Travels with Bentley

Travels with Bentley
Bentley - our Heartland Bighorn

Monday, June 24, 2019

Saturday & Sunday Saturday, June 22, 2019 - Happy birthday Heath! Breakfast at Dutch Country Cafe; Lunch at Marie's Sunday - June 23, 2019 - Catching up on Blogs, Going through Emails, Family Visits

Saturday & Sunday   
Saturday, June 22, 2019 - Happy birthday Heath!  Breakfast at Dutch Country Cafe; Lunch at Marie's   

Dean's oldest son Heath is celebrating his birthday, with his family, in Cancun, MX this week.  What a way to celebrate your birthday!  We hope they are having a great time.  We've enjoyed the pictures of the kids they have shared with us.  We are looking forward to seeing them in a week.

We both enjoyed lunch at Dutch Country Cafe yesterday and since we haven't had breakfast out in some time, we decided to see how their breakfast is.  Dean had his regular breakfast and I went with a ham and cheese omelet.  When they brought our food there were enough hash browns for almost 4 meals.  I couldn't quite finish my omelet or my toast, so we got a to-go box and brought the rest of it home.  We'll see if we can't make Dean a good breakfast for tomorrow morning too.

We went back to the RV.  I did the few dishes we had, made the bed and we headed to Marie's (Dean's sister).  Marie invited her siblings (Larry, Joyce, Ruthann, Dean), her children (Tracy/Aaron, Christy/Ron, and Keith/Ruana and their families, and Brett but he couldn't make it.  Marie is a great cook; and all of her kids are too.  I know Joyce, Ruthann, Carina and Katie pitched right in doing their part as well.   For lunch we had two kinds of pork loin that Jerry (Marie's husband) cooked on their grill; fruit, cheesy potatoes, potato salad, roast beef salad, baked beans, mac & cheese, beef and noodles, corn bread casserole, spicy corn, pink stuff salad, and homemade rolls.  I probably missed something.  I took a small spoonful of everything and IT WAS ALL DELICIOUS!  That was our lunch.  For dessert we had chocolate chip cookies (homemade by Katie, I think), no bake cookies, what I call dirt cake with gummy worms on the side, peach cobbler, zucchini cake, and I think there were a few other things as well.  Oh yeah, and ice cream for the cobbler too.  You never go hungry at Marie's.  

This is the flag that our grandson Tucker made for Marie - she has it proudly displayed just outside her front door!

Larry's wife Sandi and her four great-granddaughters.

Nephews Aaron and Ron 

Nieces Tracy (blue), Christy (pink) and sister Joyce.

Ron, Gage's girlfriend, Larry

Carina, Sandi and Aaron

Ruanna feeding Canon.  He sure is a cutie!

Larry and Sandi's granddaughter Shelby, husband Scotty and their four girls; and Keith and Ruanna's son Gage, his girlfriend and her little boy Canon joined us for dinner as well.  It's fun to see all of the little ones having a good time with each other.

After lunch everyone visited.  As always, there was lots of laughter.  It was a very enjoyable day!  It was around 8 when we headed back to Bentley. 

The park was full when we pulled in this evening.

Sunday - June 23, 2019 - Catching up on Blogs, Going through Emails, Family Visits

I slept in this morning until 6:30 and woke to more rain.  I believe it rained most of the night as well.  Typically we turn the air conditioner fan on Low when we go to bed, so it will run all night long.  Sometimes it's nice when there are loud outside noises (such as a highway, train, etc.), but I've found I sleep better when the fan runs all night.  Last night neither of us remembered to change it to Low.  I think I woke up every time it went off - which seemed often.  It was about 3, when I finally got up, found my flashlight and turned it to Low so it would run continuously and I could get some sleep.  Why I didn't do it the first time I woke up, I don't know!  I slept great the rest of the night.

After our morning coffee, Dean doctored up the leftover hash browns, warmed up my remaining omelet and re-toasted the homemade toast from yesterday for his breakfast.  He said the hash browns were better today.  

This is what I saw when I walked out of Bentley this morning - not an RV anywhere.  They sure were quiet leaving.

Dean went outside to try and locate the problem with the trailer brakes.  While he was busy with that I decided to catch up on reading blog posts, and spend some time cleaning up my emails.  I've been doing this when I have an extra hour or two and I'm making some progress.  I helped Dean a couple of times outside.  When he came in he said he had found the problem.  When we bought this truck the plug-in for the RV was just above the bumper of the truck.  Dean asked the dealer to put a plug in the bed of the truck because our first truck had one in the bed and he really liked it.  What he found out today is the plug-in above the bumper works.  There is a bad connection between that one and the one they put in the bed of the truck.  We are now good to go.  He'll work on the connection between the two  of them after we get home. 

Once he was finished, we had a quick lunch.  I continued working on cleaning up my blogs until about 1 or so.  Dean wanted to stop by to see his brother Larry and wife Sandi again before we leave tomorrow.  Their son Preston, wife Erica and daughter Addison were there.  They drove up from Houston yesterday to spend a few weeks.  We had a great visit with them all before we left to drive out to Marie's.  When we got there, no one was there.  Dean called her and they were on their way to Lawrence to eat.  

Banners put up by the City of Garnett, purchased by family members to honor Veterans from Garnett.  This is Dean's brother Dale.  He passed in 2009.  Do you see any resemblance?  

Dean has been talking about visiting his cousin Ray and wife Cheri Peine in Garnett.  I suggested we stop by to see them.  Fortunately, they were home and we had wonderful visit with them .  These last few days have been great for Dean, visiting and/or hearing about family and friends still in the area.  We've driven a number of the roads around Garnett including the one leading to the home where he grew up.  While the house is no longer standing, there were a few buildings/structures he reminisced about.  The one room school he attended through sixth grade was just down the road.  I love hearing about his memories of the area and seeing where different places are.  Names that were very foreign the first time we came to Garnett now sound much more familiar to me.

We were shocked to see water on both sides of the highway from Pottawatomie Creek, which a few days ago was all open fields on our way to Marie's.  We knew it rained last night and some the previous two days but WOW!  Come to find out they had around 5" of rain last night along with a few inches over the previous two days.   

When we left Ray and Cheri's we grabbed a hamburger at Dairy Queen; then drove to Marie's.  Ruthann sent a text once they were leaving Lawrence.  On the way we decided to take a little detour and visit the Richmond Lake, then we took the back roads to Marie & Jerry's.  

Richmond Lake

We learned Richmond's ballfield was moved out near the lake several years ago, so we had to check it out.  The ballfield is in the background.

Another shot of the lake area where several people were fishing this evening.

The countryside around Garnett is really beautiful - lots of rolling hills.

Can you guess what I found interesting in this picture?  Yes, I love those old barns!

We had a really good visit with every one this evening - Jerry, Marie, Joyce, Ruthann, Tracy, Aaron, Carina and Katie.  Another great evening with a lot more laughs.  It was 9:15 when we headed home and I was able to get this last picture of what was left of the sunset.

We have one more overnight stop before we head back to Oswego.  

Saturday, June 22, 2019

Friday, June 21, 2019 - Stormy Morning; Lunch with Family; Walmart Run; Evening with Family

Friday, June 21, 2019 - Stormy Morning; Lunch and Evening with Family; Walmart Run

I didn't wake up until 6:30 this morning after going to bed at 9 last night!  I guess I needed the sleep.  I think our bodies know when we need the extra rest.  The coffee was still perking, so Dean had not been up too long.  While waiting for it to finish I checked my phone.  Misti had sent me a text message with a picture of our grandson, Logan.  He wanted to have it put in the Labette Avenue (Oswego's, and other nearby communities weekly paper).  She asked me if I could send it to Rena (the editor).  I was glad to and I worked on that.  You get a sneak peak!

The picture was taken in San Diego.  Logan is currently stationed at Camp Pendleton, CA for his field medical training battalion for the Navy.  I'm so proud of this young man!!

After getting my first cup of coffee I worked on the prior day's post.  Once that was done, I went through my morning routine.  Dean went outside to try and figure out why our trailer brakes are not working.  I can't remember if it was just outside of Garnett or once we got into town that the message came up on the dash.  This has happened once or twice before but he was able to get them to work.  He tried a number of things but still nothing.  

While he was starting to pick things up, the north wind began to blow and it was pretty crazy.  The trees were swaying and you could see the water in the lake behind was being affected as well.  Dean hurried to get the remaining things put away.  He wanted to run by the Chevy dealer to see if they could take a look at the brake connection on the truck.  It was already raining so we donned our raincoats and drove over.  It's just a short distance from the RV Park.  Unfortunately, they said they were too far behind and at least two weeks out now.  He has an appointment with the Chevy dealer in Parsons next week to have some recall work done, along with a few other regular maintenance items, so he will ask them to add it to the list.  

You can see how the flag is blowing from the north wind, and if you enlarge the picture you can see the water is being impacted as well.

We returned to Bentley, where we quickly ran inside out of the rain.  The worse was yet to come.  We could hear (and feel) the wind blowing and it rained hard for about an hour, before it finally calmed.  While there was still a light rain, we left to have lunch with Dean's family at the Dutch Country Cafe.  

We heard there was 1.5 to 2" of rain in the short span of an hour.
It was dry as a bone when we arrived on Thursday, and this was the water standing as we left the campground.

During the storm I was "chatting" online with someone from Verizon.  We purchased a MIFI, for internet service in the RV.  The major reason we got this was for the printer.  We couldn't link both of our phones hotspots to the printer, so it was frustrating when the person with the hotspot linked to the printer was gone.  Since we received the MIFI, we also connected Alexa and our Amazon Firestick to it as well.  The reason for my call today...I cannot get the MIFI to connect to my Chromebook.  I would rarely use it but there have been a couple of times it would have been nice to have had it, and today actually happened to be one of them.  I follow a blog called Geeks on Tour.  In an email I received today it talked about a change with Google Photos.  One item told how to make sure all of your photos are backed up at High Quality for their free storage service.  Since I had many pictures on my Chromebook that transferred from my old computer, I wasn't sure if they were all set to High Quality.  To be sure I was going to begin a process mentioned in a link to an article explaining how to change any photos not already set to High Quality. Unfortunately I could not connect my Chromebook to my MIFI so it could continue making these changes while we were gone.  I keep getting a message that the password for the MIFI is bad, but this only happens with my Chromebook.  Everything else works fine - including our phones with the password provided from the MIFI.  Unfortunately, after an hour of trying to figure it out, I had to tell the technician I needed to leave for our lunch dinner.  I did get a reference number so I can go back to it, but I will call this time rather than text.  I thought it might be an easy fix, but I'm beginning to wonder if anything is easy anymore.  

The Dutch Country Cafe has not been open too long.  The former bowling alley was remodeled into a large dining area with two or three meeting/event rooms.  Some of the meals ordered yesterday were hot beef sandwiches, Chef salads, bacon cheeseburger/fries, and fried chicken.  Everyone seemed to be happy with their meals.  They serve both breakfast and lunch.  The pies looked delicious but evidently no one had a sweet tooth today or they were just being good!  The cinnamon rolls also looked tasty and they have a drink list that includes lattes, frappes, and several other beverages.  Here is a link to their menu

Dean's Family: Joyce (sister), Jerry (brother-in-law, Marie), Marie (sister), Connie (wife of brother Dale), Sandi, (wife of brother Larry), Larry, waving to you all, Dean, Carina (Ruthann's daughter), Ruthann (sister) and Katie (Ruthann's granddaughter).

It was after 1 before we left.  Dean and I went back to Bentley, and then we headed to Walmart for a few things.  DEF for the truck was one major item, as that message came up on the way here.  We have several hundred miles to go before it needs it, but now we are prepared.  With our upcoming trip it won't take long for the miles to add up.  Once we returned, I put things away and then we enjoyed just relaxing for awhile.  We had sandwiches for our dinner at Bentley.  I still had half of my sandwich from last night from the restaurant in Ottawa, and I made Dean a wrap of turkey, cheese, bacon and tomato.  

We left the campground around 5:00.  We told Marie earlier that we would come up to visit.  Dean wanted to take the back roads from Garnett to Marie's, north of Richmond.  We drove by the place where he lived until he moved to Oswego in 1970, the rural school he attended, and many friends and family members homes.  It was a reminiscing day for him being back in his hometown and surrounding countryside.

We arrived at Marie's as they were getting ready to eat.  Roast beef salad, potato salad and homemade chocolate chip cookies they had just finished baking.  It looked so good, but we were too full from dinner to eat anything except the choco chip cookie Marie handed us right from the oven!  They had cooked up a storm after lunch today in preparation for tomorrow.  Since we had already ate, we set at the table with them and visited.  Just as everyone was finishing, Marie's daughter Tracy and husband Aaron stopped by.  We all moved to the living room and enjoyed a few hours of visiting.  A great group of people with many, many memories and lots of laughs.

Tomorrow everyone will gather back at Jerry & Marie's for a mini family gathering.

Another wonderful day.  We are so blessed with family and laughter!

Friday, June 21, 2019

Thursday, June 20, 2019 - Travel Day to Garnett, KS; Dinner with Friends and Family

Thursday, June 20, 2019 - Travel Day to Garnett, KS; Dinner with Friends and Family

Dean and I were both up during the night a few times.  After drinking so much water following his procedure yesterday, he couldn't help it, but I don't know what my problem was.  I woke this morning about 5:30.  I wanted to post to the blog before we left.  Once I was finished, I ate breakfast, then started packing up the remaining things I couldn't do last night.  Once I had most of it done, I showered, then finished packing the final few things.

It was about 8:00 when we finished, so we walked down to say goodbye to Frank and Joyce.  We'll see them again in August at Yellowstone, but we'll keep in touch via text. 

We pulled out of the park at 8:30.  After a quick stop at the front gate to turn in our gate key, we took Hwy 76 to the High Road 365, which led us to Hwy 65 right into Springfield.  There we took a short detour on I-44 to reach State Hwy 13.  We drove on 13 to just south of Osceola, MO, where we transitioned to Hwy 54 through Nevada, MO and Fort Scott, Bronson and Moran, KS before heading north on Hwy 59 to Garnett.  It was approximately a four hour drive and it was very relaxing once we left the Branson/Springfield traffic behind.  

I took this looking out the backseat window - I'm not sure why there were there - but when I enlarged it - there were a number of American flags with many others.
These are random pictures I took - it was such a gorgeous day to travel!

As we passed through Nevada - pronouce va with a long a, not as the state Nevada with a short a.

Welcome to Fort Scott

Old grain elevator in Fort Scott

So beautiful

We were near Uniontown KS when I noticed this large U made of rocks on this hill!

Bicyclists were taking off from the vehicle on the side of the road, and the driver was filming them as they left.  I tried to catch what was on the side of the vehicle, but what I thought it said, when I googled it, I found nothing.  

These wind turbines were just outside of Garnett - hmmm, we have never seen these before.

A very interesting thing occurred on Highway 59, before the turn to Garnett (which should be to the left) and Kincaid, where you turn right on SH31.  Our GPS notified us with the following, "Turn right, then prepare for a U-turn".  It even gave us a picture of what to do!

Dean and I have traveled this road many times going back and forth to Oswego with the GPS on --- we've never experienced anything like this.  It was pretty comical!  Thanks to "Bobbie" for giving us a good laugh!

We soon arrived at Garnett's North Lake Campground.  Dean called his sister last night to see if she would be willing to go to the campground to see how many sites were taken.  She agreed and came back and said besides the camphost, there is only one other RV there, and she was right!  We thought we were in good shape!   So we were surprised, when we found "RESERVED" tags on almost all of the sites.....surprised in more ways than one!  

While we were in Branson I googled Garnett's website.  It said you could not make reservations more than 3 nights out - at the time it was beyond that so we decided to take our chances, since they have other RV sites available in town.  

The camphost was gone, so I called City Hall to see if any sites were still available.  Fortunately there were 3 sites not yet reserved and we were blessed to get the best of the three.  Some of the sites were a reservation as far out as July.  The site we chose gets full shade by late afternoon, which is great because it is only a 30amp site.  I also mentioned to her what I had read on their website.  She did not seem to be aware of that.  At least now we know we can call ahead and make a reservation with no time limit on when it can be made.  We've camped here several times when Dean's brother was camp host.  I guess having family onsite helps!

Only 5 miles to go!

Garnett's south lake.  There are camping spots here as well.

Golf course, right across the road from our campsite.  

We took time to eat a quick lunch and just rested for a couple of hours.  It was nice!  At 3:30 we changed out of our "travel clothes" in to our "going out to eat clothes".  Lol!  We are meeting Dennis and Pam, and Bill and Janice at Smoked Creations in Ottawa for an early dinner at 4:30.  

As we were getting ready to leave the campground (and pay our fee at the onsite pay station) a large motorhome pulled in.  He asked Dean about the spots.  Dean told him the site numbers of the remaining sites that were empty.  He pulled into one of those.  Unfortunately, the only two spots left were in full sun.  At least it still cools down at night.  (It was in the mid-60's when we got up on Friday)

We arrived at the restaurant a little early, and, as we expected, it was only a few minutes until they both pulled up as well.  We met both of these couples through our Escapees family and we enjoy them both so much.  

As with most new introductions, people always ask where you are from.  When Bill told us they lived in Rantoul, KS, Dean said he was from Garnett.  (Both towns are close to each other).  From that we found out Bill and Janice knew Dean's sister Marie and her husband Jerry.  It is a small world!  Our meals were wonderful as always.  Marie and Jerry actually introduced us to this place a few years ago, and we've never been disappointed with the food here.

Our waitress took this picture for us.
On the left Dean, Bill, Dennis, Pam, Me and Janice.

We arrived in Ottawa early so as we drove through town I took a few pictures to share.

This metal work with bushes caught my eye.  Funny, I didn't even notice the electrical tower until I looked at it later.

Water tower - logo included in the metal work in above picture.

A eyecatching flower garden in someone's yard.

Franklin County Courthouse - so beautiful!

Dean had me call his sister Marie several times as we were driving to Ottawa and again on the way back to Garnett.  Both the home and mobile phones were going to voicemail.  As we headed back I remembered when he talked to Marie a few days ago, she told us her grandsons were playing baseball tonight.  As we passed through Princeton we noticed a game, so we pulled in.  We drove slowly looking for any signs of their family.  As we left I told Dean I saw someone that kind of looked like his nephew Keith, but he decided to go on.  Since they live near Richmond, next town south, we drove through town looking for their ballfields.  Dean was surprised to see they were no longer there.  

Richmond Museum - I love the quilt design on the side.

Back in Garnett, we checked to to see if Dean's brother Larry, and wife Sandi were home.  They weren't home when we checked before leaving town, but they were now.  We had a nice visit with them and left about 8:30.  

As soon as we returned to Bentley, I changed into my pajamas, and settled to work on the blog.  I couldn't keep my eyes open long enough to type more than a paragraph.  I headed to bed shortly after 9.  

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Wednesday, June 19, 2019 - Happy Birthday to Son, Marc; Phone Calls; Packing; Escapee Casual Camp-out Pot Luck; and Health Insurance Info

Wednesday, June 19, 2019 - Happy Birthday to Son, Marc; Phone Calls; Packing;  Escapee Casual Camp-out Pot Luck; and Health Insurance Info

I woke shortly before 5 this morning.  I got up and turned on the coffeepot.  My morning habit!

Almost the first thing on my mind this morning was what happened 38 years ago today, where I was and what I was doing.  I was in the Labette County Medical Center (now Labette Health) in Parsons, Kansas waiting to give birth to my son Marc William Blair.  Happy birthday Marc!  I love you!

I immediately started working on the blog post for the past two days, and was able to post them later in the morning.

Even though Dean ate a good dinner last night and a snack before bed, he was hungry when he woke up this morning.  He missed two meals yesterday and didn't drink near the water he would normally have in a day.  I asked him if he wanted to have his normal breakfast or did he feel up to going out for breakfast.  His ears perked up, and he was ready to go in no time!  He loves breakfast - and going to a restaurant for breakfast is even better.  We chose the Hungry Hunter.  I really cheated on my order this morning.  I had 1 biscuit, sausage gravy and some hash browns.  Dean had the regular 2 eggs, sausage, hash browns and toast.  They had some great looking cinnamon rolls and we decided to get one to take home.  I really intended to take a picture but it never happened.

The breakfast was delicious.  I think a few of our grandsons would enjoy this diner.  It had a small scale train that ran around the wall sitting just below the ceiling.  There was a table of children sitting next to us and the smallest boys couldn't take their eyes off of that little train engine.

The track went into two of the three seating areas.  

Two things here - first, see the little engine right above the door on the track, and second, the sign pointing to the bathroom door - Outhouse!

Back at Bentley, I finished up the blog post, then turned my attention to several phone calls I needed to make.  A follow up visit for Dean with his doctor (had to leave a message); finding out how to access my KS Wildlife & Parks account to make a reservation (done); changing my hair appointment for Thursday the 27 (done); called All Seasons in Wichita to change our reservation (done); and made the first reservations for our trip west.  Later Dean's doctor office returned my call and we set up a follow-up visit in September.  I felt like I had really managed to accomplish a lot this morning.

For dinner we ate half of that cinnamon roll and some watermelon.  Sounds like a bunch of kids, doesn't it?  The cinnamon roll was just okay - nothing special.  We were disappointed.  

Knowing we are leaving tomorrow, I also packed up or stored several things we won't be using before we leave; hopefully it will help the morning moving prep go a little faster.  We hope to leave here around 9.  It's a four hour drive to Garnett, a little longer than we usually drive in a day.  We are meeting some friends for dinner tomorrow night in Ottawa, so we want to have a chance to rest a bit before we take off again.  Fortunately, it's not far to Ottawa from Garnett.

I have been eyeing the "screen" door of our neighbor here in the park.  Instead of screen, they had plexiglass in their door.  It allows them to leave the door open in both warm and cold weather, and allows so much more light in.  I have wanted something like this for quite some time now.  Marie was sitting outside, so I walked over to ask her about it.  She said they took it to a home improvement store, where they cut the plexiglass to fit it.  She really loves it.  I'd sure love to have this done.  Marie was such a nice lady and I enjoyed visiting with her for the next 15-20 minutes, before I had to get back to make my dish for the pot luck.

I didn't have much on hand, but I had the ingredients for macaroni & cheese.  I really love my convection oven where I can bake without heating the trailer up, especially when it's warm outside. 

The potluck was at 5, and I think we were the last to arrive.  After Connie said a blessing over the food, we all enjoyed a wonderful meal.  There were some really good cookies on the dessert table.  I complimented the cook and learned they were Nestle cookies you buy in the dairy aisle.  Wow, those cookies have come a long way since I last bought some for the kids to make.  I really thought they were made from scratch!  I think I'll keep a roll of those on hand for a quick snack for the grandkids or if someone is going to stop by for a visit.  It's nice to have a snack to offer someone.

Members from our Escapees RV group at the potluck dinner.  Thanks for the good food and visit with you all!

It was great to catch up with everyone in this group as we have not seen several of them since last year.  They invited us back to their site to visit, but we declined.  I wanted to finish this blog post and put more things away in preparation for our move tomorrow morning.  I also needed to get in touch with my health insurance agent.  I was supposed to receive an email with all of my documents for my new health insurance plan.  After checking my emails - both the inboxes and spam, the documents were not there.  I sent a text to let her know, and she resent the information.  Upon receipt, I activated my account (although it doesn't go into effect until July 1), and built a file where I could bookmark various documents they sent.  I may need to reference these in the future.  

All in all it has been another busy day, but a very productive one, and another day spent with good friends.  We are truly blessed to have met so many wonderful people through our RV groups and travels.  

(Monday & Tuesday) Monday, June 17, 2019 - Golf Cancelled; Shopping Expedition; Visiting Friends Tuesday, June 18, 2019 - Long Day in Springfield, It's Good to be Home

Monday and Tuesday
Monday, June 17, 2019 - Golf Cancelled; Shopping Expedition; Visiting Friends

I woke up to rain again this morning, and it continued for awhile.  The weather report indicated a high chance of rain today.  I worked on Sunday's blog while I drank my first cup of coffee.  Dean and Frank have plans to golf this morning, so I'm not sure if they will or not.

About 9 or so, Dean called Frank to tell him he thought they should cancel due to the forecast.  I know they were both disappointed....

We had made arrangements the day before to have dinner at Rib Crib this evening with Frank and Joyce.  Joyce sent a text to see if we wanted to eat around 11:30am instead.  We agreed, and in the meantime Dean and I had a couple of things we wanted to do.  

Branson City Campground on Lake Taneycomo.  Beautiful location!

Dean has been wanting to get a new set of golf clubs, but he would like to have them fitted for him.  We found two places online that provide that service in the area.  The first place was no longer open and the second place no one was there.  I called the number and did not get an answering machine, so next we headed to Bass Pro on the Landing in downtown Branson to see if we could find hats for our trip west.  We hope to do some hiking and wanted to have good head coverage while we are in the sun.  Fortunately, we each found one there.  We looked at shoes for Dean as well but he wasn't that happy with what was available.  

We were a little early but decided to go ahead and drive to Rib Crib.  Before we got there I received a text from Joyce they were already there.  We pulled in the parking lot, but we did not see their car.  I sent a text to make sure there wasn't a second Rib Crib, when Dean decided to drive on around - and there they were.  They could see us through the windows as we drove in, but with the sun, we could not see them.  We enjoyed our lunch with them and the food was great.
From there Dean and I continued our shopping spree at Tanger Mall to find shoes for Dean. 

As we arrived at Tanger Outlet Mall on Branson 76 Strip - I love the view as you drive onto the entrance road.

Our first stop looking for shoes, we found one pair he liked but they didn't have his size.  I wanted to stop at the Kitchen store, which was just a door down from a Tool Shop.  We split up here so we could both enjoy our own shopping experience.  I was looking for something specific - Dean wasn't.  Fortunately, I found exactly what I wanted - some glass "custard" bowls that I can use in my Instapot to make custard.  Thanks Patsy from the blog "Chillin with Patsy" for posting her tutorial for making custard in the IP.  I'm anxious to give it a try, as both Dean and I love custard.

Dean came up empty handed at the Tool Shop.  I didn't want to carry my package, so we walked back to the truck, and then headed to the other side of the mall area to Rackroom  Shoes, where we discovered a buy one, get one 50% off sale.  We found a tennis shoe he liked, so I suggested he look at a pair of casual shoes as well.  The last ones we bought for him are probably 10 years old or more.  Fortunately, we found a pair he liked so we left there - deed accomplished!

We returned to Treasure Lake with our new purchases around 2.  Earlier Joyce had mentioned going to Cakes & Creams - our favorite sweet shop.  

Dean hitching a ride with Frank and Joyce - glad they let me ride too!

In all their years coming to Branson Frank and Joyce had never been there.  I don't remember who introduced me to this place, but I can hardly remember a time coming to Branson (before Bentley) that we didn't stop here at least once for a sweet treat.  We all ordered cobbler (I think we all had peach) with ice cream.  We've never been disappointed.  I think Frank and Joyce enjoyed theirs as much as we did.

Sorry I was too busy eating to take pictures of the cobbler & ice cream!

Once back at the park, Dean and I headed over to Phase 2 of the park to visit Escapee friends Vern and Joanne.  Their friends Barbara and Milt stopped by, and we all had a nice visit.   As we were leaving, a group of Escapees returned from playing cards and we got to say hello to Carolyn, Sheila and Mike and Mary.  It was good to see them all.  They are having the Escapee rally here this week.  Their pot luck dinner will be Wednesday evening, since they couldn't get the building for their regular Tuesday night dinner.  They invited us to join them if we can.  

When we left there we swung by Bentley, picked up the hat Dean bought earlier and took it back to Bass Pro.  He decided he needed a large rather than the medium he purchased.  

Looks like some rain in the south - hope we make it there and back before it comes our way.

I love how someone put these "people" up on top of their building to stare at all of these "visitors".

I've always loved this totem pole outside this store.

Somewhere I've never been - but I've always thought I'd like to try one.  Maybe I should get one for the Escapees pot luck tomorrow!

This beautiful Hilton Conference Center and Hotel in downtown Branson

Branson Scenic Railway Station 

As we neared the Landing, just before we turn right.....

to our destination - Bass Pro.

It didn't take us long to exchange the hat and then we headed back to Treasure Lake.  

Another one of those hills I love to go down.  If you look close you can see the Tower (right in the middle) located at Shepherd of the Hills.

We took the back way into Treasure Lake, where we pass the Royal Oak Enterprises.  We have purchased there charcoal briquettes many times.

Once back at our site, we grabbed our umbrella and walked toward the entrance.  Raymond and Carolyn, more Escapee members, are parked near there and we wanted to see them as well.  We had a great visit, catching up on what they've been doing and have planned for this year.  It started to rain, and it was a good thing we decided to bring our big over-sized umbrella.  It did a great job for us, as we walked back to Bentley.  By the way, remember the golf game being cancelled?  Yep, this was the first time it rained since earlier this morning - but we had a beautiful surprise that we enjoyed on our way back.

It was a full day, but we enjoyed our time shopping together and visiting with our friends. 

For dinner, I took out the two cheeseburgers left over from Sunday that were in the refrigerator.  I took the bottom bun off of each - added a little butter to them, and warmed them and each hamburger/cheese bun portion in the pan - meat down with a pat of butter under each.  Put the lid on and let them heat up for about 8-10 minutes on low heat.  PERFECT!  

Tomorrow Dean is going in for an outpatient procedure.  I'll leave it at that, at his request.  It will all be fine.  I'll be up early tomorrow so we headed to bed a little earlier than normal this evening.

Tuesday, June 18, 2019 - Long Day in Springfield, It's Good to be Home

I woke up a few minutes before my alarm (set for 5am) went off.  I immediately showered and got ready, so Dean could follow.  While his procedure is out patient, when they called to remind us of the time to arrive yesterday afternoon, they said we should be prepared to spend the night if there were any issues.  I told Dean - let's pack as if you will have to stay and then it will be for naught, so that is what we did.

After making sure everything was ready, turned the water off to the RV, we headed to Springfield at 7:15am.  Of course he could not eat or drink, except a sip for the medicine they told him to take, so I didn't either.  Well, I guess I did drink a meal replacement shake - while he was in the shower.  It carried me until we had lunch.  I just hated to eat in front of him.  I know hard that is.

It was foggy this morning so I'm glad we left 15 minutes earlier than normal.  We arrived at Cox hospital and found the entrance we needed to go to.  The waiting room was quite busy with only a few chairs left.  We were fortunate to get seats next to each other.  Apparently someone at the admitting desk had called in sick this morning and they were really backed up.  We were to be there at 8:30 with his procedure to take place around 10:30.  It was around 9:30 before they took him back.  Dean's son Brett arrived a short time after us and I was very glad for his company while we waited.  As soon as Dean went back for his procedure, we headed to the cafeteria for lunch.  They had both of our phone numbers if we were needed.  Brett chose the salad bar - wow, what a salad.  Almost wished I had made that choice.  I selected a bacon/turkey/hot pepper cheese wrap with all kinds of yummy veggies on it, and chipolte sauce.  It was very good as well.

When we returned to Dean's room to wait, (12:30ish), another hour passed before the nurse told us they were taking him to recovery - she said he did well and would be back in the room in about an hour.  We thought we'd get to go home pretty quick after that.  It was 1:30 when they wheeled him back into the room.  The doctor stopped by at 4:15 - everything went great and he said he'll need a follow up appointment in 3-6 months.  The bad news he has to stay until 6pm.  Those were the orders and of course the staff abided by it to the T.  

We left the hospital shortly before 6:30 and guess who was hungry?  We decided to grab some fast food on the way back.  One of Dean's favorites is Freddy's, and it was on the way.  It was shortly before 8 when we finally returned to Bentley - a very long day for both of us; and we were very glad we got to go home!  I knew it was worth it to pack that bag - we didn't need it!

We watched a little TV and were in bed by 10.  Another busy day, but a great outcome, so I'm extremely thankful!