Sunday, November 29, 2009


Wednesday, November 25 – Thirty-nine degrees on my thermometer this morning. Good new is the high will be near 80* by noon. Guess you can't get far enough south to escape the night time cold temps.

I've been suffering with BAD BACK problems the last week or so. I've never had back problems in the past so this is frustrating. I saw a doctor before leaving Ohio and with Epidural shots in the back, he got me feeling almost normal. I thought I was fixed-up! Yeah right! It's getting bad enough now that it limits what I feel like doing. It's worse now than it ever was. Any worse and I won't be getting out of bed in the morning. It's okay if I don't move, but that's not a whole lot of fun. I have an appointment with a doctor next Thursday. I hope he has an answer.

Tonight Marsha and I went to the activity center here at Rainbow's End to play Mexican Train. Yeah, I won again......GEESH! Marsha came in second….AGAIN!

Thursday, November 26 – THANKSGIVING! We are headed to Houston to have dinner with Carrie. Plans have changed. Carrie was going to have the dinner at her place, but now we're going to one of her friend's house. It was a very nice Thanksgiving day. The dinner was scrumish. What a delight to be celebrating with a group of young people. Unfortunately, the pictures on the camera didn’t turn out. But just take my word, we all look FABULOUS!

Bella found a new game that she thinks she is pretty good at playing. Nick, one of Carrie’s roommates, has a pool table, and Bella decided to give it a whirl. She couldn’t figure out where it went.


bella-pool bella-pool-2
bella-pool-3 bella-pool-4

Friday, November 27 – Black Friday......yep, I went shopping with Marsha and Carrie. I actually went to the mall....WOW! Unfortunately, my back eventually stiffened up, and we decided to head back to Livingston early. Hope the doctor will be able to subscribe a successful treatment next Thursday.

Saturday, November 28 – Another lazy day. Marsha did decorate for Christmas, including putting up a Christmas tree on the dash for everyone to enjoy. I think she just got started. You better believe it, Paul.


mh inside 

Y’all come back now, ya hear.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


Friday, November 20 – Rainy day here in Lewisville, TX (just north  of Dallas). We enjoyed our leisurely beginning of the day. Will use the rainy day to catch-up with computer stuff, run some errands, and simply relax. We did take a ride around the area. We were amazed at the housing developments. Thousands and thousands of huge houses on tiny lots….allotment after allotment. A very different lifestyle than we were use to in Ohio.
Below are pictures of our campground site and one of the trails. Beautiful place.


More campground pics.


1. DNS Direct TV – We recently subscribed to Distant Network System from Direct TV Satellite. This is an alternative to people who do not have “local” TV stations because they travel. We are unable to receive broadcast by network stations – ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX – because they route through local stations (like Cleveland, Columbus, or Dallas). Therefore, we subscribe to DNS and receive the Network Broadcast from New York City and Los Angeles. As a result be can watch a program on a network at two different times. Example: the Today show out of NYC at 7 a.m. or the same show out of LA at 10 a.m. Pretty neat! Although, we can receive local broadcast over the air using our antenna (the old style of antenna you may have on the roof of your house. Rv's have a similar external antenna called a batwing.) We have to get a converter box since our 2005 TV's do not receive digital broadcasts.

2. Central Time Zone – this really is VERY different than Eastern Time Zone. Even though it is only one hour different, it has a hugh impact on your lifestyle, if you spent most of your life in the Eastern Time Zone like Marsha and I have. Everything you are use to doing occurs one hour earlier. The morning shows are on a 6:00 am, national news at 5:30 pm, Monday Night Football at 8 pm, College Football at noon, and Prime Time broadcast start at 7 pm instead of 8:00. For a morning person like myself, it's great. Although, it's tough to stay awake late at night. It's going to take some getting use to. About the time I adjust, we'll be moving on to Mountain Time Zone.......LOL.

Saturday, November 21 – Took Bella on a hike this morning back in the woods. Saw two deer – one a pretty good size buck. Watched the OSU vs MICH. game. OSU was barely victorious. The campground was packed. Numerous families with tons of young kids. Also, a big group of cub scouts. Everyone was having a blast. Lots of campfires too.

Sunday, November 22 – Burrrr......44* this morning when I got up. What's with this cold stuff???? Travel day today. We are headed back toward Houston for Thanksgiving at Carrie's house. That %&X$! city of Dallas still screwed me up. That town just isn't fit to drive a big MH through. In the future, I'll drive the outer loop!!!

Arrived in Livingston about 1:30. A five hour drive... We're in site 140.

Monday, November 23 – Marsha had a doctor appointment this morning. New doctor in Northern Houston for her Arthritis and Osteoporosis. She really liked the doctor and was happy to be able to see one doctor for both problems.

The highlight of the afternoon was getting our mail. Our new Texan stuff was here....license, bank stuff, and a ton of other mailings. Unfortunately, Marsha's license was screwed up and she had to get her picture retaken. Another bureaucratic delay!

Y’all have a great Thanksgiving, and y’all come back now…..ya hear!

Friday, November 20, 2009


Who says you can’t live in Paradise?


Tuesday, November 17 – Back to Dallas Freightliner for the motor home (MH) front end re-build. I'm not looking forward to the drive through Dallas this morning. Well, the drive wasn't too bad. I only got in a hissyfit one time when we tried to merge and no one would let us in. Finally, a trucker simply stopped his rig in the lane, and I drove on the highway. We arrived at the service facility by 9:30 a.m., checked in, jumped in the car and headed to downtown Dallas for some sightseeing.

Our first stop was the new Dallas Cowboys Stadium. The stadium is located in Arlington. This 1.4 billion dollar stadium was amazing. We took the 2 hour tour and were very pleased with the experience. It is almost uncomfortable to see the lavish spending that went into the building of this facility. No corners were cut in the construction of the largest stadium in the world. Prices at the concession stand will help pay for the construction. $5.50 for a hotdog, $8 for a beer, or you can get a bottled water for a mere $5. Unfortunately, we were not permitted on the field because they were using it for a CPR event. They were breaking the world record for the most people to learn CPR at one time......silly huh! Sadly, we also had to by-pass the cheerleader locker room. Darn! (Paul said that not Marsha.)


More pictures of stadium.

The Texas Rangers stadium is right next door. Although, we did not tour this stadium, it was a very nice looking facility.


We then headed to the Old Red Courthouse. The first courthouse in Dallas. Weird to see this old building right in the middle of skyscrapers.


The highlight of the day was Dealey Plaza. This is the location of President Kennedy assassination on September 22, 1963. Below is a picture of the “grassy knoll” where puffs of smoke were seen. On the fence they have painted the top of two fence posts to indicate where the two shots came from. We met and talked for quite awhile with a man who was there that day. He even had a picture of Kennedy being shot and there he was in the background. He is a firm believer in the conspiracy theory. He swears he heard shots and saw smoke from the grassy knoll area. He was one of 116 eye-witnesses that were interviewed. The street is marked with “X” where Kennedy was hit by the first shot and then 20 yards down the street the second and fatal shot. (Click on More pictures below to see the X on the street.) When you look up at the window where Oswald was supposedly shooting from, it's hare to believe he could have been the only shooter. When you walk over to the grassy knoll area, the multi-shooter theory seems to fit. The bottom two pictures show the window of the Texas School Book Depository, which is now known as the Sixth Floor Museum where Oswald supposedly shoot President Kennedy and the lamppost shows where a piece of his skull was found. Theory is….it is impossible at the angle Oswald had that a piece of skull could land by the lamppost. Spooky to say the least.


More pictures of Dealy Plaza.

We then went over to the cattle drive park. This was a very neat park, Pioneer Plaza Cattle Drive. Pioneer Plaza covers 4.2 acres in Downtown Dallas. There are some 40 bronzed longhorn steers setting a trail down a small hillside as if on a cattle drive. They go through a stream. The Trees and Parks Foundation dedicated this plaza in 1995, to represent the early cattle drives that were part of Texas history. The artist was native Texan Robert Summers. Really cool!


Paul tried to wrestle one of the cattle. Look at the before and after pictures below.


More cattle drive pictures.

That concluded our sightseeing for the day. We had to get back to the Freightliner facility at 4:00 p.m. to pick-up our motor home. When we pulled in, I suddenly had an “uh oh” experience. The motor home was parked right where we left it this morning. It appeared to never been moved. I checked with our service rep, and sure enough they hadn't started yet. GEESH! I was very upset, and let them know it. I didn't vent my anger, but let them know I felt we were being treated very poorly. The manager of the facility came down to speak with us bearing gift. Two very nice Freightliner jackets. I graciously accepted their gift but still expressed my feelings that we were being treated unfairly. They immediately began servicing out MH. Better late then never I guess. Finally, at 9:00 p.m. They had completed the job......I think. We are now in one of their RV hook-up sights waiting until morning to check out. Hmmmmm what should I expect?


Wednesday, November 18 – Camp Freightliner was quiet through the night. We were quite comfortable here. We were ready to roll by 9:00 a.m. Back to the COE (Corp of Engineering) campground north of Dallas. This time we went around the city rather than driving through the heart of town. Finally figuring out this big city driving. At camp I had my first screw-up with the poop dumping. We were hooking up the utilities...electric – ok; water – ok; sewer – uh oh! Something isn't right! When we pulled the valve to dump the tank we had a poop fountain. Sewage squirting all over the ground. The line must be plugged. I went over to the camp host's trailer to tell them. “We don't have sewer hook-up” was her reply. Uhhhh, what's the plastic pipe for that sticks out of the ground? “that's the drain valve for winterizing the campground.” Looks like I had some cleaning up to do....GEESH! Hooked up the water hose and cleaned everything up. First pooper screw-up!

We were happy to relax around the camp site today. Took Bella for a couple of walks. Took a bike ride. Read a little. Visited with other campers. Watched a beautiful sunset. A nice relaxing day.


More campground pictures.

Thursday, November 19 – I got up to watch the sun rise this morning! Marsha and Bella slept....ahhh. Seeing how we went down to the water last night to see the sun set, I thought I should begin the day with a sun rise. Pretty but not gorgeous.....we need some mountains in the background.

We're headed to Fort Worth today. Our first stop is the U.S. Bureau of Engraving & Printing. This is one of two places in the USA where money is printed. Their motto is “The Buck Starts Here!” How clever is our government. The other place is Washington, DC. This was a very interesting tour and FREE! I was surprised when the GPS guided us to a very new building in the suburbs of Ft. Worth. The place was surrounded by triple chain link fencing. Security was tighter than what you see at the typical airport. NO cell phone, NO cameras, NO purses, NO anything but clothes on your back! After passing through metal detectors, which I always set off with my replaced hip, we were led on an hour tour. We walked in an elevated hallway above the production floor. Billions of dollars of money was in view as it was being printed. Amazing! Marsha was ahhhhh struck at the process of making our money. There were also a zillion school groups there for field trips. we miss those teaching days....LOL


We then headed to the Ft. Worth Stockyards. This is the historical area of Ft. Worth where many millions of cattle, pigs, and sheep arrived to be slaughtered. Much of the yards' stock pens still exist and many of the buildings have been converted into little shops and restaurants. The highlight is the cowboys on horse back driving the longhorn cattle through the street to recreate sending them off to market. We then walked through many of the shops. They have a walk of fame for all those that contributed to the Ft. Worth area. Some famous people you may have heard of are Annie Okey and John Wayne. Billy Bob’s is the largest honky-tonk in the USA and is also located near the stockyards. We paid our $1 admissions to walk through the nearly deserted nightclub. Kelly & Scott were here a couple weeks ago on a Friday evening and said it was so crowed they could hardly move. There are two stages for live bands, five or six dance floors and hundreds of feet of bars. There must be seating for a least a thousand people at tables throughout the honky tonk. They also have pool tables, video games, bull riding and a live rodeo on Friday and Saturday nights. All-in-all, it was another day in Paradise.


Lots more great pictures of the cattle drive.

Thanks again for visiting with us. Y'all come now ya hear.

Thursday, November 19, 2009


Monday, November 16 – We had our first windy night in the MH. I got up about 3:30 to take the satellite dish down. I was worried it would blow over and break......have to watch the Browns on Monday Night Football tonight........LOL. Windy nights don't make for good sleeping in a motor home (MH). There was a front blowing through bringing some rain and cooler temps.

We took the MH to the Freightliner/RV service facility in Dallas today. We had to drive right through the heart of Dallas. The Freightliner facility is brand new. HUGE! They are in the process of preparing 3,200 Freightliner trucks for delivery to Walmart......WOW! When you pull into their gated facility, you show your driver's license, then security escorts you to your service bay. They have a wing on the building for RV's only. If they don't finish repairs by closing, they have full hook-ups (electric, water, and sewer). We may have to use those facilities tomorrow (Tuesday) night. We will be having the tie-rod ends and the drag links replaced on the MH. The grease boots have disintegrated and unfortunately you need to replace the whole part. They won't have parts delivered until late morning, so we may be spending the night in their campground (parking lot) on Tuesday night.

Dallas is sure a beautiful city! Driving is nerve-racking but nothing like Houston or Atlanta. Construction is every where in this city, just like Houston.

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More pictures of downtown Dallas.

We went to Grapevine, TX this afternoon. It is known for it's vineyards. It is north of Dallas and a beautiful “up-scale” community. Everything is new or newly remodeled. Huge shopping districts, a renovated historical district and home to the Dallas/Fort Worth Airport. Money is definitely being spent in this area! Marsha loved how they were decorating the median for Christmas.


2 bulbs

We received sad news this morning. Delores Weaver, who is my oldest brother John's wife passed away overnight from ALS. Delores was diagnosed with ALS about a year ago. She suffered a lot during the past year and held on to see family and friends at the recent ALS gathering. If you've been reading our blog, Marsha and I, along with about fifty other friends and family walked in her honor in the Augusta ALS Walk-a-thon on October 24. John had a barbecue at their home after the walk and everyone enjoyed sharing the day with Delores. She was a wonderful person who loved to celebrate life with her many friends and family members. There was always a crowd in her home and you were always welcome to stop and stay. She will be sadly missed!

Here is John and DeLores. She was such a beautiful southern belle!

John and DeLores de, paul and me

Marsha and I are so disappointed that today's motor home problems will keep us from attending her funeral. Delores, John, and their family will be in our prayers. We love you all!!!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009


Friday, November 13 – Every so often we will share with you a little Texas humor. Our heading is the first of many to come.

We had an 8:00 a.m. appointment to have the local RV shop take a look at the tie-rod grease boots. I knew these may need replaced so I wanted to get their opinion. This way, if parts are needed they can order them and have them here when we get back from Dallas/Ft.Worth. Yep! Need grease boots on the front end. There's a Freightliner/Motor Home Service Center in Dallas. We'll stop there for a second opinion.

Met at Kelly's place. Carrie arrived around 7:00 p.m. We enjoyed each other's company till about 10:00. We are staying at the A-OK South RV Park. It is really nothing more than a big parking lot. It works for us since all we will do is sleep here. We will be with the girls at Kelly’s most of the time.

Saturday, November 14 – Spent the day with Kelly and Carrie. K. C. and Scott came over to the campground first to see our new home. They were amazed how much room we had with the four slides out. It is really surprising! Then we had a great tour of Tyler, TX with our driver Kelly. This included the Tyler Rose Garden. The Tyler Rose Garden began construction in 1939, and the first roses were planted in 1952. An amazing display of roses. Even in November, many, many were still blooming. The Texas Rose Festival is held the third week of October. We hope to be in Tyler the last Sunday in April for their big “Rose Sunday Celebration and Kick-Off for the Rose Season.” The Tyler Municipal Rose Garden is a 14-acre park, making it the nation's largest rose garden. We took in a Wood Carver's show at the garden also. They were having their holiday craft show at the Rose Museum Center. Since they don’t get snow, they created their own snow. The bottom right picture shows kids going down a ramp of man-made snow. What a hoot!! Read more about the Tyler Rose Garden.


Then did some quick grocery shopping and headed back to Kelly's place to watch some college football. After the game we had dinner and then all played a game of Mexican Train – the new domino game we learned at the Escapee Park.

See some more pictures of the Rose Center.

Sunday, November 15 – We are attending church at Colonial Hills Baptist Church in Tyler that Scott, Kelly significant other, attends. Pastor Jerry Calaway is in charge of the Praise &Worship Ministry. WOW, what a voice. The Celebration Choir was wonderful. Senior Pastor, Robert Carter, gave a powerful sermon on “Principals of Stewardship.” They include Sermon Notes with blanks to fill in. Marsha observed just about everyone filling in the blanks. They are a very active congregation. Everyone was very friendly. Paul and I felt very welcomed. It is a beautiful church. We attended the 8:30 a.m. service so we can drive up to Dallas today for our next stop at Hickory Hills Corp of Engineering campground. Scott attends the late service.


Now this is a campground!!! Beautiful sites with privacy between HUGE camp sites. We can even have a campfire. There are hiking trails and a huge lake .....AND....only 30 miles north of Dallas/Fort Worth. Awesome! An additional benefit is we can pick up TV on the satellite and have great cell and INTERNET service. Bella (our cat) definitely approves.....she can't wait to explore (on a leash of course). Pictures to come on next update. Thanks for checking us out.