Monday, April 30, 2007


We have been traveling for eleven months now and so far we love it. I love getting up in the morning and taking off into the unknown. We prefer the smaller two lane highways to the four or more lane freeways because you are off the beaten path, visiting small towns you have never heard of as opposed to the huge cities along the freeway system. One sees real America along the smaller roads, and we've enjoyed meeting folks and talking to them about their little towns. If we eat lunch in a cafe we pick the small "mom and pop" type places, often named Main Street Cafe or some other imaginative name. I don't think we've eaten at the chain fast food places except for one in Pamana City that proved to be a disaster, which I figure indicated that we shouldn't be there!

But now we are sitting still. We are parked at the State Park close to our home town; a park where we used to hike several times a week when we lived here in a real house. It's a couple of miles out of town, but not too far to run in for coffee, internet access, or visiting family and friends. And it's a fun place for grandkids to come and visit us. The campground is a wealth of nature....wood ticks, snakes, toads, and all things spring! This afternoon I plan to check the spot where we know the spring flowers bloom earliest, and we need to hike down the trail where the wild plum trees must be in flower because I can smell the perfume on the air in the late afternoon.

Sitting still for awhile is good, especially in a familiar place where family and friends live. We look forward to our next adventure which is New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, PEI and New Foundland as dear friends from hubby's Air Force days are joining us and traveling with us to the Maritime provinces, and we are really looking forward to catching up on the past 25 years. But I am more than content to be sitting still right now. I need my grandkid fix!

Wednesday, April 25, 2007


One week and 1300 miles later, and I am finally back online! We left the Air Force base near Baltimore last Thursday and went to Hagerstown to stay in our friends' backyard while we visited with them and saw the historical sites in that area. We had a wonderful time with Glenn and Carole! Thanks for all the driving you did, all the time you spent showing us around, and all the food we ate. We love you guys! We also got to meet their two daughters and their families. You have a wonderful family and we hope we can see everyone again sometime.

On Friday we went to Gettysburg and on Saturday we went to Antietem and Harper's Ferry. I will post some pictures later from those visits. It was very sobering to be in the spots of the bloodiest battle of the Civil War one day, and on the next day be at the location of the bloodiest day of the Civil War where 23,000 were killed, wounded or captured in one day. From those numbers you would think that it must have covered a huge area. No, it was in a small woods and a cornfield! Unbelievable and extremely emotional.

On Sunday morning we took off for Minnesota, traveling through the beautiful hills of Maryland, West Virginia, and Pennsylvania on into the flat countryside of Ohio. Our resting spot for the night was a WalMart parking lot, my favorite camp spot. NOT! Monday morning we realized that we had gone over 400 miles the day before, and if we kept on that pace we could be in Minnesota by Tuesday afternoon. So, off we went, determined to keep on that schedule. On Monday night the WalMart parking lot was very small, and very full, so we didn't see an available spot to park. However, hubby spied the empty lot across the street in front of a huge grocery store that had closed. There were several semi trucks in the lot, so he decided we could park there too. So our spot that night was in front of an unidentified empty store. NICE.

But by 3:30 on Tuesday afternoon, we were set up in a site at our hometown's nearby state park! We're home! We haven't even called all the kids to let them know yet, but that is the next thing on our list of to-dos. We have seen my mom and my sister, and one daughter, son-in-law and three grandkids. We've a long way to go before we have seen all, and I am so excited to see everyone. I have missed everyone so much! I wouldn't have given up the past eleven months because we have seen so much of our great country on our travels, but my heart has ached with missing the grandkids. I'm so glad we're home!

Tuesday, April 17, 2007


My sister's email this morning started off "I am grieving with the nation today." I'm guessing that's what everyone is feeling today. I feel kind of numb, horrified at the pictures and vivid descriptions, yet mesmerized by the stories of heroism and bravery. Maybe my having worked at a college for 18 years brings me a bit closer to the whole event. I never could have imagined something like this happening at my college; yet I'm sure the majority of the students and employees at Virginia Tech felt that nothing like that could happen at their college either. It's sad, it's shocking, and it's unbelievable, yet it's a fact. It happened. Join me in praying for the families and friends of the victims, for those injured, and for the whole college community. They have very difficult days ahead of them. One news broadcaster this morning described just how horrible it will be for the students that lived through the massacre. He said that no one, except those in WWII, those in Vietnam, or those in Baghdad, has ever witnessed killings of such proportions. I pray that those students know where to go for their help....."I will lift up my eyes unto the hills from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the Lord who made heaven and earth." They will find lasting comfort in no place but His arms.

Monday, April 16, 2007


Yesterday it rained all day, quite heavy rain actually. I heard amounts of three inches and above. There is a lot of flooding around here, and now today with the brisk wind there are trees that pulled out of the soft ground and have blocked highways. Imagine the huge traffic jams that is creating! I'm sure glad we aren't driving anywhere today as I think there would be a little road rage involved.

We went to the post exchange and hubby purchased a new halibut and salmon fishing pole. We aren't planning a trip to Alaska this summer, but I guess he wants to be prepared for next year. He said it was a very good buy, so I guess it's okay. Then we came back to Panera for lunch so we could get online and check bank, email, and blogs.

And now I want to go across the street to the mall to look for a new pair of jeans. They're hard to find though, as I want top quality for a very cheap price. Think I'll find any?

Sunday, April 15, 2007


This harbor in Annapolis is the place where Kunte Kinte, the ancestor of Alex Haley who wrote the book and TV series "Roots", landed when he came over on a slave ship. The plaques have a very good message, and the figures of Haley and the children are very nicely done.


Good afternoon. Following a nice service at Christ Lutheran Church in Columbia, Maryland, we are now sitting at Panera where they have a wonderful French onion soup and wireless internet. What more could you want?

On Friday we took a trip to Annapolis. What a beautiful, historic town! We first went on a tour of the historic section, then took off on our own after we learned the lay of the city. It was easy to find our way around, and we soon were headed for the Naval Academy. But first lunch. We ate at the most unique cafe I have ever seen. I don't think they pay much attention to fire codes in this place because there is no way this little place would have passed! The aisle was one person wide. The little tables were about 18 inches apart, and the capacity must have been about half as many people as were actually in there. The noise was overwhelming and I thought of my grandson who has issues with that kind of commotion. He wouldn't have lasted 30 seconds in there. As it was, I had to really focus to stay long enough to eat my lunch. There were signs posted on every available space, things dangling from the ceiling, and pictures and posters of everything imaginable. The sandwich was very good, though!

Then we went to check out the United States Naval Academy for one of our grandkids. It's an excellent education Caleb, and you need to keep your grades up, be physically fit, and participate in community activities. Good thing you have good grades, run track and play basketball. Keep it up. I'm posting a couple of pictures for you. One is of the huge building where all 4300 midshipmen live and one is of the lawn area when some of the men and women were getting out of class.

Thursday, April 12, 2007


My sister has a new grandson, so I am a new great auntie! The baby is just under 4 pounds but is healthy. You'd best grow quickly Jakob. The ball diamond is waiting for you. Here's a picture just for you ~ a baseball signed by Babe Ruth!


The Smithsonian American History Museum is closed for renovation, but they have a few of their most popular exhibits on display at the Air and Space Museum. We viewed that display yesterday, and I took these pictures especially for you grandkids. (Just thought I'd name you all even if you aren't interested in the pictures!)

Here is the real C3PO from Star Wars.
This is the real Mr. Rogers' sweater!

Below are the Straw man and R2D2.

This last one is especially for Jaden. It's Dorothy's real ruby shoes!

Tuesday, April 10, 2007


Tomorrow would be one week since I've been online. There is just no place on this post to find a wireless connection. Don't these people realize I need my technology? We finally came to the library and are using their computers, so I won't be able to post any pictures, but I did want to update my blog.

Last Thursday we started our marathon sightseeing by going to the Capitol where we found that all the tour spots had been given out. We then went to the Botanical Gardens, the Air and Space Museum, the Castle, and had a wonderful lunch at the Native American Museum. The cafeteria is divided into five different regions of Native American food. Because four of our kids are members of a northern tribe, we decided on the Northern Plains section. We had scrumptious maple roasted turkey with wild cranberries, maple baked beans, and roasted root vegetables. It was a wonderful meal and I would love to try something from each of the other different areas.

On Friday we went to Arlington National Cemetery. It was a beautiful day. The blue skies, fluffy clouds, and flowering trees hid the fact that the nights had been down in the twenties. We watched the moving changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknowns, viewed the Kennedy grave sites, walked many miles of beautiful roadways in the cemetery, and ended up at the Women's Memorial. That was a beautiful building and the display of painted pictures of the men and women who have given their lives in the war against terror was very moving. I recognized the picture of Lori Ann, the friend of Jessica Lynch, and of Patrick Tillman. People have left letters, notes, flags, coins, teddy bears, and other objects by the pictures.

Friday evening we went to services in Columbia, about fifteen minutes away from where we're parked at Fort Meade. The gal sitting behind us leaned over to me and said she had heard us tell the pastor the name of the town where we were from, and she said her uncle used to be a pastor in that town. I asked his name, and when she told me I replied "and his daughter Ann went to the college where I worked for 18 years!" So we kept alive our finding connections at every different church we've attended in our travels.

On a cold, snowy, blustery Saturday we went to all the memorials down on the National Mall. We started at the Lincoln Memorial, then the Viet Nam Wall, on to the Korean, FDR, Jefferson, and Washington Memorials. It was supposed to be peak viewing of the cherry blossoms, and the next day was the big Cherry Festival doings. Guess what? Due to 25 degrees, snow, and high winds, the blossoms were a huge disappointment.

Sunday we attended the beautiful Easter services at the church in Columbia. We sang all the beautiful He's Risen hymns and heard again the wonderful message that He is risen indeed! Our Easter dinner was a 6 inch sub from Subway! Then we headed to the National Zoo to see the panda bears. The newest baby is now 125 pounds, so not so small anymore, but they are hoping for another. The mama had just undergone a "procedure" and they are hoping they will have another baby. The zoo is very nice and is free!

This brings you almost up to date. Hubby is not happy with the library computer as it keeps locking him out, so he went out to the truck. I will end here and hopefully will find a wireless connection soon so I can use my own computer and post some pictures. Stay tuned for the continuing adventures of two retirees who are lovin' it!

Wednesday, April 04, 2007


We have been down south where it was quite warm, upper 80's, for the past couple of weeks. That has all come to a screeching halt and they are forecasting lows in the lower 20's later this week. We live in an RV, remember, and will need to be concerned about freezing pipes. What a difference a day or two makes!

On Monday we left Seymour Johnson AFB in North Carolina and neaded north to Fort Hill near Bowling Green, Virginia. It was a small campground on a huge, hilly, tree covered, training base. We spent two quiet nights there. The town of Bowling Green was a picturesque little place, again full of history. Lafayette and men camped in the town square in 1781, and a nearby farm was the hiding place of John Booth after he fled Washington.

We left Fort Hill this morning, and are now parked at Fort Meade, Maryland, between Washington and Baltimore. The plan is to head out in the morning to see if we can master the Metro.

We are online tonight via an RVer's satellite system. He lets fellow travelers use his wireless hotspot, so we're checking email and blogs from our RV. Much more comfortable on this cold, windy night, than having to run off to the library or to the rec center.

Sunday, April 01, 2007


We have spent a pleasant half week in North Carolina. Willmington was very nice. We visited a wonderful antebellum mansion there and took a horse drawn carriage ride through the historic part of the city. There are hundreds of Civil War era homes there, all beautifully restored to their historical look on the outside, but filled with families living in them with today's modern furnishings. I think that's neat. The outside look is totally authentic, thus giving pleasure to the visitor's eyes. I'll post pictures of a couple of those homes.

You could see that the people took a lot of pride in their homes, as the paint jobs were fresh, the porches nicely decorated with my favorite rocking chairs and plants, and the yards were blooming with many kinds of spring flowers, azaleas being the favorite, it seems.

The carriage ride around the historic section was very interesting. All the horses that work for this company are rescued horses! Horses that couldn't be trained to do farm work properly are bought by this company and are patiently trained to pull a carriage with up to a dozen folks perched high up in their seats on the carriage. The horses seemed very at home in the hustle and bustle of the traffic, as cars, buses, huge SUVs and vehicles of every size and shape rushed by and they didn't blink an eye or take one mis-step. I was very impressed with the horses and the driver. He had exceptional knowledge of his city and the dates and occupants of the homes rolled off his tongue effortlessly. It was great fun.

This morning we attended services at a small LC-MS church that we found listed in the phone book, one of only 3 Lutheran churches in the city we're staying in. It was a very tiny church, probably only about 30-35 folks in attendance this morning, but, as usual, we found a connection. Seems the pastor's daughter is considering attending college guessed it!.....the college that hubby and I just retired from! I find it amazing that we are always able to find a connection somehow. It was a beautiful Palm Sunday service, and as always, I left refreshed and better equiped to face the world for another week.