Friday, October 26, 2012

Happy Hour #1 at the Redneck Castle

On Thursday evening we had our very first happy hour of the 2012/2013 winter season here at TT Peace River in Wauchula, FL.    Some of the same crew are back in the park already , but what was especially nice was seeing some of those folks that headed back to the east coast this year!   One of those couples was Jack & Diane .............and it was great having our first happy hour hosted by the "happy hour queen" at the Redneck Castle.

Happy hour's are sure to grow in size over the course of the winter but we had a nice crowd out tonight and had a great time.   The food was great too; especially the perfectly prepared London Broil.  

Pictured below clockwise from the top left:  Travis, our hosts Diane and Jack, Chuck and Dee, and Rich and Dee.

Pictured below clockwise from left:  Tom and Karen, Carla and John,  Diane and Buddy and Art and Hedy. 
With  Hurricane Sandy headed up the east coast we started feeling some of the effects at the happy hour.  We arrived at 4:00 pm,  and had plenty of time to mingle and eat. It wasn't long before rain threatened, and we got some sprinkles; enough to clear the food from the table, and then it stopped.   But it wasn't too much longer before it poured!!  While Florida won't get the brunt of the storm, we are expecting some rain and some pretty strong winds.  

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Taking in the View

Sitting on the back lanai is always a pleasure whether it's mornings with coffee or early evening.  Below are a few pictures that I took over the past week.

A little hard to see - but this alegator is about 5 foot long and was sunning itself on the berm....

 These are a little further away - so I'm not exactly which birds  these are.  We often see White Ibis, Snowy Egrets or Blue Heron... These are definitely of the smaller category. 

Sand Hill Cranes are heard just before 8:00 am each morning.   Often doing there little dance.......... But no dancing today.

This is definitely a white Ibis.   I wasn't sure until I saw him take flight.  They have black on the tips of their wings that you can only see when they fly. 

And here the Sand Hill Cranes are in control which caused the Ibis to take flight.

A little later in the morning the Sand Hill Cranes wander just outside the fence on the lanai. 
And tomorrow morning, there will be no coffee on the lanai.  I am scheduled for surgery and must be at the hospital by 6:30 am.

The house is back to normal

Well, we've been home a little over a week now.   We had lots of work to get done, both inside and out........and I think we've just about finished.  Rich did ALL the outside work, washing the lanai area and getting the furniture back out, cleaning the mud-dobbers off the sides and front of the house and housing  everything until it sparkled.     Meanwhile, after we had moved all the furniture inside,  I cleaned windows and baseboards and did some touch up painting.      Rich did do some painting inside - I was so glad he said he'd do these inserts in the foyer area.... He did a PERFECT job!  Once dry -  we'll re-hang everything.

On Sunday morning he finished the outside - re-painting the walkway to the front entry and putting new weatherstripping on the front door.

With all the furniture back in place - it looks a lot more like "home."  This is the guest bath (top left), the office, the master bedroom and the master bath. 

And the is the formal dining room and living room, the family room and the kitchen.    
We did have a conversation today about doing a little accent painting in the kitchen - the same color as the inserts in the foyer..........we'll see!

Pickleball and Pizza with Friends

It has not been ALL work and no play. The Meadow Pointe Picklers, our local group of players meet on Monday, Wednesday and Friday evenings about 6:30 either in Meadow Point I, about a mile away, or in Meadow Pointe II , where we live and where the courts are about a quarter of a mile from the house.

The first few pictues were taken on Monday evening  and came out pretty good because I snapped them before it got dark.    We played at MP I from 6:30 until after 9:00 pm.

We are usually pretty fortunate and can get two courts.  Once in a while the tennis players are out so we do rally scoring to keep players from waiting so long between games. 

Lots of other sports at MP 1 - you can see the basketball courts, and volley ball courts in the back - which are  used most every night.   On Friday's you'll see the young kids ( real young) out playing soccer. What a hoot!

On Wednesday most of the group played again at MP I, but we had some visitors and a couple of them had never played before, so a few of the regulars joined Rich and I at MP II.

On the left is Larry and Sharon from Lakeland, Fl.  On the right is Larry and Lynda from Land O Lakes Fl.  They came to learn how to play so they can take it back to their community of Cheval. 
It was dark when I got a few pictures.  This location is actually very nice.  There are three tennis courts, two of which have lines painted for pickleball. 

Larry plays with Zachary.  Zack is only 13 or 14 years old, but is a very good player.  The adults enjoy having him around. 

Below are some of the regulars.  Zack playing with Don against the ladies Karen (Zack's Mom) on the left and Marilyn.

We played again on Friday night and had two courts going with 4 or 5 waiting to play.  It was another fun evening.  Friday night is Pizza night.  Some went to Marco's, some went home and six of us went to Pizza Mania.    Joining us are long time friends Mark and Rene Glassman, (back) and Don and Linda Bass. 

It was really nice visiting with all the folks back in Meadow Pointe. 

Friday, October 5, 2012

Back in Peace River

It's October again - so time to head back to our 'home on wheels' back at Peace River in Wauchula. We really did enjoy our stay at The Villages this summer, especially with so many friends coming to visit.  I got the results of my biopsy just before we left and the good news was it was NOT cancer - but they did find some atypical tissue that needs to be removed.  So I am scheduled at the Moffit Cancer Center in Tampa next week and after that should know the date for my surgery.

In the meantime for all you folks considering whether or not to return - I must say that we were pleasantly surprised when we arrived.  The park really does look nice.....but the pickleball courts still look the same and are in need of some work. And folks are starting to arrive and fill up the park.   Unfortunately we have had rain every afternoon since we got here. It rains on an off during the night and we wake up to fog in the morning - Picture below is one of the better mornings - usually you can't see this far.

Yes - it's raining in the picture below - but the view from the patio is really quite nice. If not for the fog - you could probably see the river water flowing in the back.  The river is VERY HIGH. 

On Thursday morning we swept the puddles from the courts and Travis got the blower.  After about 40 minutes of work we were able to play.    Below is Travis and Pam.

And Dan and Nate.  
It was just the five of us today - but it felt good to be back on the court.