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Friday, November 26, 2010

MOTORHOME MODIFICATION- a new small solar panel and some Thanksgiving pics

Well, the mail lady drove up our driveway, and HONK HONK'd to let us know she had a package.... and Steveio flew out the door as fast as he could go (no jacket- no shoes!)   Ahhhhh, guess what that means?  Another motorhome project!

Last year our OEM small solar panel for the two chassis (driving) batteries had broken.  We removed the panel and just let the batteries do their job.  It was not a problem since we were using the motorhome just about every weekend for camping.  They held a charge just fine. But now that winter in here, time to make some decisions.

Note -- our four big 100 watt solar panels maintain the coach (camping) batteries--

So here are our options:
1. We could just hook up battery charger to those 2 batteries from time to time over the winter.
2. We could run a jumper wire from the four big coach batteries to also maintain the chassis batteries
3. We could buy a unit called a TrikLStart that will maintain them but needs a power source all the time
4. We could just replace the nice little square solar panel that was broken in the first place!!!

Of course, Steveio opted for number four.  He found a nice new one on Ebay, from a Lavie Solar Inc. in Texas.  Prompt shipping and here it is!  $35.

And today, with blustery wind chills of zero and below, the solar panel has arrived and he is chomping at the bit to put it on the roof.   I asked him if he was going to.  He answered:  "Are you nuts or what???"

But I know my husband, and how much ya wanna bet he will be checking the temps, looking outside, finding his Carhart snow bibs and heavy jacket.. and then going out there to do it as he says: "Awww it ain't so bad out here"    LOL LOL

We will see.


We are in the middle of Thanksgiving celebrations here... had a nice get- together with Steve's family down at his cousin's home in Grafton, WI yesterday.  The weather was treacherous on Wednesday night, with sleet, rain, snow and wind.  But by Thanksgiving morning, all was fine and clear roads to drive to Grafton.  It was 130 miles one way, and we took the car.  I HATE riding in the car now that we have experienced the luxury of traveling in the motorhome.  But it really didn't make sense to take it for a one day outing.

Steve's niece Jen and her husband Robert were presenting their new baby boy, Lucas, to the rest of the Pfundtner Clan.  He is only 4 weeks old, just a wee babe, and already getting the social circuit underway.  Grandma Shirley shared him with me (I shared my grandkids with her in the past years)  so I got in a good dose of cuddling and cooing, and he even fell asleep in my arms... awwwwwwwww.

We were so glad to see that Steve's mom, The Great Grandma Pfundtner, was able to make the day, having completed her last radiation treatment last week, after a rigorous round of chemo before that.  She is doing well and traveled quite a ways to make the family gathering and see her newest great grandson.

This is Steve's older brother Mark, their mom in the middle,
 and Mark's oldest daugther, Jen with the new great grandbaby, Lucas Jones...at 4 weeks old. 

Sharing a special bond between great grandma, mom and baby.....

Jon and Robin, Steve's cousins, have a lovely new home and everyone was together for a nice family dinner.  Lots of laughter, stories, and celebrating his dad's 78th birthday was a treat for the day too.  The bad weather held off, so we had a safe trip back home.  Winds were increasing and temps were dropping fast.  It was good to get home, in warm flannel jammies and pop in a DVD as the winds were screaming outside.


Upcoming this Sunday, all of our kids and grandkids will be here for our family gathering.  They all were at spouses's family gatherings on Thursday, so we decided to get together on Sunday instead.  The Packer game will be on at noon, and turkey will be done about 1.   Should be a good lazy day of flopping around the livingroom to watch the game, playing with the grandkids and spoiling them rotten, and being thankful for all the wonderful things life has given us, and looking forward to what great things are in store for our family's futures!

I know I haven't posted in over a week, but I was finishing up some large orders for sock customers, and trying to get a few things done around here before the holidays.  Most of the shopping is done, and now have to wrap wrap wrap things before the kids all get here on Sunday.    It seems now that it's darker, faster, since the time change, I am ready for bed earlier too.  Not getting as much done in the evenings as I usually do. 

Perhaps it's hibernation?  
Or Fibernation????  

Sunday, November 14, 2010

CAMPING- Morgan County Park and a visit to Rainbows End Alpaca Farm


This might very well be our last weekend of camping for the season, so we decided to head up to Morgan County Park on Timm’s Lake.  It is in the Marinette County park system,  and here is the link to their website:


Steve took Friday off of work, and I only babysat granddaughter Chelsea till 10am.   So we had time in the morning to load up the motorhome with a few groceries and clothes, add some water to the tanks (Steve had already blown out the lines for the season but hadn’t yet added antifreeze)   and in no time we loading up the laptops and sock machine.  

We drove up through rainy icky weather on Friday afternoon, and it was looking like a gloomy wet frozen weekend, forecast with snow showers and sleet.   But we didn’t care, we were going CAMPING!

The campground was almost empty, there was only one camping trailer on one site, all closed up with nobody around.  We selected a wonderful site (number #17) and paid our meager $15 fee, which included 30amp electricity.  This campground stays open until after gun hunting season, which starts Nov 20 and ends Nov 28.  I am sure next weekend there will be quite a few deerhunting groups here.  But for now it’s very quiet.  Just the way we like it!

Morgan County Park2 There are 32 sites in the campground, and some have nicely bordered areas with timber, sunken fire pit, crushed red gravel and very level.  Other sites are less improved, but just as nice.  During the summer months, this place is usually full every weekend.   There is even a little retaining angled wall, where the land slopes away to the ravine.  There is a small river down there, leading into the lake nearby.

Morgan County Park3

I think there are only 2 or 3 sites we would not fit on comfortably due to level or tree placement.   There is a dump station (water turned off but the dumping hole is open)  and 3 sets of lighted outhouses.  Plans are to add a shower building in the future, but not just yet. 

We set up on our site and turned on the Lasko electric heater to supplement the propane catalytic heater to warm up the back portion of rig faster.   The front area was pretty warm from the dash heat while driving.  Once we were set up, it was time for Mr. Steveio to take a bit of a rest….

Morgan County Park1 While he napped, I cranked on some socks.  I have an order to get a bunch done for Patty Reedy at Rainbow Fleece Farm in New Glarus, WI.  She sends me her custom spun yarns from her own sheep, and I knit it up into socks for her.  Then she sells them in her shop Yarn From the Barn. 


We added a new *toy* this week too for our motorhome.  We don’t watch that much tv, but like to find the local stations for weather and news usually before going to bed.  When camping up in rural areas, it sometimes takes 5,6,7 or whatever tries to find the local stations on the antenna.   That means getting up, re-aiming the antenna, and running the tv through the setup program to scan for available channels.  (our tvs run through first analog and then digital stations so it takes twice as long to do set-up scans)   If no channels show up, we have to get up, reposition the antenna, and run setup again.  and again.  and again.    LOL   Soooo we found this:

SURE LOCK antenna signal finder by King Controls, $42.79

PICT0221It is set it up between the antenna and the switcher box. Simple cable in and out.   Flick it on (it runs on a 9volt battery) and then while watching the row of LED lights, turn your antenna a full 180 degrees.  Where the lights show the strongest signal, that is where your channels are!   Once your antenna is set in that spot, now you can run the setup scan only once and find them all!   Then you can turn off the SURE LOCK as it’s work it done.  Saves the battery.


We already knew coverage up here is spotty.  We were only able to pull in one analog station which was very fuzzy, so we spent the evening watching some rented DVDs and eating some pastys… a local dish.  Pronounced “pah-stee”   The old Cornish miners would have sausage meat and potatoes and rutabegas wrapped up into a crust and baked ahead of time.  Then,  when down in the underground copper mines, they would set the pasty on their mining lamps to warm through in time for meals down in the mine. 

pasty Some folks like to slather them with ketchup, some with gravy ladled over the top, or like me, just a dab of butter or two.  They are a meal in themselves and one is very filling.  We split one because they were so big.   We dozed off to the sleeting sounds of rain and snow and ice falling on the motorhome.  Didn’t care much, we were inside and warm and dry.


We woke up to only a little bit of snow along the edges of the road on the leaves… where the heat from the ground didn’t melt what fell overnight. So that was the extent of our first snow of the season.  Not too impressive, huh? 

Morgan County Park4

Saturday morning was still drizzly, overcast and not too nice for a walk around the park.  Steve took the dogs out, but came back pretty muddy, wet and cold.  I had to dry off their paws as best I could and toss ‘em in the bathroom area with the doors closed to the bedroom and up to the kitchen/living area.  So until they dried off, they had to stay on the vinyl flooring in there.  Such a meanie, huh?  But beats wet dog on the couch, carpeting and flooring.

We took a ride on Saturday afternoon to check out a place that Steve found an ad for in the local shopping paper.  It was called Rainbows End Alpaca Farm near Norway, MI.


It was a lovely new building overlooking the pastures full of the lovely soft gentle alpacas.  We wandered around the shop a bit, with me fondling the yarns while Steve patiently waited for me to get my fill.  

visit to Rainbows End Alpaca Farm0visit to Rainbows End Alpaca Farm6 visit to Rainbows End Alpaca Farm7visit to Rainbows End Alpaca Farm8

They had a lovely seating area around a fireplace, and off to one side a meeting area for knitting clubs and lessons.  Besides the skeins of yarns, they had displays of everything alpaca related!   Knickknacks, knitted goods, and other wonderful items imported from Peru.

I saw a very strange spinning wheel, on display by the fireplace.  It was obviously very old, but for my fiber spinning friends reading this—it had a metal flyer!   Very intriguing. 

visit to Rainbows End Alpaca Farm9 

visit to Rainbows End Alpaca Farm12visit to Rainbows End Alpaca Farm10visit to Rainbows End Alpaca Farm11

It was not operating at the time, as the back rod from the treadle to the wheel was off, and there wasn’t any drive band.  Otherwise I might have asked to try it out!

We walked out on the viewing deck to check out the alpacas, and I snapped a few shots of some other young ones hanging out in a nearby shed in the parking area.

visit to Rainbows End Alpaca Farm15visit to Rainbows End Alpaca Farm13

visit to Rainbows End Alpaca Farm1visit to Rainbows End Alpaca Farm3

visit to Rainbows End Alpaca Farm23visit to Rainbows End Alpaca Farm18


Saturday night it was still raining/sleeting/snowing so we decided to hang out inside the rig, no campfires.   Before we left for the alpaca farm, I had put a turkey breast in the new small crockpot I bought 2 weeks ago.  crock pot

By the time we had gotten back from the alpaca farm, the turkey was fall apart tender, juicy and perfect!  I steamed up some cauliflower and broccoli, and whipped up a pot of rice.  Yummmmmm   These are all turkey breast meat, no bones, no wings, no legs or carcass of any kind to deal with.   Just roast it and slice off a mouthwatering piece. 

Morgan County Park0

We popped in a travel DVD of touring the southeast coast from Georgia to Florida all the way to Key West.  It is part of a 6 DVD series called America’s Scenic RV Adventures.  (rented from Netflix)   After that was done, we put in Dustin Hoffman’s Little Big Man, never having seen it before.  Gosh, the violent things done in the name of the US Army, to the native americans.  We know this is a part of our history not often talked about, but sure is awful.


Sunday morning I woke up and realized the rain/sleet sounds on the roof has ceased!  I reluctantly opened the blinds, scared to think I would see a couple feet of snow… Nope.    And the rain had stopped long enough for a nice walk with the dogs before breakfast.   Steveio put on his chef’s hat and whipped us up some ham and cheese omelets!   He is watching his cholesterol, so eggs are a rare treat for him.  About once a month is all he indulges in them.


Now,  I am having a pleasant morning of knitting socks and doing a bit of this and that around the rig.  I am dreading going home, as it will be the last time camping for the season.  That means taking all the foodstuffs and canned goods into the house, removing the extra things that I will plan to use in the house for the winter, like the spinning wheel and yarn stash, and any cleaning or bathroom products that can freeze.

Weekend Camping will be over until either a winter vacation getaway to the south or springtime thaw.   Unless we get nice weather later in the month?  But with opening weekend of hunting season next weekend, the woods will be full of bangs and booms and hunters all over the place.  Plus the traffic will be bumper to bumper heading north on Friday night.  

Opening Day of Deer Season is such a national holiday around here that most schools even close down on opening day to allow the older students to take the day off officially, instead of parents calling them in with excused absences.  Or skipping. 


After lunch on Sunday, we got ourselves *road worthy* to head on out.  We dumped the holding tanks and gave them a good rinse-out with our own onboard water system, as the park’s water has been shut off since Oct 1.  And time to hit the road.  Back home. End of camping.  Sigh.



Monday, November 8, 2010

More Motorhome Projects - and a Grandkiddie Weekend

Well, that Mel has gone and did it again!  He inspired Streveio to do another project to the motorhome---  Mel has a motorhome like ours and keeps giving Steveio so many ideas of things to try.

This project was to relocate the air intake for the air filtration system from underneath to the motorhome to a new area on the side.  When you travel the gravel roads as much as we do, the dust can fill up the air filter quickly.  The air filters on our big Cat 3126 diesel engine are big round cylinders larger than a 5 gallon bucket, and quite costly.  ($100.00+ range)   So keeping them cleaner and longer is a bonus to us and our meager pocketbook.

First... he had to CUT A HOLE in our fiberglass side!!!! ACK! 
(I just gasp and then hold my breath when he does things like this!) 

Then he fashioned a new configuration of ductwork to reroute the air filter intake from below.
This piece is a couple of feet long and wide and crazy shaped, but he said it will work. 

He cut and measured and fitted the ductwork to the opening and lined it up just right!

 AWww just look at that hard-working guy....  best to get this stuff done before the snow flies! 
--you might notice in the picture below, he is missing a side marker light (project number two)  
and a small silver pipe sticking out the corner of our rig (project number three)  

He bent back the duct work to secure it into place, 
and he had painted the grid piece with a silvery aluminum colored paint to match 
the stainless steel compartment doors on our rig.  Another job well done, Steveio! 

Now, as for that small silver pipe sticking out the corner in that photo up above?  

Well, that is a re-routed "slobber tube"!  Diesel engines have a slobber tube to drip excess oil and moisture to the ground below as you drive.  If left hanging down, the spray flows back and all over your vehicle that is towed behind, and also can spray all over your radiator and cause more dirt and gunk to cling to the radiator.  This can cause serious overheating and damage the engine.  

Common practice among motorhome owners is to extend the slobber tube so it is lower, with a piece of hose, or to route it to one side like Steve did in the pics below, using a piece of conduit and angling the slope of the pipe to let the fluids escape and drip to one side.

It was after dark by the time he got the new side marker light into place, so I didn't get a pic of that.
But all three of his projects are done.  Wonder what Mel will dream up next???

Now for the grandkiddie portion of the post...    we had the lovely opportunity to spend time with all three of our grandkids this past weekend.

On Friday, I brought little 9 month old Chelsea to the library for their weekly story hour.  She enjoyed seeing other children and played with some of the toys till the stories began.  The kids all sit in this vinyl padded *pit* seating area to enjoy their stories.   She tried out the pit area, but felt a little intimidated. 

Chelsea listened too, but from the comfy location of my lap, with a bottle.  LOL 
As the last story was finishing up, she just HAD to get off my lap and go visit with the other girls.
I knew she would warm up and enjoy the other children.  They are all older, but played gently with her.  One little boy even patted her on the head, carefully, and said she was a Little Baby! 

I just love this shot I took of her... she is watching some squirrels on the deck after I filled the feeders.  She seems to be wondering if they will come and play with her?   She has a realistic squirrel puppet that plays with her, so I suppose she figures those guys out there are her puppets too! 
Saturday afternoon we took Jameson, 2 years old, for an overnight with us.  He was all full of energy and fun and curiosity.  We ate raw veggies --green and white *TREES*-- for the first time, and he liked the white (cauliflower) trees better than the green (broccoli) trees.  My friend Connie had tempted my kids with naming the raw veggies as *TREES* when they were little too.  It's only fitting to pass along the tradition! 

He had a very busy visit with us.  He played with all of the toys here, he helped fill the bird feeders, and helped me bake cookies. Here he is, patiently waiting for them to come out of the oven.  He proudly brought a zip lock bag of them to his Mommy and Daddy when we returned him on Sunday afternoon. 

Oh, this was a cute cut-out device I highly recommend for every grandparent to get for little lunches.  
I even bought one to keep in our motorhome.  Tee heeeee   When is the last time YOU ate a dinosaur???

On Sunday afternoon, we met up with our son Dan and his wife, Heather and their darling daughter Allegra.  She is already 11 months old!  Wow, where did the last year go?   It is Dan's 28th birthday, so we went out to eat to celebrate his birthday.  Green Bay's west side of town was very busy due to a home game starting at 7:30pm, so we kept to the far east side of town at The Woods supper club, bar and grill.

Little Allegra was wearing her Packer Cheerleader outfit.... because it was a Packer Game night, what else? 

She was so cute and just about walking, and stands so well on her own.  She was cute at the supper club, and it wasn't too busy, so we got to walk around a bit with her and let her see things.  She ate good from most of our plates and didn't want any of her own food.  Who can blame her?  

Oh yes, and the Packers won! 

We got in a good dose of grandkids and really enjoyed their company.  Having these little people in our lives has brought us such riches and joy.  We cherish our time with each one of them, and hope they look forward to the next time they get to come see Granmuddah and Granfaddah Pfun! 


Monday, November 1, 2010

HALF CAMPING - HALF FAMILY - Chalk Hills Campground and my 50th Birthday

On Friday afternoon, we loaded the rig and came up to Chalk Hills Dam campground for probably the last camping weekend of the season.  Sigh.  Soon all of this lovely woods and trees and ground will be covered in ice and snow and cold.

We got up here about 5pm just before it got dark and got set up on our favorite site.  It really wasn't a problem getting a site, since we are the only ones here!  26 sites to choose from... tee heee....  4 or 5 of them are 50 amp, and the rest are 30 amp.  There is a water spigot and 2 outhouses here.  They are set up for hunters in the next few weeks, as there are *buck poles* set up around the campground, to hang their deer from.  It's a nice little campground near the big dam on Menominee River, dividing Michigan and Wisconsin.  This time of year patronized by fishermen and hunters.

Once we were settled in our campsite and toad unhooked, I whipped up some tacos for supper and we were cozy warm with the heater going.  We were able to pull in one television analog station, but none of the digital stations reach up this far north.   Our televisions pull in both analog and digital signals, as some of the smaller transmitter stations don't have to switch over to digital in this area of the U.P. of Michigan.   Nothing on tv that was interesting with that one NBC station, so instead we popped in a DVD from Netflix.  It's a 6 part series called America's Scenic RV Adventures.  We watched the first disk, on Alaska.  We sat back with a big bowl of popcorn and enjoyed a wonderful tour of RV travel in Alaska and Canada. Places to see, things to do, and all based on RV travelling.  What a great set of DVD's and we are looking forward to the future episodes, on The Northwest Coast, The Southwest Coast, The Gulf Coast and Baja,  I almost felt like I should be taking notes!  Maybe I will run through it sometime tomorrow and take quick notes before we return that episode.

The woods were peaceful and quiet in the night.. and we dozed off, relishing the comfort of the electric mattress pad heater on a chilly night.  Though we were warm inside, it got down to 28 during the night out there...brrrr~!  

By morning, we had woken up to a very warm motorhome, as I think we had the heat on HIGH all night.  It was almost too warm in here, and we cut the heat back during breakfast.  I snapped some photos right out the bedroom window of the sun coming up on the tall naked trees.

The view right out our open bedroom window!

On this sunny Saturday morning, with our coffee, we turned on the radio for some "Yooper Entertainment"  
Let me explain----  The local radio station in the town where I grew up hosts a program called Telephone Time.  It's a call in program where one can sell things, or say they are looking for things, or announce their rummage sales, or find out what is going on in the area.   Sometimes there are contests with trivia and local businesses offer prizes.  It's on Monday though Saturday mornings and it is our Local Entertainment.  LOL

We are camping nearby enough to pull in that station, faintly, so we decided to listen in.  Here are a few of the calls,  word for word.  Think of a Yooper accent as you read these.  Again, this is actually what was said on the air, I kid you not!-------

I am selling two belgian work horses, dey are named Dick and Dan...in case ya wanna get close ta come see them and talk ta them.  Dey were used this summer to cut hay, dey cut all dere own hay.  But I am looking ta sell dem now.
Looking for a pickup truck, it don't have to be anything too fancy, just a Beater with a Heater.  I got cash now, but I am headed to the casino later today, so if you want to sell your truck, call me now.  Because later on I won't have any money. 
I am retired now and sharpen chain saw blades.  Not too many at a time, not like a business or anything.  But if I sharpen your saw, I got plenty of wood around here for you to try it out on.  (Ya think he is looking for someone to help him cut his winter's wood?)
I got an oak table and chairs to sell.  They would be good for a "camp".  I already got a table and chairs in my camp, so I am selling these.   (a "camp" is meaning a rustic Yooper hunting cabin or shack in the woods)  
I called yesterday to sell my guns. I forgot that yesterday was Friday.  I wanted to call on Saturday.  So that is why I am calling now.  I have some guns to sell. Call me. 

After breakfast, (and caramel rolls outta a tube I forgot to take a pic of) we ran with the Tracker into Carney, MI to hit the post office.  I had 6 pairs of sock orders that needed to get out in the mail, so we took care of that and stopped at the little IGA for a bit of local flavor.  Bought a few things and chatted with the gal behind the register.  We find this is the best way to learn more about an area or find out what is going on.  There is a halloween dance at the Middle School.  That is about it for their tiny town.

On the way back to the campground, I snapped a shot of this fancy schmancy fifth wheel deluxe RV with a rear facing observation deck? Or for the toys, like  ATV's, motorcycles, dirt bikes?  Hmmmmm nothing like the inventiveness of the U.P. residents!  

By the way, a "Yooper" is a person from the U.P. of Michigan.  UP'er=Yooper  --- get it?  Best described as kinda a cross between a lumberjack and a hillbilly.  LOL  But they are a hearty folk, battling the heavy snows of winter and getting along with the challenges of a diminished economy and suffering from the lagging logging and mining industries. I spent my formative teenage years growing up there, from 10 to 18.  They are known to make due with what they have on hand, and some get quite inventive.

Our Saturday afternoon was partially cloudy with the sun peeking out between the fluffy white clouds. The campground owner's teenage kids were sent over to pick up branches and sticks blown down from last week's storms.  We chatted for a while with them and played fetch with their dog, Hunter and our two muttenhiemers.  They had a lot of fun, but Hunter got the stick almost every time.

We walked along with the doggers around the campground loop.  Check out these clean, neat outhouses!

  And the dogs really enjoyed the outing.  Duchess runs ahead and Duke takes up the rear.

 We took a little walk around on the *hiking trail* that was added to the campground this year.

Snapped a few pics here and there of the local flora along the path.  Like I said, it won't be long before it's covered in snow and ice, to lay dormant all winter. Spring will come, eventually, and these woods will be alive again.  But it's a melancholy feeling to walk along the bits of green and gold and red and brown.... soon to become all white.  Sigh.

We cooked up a special birthday supper, steaks on the grill, salads, broccoli and mushrooms to round out a lovely meal. Even though it was only Saturday, my birthday wasn't till Sinday.  It was getting too cold to eat out on the table, so we moved the food indoors to enjoy candlelight, soft music and a bottle of wine.  Ahhhhhhh

It was getting too cold for a campfire outdoors, so for the evening entertainment, we popped in another dvd, this one called Frozen River.  It is about 2 women along the border between New York and Canada, who get involved in smuggling aliens across a frozen river in their car, for money to make ends meet.  Very riveting story and sad at the same time.  What they do with a baby is unbelievable!

After another cold crisp night, and this time we set the heater on a lower setting, but it was chilly waking up with 28 outside and about 54 inside!  We kicked up the heat and hopped back into bed!   I had a stack of birthday cards to open up and we spent time reading and laughing and sipping coffee.  What a great Happy Birthday!

The aircard signal was pretty weak here this morning, so I could only see the messages on Facebook and reply to one or two messages.  Then it cut out repeatedly.  I could not even get gmail to come up either.  I know my mom was on MSN Messenger, but I could not stay connected once the sun came up.  Evenings and late nights worked fine, but once the day comes the signals drop on both the aircard and the cell phone.  Sunspots?

I was kind of bummed that I would not see the grandkids today in their costumes.  I had seen Chelsea on Friday when we took her to a Halloween Party at the library in town, but I would not be seeing Jameson or Allegra either. I knew that both of those families were trekking out of town to the other grandparents for trick-or-treating, and I was missing out on seeing the grandkids myself.   But I am not greedy and always willing to share the grandkids with the others, so I kept my disappointment to myself.  I couldn't expect them to trek up to our house too, that would be 150-200 miles roundtrip for some of them to come after seeing their other grandparents from the inlaws.   So I facebooked messages to both mommies to PLEASE take some pictures for me????

(I didn't know what was coming up later!!!)

Cooked up a great breakfast treat of french toast, with vanilla and cinnamon added, fried up with a tad of oil to make the edges crisp... yummmmm  What a birthday treat!

I had knit up 9 pairs of socks on Thursday and Friday that needed to get their toes closed and steam blocked with the iron.  So I did that in the morning sunshine coming into the motorhome.

Steve putzed around and considered doing a few more projects... that danged Mel has filled his head with more things he wants to do in our rig!   LOL  Now he is making up lists of parts and pieces to get.

By noon, the Packer game was on the radio, as we could not get in the Fox network here on the tv.  So while we were listening to the game, I am knitting up some thick bulky socks on needles to keep the fingers busy.

About 3pm Steveio was chomping at the bit to leave the campground (wonder why?)  and he mentioned driving back on a route going through Michigan down Hwy 41 through Menominee and Marinette and stopping to get some groceries at Aldi's and a few items at Menards.   I said nooooo let's drive back the Wisconsin route down Hwy 141 because there is construction on the Michigan way.  But he insisted.  When I protested, he then bribed me with stopping at a little store that sometimes carries a favorite yarn of mine.
Should I have been suspicious?  I guess.. but I didn't think twice about it!   LOL ....  

We drove to Marinette and did our shopping with the motorhome sitting in each of the parkinglots... and after the last stop, he said we should change into some nicer clothes as he wanted to take me out to eat.  I said naw.... I want to get back to Oconto in time to see at least ONE of the grandkids in their trick or treat costumes.   But he insisted ... again.
Should I have been suspicious?  I guess... but I didn't think twice about it!  LOL ....

We changed into some nicer clothes in the motorhome right in the parking lot at Aldi's.  Of course we changed clothes while IN the motorhome.  LOL   He drove us over to Peshtigo to a nice supper club that serves the deep-fried lobster that he knows I love.  
Should I have been suspicious?  I guess... but I didn't think twice about it!  LOL ....

We walked in and ordered a drink at the bar.  Then he said he wanted to show me something on the wall.  He led me over to the wall, and then around the corner into the adjoining dining room.
Should I have been suspicious?  I guess... but I didn't think twice about it!  LOL ...

There were 

AWWWWWW I am even crying now as I type this! 

Our son Dan and daughterinlaw Heather brought little Allegra the Sunflower

Our daughter Erin and soninlaw Mark brought little Chelsea the Bumblebee

Our daughter Heather and soninlaw Jesse brought little Jameson the Puppy

We wined and dined on fine food, and I had my deep fried lobster!  Yummmmmmm   They brought me a piece of turtle sundae cake and a candle.  Jameson blew it out three times for me, he could hardly contain himself!  

We had laughter, presents, and fun and family...
What more could this fifty year old granny ask for???