American by birth, Southern by the grace of God.
Louis Grizzard, a great American
It's choice ~ not chance ~ that determines your destiny.
Jean Nidetch

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Sunday, November 30, 2008

~ Project 365 Day 22 ~

Moving Day

From John Tanner State Park in Carrollton GA....with a stop at MacD's for breakfast......

To cousin's Marilyn's in Chipley, Florida.....

Saturday, November 29, 2008

~ Project 365 Day 21 ~

Not my sign........but I wish it was!

Friday, November 28, 2008

Thursday, November 27, 2008

~ Project 365 Day 19 ~

Happy Turkey Day !

Our family in Georgia is so spread out that we are not all getting together for Thanksgiving this year. My Mother (from Buford) is going to my Brother's in Watkinsville. Our son and his family (from Flowery Branch) will be getting together with his wife's family. We will be going to our daughter's house, about 30 minutes away in Douglasville for Thanksgiving dinner with all the traditional fixins.

Today started out pretty cool outside....not freezing, but close. There are a lot of campers here this week, even with the cold temps. Of the 32 sites, I think about 20 are taken. Lots of families celebrating the holiday.

After a quick breakfast of coffee, bagels and cream cheese, we got things together to take to Samantha's for dinner. DSiL, Nate's, parents were coming and bringing the turkey. Samantha had a ham, green bean casserole, sweet potatoes with the little marshmallows on top, crescent rolls and corn bread dressing. I made the dressing when we got there while she was doing the other dishes. Those are all of the traditional dishes we always have on Thanksgiving for as far back as I can remember. We had a good time visiting with the other grandparents and playing with the three boys.

Corn Bread Dressing

Green Bean Casserole
Sweet potato casserole

DGS, Kyle (5), has been with us at the camper since Saturday (his school was out this week) so we took him home and brought the next one, Logan (2 1/2) with us back to the camper to stay until we take him home on Saturday when we'll say our goodbyes for a while as we head back to Florida for a visit and then to Texas. Tomorrow is supposed to be a nice day so we will probably have one last camp fire and Logan can roast marshmallows for s'mores.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

~ Project 365 Day 17 ~

A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving. 35 years old and still a classic.
(copied, not photographed)

~ Photo Hunt - Reflections ~

Reflections..........of the day, week, month, year.

Something new I'm trying. Photo Hunt is about themed photos you take each week. Go to their web site for more information.

Monday, November 24, 2008

~ Project 365 Day 16 ~

"Bambi" chili. Tasted no different than beef.....just a little milder. I just have a mental block that prevents me from actually eating it.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

~ Project 365 Day 15 ~

Out of school for Thanksgiving and camping with Nana & Papa.

~ Project 365 Day 14 ~

At least he's honest.

Friday, November 21, 2008

~ Project 365 Day 13 ~

This is a copy of the land grant from the War Department for 160 acres given for service in the American Revolution to my great, great, great, great grandfather in 1818. He choose Greene County, Georgia, and lived there with his wife Mary until his death in 1848. He was 85 years old. John Shaw 1763-1848

Thursday, November 20, 2008

~ Project 365 Day 12 ~

Couldn't resist one more chili dog!

~ Letter to the Honorable Sonny Perdue, Governor of Georgia ~

Dear Sonny,

I don’t want to see on TV, read about, or hear another !*&%*^! word about the !*&%*^! scallops or oysters or clams or any other slimy (yet tasty) creature in Apalachicola Bay, Florida. Lake Lanier in northeast Georgia can not give them any more water! The dock in the first picture is my Mother’s dock in front of her house on Lake Lanier. The boathouse is supposed to be hooked to the dock, not 40 feet down a hill.

The dock....high and dry

The drought in Georgia has taken a toll on the area lakes, and this one in particular. Florida keeps yelling about more fresh water needs to be sent down the Chattahoochee River (which they call the Apalachicola River after it crosses the border) to keep the scallop and oyster beds alive. If Lake Lanier dies (and it’s pretty close now) just as many people in Georgia will be out of work as in Florida. There are marinas, boat dealers, restaurants, rental homes, boat repair shops, boat dock workers/builders, campgrounds, etc., all relying on the lake for their businesses……not to mention the decline in property value for home owners on the lake. All the recreational value of the lake to Atlanta and the surrounding area has dried up. People are afraid to go sailing or jet skiing because the water is so shallow and the Corps of Engineers can’t mark all the hazardous areas fast enough. And who would want to go swimming in that, even if you could make your way down to the water’s edge through the gunk?

Come on Sonny. Hold your position and don’t give up any more water. You wimped out on the flag issue but don’t wimp out on this!

Susan Shepard, a concerned Georgia citizen.

This picture shows the second dock which is totally grounded while down below is the floating dock and pontoon boat.

Looking to the left along the shore

Looking to the right along the shore

Footnote: These pictures show only one cove on the lake, which has 700 miles of shoreline. The entire lake is in very bad shape.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

~ Project 365 Day 11 ~

Brrrrrrrrrrrrr......had to break out the purple fuzzies! 18 degrees in Carrollton, Georgia, is too cold for November. 11 days to FLA!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

~ Project 365 Day 8 ~

Visiting Scott and Angelia in Flowery Branch, GA
Mackenzie & Ethan

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Friday, November 14, 2008

~ Project 365 Day 6 ~


Tops on my Bucket List

Thursday, November 13, 2008

~ Project 365 Day 5 ~

*****When all else fails, make Cup Cakes*****

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

~ Project 365 Day 4 ~

Beautiful fall leaves in Georgia

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Monday, November 10, 2008

~ Project 365 Day 2 ~

Meet our new best friend, Mr. Tom. He is a real genius!

Mr. Tom

Sunday, November 9, 2008

~ PROJECT 365 DAY 1 ~

I thought the best way to begin my Project 365 was with a picture of the camera I use. It's a Kodak Ease Share Z650 with 10X Zoom. Not too big, not too little...just right for me. I've had it about 1 & 1/2 years now. I love the zoom feature.

And here is my first real picture for Project 365, even though I didn't take it today I did take it a few weeks ago. If anyone is ever in Atlanta and needs directions on the Northwest side of town, the Big Chicken is given as a reference point. I guess it's the original KFC store. Hey - I can't find her on my Bird Watcher's Life List! Aw shucks.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

~ The best laid plans........ ~

Here we are just a little over a year since retiring and hitting the road. We find ourselves in our home state of Georgia. In the past year we have been to Florida and Georgia……..our pitiful version of hitting the road.

Money, or the lack of it, was always a good excuse for staying close but we could volunteer in Utah or Virginia for the same cost as volunteering in Georgia or Florida, except for gas. Gas played a part in our choices when it was upwards to $4.00 a gallon and we drove a motor home and a truck too heavy for the MH to tow. Now it’s down to around $2.00 a gallon so we can fill up the truck for $50 instead of $100. That’s a big difference.

Another excuse was the fact that I was scared to go any distance in the motor home. I was afraid it would break down somewhere and we would be stuck far, far away. We have a travel trailer now and that old fear is mostly replaced with the lesser fear of the tow vehicle dying.

I’ve decided that in order to travel and see the things we want to see and do, I have to let go of the bigger fear……I must be okay with leaving my family (mother, kids, grandkids, cousins, etc.). That is what is holding us back. At least that is what is holding me back. Sam was ready to go months ago. I have convinced myself that everyone will be okay if we are gone for a few months and I won’t miss them so much if we are having a wonderful time. Right?

With that said, we have plans to leave December 10th from Florida and travel along I-10, stopping whenever and wherever we want. We plan to travel no more than 200 miles a day and stay overnight for several nights at the time. We are going to spend several weeks in Texas along the I-10 corridor around Beaumont, Houston, San Antonio and San Marcos. We may find workamper jobs along the way or not. If we make it to El Paso that will be a great accomplishment! Then on through New Mexico and Arizona. We will probably visit Quartzsite while in that area. We are looking to arrive at Las Vegas by mid-February and will work at the NASCAR race the end of February and first of March.
I'd like to see this!

Is this a problem in Texas??

After March 2nd, we will start back home probably along I-40 most of the way. We need to be home to visit for a while because we have a job at Adventureland in Iowa beginning the latter part of April which last for 5 months through the end of September.

The rest of November, I’ll be spending time looking online and finding areas of interest to visit on our trip. We don’t want to be tied to a specific schedule so we’ll just play it by ear as we go along. That is also a new one for me as I always make exact plans and reservations for every place we go. It will be different.

Friday, November 7, 2008

~ Melegris Gallopavo ~

It's only fitting that I should see my first Wild Turkey only 3 weeks from Thanksgiving. There were three of them, walking across a field about two miles outside the park. I'm adding her to my Life List. I actually did see one about a year ago but she ran across the road so fast that I didn't realize what happened until she disappeared into the woods. These three were just meandering along without a care in the world, unsuspectful of the hunter we came across a few miles back.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

~ Where does the time go? ~

I wanted to start my Project 365 for the past week but just haven't been able to commit to it. Now I am going to my daughter's tonight to help with sick kids. Probably won't be able to post tomorrow so I decided to start the project on my birthday, November 9th. More on that later.
Here are the boys that came up to visit on Saturday. Tyler, in the middle, is the sick one.

Footnote: Gas was $2.09 in Carrollton, GA!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

~ The Goat Man of John Tanner State Park ~

Our first day as volunteers at John Tanner State Park near Carrollton, Ga., we met the Goat Man. He lives just outside the park and every weekend he brings his two goats (Princess, 17 months and Lil' Mike, 18 months) for a walk through the park and campground. He said he just does it so the kids can see and pet the goats. He told us all about how he gives them baths, grooms them and takes them for rides in his truck. They were very tame and friendly. Princess has tennis balls on her horns because hers are a little sharper than Lil' Mike's and the goat man doesn't want any children to get scratched. Apparently he treats them just like he would treat two dogs.....just part of the family.

The Goat Man with Princess and Lil' Mike

Lil' Mike
Walking the goats

John Tanner State Park is a beautiful park in northwest Georgia. It is just off Interstate 20, west of Atlanta, and only about 20 miles from the Alabama state line. The city of Carrollton is just 5 minutes away and is home to West Georgia College. There are plenty of shops, restaurants, theatres and golfing in Carrollton.

The park itself is best known for having the largest sand swimming beach of any Georgia State Park. There are two lakes for water lovers to boat, fish, swim and rent pedal boats. There are also hiking trails, volleyball on the beach, miniature golf, horseshoes, playgrounds, and picnicking. To stay overnight or longer there is a full facility campground and even six motel-type units located near the beach with fully equipped kitchens. Events are held monthly in the park such as March's Turkey hunting and safety classes and the Triathlon in April, consisting of a 600 meter swim, 11.2 mile bike ride and 3.1 mile run.

The area is especially beautiful in the late fall when the leaves are turning yellow, orange and red. Many of the county roads have gorgeous trees in full color in November. Also nearby is Pickett's Mill Battlefield State Historical Site, one of the best preserved Civil War battlefields in the nation.

We volunteered as Campground Hosts at Tanner for the month of November, 2008. As hosts, we would greet new arrivals in the campground after the office had closed for the day, take their payments and give receipts and answer any questions they might have. We also sold firewood and ice, after hours, for the rangers. During the day, we would ride through the park in the volunteer's golf cart and pick up any trash left behind. We'd also clean out the fire pits when campers left.

We enjoyed our experience at this park so much that we have already signed up for November and December of 2009 and 2010!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

~ Some signs and sights on the way home ~

Alabama has a nice state sign and their tags say "Stars fell on Alabama." Not sure what that means.
This monument was at the Alabama Welcome Center on Hwy. 231

It reads:

The Union’s 22nd State 1819, Dec. 14th
Erected by the State Highway Department of Alabama
Frank M. Dixon-Governor Chris J. Sherlock-Director

This sign directs us to Cottondale, Alabama, which has more cotton fields than I have ever seen. Most of the fields were picked but a few were yet to be done.

Not picked.

Not sure....probably not picked. This field was too distant to tell. The Cotton Picker leaves a lot ot cotton on the plant, mostly on the bottom half.

John Deere cotton picker at work

Close up
Good ol' Georgia State sign. Still proud of those olympics!