Thursday, November 30, 2017

Otter teeth
The otter showed us his teeth today. He may look cute, but we don’t plan to pet him.

Well, we lost our beautiful fall weather today. It was cloudy and rainy all day. Most of the day it was just a drizzly and foggy. We did see the otter again this morning, but no ducks. Tomorrow it is supposed to improve with the weekend being partly cloudy with highs in the low 60s and lows in the low 40s. We hope the rain is gone because Philip and Lauren and the kids are due to arrive tomorrow. We are so looking forward to their visit and Juno can’t wait to see them. We want good weather so we can go hiking, too.

Today we decided to take the rainy day and spend our time cooking ahead. That way we will be able to spend more time visiting and playing with the kids this weekend. So today we cooked bacon and sausage, and biscuits for breakfasts. We also cooked up the sauce for the spaghetti so the flavors can blend and again it will save us time to visit. There will still be cooking to do and beans to snap, but at least some of it is done. There is still house cleaning to be done in the morning. Please pray with us for safe travel for our Philip and Lauren and our little ones tomorrow. That’s it for today.

Glad we put cardboard down to catch some of the grease
Glad we put cardboard down to catch some of the grease and make cleanup easier.

Duck X 6, Otter

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

So the title today was going to be Duck, Duck, Otter (duck, duck, goose), but then more ducks just kept appearing until there were six. As most of you know we love traveling, working on mission projects, and sometimes we are really sad to come back home. But we love the wild life we have here. We love living in the quiet, peaceful woods and just watching all the wildlife. Since coming home Tuesday, we haven’t seen deer or turkeys, but it was lots of fun today to watch the ducks and a new visitor for us, a river otter. We have never seen a river otter on our property, in either of our ponds, before today. He looks to be rather large. We did a little research today and found that they can be found from north to south Alabama. Their first choice in food is fish but if there is not enough fish, they will also eat duck. Now we don’t know if we want him to stay. We enjoy our ducks. One account we read said that the otter would swim under water and grab a duck’s feet as they are swimming. We hope that if that happens here we don’t see it. The ducks do seem to go to the opposite side of the pond from the otter but really don’t seem particularly afraid of him. In the past we have enjoyed watching the ducks raise their babies so maybe the otter should just go somewhere else. Don’t know how to encourage him in that direction. Guess we will just watch for a few days and see what happens.

It was another unseasonably warm (72 degrees), beautiful late fall day. The forecasters keep telling us it is going to be cold in the next ten days but for now we are really enjoying the Alabama weather. They keep postponing the cold which is fine with us.

Unloading againToday was a get settled in at home day. We unloaded FRED, which didn’t take as long as usual since we were only traveling a week, and packed pretty light. We did keep getting sidetracked watching and taking photos of the otter. We have company arriving Friday so after unloading, we worked on menu plans and then we were off to the stores to buy groceries for the weekend and the LOLs. That took up our day. Hope you are having a great week!

Back On Pine Mountain

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

It was another cold and frosty morning. FRED was cold this morning. We turned the furnace up and got back in bed until the house warmed up a little. Oh well, we were not in a big hurry to get on the road. We had to wait for the office to open and complete all our paperwork so we could close everything out and head back to Pine Mountain. Glad to have all the warranty work done and have FRED ready for January mission projects.

It was a very uneventful drive on another beautiful day. When we arrived back on the mountain we parked FRED at Helen’s and went to see Randy and Debra at Tom’s house. They have done an awesome job packing up all of Juno’s remaining items and cleaning out the house. The inside is complete! We are going to work on the storage shed after we get FRED unloaded. After some time to visit with Randy and Debra, we moved FRED to our house and unloaded what we needed for the night, ate supper and began the unpacking routine. Much is left to be done but we will work on it some more tomorrow. Three days in a row without pictures. Think that is a first for us. Maybe we will have something picture worthy tomorrow.  Since we have no pictures today, here is what we were doing this day last year.

tree with lights
On this day last year we were helping decorate Camp Sumatanga for Christmas. With other volunteers we put up around 14 trees. This is the largest and came from our property on Pine Mountain.

Finished In Red Bay?

Monday, November 27, 2017

We had a low of 32 last night with heavy frost this morning. But it was in the mid sixties by early afternoon and was another gorgeous day. You just can’t beat this weather.

We were hoping for an early call to go into the service bay. If you were following us in September when we were here, you know that Tiffin no longer makes appointments and service is first come first serve with warranty work having some priority. We came to Red Bay Friday morning hoping to beat the crowds and it worked. We received a call at 6:10 this morning asking us to be at service bay 6 at 7:00am. We had already prepared FRED for the move and were eating breakfast when the call came in so it was no problem to be at bay 6 at 7:00. We would have been really disappointed if that call had not come. Anyway we had two service techs greet us and get right on our list. We had 12 items on the list but the one of most concern was a little leak in our hydraulic pump. There is one pump that works the hydraulic jacks and the hydraulic slide outs. We really wanted to know the pump was okay before we left for the January projects. Everything except the pump was complete by about 11:00 and then one of the mechanics came to our bay rather than us having to wait for a mechanical bay to open. He found four fittings that were just a little loose and were leaking. He tightened the connections and we returned to our site. We still needed to pick up a couple of spare parts from the parts store and then check out after lunch. We returned to our site and put the jacks down and that was when things went bad. There was hydraulic fluid running out from the compartment housing the pump. Lots of hydraulic fluid. Max open the bay door and hydraulic fluid squirted out about three feet, just missing him. Everyone was at lunch by this time so we had to wait until after lunch. They sent two mechanics to our site after lunch. They had us try to lower the jacks again so they could find the leak. It really leaked that time, so they easily spotted a fitting that the mechanic accidentally loosened on one end when he tightened the other end. It was a quick fix, but then they had to refill the system because we had lost so much fluid the jacks would not work. After that it really wasn’t leveling just right so they recalibrated the system (which we thought needed to by done anyway) and then cleaned up the mess in the bay with the pump. So, this evening everything seems to be okay. After a late lunch/early supper, we walked about 3.5 miles again this afternoon. We will check the jacks once more in the morning and then check out and head to Pine Mountain. We are thankful that this was basically a really easy visit to Red Bay and FRED is now ready for our next project – and so are we. Sorry, no pictures. We were sort of busy with the techs and forgot to take pictures.

A Sabbath In Red Bay

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Today was another wonderful fall day. The forecasters got it right today. 38 this morning, about 60 this afternoon and dropping again now that the sun has gone down. Brisk evening for a walk.

We went to worship at Red Bay UMC which began at 10:30. We visited here when we were having work done in September. Again the congregation was very welcoming and we met another couple that are here at the campground just a few sites from us. They are full-timers. There was a guest pastor today from Asbury UMC in Madison, Rev. Doug Wooten. His message was from Mark 4:1-9, 13-20 with a final question of “what fruit are you bearing as a disciple of Jesus Christ?” Good question for all of us to ask ourselves. God has blessed us all to be a blessing to others.

RVs continued to come in all afternoon. The camp ground is close to full but still has maybe 8-10 sites based on our walk around. A lot of people have come in the past two days. We were good today and ate healthy at home and then walked around meeting and visiting with our neighbors. Some are new RV owners and have lots of questions. Fun to chat and share.

We really hope you have all had a wonderful Thanksgiving with your family and friends this weekend.

God Bless.

Quiet Day At Camp Red Bay

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Boy, the forecasters got it wrong today. It was predicted to be another gorgeous fall day. It was totally overcast when we woke up this morning and we had nothing but clouds until about 3:30 this afternoon when we saw a little sun. Due to the clouds it stayed cooler than predicted as well and if the wind was blowing it was down right cold.

We got a slow start to the day for a change. Max fixed us a wonderful omelet for breakfast and then we did some work on our personal accounting. Later we went to the local grocery store (Piggly Wiggly) for some milk and a few other things. It is a small store and prices are a little higher but we do like to support the local businesses. We walked around the campground checking to see if the campground was filling up. More coaches coming inIt’s not full yet but there was a steady stream of coaches coming in today. One of the times we were out we met our next door neighbor. He is from South Carolina and was hoping to watch the Clemson vs South Carolina game tonight. Unfortunately, he left his satellite remote at home. We just happened to have an extra we were able to loan him so he could get to the correct channel. BTW, for our Clemson graduates, he was pulling for Clemson. They also work with the Campers on Mission.

We then prepared dinner. When we were last in Publix, Max picked up a new recipe for Roasted Potatoes with Bacon. We decided to try it out today to go with our left over turkey. It’s was a keeper even though it’s not very healthy with four strips of bacon. It was good, as was the leftover turkey. 


Finished product with some leftover turkey
Finished product with some leftover turkey. (We added the cheese sour cream and fresh chives, just because.)

After our not so healthy potatoes, the sun finally came out and we walked to town again. It’s over 3 miles the route we take, so with the other walking we did today we probably got 3.5-4 miles. Some work, some rest, some visiting, and some exercise. It was another good day.

Back to Red Bay

Friday, November 24, 2017

Entrance to the Tiffin Service CenterToday was another short travel day. A gorgeous day, although a little chilly most of the day. We left Tuscaloosa at 6:55 this morning in route for Red Bay, Alabama. We will spend the weekend at the Tiffin Allegro Campground and Service Center awaiting service the first of the week. We have some additional warranty work to be done. As was last time, nothing major, but we do think we may have a hydraulic pump leak and we would like for that to be repaired before we head out for more projects the first of 2018. This pump operates our jacks which seem to be working okay but if we are parked for a three week project they seem to leak down slightly. Anyway, the other things on our list are primarily cosmetic but since we are here we will ask that they be completed. We had an uneventful drive to Red Bay with the exception of a herd of deer along side the road a few miles out of Red Bay. We did have to use the big air horn to get them to run back into the woods. Hated to scare the pretty things but they were too close to the road and looked to be considering crossing in front of us.

After arriving at Red Bay, we registered in and went to the local Jack’s for a late breakfast. Back at the rig we completed all the paperwork for the warranty work we are requesting and had the afternoon to relax. A nap, and a nice long walk took up most of the time. We have not gotten much exercise the past few days so the walk to town was great. We were blessed with a beautiful sunset to close out our day. Hope y’all didn’t overdose on the black Friday sales and are continuing to enjoy the holiday weekend. Sunset in Red Bay