Travels with Bentley

Travels with Bentley
Bentley - our Heartland Bighorn

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Sunday, October 25 through Saturday, October 31, 2015 - Oswego & Wichita, KS

Sunday, October 25 through Saturday, October 31, 2015 - Oswego & Wichita, KS

Sunday, October 25, 2015 - Oswego, KS
This is going to be a busy week which is often how things are when we are at home.  We dawdled a bit this morning, taking our time getting up and around.  I went to church, leaving about 10:25 and got back around noon.  Dean told me Jarred and Andrea had called to see if we wanted to meet them in Parsons for lunch about 12:50.  As much as I hated to decline, I had made kind of a big deal to my sister Crystal about being at my sister Jody's for my 1st Sunday get together in almost 3 months.  Crystal and her husband Lonie were on vacation this past week so I have not had a chance to see her or my youngest sister Jody.  Since I made a big deal about it I felt like I should be there.  I am glad I did because Crystal not only showed up (she had planned to go into work to do some catching up before her first day back at work tomorrow), but Jody made me a birthday cake. 

We had a good time visiting and catching up with each other's families.  Since I will be gone on Sunday, November 1 and it's my turn to host on the first Sunday of the month, I felt bad about missing another Sunday as well.  More explanation on that later in this post.

Monday, October 26, 2015 - Oswego, KS
Our grandson Jaxson is coming to stay with us today while his mom Jennifer is working out of town.  I'm pretty excited to spend some time with him.  He's a pretty good little guy.  He turned three in July.  I had some of his favorite toys out waiting for him when he got here.  He loves to play with Hot Wheels and a little race track we have, as well as the Tinkertoys.    He jumped right in playing with the Hot Wheels and Tinkertoys and it kept him busy all morning. 
Jaxson playing with Tinkertoys, while sitting in the Tinkertoy tub!

Putting the wooden puzzles together.  Some of them were his Aunt Misti's and his dad's when they were small.  Logan in the background.

I also got out the wooden puzzles for him to try.  He picked up on those in no time and seemed to enjoy them quite a bit.  After lunch we drove over to my sister Cindy's to visit her.  He was being a real show-off for her and was quite proud of it too.  We came back  home and then we played outside for awhile.  When Logan, our 16 year old grandson was about 2, we bought a playschool wagon that has stayed here at the house for many years. All of the grandkids (except Emerson, although I'm sure her day is coming) has made use of this wagon.  Jaxson loves riding in it.  I pulled him around the house and yard for awhile, and then he helped me pick up sticks.  It seemed like it was no time and Jennifer was back to pick him up.  He is coming to visit us again next Monday and Tuesday.

Tonight is my favorite show, Dancing with the Stars so you know where I was after dinner.  I did manage to stay awake for the entire show though --- which does not always happen.  (I do record it though in case I don't make it!) 

Tuesday, October 27, 2015 - Joplin, MO
To back up a bit, Bentley went in for his repairs last week--tear in linoleum in kitchen, replacement of slide roller under the refrigerator and replacing the water pump.  Deryl at Chetopa RV called us on Friday or Saturday to let us know everything was done except for replacing a part they ordered that had not yet come in, however they expected to have it Tuesday when they open for the week.  So we are hoping Bentley will make it home later today.

I had my annual women's checkup today in Joplin, MO.  I like getting early morning appointments so I can have the rest of the day to spend running errands, shopping and sometimes making a visit along the way, and today I did all three.  I was done shortly before 10:00 and I headed to Khol's, Dress Barn, Northpark Mall, Ross' and Cato's looking for a few winter tops and some new jeans.  I must have tried on over 20 tops and 10-12 pairs of jeans.  I bought one pair of jeans at Macy's.  I needed just a few things from Wal-Mart and while there I picked up two more pairs of jeans (although I was tired of trying on clothes by now, so I just took them home to try them out) and a couple of pair of shoes.  I purchased a pair of shoes like the ones I bought today right before we left on our trip and I wore them almost every single day we were gone.  I loved them so much I wanted to get another pair like I had, plus a black pair.  How often do you find shoes that feel so comfortable for $15 a piece? 

A year or so ago my sister Cindy and I made a trip to Tulsa.  After hearing about how good Panda Express' orange chicken was from the Pioneer Woman, Ree Drummond we decided to try it out.  We were both terribly disappointed.  In their defense we did get there after the lunch run, with hardly any left in the bottom of the bowl so it was somewhat dry with little to no sauce.  I just knew Ree would not lead me astray so I wanted to give this place another chance, and today was the day.  I'm glad I did because it was so much better than our first trip.  In fact, as they filled my bowl, I thought there is no way I can eat all of that, but it was so good I could not bear to leave any of it.  I will definitely come back here again.

My next stop was near Seneca, MO to see my step-dad Larry and his wife Verna.  As with everyone one else, I've not seen them for several months so I was really looking forward to having some time visiting with them.  I stayed for about an hour and a half and really enjoyed catching up with them and telling them about our trip.

Bentley was home when I got back.  Dean picked him up this afternoon.  It was so good to see him sitting on his pad next to the house.  I really miss staying in him.  It is so much easier than our big house.  In fact it has made me stop and think about what more can I get rid of in the big house to make life more simple.  I've been wanting to get rid of some furniture that I really do not need or want to keep.  I am reaching out to my kids and nieces and nephews since it is all Blackledge/Duncan family heirlooms.  Hopefully someone will want them and if not, then I'll try to figure out what I will do with them.

So tonight was also the first night of the World Series.  Our son Marc was fortunate enough to attend the game.  We watched it until we couldn't hardly keep our eyes open any longer and we finally headed to bed, but not before we DVR'ed the remainder so we can finish watching it in the morning. 

Wednesday, October 28, 2015 - Wichita, KS
This morning we were up early and right away checked to see the outcome of the Royals game before we turned on any news.  What a great ending to the first game.  I texted Marc about 8:30 to see if they stayed to the end.  He said they and they didn't get home until about 3:45.  He said the traffic was horrible in Kansas City and then they had to drive in heavy fog back to Parsons.  I'm just thankful they had no problems getting home.  After breakfast we began packing Bentley up for a trip to Wichita to see our oldest and youngest sons and their families.  We will be there until Monday morning.  Fortunately for us it was pretty light packing.  We expect to eat dinner out every night so packing food for breakfast and lunch is simple compared to preparing a dinner meal.  Plus, I am always up for having dinner out, especially in Wichita where there are so many choices.

Dean left Oswego about 1, and I followed him in the car a short time later.  I was expecting a prescription refill in the mail today so I waited for the mail lady to arrive before taking out after him.  It wasn't too long and she showed up, but not with my prescription.  The Dr.'s office called it in on October 20, it was mailed the 22 by first class mail.  I suppose it will show up the day after we leave.  We'll find out when we get back.

Since I am watching Jaxson again this Monday, I will get up and leave early that morning and plan to just pick him up in Parsons on my way home.  Dean will leave a little later with the RV.  It's kind of nice having a car while we are in Wichita and it's not the first time we've brought it along with us. 

I called Dean to let him know I was on my way and then he told me the bad news - no, there is nothing wrong with Bentley......

but there was LOTS of road construction and we found out it wasn't just in Labette County but in several stretches between Oswego and Wichita.  It wasn't too bad until I got stuck at one spot for almost 25 minutes and I really needed to have a bathroom break.  I was never so glad to see that big old flag flying outside of Fredonia and I knew it wouldn't be long.  I pulled in and almost ran into the store and the door was locked.  Oh no, but then I noticed it said Family Restroom on the door - that's not what it has said in the past.  I then realized there was some major renovation in the convenience store so I started looking around and they have an entire new women's restroom - with three stalls!  WOW!  I have stood in line here for 15 minutes or more many, many times.  What a treat!  I know, crazy to be excited about a bathroom, right?  Well, it wasn't long and I was on my way again.  Even though Dean only left about 15 minutes before me, however I was never lucky enough to make it through without them stopping me and he arrived well ahead of me at the RV Park in Goddard, KS - All Seasons.  It's a decent park and very convenient to Heath and Jarred so that is great.

The main reason we are here is to see everyone after almost 3.5 months but for a few other things as well.  Jarred and Andrea bought their first home and will be moving this week, and on Sunday they will have their daughter's dedication at their church.  Originally it had been planned for earlier in October before we got back, so we were pleased to hear the date had been changed.  Also, since we will be here over Halloween we will get to see Heath's kids in their costumes "Trick or Treating" for the first time. 

Once we had Bentley set up, we hopped in the van and took off to see Jarred and Andrea's new house.  It is so nice and will be a wonderful home for them and Emerson.  It has a very nice backyard that has been beautifully landscaped. They were wanting to get some more painting done, so Dean and I took Emerson with us.  We ran by a nearby Subway to get some sandwiches and then stopped by Heath and Casey's for a little while to say hello.  I think the boys enjoyed seeing Emerson and they kept her entertained while we quickly ate our sandwiches.  We didn't stay too long since it's a school night and we headed back to Jarred and Andrea's so Emerson could get some sleep too.

Once we were settled in we were soon watching the World Series, night 2.  Another win for the Royals.  We hope they keep it going like this for the next two games!

Thursday, October 29, 2015 - Wichita, KS
Today we have no plans until later this evening.  We started out our day by eating breakfast at Egg Crate Café.  Dean wasn't that thrilled with his - why am I not surprised, since it's not Tina's?  but mine was very good.  He had eggs, sausage and home fries with toast.  The home fries were pretty mushy with quite a bit of seasoning salt on them and he just didn't care for them at all.  I had a ham and cheese omelet.  It was very good, full of ham and lots of cheddar cheese, probably more than I needed.  I did not have anything with it though and it was just right. 

When I tried on the jeans from Wal-Mart before leaving home, I was very disappointed.  One pair was too tight and one pair was too big.  Same manufacturer and same size.  Errr!  So our next stop was to return those to a store nearby.

From there we drove south to visit Harbor Freight.  It's one of Dean's favorite stores.  Deryl had mentioned to him they had one of the platform stepstools on sale that Dean had asked him about when he picked up Bentley so he wanted to check it out.  (The bottom step of our entrance steps into Bentley is often just a bit too high to comfortably step up onto.  We have a Rubbermaid step we carry, but it is a little higher than we need so we hoped this would be just perfect.)  Not only were they out of stock, but in checking the dimensions it would have been too tall for what we needed.  But it was fun looking around.  We made a quick stop at Dillon's just down the road from the park so I could pick up some fruit for breakfast the rest of the week, then headed back.

We had some lunch about 1:30 or 2, and then I talked Dean into going with me to a few places to look for some tops.  Maybe I'll have better luck here in Wichita than I did in Joplin.  About two hours later, and after stopping at several stores I was still unable to find anything I liked.  It seems clothes are within that period between summer/early fall and winter clothing and there just isn't much in the stores right now to choose from.  Story of my life!

Dean and I stopped by Jarred's this evening after we had dinner at Applebee's.  We helped him move some more things from their old house to the new one.  They have already moved all of their kitchen items, their clothes and almost all of the small items and have two blow-up mattresses set up for them and Emerson to sleep on.  Saturday they have several friends coming to help them move the heavy items and then it will be a matter of getting everything in it's place.  Andrea has already done an amazing amount of work including decorating.  I am impressed!  We filled up both the van and the truck.  Andrea and Emerson were at Andrea's parents working on Emerson's dress for her dedication at church on Sunday.  Jarred asked me if I would want to watch Emerson tomorrow and of course, I said I would.  

Friday, October 30, 2015 - Wichita, KS
Today is our granddaughter Haleigh's birthday.  She is 14 years old.  Wow, where has the time gone.  My dad had red hair and I always wanted red hair myself, but the most I had was a bit of a reddish tint when I was in the sun.  Haleigh has beautiful red hair and her middle name is Kay, my mom's middle name so she is one special girl to me with a little bit of my dad and a little bit of my mom, and her birthday is only one week to the day after mine!  Oswego has no school today so that made her day all that more special! 

My granddaughter Haleigh Kay Bates - 14 years today!

We were up pretty early this morning to be at Jarred's so I could drop off Dean and pick up Emerson and bring her back to Bentley for the day.  Dean left his truck at their house last night so he rode over with me.  Jarred has several things he needs Dean's help with today so Emerson will have fun hanging out. 

Emerson is 7 months old.  She is such a pleasant little girl.  Very, very happy and easy going.  I say that, and then after we got back, we played for awhile and then she started getting a little restless.  I tried to rock her, walked with her and finally laid her on the loveseat.  I could tell she was tired but she just wouldn't give it up and finally just flat out cried.  I was beginning to think I had lost my touch as a grandma.  I finally decided I would take her in and lay her on our bed.  She laid on her side, rolled to her stomach, pulled her knees up under her and was asleep in about 1 minute.  WOW, you just have to get used to their routine, don't you?  I piled every pillow I had around her, pulled the covers up in a big roll on the end, and turned everything off so I could hear her if she woke up.  She slept about an hour and a half. 

Emerson having a good time with her bounce toy.  She's pulling herself up really well.  She loves to grin!

She woke up so happy and played in her bouncer for quite awhile, just as content as she could be.  She ate great and then took another short nap before Jarred picked her up later that afternoon.  They have dinner plans for the evening. 

Dean and I decided to eat at Logan's tonight for dinner.  I chose the grilled chicken with peppercorn sauce, grilled vegetables and salad.  He had the fish, fries and a salad.  I think mine turned out much better than his.

We headed to Heath's after dinner so we could visit some more.  Our family loves Lori's cookies from Oswego.  Lori is extremely talented and her decorated sugar cookies are extremely good and loved by many in the 4-state area.  I stopped and bought a dozen before we left town.  I knew the boys would love the Halloween cookies better than they would candy.  We took these in with us and yes, they all wanted one.  Their boys are really growing up.  We had such a nice evening visiting with all of them and watching the start of the 3rd game of the World Series.  We left about 8 or so, so they boys could get ready for bed. 

We finished watching the game back at Bentley.  Disappointing loss, but that's okay we are still a game ahead and we hope for a better outcome tomorrow night.

Saturday, October 31, 2015 - Wichita, KS
I am watching Emerson again this morning while they move the last of the items from the other house, allowing Andrea time to put things in place as they bring them in.  She is hosting a dinner at their house tomorrow for about 25 people after Emerson's dedication.  I can't believe what she got done yesterday.  She already has pictures hung and many areas decorated.  They finished painting Emerson's room yesterday so she'll be ready to settle in after today. 

She was just as good as gold again today and this time I knew what to do when she got sleepy.  She woke up just as happy as she did yesterday.  I took her back home about 11:30 as her and mom had plans with Emerson's Grandma & Grandpa Braitsch and her Uncle Chris and Aunt Kelly (Andrea's sister).  They are going to a special Halloween event at the hockey game this afternoon.  They are big Wichita hockey supporters.  Jarred was still moving things, plus he has some other things he needs to work on as well.

Jarred is the Missions Director at their church (Pathway Church) here in Wichita and he is leaving Monday on a trip to Tanzania, Africa, so he has a lot of things to finish getting ready before leaving, as well as finishing up with getting things settled after the move.  It's been a very busy time in their lives the past few weeks, as you can imagine.  With all of tomorrow's events he really needs this afternoon and evening to make sure he has things ready for his trip.

I decided to get caught up on the week's happenings for the blog this afternoon while Dean is helping Heath with a project, so I can post this Sunday evening.  We will be heading to Heath's later this evening to see the boys in costume and probably visit for awhile.  I can't believe how fast this time here has passed.  I really love having Bentley here.  While both Jarred and Heath are gracious hosts, it's wonderful having your own bed and your own chair to rest in at day's end.  I've never regretted buying our Bentley.  He's been great to travel with and he gives us absolutely no back talk.  He's still getting broke in though so occasionally we have a mild hiccup but thanks to our great dealer Deryl he always gets him fixed up in no time. 

We headed to Heath's about 6:15 so we could see the boys in their Halloween costumes before they take out for the evening.  What fun!

The Man in the Big Yellow Hat - Roman

Steve from Minecraft - Gideon

Character from Star Wars - Abram

On their front porch before heading out to "Trick or Treat"!
It was fun watching the boys get ready for the evening.  I'm sure they will have lots of stories to share tomorrow and of course we'll have to see what they got.  They assured Papa he could have the candy they don't like! 

After we left their house we stopped for some Chinese food.  Should have stuck with my crackers, ham and cheese and more veggies.  Mine was not very good at all, but Dean really liked his.  I think he'll have a problem getting me to go back to this place.  Oh well, at least I didn't eat much.

We are now watching the 4th game of the series.  The Mets just scored Run 3.  Hope the Royals can pull it together before the night is over.  We'll see.

See you next week!

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Sunday, October 18 through Saturday, October 24, 2015 - Oswego, Kansas

Sunday, October 18 to Saturday, October 24, 2015 - Oswego, Kansas

I have decided to try and do a weekly post as things happen during the winter to just keep friends and family up to date with our happenings.  Here is the first one.  I may not get something posted every week but will try to do one or two each month. 

Our son, Marc and  his wife Jen and family came down today (Sunday) to have lunch with us and Misti's family.  Marc picked Haleigh, Misti's daughter, up at her dad's on his way through Altamont and we all went back to the local Mexican restaurant.  Good thing we like it, huh?

Between seeing kids, and taking care of every day stuff we have stayed pretty busy every day our first week home.  Things we have done included unpacking Bentley so he could get him to the RV hospital to repair our broken roller on our slide, replace the water pump and to repair our linoleum that was ripped when the slide caught it, doing laundry, calling all the various services to let them know we are back home (city, phone, etc.), making changes in our Verizon data plan, updating our Century-link internet service, fixing problems we found with our second Dish Network receiver that controls the extra bedroom and garage TV's, etc.  We tried to remove anything from the RV that might be in the way of the workers, which included emptying most of the basement.  Going through mail took me awhile as well.  While my sister Cindy was kind enough to pick it up every two weeks and check it for anything important there were still things I needed to go through, file, toss or take care of.  Dean spent a couple of days giving Bentley a much needed bath and scrubbing.  Cindy needed to run to Joplin on Tuesday and wanted me to go with her.  She's had horrible withdrawals from seeing me for so long.  HAHA!

We had a good time getting to visit in person and I really did miss her (and my other sisters Crystal and Jody too).  She is having a jewelry party tomorrow night at her house and she wanted a few things for decoration.  We spent a good hour to hour or two in Hobby Lobby looking for things.  She came up with some cute and affordable things to do.  We made a quick stop at Wal-Mart for a few more things and then headed home. 

Wednesday morning I had an appointment to get my hair cut and colored and I was ready.  I only had it cut once while we were gone and my bangs were driving me nuts.  I never colored it while we were away.  Marla was surprised as there were only a few places the gray was really noticeable.  After lunch I went to Cindy's to help her get things ready for the party - decorating, getting food items made, etc.  I headed home in time to fix Dean something for dinner and change, then headed back to help Cindy with last minute things.  She had a great party and since all of her guests pretty much knew each other, we all had a good time visiting.  I enjoyed spending some more time with my daughter and niece Nikki, Cindy's daughter afterwards.
Thursday I did more laundry and more stuff around the house.  Our grandson Tucker has his last football game of the season tonight and granddaughter Dacy will also be cheering.  This will be her last middle school cheering experience so we headed to Columbus after dinner of homemade vegetable soup.  Yummy!  On the way over son Jarred called to say they were on their way to Branson for the weekend and were thinking of stopping by.   We had to pass on that since of course we will not be there.  We really hated to pass up an opportunity to see them and our granddaughter Emerson.  She was 4.5 months old when we left so I'm sure she has changed a lot while we were gone.  If they have time, they might stop by on their way back to Wichita on Sunday.  Hope it works out.

The 8th grade game was pretty good and Dacy did a great job.  I only managed to get one good picture of her. 

Dacy is the one in the middle that you can see clearly!
Tucker's game didn't go so well.  Not only did it begin to rain but they lost.  Dean and I left when it started to rain harder and set in the van along the north side of the field.  We did get to see Tucker as we walked by his team setting near the fence at half time so he at least knew we were there.  We left a short time before the game was over. 
Friday was my birthday.  When I woke up Dean had a nice card laying out for me at the coffeemaker.  He knows that is where I always head first!!   It's Friday and that means we eat breakfast out, and of course it was at Tina's in downtown Oswego.  I know I've said this before but all breakfasts are compared to Tina's and he was ready to have the best breakfast he's ever had here in our hometown.  He said it was just as good as always.  We decided we would take a drive to Grand Lake and just drive around to a few places.  We love the area.  It rained off and on but never really bad so we enjoyed the drive and just seeing the sights.  Misti called while we were gone to see if we wanted to go eat dinner with her and boyfriend Chuck and Marc, Jen and their family at Josie's Restaurante in Scammon.  Well, it's one of my favorite places to go, so of course we said yes.

I snapped this picture as we left Oswego on our way to Josie's.  Loved the sky and sun hitting the trees on the left.

We met them there about 6:30.  The food seemed even better than what I remembered it and the company was fantastic.  Unfortunately I failed to take a picture of everyone as I had planned to do.

I received lots of emails, texts and Facebook posts from friends and family members wishing me a happy birthday and that meant very much to me.  I received some nice cards in the mail and my granddaughter Kamron made me a special card herself.  My granddaughter Haleigh called me early this morning to wish me a happy birthday.  Really a great day for my last birthday in the 50's!

What a way to end our first week at home!

Monday-Saturday, October 12-17, 2015 - Cedar Oaks RV Resort, Grove, OK

Monday-Saturday, October 12-17, 2015 - Cedar Oaks RV Resort, Grove, OK

Monday, October 12, 2015

This morning we got up and headed into town for breakfast at the Eastside Café.  It was very good.  We also checked out the route we wanted to take leaving Pryor and purchased fuel.  We had not paid anyone for our stay and I was unable to find anything stating how much the nightly fee was or where we should leave our payment at the bathhouses across from us where a large bulletin board displayed several flyers and phone numbers to call.  I tried to call the numbers listed online with no answer, and the ones on the flyers here were the same numbers.  I emailed the address listed in the email but wasn't sure how quickly I would hear from someone.  I walked over to the office area to see if there was any other direction noted there and did find a different phone number than was listed on the website.  I called it but the person who takes payments was not in the office.  I was told they would call me back.  After a few times of phone tag, I received an email telling me where I could mail the payment and how much it was.  I emailed back that I would send it.  A few hours later I received a phone call, from the same person who had emailed me earlier, not realizing I was the same person.  So finally we were able to settle our overnight fee.  First time we have run into this.

As we were about ready to hook up, a little white car pulled up and it was my cousin Jim.  He told us he comes to the park everyday to walk.  He didn't expect to still find us there but sure was glad he did.  He suggested another route for us to take.  It turned out to be a great solution and for Bentley we think it was the best one. 

I can't believe I failed to get a picture of Jim and Wanda or our spot at the Recreation Area. 
We were soon headed to Grove, OK where we will attend an Escapees Rally.  As you know our original plans had been to attend the Oklahoma Heartland Rally in Durant this week, and then on our way home we planned to attend the Escapees Casual Campout near Wagoner, OK but since we are anxious to get home, see the kids and get Bentley in for repairs we decided to bypass the Durant rally and instead attend the Escapees Fall Rally then go on home.  We saw almost all of our Heartland friends at the Texas rally and while we hate to miss the OK rally we didn't want to bypass a get together with our Escapee friends either.  This way we got to see them all and still get home a week earlier than we had expected.

We had a nice drive from Salina, Ok to Grove, Ok via the route Jim gave us.  We headed south out of Salina to Highway 412, and then east to 59 highway through Jay, OK and on to Grove.  We noticed some of the trees were really beautiful as the colors are changing.  The most we have seen in all of our travels this fall. 

As we head into Grove from the south near Honey Creek Bridge.

We were really glad to see some of our SKP (say that fast and it sounds like Escapees)friends already here once we pulled in. After we got set up we had a quick bite to eat, and then took our chairs over to the Chapter President's motorhome where several others were gathered outside in the shade to visit. 

After visiting for awhile the discussion about what everyone was doing for dinner was discussed.  It was decided for those who wanted to go we would head to Rib Crib at 4:30.  Phil and Janelle Mackey asked us to ride with them and we enjoyed their company.  

We set outside for awhile after we returned, but I suddenly remembered it was Monday night and my favorite show, Dancing with the Stars was on so I quickly headed back to Bentley.  I do not watch much TV but this is my favorite show and I hate missing it, especially since I could not record it.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Other SKP members continued to arrive throughout today.  It was good to see everyone again.  The Opening Ceremony for our rally was held at 2:00 at the clubhouse where we received a copy of the schedule of events for the week and were advised of a few minor changes.  A wagonmaster is in charge of each day's events.  Each wagonmaster is responsible for preparing the main meal of the day, getting help from other SKP members if needed, and organizing any other events for the day.  The club reimburses the wagonmaster for their expenses. Tonight we did not have a wagonmaster so they ordered pizzas from Pizza Hut and had salad prepared by a few of the ladies.

Afterwards several of us played Hand and Foot in the clubhouse.  I fell in love with this game after playing it at the spring SKP rally here in Grove.  It consists of four rounds, and takes about two hours or so to complete a full game. 

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

As I've mentioned before, each morning while drinking my coffee I read the RV blogs I follow.  This morning I opened one I've been following for just over two years and noticed their blog was a review of their recent visit to Bartlesville, OK including Woolaroc Museum.  I thought wow, they were not too far from us.  As I read on it said they were now parked at Cedar Oaks RV Resort on Grand Lake o' the Cherokees.  Hey, wait, that's where we are.  I quickly read through and saw they were not planning to leave here until Saturday.  I was thrilled at the opportunity to meet one of the bloggers I've been following.  I sent them an email asking if they would have time to meet up.  Later in the day I received a message that they would love to but they were on an overnight trip but would return to the park this evening.  We agreed to meet up Thursday morning at their place. 

Dean went to play golf with one of the new chapter members, Tom, this morning so I decided to go visit my bestfriend from high school, Cheryel, who recently moved to Grove.  We had a great visit and then I headed to Wal-Mart for a few groceries - since we had nothing left to eat for breakfast or lunch.  Dean returned from golf not long after I got back so we had some lunch.  We spent part of the afternoon visiting with various members.

Tonight we had an interesting meal, trash bag tacos.  I've never had or even seen this before.  Salad and most of the fixings were all poured into a large trash bag together, shook up and then laid open on the table for each of us to come by and fill our plates.  Additional fixings we could choose from were set out on the table.  It was very, very good.  For dessert we had brownies.  A perfect bit of sweet after dinner.

Dumping the food in the trash bag!

Afterwards a couple of the ladies wanted to walk and asked if I'd like to join them.  The resort has a nice area to walk and it's another opportunity to build friendships and get to know the other members. 

Another night of Hand and Foot followed with lots of laughs and getting to know the new members.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Well, I was anxious to meet my blogger friend this morning so I tried to keep myself busy around Bentley, getting ready, cleaning, picking up, etc.  Soon it was time to walk about 100 feet, two rows over from us to meet them.  They were so nice and we had such a great visit for a little over an hour.  We discussed all kind of travels, including theirs in Kansas.  I inquired if they had ever driven any of the Flint Hills area.  They had not.  I strongly suggested they include that in a future trip to our state.  I love the Flint Hill area on 400 Highway and believe it to be some of the prettiest country I've ever seen.  I love that drive no matter the season, or the weather!

After lunch, one of the ladies walked over to see if I wanted to play cards and of course I said yes.  We had a great game then took a break before dinner.  The resort supplied smoked brisket (which was awesome) and the wagonmaster for the day supplied baked beans, coleslaw and potato salad.  DELICIOUS!

Afterwards we took another walk around the park before playing more Hand and Foot.  So much fun!

Friday, October 16, 2015

After breakfast, we visited a bit and then headed to the clubhouse for the Business Meeting, where I accepted the job of newsletter editor for our Chapter for the upcoming year.  This will mean preparing and emailing it to all members 4 times a year (and mailing it to 1 member), which isn't too bad.  I think once I've done it, it will be fairly simple.  At least I hope so!  We had three new couples join our chapter during this rally.  We had a total of 16 rigs with 31 attending.  It was a great turnout!

Most of the members who attended posed for this picture.  One couple had to leave before the brown bag exchange and this was taken following that.

Following the business meeting the Chapter treated everyone to lunch at Rib Crib.  It was a great meal and a good time.  At 4:30 we had our brown bag exchange.  What fun it is!  Each person brings some type of gift and puts it in a brown bag and closes it up where you CANNOT see inside.  All of the bags are put in the center of the room, with enough chairs placed in a circle around the brown bags.  Each person draws a number.  The "emcee", for lack of a better word, determines how the numbers will be called.  This time they were chosen randomly rather than from first to last, or last to first.  Once a person picks up a bag they have to take that one, but after opening it they have the choice of keeping what they picked, or they can steal from someone else.  A gift can only be stolen two times.  There is someone to mark the bag each time it has been stolen so that once it has two marks, you know you cannot steal it again.  It is a lot of fun and provides lots of laughs to everyone playing. 

Following the brown bag exchange there were 3 couples besides us who thought ice cream sounded pretty good and we were soon headed to Braum's.  It was really good.  A few of us ladies took a quick walk around the park before heading to the clubhouse for our nightly game of Hand and Foot.  This time our group of six were all ladies playing together.  It was a little wilder than when the men play with us and much laughing going on.  What a great time. 

I just want to mention Dean is not much for playing games but he does enjoying sitting out with the other guys talking after dinner for awhile.  Once the guys head in for the evening he watches TV.  By the time I get back we still have an hour or so to visit about the day before heading to bed.

Today was the last day of the rally and tomorrow we will head home.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

We were up and around pretty early this morning, getting breakfast out of the way early enough that even I was able to head to the clubhouse for coffee and say our goodbyes.  We are ready to head home but always hate leaving our friends (both Heartland and Escapees) behind knowing that it will be several months before we will see them again.  Many of the couples are heading south for the winter and will be leaving soon.  Most will stay in the south until March.  We actually considered going down for the months of January and February of 2016 but have decided to put that off for a year as we have a few projects we hope to get out of the way at home before we start our spring/summer RVing. 

We were ready to head out about 10:00 or so and were home by 11:30.  We took the long way home in order to bypass the bridge north of Welch near the Oklahoma state line as it is very rough to take Bentley across. 

Our daughter Misti knew we would be home today and it wasn't too long after we arrived that she and our grandson Logan showed up to welcome us back.  We visited for awhile and decided we would meet later for dinner at our local Mexican restaurant.  I called our son Brett and he agreed he and his family would join us as well.  Our son Marc and his family will be down tomorrow.

We had a great time visiting with the kids and grandkids this evening and hearing about everyone's activities and telling some of our traveling stories.  It's great to be home and see them again!

Sunday, October 11, 2015 - Snowdale Recreation Area, Salina, OK

Sunday, October 11, 2015 - Snowdale Recreation Area, Salina, OK

We left Bullard, Texas this morning about 9:30 with plans to stop north of McAlester, OK at a State Park, however near the turnoff we pulled off for a rest stop and decided we felt like traveling further today.  We reset Tammy, our GPS, for Snowdale Recreation Area in Salina, OK.  We stayed here on our way home last year and we enjoyed being near the water.  This time of year there are usually white pelicans passing through and we were fortunate to see a few while we were here.  It also happens to be just down the road from my cousin Jim Wade and his wife Wanda.  I gave them a call to see if they would be around later.  Fortunately they had no plans and we agreed to meet them at their house once we were set up.

We arrived about 4:30, and arrived at Jim and Wanda's around 5:00.  It was great to see them.  Jim had quite a health scare earlier this spring and even though he is not back to full speed it was great to see him doing so much better.  We had a little trouble finding a place to eat, and checked two or three places out only to find they were closed Sunday evenings.  We finally settled on Chili's in Pryor.  It was pretty good, and best of all we had a great visit.  By the time we returned it was near 8:30 so we headed on back to Bentley.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

October 4-9, 2015 - Bullard, Texas, K.E. Bushman's Camp

Sunday - Thursday, October 4-9, 2015 - Bullard, Texas, K.E. Bushman's Camp

Sunday, October 4, 2015 - Bullard, Texas

We pulled out of the park in Minden, Louisiana at 9:35 this morning.  It wasn't long before we could tell we were nearing Shreveport, LA due to the numerous casino signs.  Here are a few shots I took as we drove through Shreveport on Interstate 20. 

We soon passed into Texas and began the drive on to Bullard. 

We arrived at the park around 1:30.  We are really glad we will be here for several days as we are ready to stay put for awhile.  As we were pulling into our site a man stopped to visit with us.  He told us he and his wife were also here for the rally.  They are full-timers and have been here in the park since June after they left the National Heartland Rally in Goshen, IN.  From here they will go further south into Texas for the winter.  We finished sitting up after he left.

We were soon set up and settled in.  As usual we just set around for awhile enjoying the freedom of being outside.  After dinner of cheeseburgers we decided to take a walk.  The park is quite nice.  It has a great building at the entrance that houses a large office area, an indoor swimming pool (with a very large, oversized garage door that opens to give an outdoor feeling and a hot tub.  On the opposite side of a double wide covered entrance (big enough for two RV's to pass each other) there is a large meeting room, restrooms with showers and a Laundromat.  There is a small pond on one side with a large concrete pad you can fish or swim from.  I'm not sure you could get me to go down the steps into the water as it appears to be quite full of algae but it is a beautiful spot to just set for the enjoyment of it or to visit with others.  On the other side of the park is a large event center that is used for weddings and other celebrations. 

The RV sites are two ribbons of concrete with grass between them.  There are plantings of trees and/or bushes between each site.  Each site has full hookups, with 50 amp service.  We are in site #78.  Even though it is a pull-through, since it is on the very end, we had to back-in to the site as there is not enough space to make the corner and utilize it as a pull in. 

As we approached the office area we saw Allen, the gentleman we met as we were getting set up and stopped to visit for awhile with him and his wife.  They too have a Big Horn.  Deb gave us a tour of it.  It has a living room in the upper area (where our bedroom is located) and the bedroom is in the back (where our living room is).  It was quite nice but I think I still prefer our set-up.  Mainly because Dean would never go for pulling a rig as long as theirs and I still prefer our floorplan.

We had a nice visit with them before heading back to Bentley for the evening.

Monday, October 5, 2015 - Bullard, Texas

Since we arrived a few days early we have some extra time on our hands so we decided we would get out and find some things to do today and tomorrow before the other Heartland Owners begin showing up.

This morning we drove to Canton, Texas for First Monday Trade Days.  It took us about an hour and a half for the drive.  We arrived to find no one in the parking lots and only a few vendors and we weren't sure if they were really open for business or not.  We left and drove toward downtown as I was looking for more information and soon found out the problem.  Just because it says First Monday Trade Days, it is not on the First Monday.  Trade Days is held on the Thurs-Sun BEFORE the First Monday of the Month!  So we missed it by one day.  We still enjoyed the drive and we had a great Mexican lunch at Ochoa's Mexican Restaurant in Canton.

We headed back to the campground and after dinner we took another walk around the campground.  As we were passing one of the Heartland RV's on the other side of the park, a woman walked out and we started visiting with her.  She was going out for an evening walk herself so she joined us.  Judy Parker is a full-timer, mostly residing within Texas for most of the year.  We ended up back at Allen and Deb's and visited for quite awhile.  We had to leave after about an hour as Matt, Megan and Josh wanted to Skype with us this evening.  We had a good time visiting with them and we were thrilled that Josh remembered who we were.

We watched TV for awhile and headed to bed so we could take another day trip tomorrow.  I forgot to take any pictures today so will try to do better tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015 - Bullard, Texas

We had originally planned to arrive in Bullard on Monday (yesterday).   Since I knew we would have a day with nothing much going on we already had something we wanted to do - as I mentioned in an earlier blog post.  Once we were up and around we headed west to Waco, Texas to visit Magnolia Store.  You might remember I mentioned Chip and Joanna of the HGTV show Fixer Uppers.  They own the Magnolia store.  It was a bit more of a drive than we thought but it was a nice day and an enjoyable one.  We chose to just take a Texas state road versus the Interstate so it was relaxing since we were not pulling Bentley along with us.

We were about an hour from Waco and it was almost noon so Dean suggested we stop in Mexia to have lunch.  I checked Trip Advisor real quick and there were great reviews on The Farm House so we headed there.  It looked busy, which is always a good sign.  I thought it was pretty neat looking inside so I took a snapshot.  Here it is.

The food was great.  I chose 2 fried shrimp and 2 catfish fillets.  It included hushpuppies and two sides and I chose coleslaw and fried okra.  It was delicious.  I think I might have liked the coating on the shrimp better than any other we had.  It was very light.  They had peach cobbler for dessert but we were just too full to have any.

We were quite fortunate to arrive at Magnolia at a bit of a lull.  While there were several people in the store it did not seem many cars were parked close by.  Before we left, the store was getting quite full and there were cars everywhere.  I really enjoyed getting to see the store even though it was small and while I did not buy any decoration pieces, I did buy a T-shirt which I really like.  I went back and forth between it and a coffee cup and finally decided I had enough coffee cups, but can you ever have enough T-shirts?

Inside of Magnolia Store.

Outside shot of Magnolia Store.

I really liked the way the sign was made out of mismatched letters.
The store was pretty small but it had many nice things.  Unfortunately my house decoration is quite different.  I have no desire to change it due to the cost involved in doing so but think I would like this shabby chic type style.  I love all of the decorating Joanna does on the show.  I was amazed at the number of pieces that people were purchasing while I was in the store.  Many women had numerous items they were bringing to the registers, but still shopping.

When we left the store we headed to the silo's.  If you watch Fixer Uppers you know they recently purchased some abandoned property near downtown Waco where two old silo's set along with some other buildings.  They are hurriedly working on getting final touches done as there were a number of workers on site moving around outside and on top of the large white building (I assume this will be the new store).  They have a grand opening planned for the end of October.  The entire work area was blocked off with fencing so you could not get close and that only makes sense with construction taking place.  I would not be surprised at all if one or both Chip and Joanna would have been in the building.  So wish our timing would have been such that we could have visited the new store which is supposed to have quadruple the space of their current store....per something I read somewhere.

If you enlarge this picture you might see some of the workers on the roof.

Here are numerous shots of the silo's and outbuildings.

I do hope they have a lot of parking nearby as I believe they will need it. 

When we left there I had a great shot of the ALICO building which you see in a night shot of Waco included in Fixer Upper's show overview, and a pretty decent one of the McClennan County Courthouse.  What a beautiful structure it was. 


As we left Waco we crossed the Brazos River so I was able to get a picture of it.  It was very pretty with walkways running along the riverbank. 

When we got back Dean talked with Deryl, our RV dealer, about the roller under the refrigerator that has been giving us problems.  He asked if we could send a picture of our flooring.  They will see if the factory might have a piece to repair the tear that was made by the slide.

Tomorrow many other Heartland Owners will be coming in so we look forward to visiting with them.

Wednesday, October 6, 2015 - Bullard, Texas

About mid-morning we started seeing several Heartland's pulling into the park including a few folks we knew.  We needed to make a Wal-Mart run so I would have something to make for our potluck on Saturday evening and we needed a few other things as well, so we headed to nearby Jacksonville, TX.  After we returned I cut up broccoli and cauliflower for lunch.  We set outside for awhile and visited with a few people as they walked by.

We really didn't do much today.  I did a little cleaning around the RV, dusting, vacuuming, etc. and just visiting with folks. 

Tonight I fixed a pork roast that we had with a loaded baked potato.  Pretty tasty.  We walked over a few sites to visit with Paul and Nan Lineen.  We met them at the Oklahoma rallies although they live here in Texas, and only about 30 minutes from the park.

Tonight most of the Heartland Owners that are in the park drove about one half mile east to eat dinner.  Hondo and Shorty's was a great little restaurant with a pretty decent menu and very affordable prices.  Dean and I both had the chicken tenders, fried okra and one other side.  I had cole slaw and I don't remember what Dean had but we both thought  our meals were very good.  There were four others at our table and they all said they too enjoyed their meals. 

When we returned we decided to stay here at Bentley although several were getting together for some games at the rally room.  We'll catch up with everyone tomorrow.

Friday, October 8, 2015 - Bullard, Texas

This morning there was a breakfast for the Heartland Owners who have arrived.  One of the Texas members cooked breakfast of scrambled eggs, sausage and bacon.  Another member made pancakes.  There were numerous breads, fruit and muffins to go along with them.  In addition to coffee there were several types of juices.  What a great breakfast!  We set with the Chapter Leaders from South Texas, along with Connie from Ohio.  Connie and her husband full-time.  They own a travel agency which they can operate from any place they have internet connection. We had a great time talking to this couple (Tom and Marti) and Connie about places to visit across the United States.  Time flew and before we knew it was nearly 10:00.  We have met some of the nicest people and really enjoy our time at these rallies.

We moved around talking to various people in the park today.  One of our stops was at Orville and Barbara Wright's.  They live near Moore, OK and have made it through two or three tornadoes.  Sometimes I think Southeast Kansas has it bad, but Moore seems to be a major attraction for tornadoes.   Barbara quilts and she was kind enough to show me some of her work.  I really think I'd like to try one but not sure how well I will do.  I guess I won't know unless I jump right in.  We set outside for a while earlier in the morning but it was pretty warm in the afternoon as the temperatures were over 90 today and yesterday.  Sure would like to see some 70 degree temperatures.

We made hash tonight from the leftover pork roast.  It sure was good.  I am so glad Dean introduced me to this when we met.  It's one of my top 5 favorite meals.  I also made the crust for four-layer dessert that I will take to the pot-luck dinner on Saturday evening.

Tonight there was a meet and greet at the rally hall.  The Chapter Leader for the South Texas group brought several containers of Blue Bell ice cream that had everyone cheering.  I guess North Texas does not yet have Blue Bell back on the shelves after the big issue they had earlier this year.  We rarely have Blue Bell but what we had tonight was pretty good.  We enjoyed our time at the meet and greet.  Usually they play board games as well as Mexican train but tonight only Mexican train was on the agenda so we headed back to Bentley at 9:30.  It wasn't long before we headed to bed.

Saturday, October 9, 2015 - Bullard, Texas

Dean got around this morning and headed up to the rally hall to have doughnuts and coffee.   He said it was mostly guys who showed up.  He was really happy they had an apple fritter and he told me it was delicious.  I asked if there were any left over and when he said yes, I asked why he did not bring me one.  He said there wasn't a sign saying it was also carry-out.  :(

While he was gone I did up the dishes from last night's supper since I didn't have time to do them last night, made the bed and made the next layer for my dessert.  Once I showered I added the next layer and after doing my hair and makeup I added the last layer.  I'm ready for tonight.

We set outside for awhile.  It was surprising how the temperatures dropped overnight.  It feels about 60-65 outside with a nice breeze.  I think it's supposed to warm back up this afternoon though.

About 11 we walked down to David and Donna Williams', new to them, RV.  Since we saw them in Durant last year they upgraded from a Big Country to a Landmark.  They plan to go full-time when David retires in a year or so.  It was a beautiful rig, about 4 feet longer than our Bentley.  They probably have an extra 2 feet in the living/kitchen area, 1 in the bathroom and another in the bedroom.  It's amazing what 4 feet will give you in space.  I love looking at other's rigs as everyone has great ideas.  Two they have done is adding tension bars to shelving in the back of the closet and also wire shelving to hold shoes.  Both of these will be happening in Bentley over the winter.  Such a great use of space that could be better utilized.  We oohed and awed over all the extras and left about 30 minutes later so we could have a little lunch and let David get back to cleaning the outside of their RV.

After our lunch, Dean was watching the golf game and I worked on the blog for an hour or so.  We took a walk over to the next row of RV's where a guy was set up to test air pressure gauges for free.  Ours tested 2-3 pounds heavier than what it should which wasn't too bad.  I wanted to take some pictures of the park to include in the blog so we walked around a bit and then stopped to visit with Flora Tayloe and our neighbor a few doors over, Nan.  We soon headed back to Bentley as I want to get as much done on the blog as possible today.  I hope to post tonight after the pot-luck dinner.

We will pull out tomorrow morning and head to McAlister, OK for an overnight stay before moving on to Grove, OK to attend an Escapees rally before heading home.  I suspect Dean will be making a drive to Oswego on Monday or Tuesday from Grove just to check things out. He is really having withdrawals!  He's done great though and I am proud of him for making this sacrifice for me.  We've had a good time and done very well living together in a small space for two and a half months.  Of course if the weather is nice the whole outdoors is our living room.  How nice!

Here are some pictures of the park.

The two pictures above were taken Friday evening. 

These pictures were taken Saturday afternoon as we made our walk around the park.

This is the sand volleyball and pool area.

You can see the pool better in this picture.  This large garage door opens to provide fresh air during the summer.

Notice all the flags.  A number of the rally members are veteran's.  I love seeing the flags fly on their rigs.

This is the large building I mentioned in an earlier post where two RV's can pass through the center as they check in and leave the park.

Our Bentley

View behind our rig.

Everyone met at the rally hall around 5:45 as the plan was to take a group picture of us before our evening pot-luck meal.  The smoked meat of turkey, brisket and sausage was provided by the North Texas Chapter with all of the sides provided by the Heartland RVer's attending the rally.  There was so much food.  I made a four layer dessert and it was all gone at the end of the evening.  I was so glad I didn't have to take any home and be tempted with it for the next day or so.

There are some great cooks in this bunch.  Something new that I've never experienced before was corn pudding.  It was almost like a custard topping over the corn portion and it was delicious!

We said our goodbyes to a number of friends this evening as we plan to leave by 9:30.  By the time we get around and pack up we won't have time to really see anyone before we take out.  Jay Coffman walked with us back to Bentley as we discussed some upcoming rallies for 2016.  Branson in April and Las Vegas in October.  We definitely plan to make it to Branson but we just aren't sure about Las Vegas yet.

Next time you hear from me we'll probably be in Grove, OK. 

Friday, October 9, 2015

October 2-3, 2015 - Minden, LA - Beaver Dam Campground at Caney Lakes Recreation Area

October 2-3, 2015 - Minden, LA - Beaver Dam Campground at Caney Lakes Recreation Area

Friday, October 2, 2015

 We left the campground at 9:45 this morning and headed west which took us along the Barnett Reservoir where we discovered there was a beautiful drive on the Natchez Trace Parkway.  We were so glad the GPS headed us in this direction as it was a beautiful drive for several miles.  We followed the bank of the Reservoir for most of the drive and discovered they have a beautiful bike trail here that evidently is quite well known by bicyclists. 
Natchez Trace Parkway

Barnett Reservoir

Barnett Reservoir along Natchez Trace Parkway
In no time we were crossing the Mississippi River and driving into Louisiana.  One thing we noticed right away was the change in the landscape.  In Mississippi there were lots of pine trees and the land immediately turned flat and open as we crossed the River into Louisiana.  While pine trees did come back into the scenery as we moved on west it was interesting how it changed so drastically right at the river.
Bridge between Mississippi and Louisiana.  Notice the flag on the bridge to the right.

Entering Louisiana.
We ran across a few cotton fields soon after that and I snapped a few pictures.  These were a little better pictures than the previous ones I shared.

Cotton Fields.
As we passed through Monroe, LA I was reminded that our son Marc had mentioned the Duck Commander store was here, of the Duck Dynasty fame.  We discussed the possibility of driving back here to visit if the drive isn’t too far.  
About an hour later we arrived in Minden, LA.  I had read about their historical district on Trip Advisor so I was expecting something really nice but was pretty disappointed.  I really didn’t see any shops to visit.  The road to the campground took us right through some of the downtown which isn't much fun if you hit it when it’s busy.  It’s one thing in just a vehicle but entirely different when pulling a 36’ RV behind you, but as usual Dean did a great job of maneuvering Bentley through the twists and turns.
We are staying in the Kisatche National Forest at the Caney Lakes Recreation Area in the Beaver Dam Campground. 
I have to say Louisiana had the worse roads of any state for the longest period of driving we have done.  It started on the east side and was that way all the way to the west side and in all of the towns we visited.  The drive to the campground seemed like it would go on forever and of course we had to drive slow due to the condition of the road.  Once we turned on to the park road I realized we might have a problem here as it did not appear we would have a signal for our phone or any internet service at all. 
We finally decided on site 20, since many of the sites had reserved placards on them.  I called early that morning to see if they had plenty of sites.  The ranger advised they had many sites available so we were surprised there were so many reservation placards as you can only reserve so many days prior.  Our site is pretty nice here, being both level and on gravel.  We have a view out the front door of nice pine trees where we can see glimpses of Caney Lake.  It is a nice large gravel spot with both water and electric hookups.  They provide a grill, fire ring and a picnic table for each site.  We found when setting outside sometimes you could pick up a signal on the phone but it was not constant and it did not work inside at all.  Originally we planned to spend four nights here but due to the lack of phone signal we decided to cut our stay here by two nights and we will go on to Bullard, TX a little sooner.

Our view from Bentley's front door.
Our site, #20.

So here is our bad news for the day – ha, you thought it was the lack of phone and internet signal, right?  Nope, this tops that.  I was putting the slides out in the living area.  I watch as both go out to be sure nothing has moved during our travels that might be in the way of the slides as they go out.  As I looked from the dining side back to the kitchen I looked down at the floor and the roller evidently is not working again.  Something had caught the vinyl flooring and ripped it back several inches in a big V.  You can only imagine how I felt seeing that, especially since we thought that problem was behind us.  There isn’t anything we can do about it now so we’ll go back to putting the metal plate down and Dean trying to lift the kitchen side of the slide as I bring it in and take it out until we get home and Deryl can look at it.  Oh well, at least we can get it in and out.  I’m thankful for that.
We took a walk around the loop of the campground.  Dean took a look at the reservation placards on some of the sites to discover most of them were old – as much as a month!  We passed up some nice spots because the reservation placards were there.  That was a bit frustrating.  Oh well, the one we have is fine, however one of the spots we had looked at had a really beautiful and open view of the lake. 
I wanted to find a laundromat so we could hit Bullard with everything clean.  We headed into town and after literally driving all over Minden, we finally found a laundromat.  Our first try took us to the far west side of town and we never did find a laundromat, then a second selection took us to the east side but it turned out to be a cleaners.  I went in to ask where a laundromat was located and they sent us on east and then back south, then back west.  After 30 minutes of driving around we finally found it.  I will say even though it didn’t look that great from the outside or inside, the machines seemed to be clean and the dryers worked better than any others we’ve used in other laundromats on this trip.  In less than two hours we had everything done and we headed back to Bentley.
After dinner of macaroni with meat sauce we settled in for some TV (fortunately we picked up several local channels) before heading to bed.

Saturday, October 3, 2015

I woke up about 6:30 this morning.  I read some on my Kindle since I was unable to get online to read my daily RV blogs. 
After breakfast we discussed our plans for the day and we decided we would drive back to West Monroe, LA and visit the Duck Commander headquarters.  The drive was still bumpy but not as bad without Bentley following us.  I’m not sure what I was expecting but more than what was there.  It was a large metal building that was pretty plain.  Here are a couple of pictures I took.  Their large trailer with pictures of the Duck Dynasty crew painted on the side was sitting out front.

Duck Commander Trailer in front of warehouse.

Store entrance
Us in front of warehouse/store building.

Upon entering the store, a young lady immediately asked us to step over to a site where they handed Dean a “toy” gun and asked us to pose for a picture.  We looked around the warehouse which was mostly T-shirts, sweatshirts, memorabilia and of course the various Duck Commander duck calls.  It was interesting and I’m glad we went, but really not what I thought we would see.  We did buy the picture of us for a souvenir.  Since we purchased it we also received the rights to email it to others and or post it to Facebook.  I emailed it to myself and then sent it to a few family members.  Here it is for everyone else to see.


I took this selfie as we were leaving in front of the building and then we headed out to find some place to have lunch.  We decided to take local highways back to Minden rather than the Interstate.  We stopped in Ruston, LA at a local Popeye’s.  Dean told me it was my turn to pick out where to eat.  I really like Popeye’s, especially their red beans and rice. 
We enjoyed the drive back and passing through the small communities.  We set outside for awhile before I made our dinner of taco salads.  We spent time figuring out our route to Bullard for tomorrow before heading to bed.