting patiently for a frame-up rebuild. And lately he's been considering building a small custom trailer on my brother Chip's old frame. All of that, plus literally a hundred other projects to do, and it appears that Jackie and Caroline have a long time to wait to get some of Gary's attention. We'll see what happens.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Lake Griffin: We're Outta Here!

Tuesday morning had arrived, and it was time to head home from our five night stay at Lake Griffin State Park. Gary hitched me up to "Dodge", and off we went. As I had mentioned before, Lake Griffin isn't Gary's favorite park to camp at, but it's conveniently located to some of the places that he likes to go to. As long as we're camping, I'm not picky about where we're at. Even though the park doesn't offer a lot to see and do, our campsite (#5) is the best in the park. Actually, it's nicer than a lot of places we camp at. Gary and I like our seclusion, and campsite #5 offers plenty of that. On three sides, we can't see anyone at all. On the remaining side, there is a limited view of campsite #4 and #3, but there's still a lot of foliage blocking the view. No other campsite in the park is that secluded, so if you're like us and that's the type of campsite you like, we HIGHLY recommend it. Gary took one last photo as we were heading out of the campground, and a couple of hours later, we were back in St. Augustine, and I was safe and dry in my garage. Marathon camping is coming soon, so I'll have a LOT to tell you about. If anything happens before then, I'll let you know. Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Hot And Muggy In Lake Griffin

I apologize for not posting since the middle of this past week. The weather hasn't been too great here at Lake Griffin, and I've been sleeping a lot. We've been here since Thursday. It's now Sunday morning. This is one of the few times since our arrival that there's been a few rays of sunshine peeking through the clouds. Unlike our last day at Paynes Prairie when the temperatures hovered around 59 degrees, it's been in the high 70's and lower 80's here. It's been moderately hot and highly muggy. The temperature doesn't bother me, of course, but Gary is constantly complaining when the weather isn't to his liking. But, regardless of the temperatures or rain, Gary has done everything he set out to do here. We arrived here late on Thursday, so other than setting up camp and cooking dinner, nothing got accomplished. Friday was a different story. By 10AM, it was drizzling rain. Gary went to two different antique malls in nearby Leesburg. Shortly after, he got a call from his friend Sandy. I call her Aunt Sandy. As you may recall from an earlier post, Sandy was kind enough to take a day off work to drive Gary to and from his eye surgery last month. She was visiting her Dad a few miles south of the park, and while her Dad was taking his afternoon nap, she stopped by for a visit. The light occasional drizzle didn't stop Gary and Sandy from taking pictures of each other with me. After all, it's an unwritten rule that anyone who comes to visit with me, HAS to be photographed with me. On Saturday morning, the rain had finally stopped, at least for awhile. The main reason for our stay at Lake Griffin was the proximity of the park to the enormous Renninger's Antique Extravaganza in nearby Mt. Dora. The break in the weather gave Gary his chance to take in the show. Luckily, the rain held off just long enough for Gary to see it all. By the time he hit the highway to return to the park, the rain was at it's heaviest since our arrival, and it continued on for well into the night. Right now, Gary is taking a shower, so I thought I'd catch you up on what's been going on around here. His plan for today is to visit a couple of big antique malls just west of here. I'm sure he will be gone all afternoon. As for me, I'll be watching some football on TV, and taking a good long nap. That's what Sundays are all about.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

The Sun Sets On Paynes Prairie

Much to my surprise, Gary has been a really good boy on this trip. He has followed his doctor's orders to take it easy and rest, and I haven't had to nag him to do so. Other than a quick trip to the big nearby antique mall just after our arrival on Monday, he has spent the rest of the time right here at our campsite. He has slept in late each morning, and even had a nap or two during the day. That's not how he usually does things, but I'm happy that he spent lots of time here with me. He spent most of Tuesday listening to music and doing some writing while lounging outside in a camp chair. Today (Wednesday), he sat outside and read for a few hours. He finally decided to go for a little walk just before sunset. On the trail over to the waterfront, he spotted several deer. One stood still long enough for him to take a photo. Once he got over to the picnic area by the waterfront, there were a bunch of squirrels looking around for dinner. Gary took some pictures of one of them that didn't run off. As you can see in the photos, he was a fat little guy. The sun was getting lower in the sky as Gary headed back towards the campground. He stopped in three different spots along the way to take the pictures I've included. It was a pretty sunset on an unusually cool November Florida day, and the last sunset we will see here on this visit to this beautiful park. Tomorrow morning, we pack up and head south to Lake Griffin State Park. It's not as pretty there as it is here, but it's conveniently located. Gary is planning to go to a big antique show in the area over the weekend. We'll be back here at Paynes Prairie in about three weeks, and like always, I am looking forward to it. We ALWAYS have a great time here. I'll check in from our next stop. Goodnight!

Monday, November 11, 2013

Return To Paynes Prairie

Once again, my buddy "Dodge" successfully delivered Gary and I to our favorite inland Florida State Park, Paynes Prairie Preserve. We love it here, and we're glad to be back for our fourth visit this year. Today was absolutely beautiful. Sunshine, blue skies, and temperatures near 80 degrees, but low humidity and a hint of coolness in the air. Our day began around 1:30AM. Gary had slept for awhile, but was eager to hit the road. He always likes to leave our house in the middle of the night. We headed down I-95, and stopped at a rest stop to get some more sleep. Usually at interstate rest stops, we end up next to noisy 18-wheelers. Not so this time. There was a HUGE motorhome next to us on one side, as you can see in the first two pics, and a U-Haul truck on the other side. The U-Haul left before daylight. It was nice and quiet, and we slept pretty well. We left the rest stop around 8AM, and headed to Paynes Prairie. It's only about 80 miles from home, so it was a fairly short ride. After checking in at the ranger station, we headed back to campsite #18 in the Puc Puggy Campground. We stayed in this campsite once before, and REALLY liked it. We've stayed in three different campsites here, and we like them all. Look at my face. Can you tell that you are looking at one majorly happy camper? Gary has explored the park here in the past, so I don't think he will be doing that this time. He's still healing from his eyelid surgery, and I won't let him do much, even if he wants to. I think he's going to be content to just hang out with me and enjoy the peace and quiet. We'll be here for three days and nights, and we plan to savor every minute of it.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Gary's Progress, And My New Pal, "Nutkin"

Hey there! It's been about a week since I last checked in, so I thought I'd let you all know how things are going. I would have posted sooner, but I've been busy watching over Gary. As you know, he had eyelid surgery last week. The first picture I posted today was taken at his surgeon's office on Tuesday, which was eight days after the surgery. Although his wounds look kind of scary, he has made a lot of progress. His surgeon said that he is ahead of schedule with his healing. Gary gives me a lot of credit for how well he is doing. He's an active guy, and I've had to constantly nag him to keep him from doing too much. Apparently, my nagging has paid off. This morning, Gary brought out a shopping bag to me, and inside the bag was a little stuffed squirrel. He knows, as do all of my blog readers, how much I love squirrels, and wanted to reward me for taking care of him with this cool little gift. I have named my new pet "Nutkin". Nutkin and my dog Serra have hit it off, so that's good. I think they're kind of cute together. I found out that Gary had bought Nutkin for me when we were camping at Magnolia Springs in Georgia last month, but kept him a secret until now. That Gary can be pretty sneaky sometimes. While he was buying Nutkin for me at the Magnolia Springs gift shop, he also bought the t-shirt in the bottom picture for himself. The writing on the shirt pretty much says it all. In addition to receiving good news from the surgeon about how well he was healing, Gary also was "cleared" to go camping this coming week. We are both really excited to get away from home again, and do some relaxing in the great outdoors. And I'll be sure to introduce Nutkin to the REAL squirrels in the campground. I can't wait! If not before, I'll check in when we reach our destination. Have a GREAT day!