Thursday, March 30, 2017

CEDAR KEY


March 28th - 31st, 2017


Here we are! Currently we are in Cedar Key on Florida's west coast. It's just a short 2 hour trip from the house. Tim and I were here three or four years ago with our Airstream group. Back then we stayed at Sunset Isle RV Park. During that trip we discovered a little Tiki Bar walking distance right down the road. The Tiki Bar is attached to a little motel of five rooms - The Low-Key Hideaway. They also have three campsites on property! Right by the Tiki Bar!!! So here we are ... it's taken me this long to get a reservation.




Tim and I are loving it here! Our site has its own deck on the water and we have nothing to do but wait for the Tiki Bar to open at 2PM. We don't need to go into town ... been there done that a few years ago. Not into the tourist thing here. No group of people to socialize with. We didn't bring the kayaks or my paddle board. We didn't bring our bikes. We can borrow some from the motel if needed. We didn't bring any fishing poles. We did however bring Tim's guitar and one of my ukuleles. We brought all our food. We haven't even unhooked the truck from the Airstream. 


They are green here at the Low-Key Hideaway. The Tiki Bar wall was built with recycled wood from a house that was being renovated in Cedar Key and the doors you see on the outside of the tiki bar wall were recycled off of Craigslist. The glass walls of the tiki bar are mortared together with wine, beer and liquor bottles sold at the tiki bar itself.



Another great thing about the Low-Key Hideaway besides the Tiki Bar is that dogs are allowed (no kids though). Your dog can go anywhere on property. They can go out on the dock. In the Tiki Bar. Anywhere. Both Jett and Mattie have made themselves at home here. It's been the perfect hassle free get away for us. 




Our next trip is not scheduled until June but who knows ... we can take off anytime without notice now! 


98th TCT WINTER CONVENTION



February 23rd - 26th, 2017

Within a few weeks of Tim's retirement we were off on a trip. Below is hopefully a better link to Tim's retirement video: 


We packed all our stuff, loaded up the girls and off to Brooksville, Florida for our annual trip to the Tin Can Tourist Winter Convention. 


Jett and Mattie had a blast. With all the attendees at this event they met many new people and other dogs as well. Being out in the woods gave them many opportunities to explore too. 


There were over 100 rigs in attendance. Anything from Trotwoods, to Scoties to the usual vintage Airstreams. Our goal is to have our 1948 Airstream Liner restored for the 100th TCT Winter Convention. With the open house of the vintage trailers, nightly entertainment, a tour of a private car collection, a potluck dinner, a few catered dinners and all the socializing the time flew. 


Every year we say 'This was the best one yet!' And the same held true for this year ...



I along with a few others were interviewed on the VAP. The VAP is the Vintage Airstream Podcast. This is an audio link only:


This year begins the fundraising for the 100th Convention that takes place in two years. As part of the fundraising they held a raffle. One item that Tim got tickets for was for a sword. This sword has history to it and belongs to our friends who are Sword Swallowers & Fire Breathers! Well of course Tim won the sword and had to retrieve it ... out of the Sword Swallower! 


We really did have a great time and will take off soon for a short little get away. 


Wednesday, March 29, 2017

THE LONG AWAITED BIG NEWS ...




February 9th, 2017

Yup! He did it. TIM RETIRED!!! Tim's last day of work at Kissimmee Fire Department has come and gone. I know this might be old news for some of you but I wanted to get this out to those who don't know. 


After dedicating thirty-six years of his career to the fire service, thirty-one of those at City of Kissimmee, he has finally retired. He couldn't go out quietly as his last shift gave him three structure fires, chased smoke in the childrens ward at the hospital and had numerous other medical calls. 


Tim wanted no fanfare on his departure. Just a simple, no effort meal of Nathan's hot dogs and baked beans from Fat Boys for his last shift meal. Well since his last shift was so chaotic he never made it to his own party! So he had no choice but to have a big gathering outside of work after his official retirement.



Thanks so much to everyone who put it together. Tim really appreciated everything that was done for him. He wants to thank all those who helped (you know who you are), all who attended and thanks for all the gifts. No words can describe the gratitude felt. ALL very much appreciated!!!


Tim (my hero) now begins the next chapter of his life ... 


A little video:


Friday, December 30, 2016

WHATS ONE MORE?!


The last half of 2016 has been a tough one. Just when we think we can recover from one incident something else happens. With all our drama we had to cancel all of our planned travels for what remained of 2016. We have only been out twice since our last outing in May. These two short trips have just been in the last few weeks and within an hour of the house. This has been the longest period of idle time for the Airstream since we owned it. Here is the short list of what has transpired:

       Christmas at Lake Louisa

One week after our return from our month long trip in May Tim's mom fell braking her pubis ramus in 2 places. Basically she broke her butt bones/pelvis in two places. Along with some other injuries from the fall she spent a week in the hospital. Then moved to a nursing home. Right before her move to an assisted living community ... she fell again. This time braking her hand. By the first week of August we successfully moved her to assisted living community nearby. Anyone who has gone through this with an elderly parent understands all that is involved in this process. She just turned 90! And is having a blast where she is currently residing.

                        José 
On top of that ...

A large oak tree on the bike trail that we live on fell into our yard almost hitting me and José. So glad Jett wasn't out there at the time. José is Tim's moms chihuahua ... we are fostering him for her until she can take care of him again. José is 14 years old ... was un-handled and unsocialized. Not a good mix with a 14 month old lab. With some patience and love we have brought José to a point that we can all manage to mingle in peace most of the time. Tim and I had planned on getting another puppy this past summer ... a yellow male this time and we would name him Dash. We decided to put that off for at least a year and I even said 'Who knows maybe a dog will find us.' 


And on top of that ...

The AC went out at the house in the heat of our Florida summer. My work has been BUSY!!! Hot water heater went on the fritz. Lawnmower broke. No power for 16 hours during Hurricane Matthew. House flooded ... Okay just one room and the garage. Just a little leak from a copper pipe in the FOUNDATION. No need to even do an insurance claim. The repair cost of less than $500 wouldn't meet our $500 deductible. Just as Tim was in the process of re-plumbing the entire house a second leak reared its ugly head. This time taking out the flooring and some drywall in FIVE rooms. Time to make a claim! We had no running water in the house now. It took three days to get the master bath back up and running. With our busy schedules it then took a few more weeks to get the rest of the house re-plumbed. It took six weeks to hear anything back from our insurance company! After much searching for new flooring we were finally able to order our new flooring which just arrived two weeks ago. Tim and I will begin the process of laying the new floors after the Holidays and the first of the year. At this point I'm just grateful that I have a roof over my head. So many other tragedies have happened to others in this world ... fires, earthquakes & entire towns flooded. A little water in the house is nothing to complain about. Just pick-up the pieces, figure out how to put them back together, be grateful for what I have and move on!



Back to the 'WHATS ONE MORE?!' ...

What seems like ages ago I was at the dog park just a few days before Hurricane Matthew hit Florida. I was inside the big dog park fence with Jett and half a dozen other large dogs and their owners when a guy walked up to the gate and said 'I just found this dog down the road by a trailer park. She almost got hit by a car. I put her over in the little dog fence.' Before we all knew it the guy was gone and we all decided to go check this dog out. There stood what looked to be a black lab mix and what a cutie! (Love at first sight!)

          Jett    and    Mattie

We all decided to just leave her hoping her owners would come find her there since she was from nearby. By this time the Park Ranger had found out and came over. He told me that if we were to leave her, his protocol would be to call the pound. I called Tim to tell him my situation. He was not the most receptive. I then put this sweet dog in my car with Jett. Drove around for a bit looking for a 'trailer park' nearby. Uh ... all the houses nearby are on the lakes and no trailer park to be seen! I figured I would find her worried parents by days end or at least within a few days.



Luckily for this sweet girl, when I got home, she jumped out of my car, ran to Tim wagging her tail and licked him! Long story short after a chip scan that showed no chip, social media postings, many fliers all over town we now have ONE MORE dog in the house. We've gone form zero to three in a flash! We named her Mattie after Hurricane Matthew and guess she was about a year old. Mattie didn't know what a toy or a ball was and didn't even know a sit command. She was also in HEAT when I rescued her. And I recall the guy who dropped her had a leash in his hand and had probably really dumped her. Why did he put her in the fence where no one was? How do you just happen to have a leash to rescue a dog?


          Mattie

Mattie has come a long way. Everyday we continue to watch her evolve coming out of her shell and becoming herself. She plays with toys now. Has a blast playing tug of war with Jett. I love it when they get a big chase going in the back yard ... Mattie being about 20 pounds lighter/smaller than Jett is a bit faster! Jett and Mattie are the complete opposites. The girls get along great and I now realize one would not be happy without the other nearby. She is the sweetest dog I have ever owned and has been the perfect fit into our home! Life is good. 

        Jett happens!

Jett is now 20 months old, Mattie 14 months and José 14 1/2 years old. What a mix! There is never a dull moment for sure. I'm always counting to three to make sure all the dogs are in check. Everyone continues to learn to cohabitate ... dogs and humans alike. 

        Jett happens!!!

Oh ... almost forgot ... I got to work with Buzz Aldrin a few months ago!!! The heck with the Olympians, famous football players, Darth Vader, Storm Troopers, Princess's (RIP Princess Leia), Mickey & Minnie. I got to work with a real astronaut! A world famous icon and true hero who walked on the MOON!


Our big news has been delayed due to all the chaos. Hoping we can make that announcement sometime in the next few years. Tim and I are hoping to be able to get out more in the Airstream in 2017. Mattie was able to go on her first camping trip and handled it like an old pro. 

       Mattie's first camping trip!

Here's to knowing 2017 will be a hell of a lot better than 2016!

Cheers ... Bring It On!!!













Wednesday, June 15, 2016

HAPPY FIVE-OHHH!!!

Yup it happened yesterday. The big one hit! As I look at it, its just another day and I am proud to now be able to claim my fifty years! 


One of my favorite birthday gifts was a print on canvas from the original of my Airstream in Chaco Canyon in New Mexico. Painted by the amazing fine artist, Elizabeth Jose. 


Then my mother made me the best birthday cake ever!


And I also received a shipment from Vintage Trailer Supply. Just a few items to get started on restoring our 1948 Airstream Liner. 


Tuesday, May 31, 2016

BACK TO THE HOME-FRONT . . .



We made it! It was a toasty 94* as we crossed the state line from Georgia into Florida. Then the temperature kept going back and forth between 94* and 97* as we drove south. Settling at 91* on our arrival home. 


Tim and I made it home around 4:30 PM today. We are glad to be home and so is Jett. She ran and ran in the backyard as soon as she was let loose. Now the major cleanup begins. Not sure of our next travels but hopefully it will be back into cooler weather when it does happen! 


Monday, May 30, 2016

WHODAHELLIZDAT?



Someone has not shaved in just over a month! Guess who? Just a 'little' gray I've been telling him. I think he likes it and I do too. Well, as far as today goes it was spent not doing much. 


Tim and I decided not to leave camp but to instead continue to enjoy our last day here in this spectacular park. Skidaway Island turned out to be an amazing find and very quiet on this holiday as most everyone departed this morning. We spent most of it discussing our future and what it holds. There will be major changes in what's left of the year to come. Life is indeed good! 


The Homefront has many projects waiting to be done and we have started to prioritize that list . . .


The day turned out to be fantastic as I got more hammock time. Weather is perfect. Jett enjoyed being outside with us as well and Tim took care of everything we needed. We only left camp a few times (at least Tim did 2x) as I was busy (in the hammock). We all did make it to the camp office where Jett was invited in! Jett happens . . . 



On our last night out, here at camp, we had our favorite foil pack dinner which is smoked sausage, potatoes, fresh carrots and sugar snaps. Then we enjoyed a toasty campfire for the evening. Perfect ending to a relaxing perfect day! 


Happy Memorial Day! Thank you to all who are serving, have served and to those families who have lost loved ones serving our country.