Saturday, April 14
We spent most of today catching up on some cleaning of Bentley, and going through cabinets, cubbies, closets, our underbed storage and other areas inside. While we were in Texas we decided we took way too many things so now comes the paring down. We managed to take two large tubs and two pretty good sized piles to the van that will go to storage once we return home next week. In the evening, we went to our son Brett's house in Liberal, MO. He grilled hamburgers and we had a great visit with him and grand-kids Dacy and Tucker. On our way home we stopped at Walmart to pick up a few things we needed in anticipation of our upcoming campout.
Sunday, April 15
Dean and I went to Sherman Country Church this morning, our home church when we are in Oswego. We picked Misti up and after church the three of us went to our local Mexican Restaurant, Mi Pueblo for lunch. Afterwards, we took Misti home as she had homework to do. Our son Matt called to see if we wanted to Skype with them. After a bit of technical issues we finally connected and had a great visit with him, Megan, Josh and Sarah. Here are a few pictures I took of them while we were visiting.
|I love the picture of Megan, Josh & Matt - top left. They are all great but that smile he's giving Mom and Dad is priceless!|
After our phone conversation I did a few things in preparation for our trip to Carthage, MO tomorrow for a rally with our Escapees group - Chapter 17. I made Chili, and cooked 2.5 pounds of sausage which I froze in 1/2# bags for future meals. Later we took our bicycles to the storage shed and while we were there we picked our granddaughter Haleigh up from her dad's and brought her back to Oswego with us.
Monday, April 16
Our Escapee rally begins tomorrow but most of our group has already arrived or will be arriving for the rally this afternoon. We were loaded up and pulled out of the park here in Oswego by 9:30. I told Dean I would drive today. I am not interested in driving all the time or even regularly but I do want to drive enough that I feel comfortable if something happened and I needed to. Hopefully we never have to face that, but it's good to be prepared. I also like the idea of driving in different types of traffic and today I'm taking I-44 from Baxter Springs to Carthage It's not far, but I need to get comfortable with merging into Interstate traffic. No better place to practice than in an area I am familiar and somewhat comfortable with as opposed to somewhere I've never been. We stopped at the Missouri Travel Center just west of Joplin for a restroom break, and about twenty miles later I pulled into Coachlight RV Park just south of Carthage, MO. We really love this park. It's nicely shaded and has a very nice rally hall. It's very clean and the people working here are just great. They seem to love their job and go out of their way to assist us in anyway they can.
We were soon set up, had some lunch and then we headed to Joplin. Dean had a doctor's appointment at 3:30 but I wanted to run by Khol's first. I'm still looking for a few tops and some capris for this summer. I received a 30% off coupon in the mail so wanted to at least look to see what they had. As it worked out, I did find a pair of capris' and 4 shirts for less than $45 so I was quite happy with that. We made a couple of other stops before arriving at the doctor's office about 3:15. It was close to 4:30 before we finally got called back. We could see we were going to be too late to eat at 5:00with the group that was gathering back at the campground, so I sent a text letting them know to go on without us and we'd catch up with them later. When we finally finished up at the doctor's office we headed to Texas Roadhouse in Joplin. Dean chose a ribeye steak. I don't remember what my meal was called but it included 3-3oz. tenderloins. We both had baked potatoes and salads. Mine also included a bowl of rice - which was delicious and I shared it with Dean. It was a very good meal and since we had a gift card from Heath & Casey (Christmas present) the cost to us was just under $13.00. Thanks again Heath Peine family for the gift. We sure did enjoy it.
Back at the campground we finished getting a few things set up before we walked down to Alvin & Linda's camper where the campfire was for the evening. Both Alvin & Linda and Phil & Janelle have Flame Genie's - neat little campfire containers that use wood pellets. With the size of our group it was great to have two of these going since we had some chilly evenings. It was a wonderful evening getting caught up with everyone.
Tuesday, April 17
We had an officer's meeting at 9 this morning, I'm not an officer, but since I am the newsletter editor they invite me to attend the meetings. Afterwards I returned to Bentley, where I made Dean and I some lunch. We have a Welcome and Announcement meeting at 2 where we'll go over the schedule for the week.
After the meeting, 4 of us ladies played hand and foot. I really miss getting to play this card game so I thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity, even if it was only one time during the campout.
Tonight we had our pot luck dinner. Everyone brings a covered dish. I made apple crisp, potato salad and since I had a few eggs left over I made some deviled eggs as well. These ladies know how to cook and we had a wonderful meal. However, the best part of the entire campout is catching up with our friends, many of which we have not seen since sometime during the past year.
We enjoyed another evening around the campfire before calling it an evening.
Wednesday, April 18
At the Welcome meeting yesterday Dean volunteered to make the coffee and have it ready at the clubhouse by 8 each morning so he was out the door about 7:30 which gave me time to get my work done around Bentley. At noon we had our pot luck leftovers from last night for our lunch. Everything was just as good - if not better the second time around.
At 3:00 Dean and I were in charge of playing Bingo. He called the numbers. I play but when someone Bingo's I check their cards to be sure all of the numbers were actually called. We had a lot of fun with this and almost everyone participated.
Tonight was supper on your own and four (Phil & Janelle, Keith & Drena, Bill & Mary, Dean & I) couples went to the local El Charro in Carthage for dinner. The food was great, as usual, and once we returned we all gathered around the campfire again.
Thursday, April 19
This morning we had our Chapter Business Meeting. We elect officers every fall (September) and our President, Alvin let everyone know there would be several positions open including President, Vice-President and Newsletter Editor at our fall rally. I've decided that I'm ready to pass the newsletter on to someone else. It's my third year doing it and have found it doesn't always work well while on the road. You might remember we had really poor Wi-Fi and Verizon connections at times while in South Texas. Unfortunately it took a little longer for me to get the newsletter out in March. It's hard to plan where to be, at the proper time, and it's time for someone else to give it their own twist.
Everyone had lunch on their own. Dean and I chose to have some chili dogs at Bentley. This afternoon at 3:00 we had our brown bag exchange. This is always lots of fun. We had some great gifts as usual and they were stolen early on. Once they've been stolen twice - they belong to the last owner for the remainder of the game. Dean ended up with a very large bag of Gardetto's and I won a bottle of Awesome, 2 little dip holders (they attach to your plate) and a little pop up fan - that about made me jump out of my seat when it popped out suddenly. I wasn't prepared for that at all. I was really disappointed that someone stole my ice cream toppings I stole; and then the 4 sampler set of BBQ sauces I picked from the remaining brown bags. I know Dean will use the Awesome and the dip holders might be a handy thing to have, so I was satisfied. However, Dean was very UNHAPPY someone took the popcorn he really wanted. We learned later we can buy it at Sam's - so my next Sam's trip might include a purchase of that particular brand of popcorn.
Our friends David & Donna had asked us about going out to dinner tonight. Two other couples, Phil & Janelle, and Don & Lynda joined us. We drove to nearby Joplin, MO and ate at Red Onion Cafe. Dean and I really like this place. We wanted to share it and I think everyone really enjoyed their meal. We had a great waiter who really did a great job of taking care of us. It wasn't too late when we returned but it was pretty windy so there was no campfire tonight.
Friday, April 20
We had another group meal this morning - breakfast and as with all of the other meals prepared by these wonderful campers, it was wonderful. Biscuits & Gravy, Egg/meat casseroles, Sausage Links, Fruit, French Toast Bake and some pastries. It was all delicious. Afterwards Donna, Mary and I drove to Joplin to do a little shopping. I still had my 30% off coupon for Khol's so we stopped there first. We all used the coupon for our purchases. We made a stop at Sear's where we enjoyed looking around. By 12:30 or so we were beginning to get a little hungry, so I suggested we try out a restaurant that my nephew had given high reviews to awhile back, called "The Brunchenette". Once we were inside and read the menu on the wall I was wondering what Rye had lead me to. It was a very different menu, but we all braved up, ordered and were so glad we stayed. The brunch choices we made were delicious. Mary and I had one of their "Bennie's" (eggs benedict) with Bacon, Tomato, Avocado, Egg with Hollandaise sauce - WONDERFUL! Donna had basically the same thing except it had pulled pork (no bacon, tomato or avocado), but she did ask for a couple of slices of tomato - which by the way, were very good!
|Donna's Eggs Benedict with Pulled pork|
|This is the Eggs Benedict that Mary & I had with Bacon, Tomato and Avocado.|
|Mary, Donna & Me|
The three of us had a great time visiting, shopping and having lunch together. We returned in plenty of time to enjoy a community cookout that took place at the clubhouse. Alvin fired up the large charcoal grill outside and everyone brought their own choice of meat to cook. Once it was done we went into the clubhouse to eat. Dean and I cooked hot dogs again. I brought up some chili that I had already warmed up, along with some cheese slices. When Dean finally brought the hot dogs in they looked like shriveled up sausage links. I'm not sure what he was doing out there but it evidently was not keeping an eye on our hot dogs!!; however, they were edible and with the cheese and chili they tasted pretty good.
Once things were cleaned up and our food/dishes back home, we all gathered one last time at Alvin and Linda's for our nightly campfire. Phil and Janelle left earlier today, so Stan and Linda shared their Flame Genie to provide enough fire for all of our group. I was having a hard time staying awake. I think I dozed off more than once until everyone decided it was time to call it a night. We had such a great time this week. It was good to see everyone again after the winter months had passed - although it has not always felt like winter itself has passed. We were fortunate the days were pretty nice but most evenings the ladies (and maybe a guy or two) were wrapped in blankets at the campfires.
Saturday, April 21
This morning almost everyone was readying their rigs to hitch up and head home. Three rigs stayed for a day or more before they move to their next site. We left the park about 10:30 and arrived back in Oswego at 11:40. We have an event to attend later this evening. Our other 16 year old granddaughter, Dacy is attending her first High School Jr/Sr Prom with a friend that attends Baxter Springs, KS HS. (Remember, we did this just two weeks ago with our granddaughter Haleigh) We are driving half-way back to Carthage to watch Dacy; but it's so worth it.
After arriving in Oswego, getting the rig set up and eating lunch, I finished setting everything else up, then washed a couple of loads of clothes. My daughter Misti, and grandson Logan stopped by for awhile and it was great to visit with them. Logan is going to KC on Monday to take his physical with the intent of joining the Navy. I'm really proud of him but it's hard for a grandma to not be concerned - and I'm sure Mom feels the same way. This is where we have to continue to trust God that he will watch over him in everything he does, as we do for all the grand-kids.
It wasn't but a short time after Misti and Logan left that Dean and I was headed to Baxter Springs. We met our son Brett and grandson Tucker at The Rice House, a Chinese restaurant in Baxter Springs, for dinner before going to the High School. We had never eaten here before but the reviews on Google and Trip Advisor were great. Weve been looking for a really good Chinese restaurant and we LOVED this place. We will definitely return here in the future. I had General Tso's Chicken, Dean had Cashew Chicken, Tucker had Sweet & Sour Chicken and Brett chose the Garlic Chicken. We all really enjoyed our meals. I was a little worried about my fortune cookie comment though - Something about soon being the center of attention - I was extra careful walking into the gym, setting down and leaving!!! I managed to get in and out without drawing any attention to myself - or at least that I know of!
By the way it started raining this morning before we left Carthage, then stopped before we left. Shortly after we arrived in Oswego it began to sprinkle, and gradually increased in intensity, but it never turned into a downpour. When we reached the high school we were glad to see the "Walk-in" was being held inside. We are not sure if that is always the way it happens or it was due to the rain. I didn't think to ask anyone about it. Renae met us at the High School. She had spent the entire day with Dacy starting with her makeup and hair appointments; changing into her dress; followed by pictures with her and her date in Columbus and Joplin. We were fortunate to get some pretty decent seats and it's a good thing since I left my new camera in Bentley. I was so disappointed I forgot it, but Renae was good enough to share some great pictures that I will include.
|Dacy and her date.|
|Dacy & Brother Tucker - Love that Renae is in the picture, taking her own picture.|
|Mom Renae, Dacy, Dad Brett & Brother Tucker|
|Nana, Dacy Papa|
|My favorite picture of Dacy - by Renae.|
It was after 8 when we returned to Bentley. Dean and I were both pretty tired. I think we were in bed by 9:30 and I could barely keep my eyes open the hour or so before I finally said - "it's bedtime". All of that camping just wore us out!
It's good to be back in Oswego.