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.