Thursday, December 6, 2018

Holiday Decorating, Surgery, New Year's Day Football!

Still not a whole lot going on.  With Rich's injury to his arm, it's been pretty hard to do much, or make plans to do much.  I've done some of my Holiday Christmas Shopping - but still nowhere near done.  We've both spent so much of our time seeing doctors or not feeling well........that it's been hard to get in the Holiday Spirit at all.  With all the aches and pains - I refused to put up that big Christmas Tree....... I went and bought a 3 ft lighted tree, put it on the end stand in the family room and decorated!  Plenty big enough for the two of us.  A little more decorating around the house and on the front porch.......Would like to pick up a couple of Poinsettias...........and that should do it!

So finally Rich was able to get an appointment scheduled with a surgeon who actually knew how to take care of his arm.  After several failed attempts here in Sebring and Lake Placid, and doctors who had no idea what needed to be done, I contacted our Insurance Company and asked for help.  They suggested Orlando Hand Surgical Associates.  And as the name suggests, they are located in Orlando! An appointment was scheduled for Tuesday 12/4........and we made the  200+ mile round trip. Dr Patel knew immediately that surgery was necessary, and needed to be done as emergency surgery...He put Rich back on 500mg antibiotics for 10 days, and said we would be getting a call to schedule the surgery sometime later in the day.    We actually got the call about 1/2 way home... and they scheduled him for the next day - Thursday 12/5 asking us to stop on our way home to have some lab work done STAT at Florida Hospital in Lake Placid.

Nothing to eat or drink after 9:00 am on Wednesday.  Headed back to Orlando and they took him right in,  and began prepping for surgery within 5 minutes of our arrival!   The surgery was much more invasive than we had expected.  They put him under, but also did a "long block", which pretty much numbs the entire arm.  Dr Patel said the surgery was successful, he pulled out a one inch or bigger piece of bark from his arm, and he told Rich that he was very lucky,  he could have easily lost his hand.  It's about 11:00 PM and Rich still has no feeling in the arm.  The block will pretty much keep it numb for up to 24 hours............the the tingling and pain will begin. ( Yes we will pick up the pills in the morning!).. The splint and bandage will stay on for two weeks, at which time he has a follow-up.

Dennis called on Saturday after learning that the Ohio Buckeyes might possibly be playing either in Orlando or Tampa on New Years Day...........   (Both of the grand kids attend the University of Iowa....It turns out they will be playing Mississippi State in the Outback Bowl.........and so Dennis and the kids, and three others will be making the road trip on Thursday, His Step-Sister, Kim, and Step-Father Jack will be hosting a New Years Eve Cookout in Tampa for all of us, and we'll all attend the game on New Year's Day!  Getting excited about seeing Dennis and the kids!

Sunday, November 25, 2018

A Quiet Thanksgiving...........

Well - since my last post there has not been a whole lot going on..... just a lot more of the same ol', same ol' ........... And we are so hoping that it all gets resolved soon.  I'm losing track of time.........but I think  it's been close to 6 weeks since Rich injured his arm.  Most of the cuts and bruises have healed, and except for one area near the wrist, most of the swelling is down.  But....... he's had a MRI, about a week and a half ago, and we have been trying to find a surgeon who can remove the "foreign object" from under the skin.......and until that is done the wound will continue to drain.  No hand/wrist specialist in the area (that is covered by our insurance!), so we are in the process of scheduling a visit to   Orlando Hand Surgery!!!!  We'll see how long it takes!

So not getting a lot done.........and we are so ready to GO SOMEPLACE!!  ANYPLACE!!! Have not even seen friends in what seems like forever..... but we have plans to meet up at the Outback Steakhouse next weekend!

So what do you do when you're stuck at home??  Cook and Bake, of course!  And so - Rich said " lets fix a prime rib!"!!  OK - but neither of us had every done we got a 2 bone Rib Roast ( $45!!!!!),  and the appropriate seasonings!  We roasted some asparagus, a baked potato (sweet potato for me)
and it was absolutely delicious!

We were blessed with a couple of "cooler" days, so Rich suggested Chicken Chili and cornbread.......... Had enough for left overs for a second meal.  I prefer the regular chili, but this is definitely his favorite.

Thanksgiving always calls for Rich's Mom's Pumpkin Pie!  And so on Tuesday we did the baking!  And, of course we enjoyed a piece with whip cream for dessert that night.😋

Thanksgiving Day was a quiet one.  We are so used to fixing dinner for family or friends, and yet this year, I just could not find the energy to entertain anyone ...........  But we did fix the Turkey, and stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, sweet potato casserole, biscuits, green bean casserole and cranberries!   And yesterday we enjoyed hot turkey sandwiches for dinner!

The highlight of the day was the phone call from Dennis and the family!

Today - Sunday, we harvested the last pineapple from the backyard for the year.  It was definitely ready, golden yellow in color, juicy and perfectly sweet!

Tomorrow I need to continue and try to finish my on-line Christmas shopping! Will be back on the phone with the Doctor's, I'm sure!

Friday, November 9, 2018

SOOOOO tired of doctors offices and tests!!!!

And so the saga continues.  First for Rich. Tomorrow will be the last of the high dosage anti-biotics.  We've seen some improvement in the arm, however their continues to be some swelling, and the wound continues to drain.  Needless to say it's been a bad three weeks!  He also completed one of two ultra-sounds.... but the results of the carotid didn't look too good,  doctor wanted to see him right he's now scheduled for a CT Scan of that area, and then a two day check of the femoral artery!!!

Me?  Well in addition to the EKG coming back abnormal, so did my Eco-Cardiogram, AND the Nuclear Stress Test.  So the doctor says there is a possibility of needing a heart catheter, but before we do that I'm scheduled for a CT, Angiogram of the Coronary arteries - to check for blockage!  That is scheduled for the end of the month. 

Enough of that - my blood pressure is rising!!!!!!!

Since I can't do a whole lot outside....I've spent my time doing some cookin'.  We've had Tuna Noodle, Shepherds Pie, Roast Beef, and today we enjoyed Chicken Parmesan......we also made some Tagalong (Chocolate/Peanut Butter) Cookies and some Peanut Butter Cups!

And we had a very pleasant surprise on Wednesday.  On our way back home from the cardiologist, we decided to stop for dinner.  We had already decided that it would be Denny's or I-HOP..........but we ended up at Hibachi Grill......where we ran into Rick and Judy Haphey!  I used to work with Judy at Thousand Trails Peace River.  It was nice seeing them both, and we promised to let them know when we made a stop to see friends at the park.

Sunday, November 4, 2018

And it's Already November?

Well, the only thing really exciting about the last two weeks is that a little bit of Fall weather has arrived, the humidity is down, and all of our favorite programs are back on TV! 

Unfortunately after Rich's accident with the Oak Tree - the swelling continued in the forearm and the fingers and so we made an appointment with the doctor.
X-ray showed no fracture....and he started antibiotics..... The following, Monday the wound was still draining and swollen, so it was another trip to the doctor, another X-ray, and stronger antibiotics.  Doctor also took a culture. When the results came back, X-ray was good, but the results of the culture require him to throw out the 2 antibiotics he was taking, and begin a 10 day supply of 500 milligram antibiotics!  He still has a week left.............but finally starting to see an improvement.   The swelling is not as bad, it continues to drain..........  The WHIP CREAM CAKE  brought on a smile!!

In the meantime we've both had appointments with the Cardiologist!  I completed by two day stress test, and Rich had the first of two ultrasounds.

Absolutely nothing else going on......... Neighbors Phil and Doreen are on a 10 day visit to Jerusalem, but we did visit for a little bit with neighbors Jim and Patty who came up to fish for 4 or 5 days!  And not even ONE trick or treater on Halloween!

And our new T-Shirts arrived...  Fund raiser at the King's Harvest Pet Rescue, where Dennis and Krystal and our grand-daughter volunteer!

Monday, October 22, 2018

A CRAZY few days~

Again - most of this past week was not exciting at all.  Rich was at his desk, with the stock market, much the same as any other weekday, and on Wednesday had his appointment with the Cardiologist. and was scheduled for some tests to check the carotid artery, and the femoral artery where he has the stint......I was a bit under the weather.........not feeling well, especially with my legs bothering me, and even took an afternoon nap 2 or 3 days.  Had to go out on Wednesday for my echo-cardiogram and on the way home from doctors - we stopped at Hibachi for dinner. 

But the weekend was far from boring!  Friday night we fixed Jambalaya for dinner, and Saturday I had the potato soup cooking in the crock pot, and we enjoyed our afternoon Banana Smoothies!  Sunday I made a couple dozen peanut butter cookies, and a big dish of macaroni and cheese for dinner!

Mid afternoon on Saturday we had a pretty scary situation.  Rich went out to the garage, the door was already open - but was surprised as he started to walk into the driveway, as several police cars were blocking the road to the west.......and a police officer with a long gun was walking in the yard toward the garage.  Rich went back in side - and  watched as the police officer stood just outside our garage with his gun aimed toward our neighbor's home.

A police car pulled INTO our front yard, and another officer, also with a long gun, was walking past our front window, around the side of our house, walked across our deck in the back and then down to the canal, where he made his way through the bushes into our neighbors property........ But this time - another officer was knocking on our front door asking us to please leave the house and move down the road to the east.........  We were getting a bit nervous - and by this time we had made sure all the doors were locked - and Rich had secured his gun....

Fortunately - no shots were fired. Long story short, our neighbor has had some very serious medical issues, and is having very very reactions to changes in medication..... He has been taken away, charged with domestic abuse.  Fortunately no one was hurt, but he did seriously threaten Diane.  We knew John was having problems - but had no idea it was this bad.  They are great neighbors - and we are so sad that this had to happen. I have spent time with Diane since.... she is fine, and I know that I would be a total wreck had I gone through what she did.  I pray for both of them.

And so......on Sunday Rich had the ladder out, his electric saw with the extension handle and proceeded to cut a ton of branches from the neighbors tree that were growing across on to our property.  He did the cutting and I stacked them along the side of the house, and along the driveway, as Cindy ( who does our lawn) will be coming Tuesday or Wednesday to haul them all away.  Things were going quite well........UNTIL the very last branch, the biggest branch was to be cut.  It was also one of the highest ones to reach........and when it fell it came right at Rich, who used his left arm to keep it from knocking him over..........and his arm got cut up pretty bad!  So he his all bandaged up!!

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Just "Same ol' same ol'" - and waiting for FALL!

It's been a couple of weeks now - and not a whole lot of news to share.  Neither of us have had a whole lot of energy , and it's been so hot!  And still is!! 

Rich has been out doing the fertilizer, epson salts on the palms,  and spraying more weed killer, but it seems like one day outside working and the back and legs bother him for a couple of days.  The muscle ache in my thigh continues, as does the cramping in the calves and so I've been getting in some afternoon naps.   We both had doctor appts - Rich with the Gastroenterologist - following his colonoscopy, and looks like he has to continue every year as they continue to find, polyps that are cancer forming.  I had my first visit with the Cardiologist who confirmed with another EKG that I did indeed have a heart attack, and put me on the baby aspirin a day routine.

Rich sees the cardiologist this week, and I have an echo cardiogram and a two day chemical stress test between now an the 25th.

But in the last 4 or 5 days we've both found a bit more energy. Meals are getting back to normal - Rich's Pizza ( I had eggs and fruit), Chicken Chile and Cornbreat,  Peanut Butter cups for desert, and today Meatballs for the Linguini and Garlic Bread tonight.  Last Monday we did meet up with Buddy and Diane here in Lake Placid at the Golden Corral.  Diane still remains in good spirits, but continues to have more difficulty walking, and it won't be long before she'll need the wheel chair.  The clowns are back in town, so hopefully we'll get together with them one day soon.

Have not seen much of the Blue Heron, Whistling Ducks  etc.... but in the last week or so we've been entertained by the beautiful Cardinal on the back deck, and the Anhinga, drying his  wings after fishing off the dock.

And yesterday we actually got back outside and trimmed more of the palms, bushes in the yard.

No plans for anything exciting in the near future!  Guess I'll get started on my Christmas Shopping!

Friday, September 28, 2018

Not too much going on.........

Been a few weeks or better since my last post.  That's a pretty good indication that nothing earth shattering, or even a bit exciting has been going on.   A few more doctor visits.........  A follow-up with my Primary Care.  Need to lose some weight and change my diet as I was up 10 lbs from last visit, my sugar level was up as was my sodium.   I should get started on that pretty soon!!!!  Rich had his colonoscopy for the third year in a row..........but all was good this time and he is delighted that he does not have to go back for THREE  years.  In the meantime he went and got his Pneumonia Shot yesterday and his are is very sore and very very HOT!  Same as last year - but will not have to get any more.

Working in the yard has taken a back seat, mainly because it's been so very HOT.  Although - Rich has sprayed for weeds, put miracle grow on the Azalea's and Pineapple plants and cut/cleaned up the Aloe Plant!  But while helping Rich with the sprinkler (meaning I turn the sprinklers on and off) I pull a muscle or a tendon in my right calf.....Worse than the pain I was having in the right thigh a week or so before!!  Wrapped for about a week - and while still sore to touch - I can at least walk almost normal.

It has been so quiet around here lately - Jim and Patty haven't been back in a couple of weeks, and John - now home from the hospital and Diane have gone to their home in North Carolina for a couple of weeks, so we've been keeping an eye on things there and picking up the newspaper each morning.  It's been so hot that even the birds and ducks have not been around........Well we did have an Anhinga drying his wings down on the dock - but he put the wings down before I could grab the camera........... Love to watch them.  Know as the "snake bird" for the way they move and curve their neck......

We've been making plans to upgrade the guest bathroom..........looking a new tubs and tile and enclosures, and toilets and sinks an how we want to build the new vanity and tile etc.  Got our list of ideas and we're just about ready to have a few come in with estimates.  Rich would prefer to do it himself - but the back and the legs are telling's not a good idea.

Oh - and a few family photos to share.   Our newest photo of our  beautiful granddaughter Chauna (bottom).  Now a sophomore at University of Iowa.  And the two pictures at the top are our handsome grandson, Dalton with his new girlfriend Briana. They both attend University of Iowa.

With both of the kids in college - Dennis and Crystal have added a new family member.   That is Zoey on the right.........recently adopted and showing us her favorite pose!  And on the left is my brother Dave with his faithful companion Jake on one of their hiking adventures in NY State.  Beautiful scenery!

Sunday, September 9, 2018

Yard Work, Baking, Doctors and Dinner with Friends.

 Over the weekend Rich and I managed to get a little bit more done in the yard.  We worked together on the back corner, down near the water as that had gotten very overgrown.  I trimmed the Indian Hawthorn around the deck, while Rich cleaned up the big elephant leaf  plant, and then Rich trimmed the bushes and I did the clean up.   All the bending over and we were both a bit sore.  My legs were hurting so bad that I could not even lift my leg to put on a pair of shorts!!  Hurt just to walk.  But we got everything cut and bagged and ready for pick-up on Tuesday.

I had gone for blood work over the weekend, and went for a follow up visit to my Primary Physician on Tuesday.  Perfect timing........ She checked out the leg  ( primarily the right thigh area.........) to see my range of motion, and then checked to make sure it wasn't a nerve issue.........and determined it was muscle.  So I had to pick up a prescription strength ibuprofen, along with a prescription muscle relaxant, to take for three or four days........... It seemed to be working quite well - but the muscle relaxant also makes me very drowsy!

Felling better, supposed to be taking it easy, so made Rich a batch of Peanut Butter Cookies on Thursday while he went into Sebring for a visit with his cardiologist.

The muscle relaxer, while the leg was improving, I was more and more tired, and spent much of each day just sleeping.  Unfortunately, once I finished the medication, the muscle pain in the thigh has returned........

Neighbors, Jim and Patty were back in Lake Placid and stopped by Saturday morning to visit and share some pictures from their stay in Islamorada, in the Keys. DeepSea fishing a couple of times while there.    Just might check that out!!

Anyway...... got a message in Facebook from John and Carla Foard, pickleball friends from down in Venice area, that we have not seen in years.  They were visiting TT Peace River in Wauchula for the weekend and wanted to make plans to get together. So on Saturday, Nathan and Buddy and Dianne, and Rich and I met up with John and Carla at..........where else?  Yes, Hibachi.  It was their first time eating here, and they really enjoyed it.  Nice time visiting with them.

We left the house a little early,before dinner with friends for a Walmart Stop.  Picked up fertilizer, fungicide  for bushes, and Epsom salt for the palms. Coffee pot stopped working, and the landline was going,  so we picked up a Mr. Coffee, and a new landline phone.

Friday, August 31, 2018

A little more accomplished and - Dinner with Friends

I know - same old same old...........but the work has to be done.  Continuing to make progress, but between the hot sun, rain, and getting old, it's a slow going process!!

The front yard is getting back to normal.  The topiary has been nicely trimmed.  The palm tree in the front of the house WAS a Triple ............but the rain and heat and fungus has been a problem, and we had to cut down, to the ground the third now we have a "double palm".  The crotons and bushes are all trimmed in the front.  There is a lot of mold on the front of the house,  and the corner near the front Rich will be out with the Clorox and brush pretty soon.   Still have bushes to trim and the corner near the water to cut back.... and when the rainy season is over the power washer will be out.

And then on Wednesday. while Rich was spaying for weed he noticed a pretty deep hole just under the bushes...........which after a little inspection he determined was another leak in the sprinkler pipes.  Lots of digging.....and this turned out to be on the main sprinkler.... which meant a trip to the hardware store.  But........while on the trip into town, the skies were pretty threatening......and so I took a sheet of plastic and a couple garbage bags to cover the dirt.  And thank goodness..........IT POURED! 

Too wet and muddy - so it was not until Thursday morning that he was able to finish. Thankfully he was done before the skies threatened rain again.

And then we met up with Nathan and Krystal, and Buddy and Diane at (where else?)  the Hibachi Buffet.  This is our first get together since we've been home from NY.  Fun evening, lots and lots of laughter and as always great food! 
Plans for next month are to go to Cody's for 2 for 1 fajitas, before all the snowbirds are back...........and Nathan and Krystal are hosting our get together in October.   John and Carla Foard will be at TT Peace River next weekend so they asked if we could "do a repeat dinner" with them.  Also going to check  to see if Bob and Lavern are back in town.

And "surprise" on the way back home from Sebring the skies opened up.....nasty sky and lots of rain.

Rich has a long weekend for Labor Day and we have no plans.  Checked Ft. Myers and Hudson to see what was going on at the dinner theaters, but nothing looked good.  Not much going on in the, if we can find a decent movie we may do dinner and a movie one night.

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Just a few more ordinary days.....

Not a whole lot going on and it's pretty quiet here at home.  Well, except for the daily thunderstorms!  Talked with John and Dianne, next door a couple of times, but mostly about John's health.  Not real good.  Phil came over to return the tree trimmer he borrowed before we left for NY. Doreen decided to ride over with him, so we had a nice visit for an hour or so.  And Jim and Patty have been spending some vacation time down in the we don't expect to see them until early September.

So much to be done outside. We both did a lot of weed pulling, and the majority of it is almost done.  Then Rich can do some more spraying.  Still a lot of bushes to be trimmed.........but making progress.  Just too hot to do too much during the day, and both of us are suffering from back and leg pain!! 

Rich had a doctor's appointment on Wednesday up in Sebring.  Stopped at Walmart to pick up a new Hoover Vacuum Cleaner, and at Office Depot for some printer ink and a few other things.............and since we right across the road from Hibachi, we decided to just stop and have dinner there. 

The skies were pretty nasty on the way home.......but it was pretty obvious when we got home that we had a pretty good downpour!

Friday and Saturday are the last two days of Early Voting for the 2018 Florida Primary, so on Friday we went into town to the Lake Placid Town Hall to cast our vote.  Election day is next Tuesday - so we'll see what the results are. 

If we're going to make Pizza - it's generally on Friday night........and yes that's what we had.  A lot of cooking though this past week, so we have Shepherd's Pie and Macaroni and Cheese leftovers for the next few days....and then we have Barbeque Ribs, Chicken Chile and Shrimp Scampi on the menu after that.

Today - to lazy to work outside (actually - still hurting!) so baked some Oatmeal/Raisin Cookies

And yesterday was National Dog Dennis and Crystal shared a few pictures.  Both of the kids are back in college, so they have a new family member, Zoey - and they are taking the two dogs for training.

Sunday, August 19, 2018

A whole lot of nothing!!!

This past week has been spent just trying to get things back to normal after being gone for so long.  Getting unpacked and put away, doing laundry, filling the almost empty refrigerator and freezer, cleaning inside, and trying to get some work done in the yard.  The weather is just tooooo hot, to get very much done outside, so we've been doing a little bit at a time.  Lots of pulling weeds, and spraying the flower beds, getting the topiary out front trimmed, and trimming bushes and tree limbs.  We have not accomplished a whole lot outside..... but we'll get it done..........and then it's getting the power washer out!

We have a new visitor - not the Blue Heron this time, but the neighborhood Great Egret. Think he's looking for food.  Hate the the guy across the canal feeds all these birds, and then takes off to go back north.........   We don't feed them.    This one wanders up to the screen lanai, and often onto the deck to look at himself in the window.  

It seems every time I go to fix dinner, cook or bake.......I'm missing at least one ingredient!  Third trip to the grocery store since we got home...... and the total spent on groceries in those three trips is over $500!!!

On the baking side - we made no-bake cookies, chocolate chip cookies, and cinnamon buns.  And it's always good to get back in the cooking groove.....and we've enjoyed a good variety of dishes including, meatloaf, chef salads,  Potato Soup, Cajun Shrimp Pasta, Noodles and Beef, Chicken Fajitas............and tonight will be our homemade Pizza.  Pictured below is the first stage of the potato soup.

Not a whole lot going on around here.  Checked out the upcoming shows in Ft. Myers and Hudson...........but nothing that caught my fancy.  So  looking to see what other events are on the upcoming calendar.  But we did make plans with friends for dinner at our usual spot later this month.   We'll have a lot to catch up on.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Back Home

The trip from Jacksonville home was uneventful.  We stopped for gas just outside Orlando, and the at Denny's for breakfast in Haines City.  It was early afternoon when we arrived home.

We were gone for just about 8 weeks.  So during that time, the yard was enjoying lots of rain and hot sunshine........... and so the weeds flourished and the bushes took on a life of their own.  We have someone mow and edge the yard, and we thank them so much for trimming the large hedge in the front of the house and the large azalea bush in back.    BUT............... here are a few shots of the topiary in the front, the overgrown bushes and palm trees............ Given Rich's back and my hating this hot summer weather - this is going to take quite a while to get looking anywhere near good again.

And until today we could not even spray the weeds........been rain most every afternoon/ when it's not raining it's just too hot.

So the yard remains pretty ugly!!!!

It was just a few days ago that we were visiting family and friends in NY and PA, and then driving on home through Virginia, NC, SC, Georgia...............and it seems the good Lord has been on our side.  Rain, storms, and flash flooding have hit pretty hard.  A few pictures from the past couple of days in our home state of NY, near our home town of Elmira.

Top left is of Seely Creek, Lower Maple Ave where Rich and I often swimmed when we were younger.  I have family that lives on Lower Maple Ave, not far from here.  The top right is a picture of Taughannock  Falls, in the Finger Lakes area - with as much mud as water falling... Bottom left is the Moose Hall, where a lot of our Elmira friends hang out, Bottom right is Harris Hill Road, where we recently visited for our family reunion, and the middle photo is our friend Renee Torrence's house in Pine City, NY just outside of Elmira.  Unfortunately she suffered quite a loss inside, and vehicles etc. outside because it flooded so quickly.   So sad..........our hearts go out to our family and friends.

And below is a  link to a video near where we used to live in Beaver Dams........  This is Montour Falls, near Watkins Glen where just recently the Watkins Glen International was taking place. .

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Fort Mill to the Sunshine State

Wednesday morning and we were on our way to the Sunshine State..  We made it all the way there with no rain, and no traffic jams!!   So we started in SC,  and made our way through Georgia, and crossed into Florida at 12:21 PM. It was a 6 hour drive, and we only stopped once.  Stopped at the Pilot Station for gas ($2.48/gallon), and grabbed a quick breakfast at McDonald.  Total time for the stop was 20 minutes.

Not a whole lot to take pictures of in Georgia.  But I always remember the State for lots of rivers .............and creeks!  There seem to be on after the other as you travel along I-95, and most of the time they are dry!   This trip we actually saw some water!

And before we knew it - we arrived in Jacksonville!

We stayed at another Comfort Suites, here in Jacksonville, just off I-95.

And once again, the hotel had a room service and so we decided to order in.  This time it was from Sel Vino's Pizza.  Rich selected the stuffed shells, and I took the Baked Ziti.  Both came with salad and garlic bread.  And we had Cannoli's for dessert.  Delicious ...... and we were stuffed!!

And our drive tomorrow should take us home! 

Harrisburg, VA to Fort Mill, South Carolina

Tuesday morning and we were on the road to the Comfort Suites in Fort Mill, SC.   It was just a little past 8:00.  Traveling through the state of Virginia is just beautiful and I was able to get some pretty good pictures.   Below are just a few of the rolling hills, the Blue Ridge mountains, and one of the Rivers in Pulaski.  Notice the bottom right photo..... Wish I had grabbed my camera sooner -  There were several police cars, and probably 8 or more cars pulled over.  The drivers in all of the cars appeared to be Black. ( not that that makes a big difference). Rich and I both commented, actually wondered, how the officers happened to get all the vehicles stopped in the same area......we thought it appeared to be drug related.  

A little further down the road is one of those places that every time I pass, I say that some day I would like to visit.  That is Lake Norman in NC.  It is such a beautiful lake.  Lots of construction in this area - and so we were once again in bumper to bumper traffic for about 25 minutes.

Nothing else exciting on the way - just a stop for gas in Pulaski ($2.55/gallon) and then to Cracker Barrel for Breakfast.  Rich had the pancakes and sausage, and I had the French Toast.

And then we arrived at the Comfort Suites in Fort Mill, SC.  Looked like the rooms had bee updated and remodeled.........but it was not hard to tell that this was a very old building.

After the long drive - we just did not feel like going out to eat, so we ordered in Chinese.  Rich enjoyed his Chicken Lo Mein, and I enjoyed the Sesame Chicken.

Off to Jacksonville, Fl tomorrow.

The Trip Home - From Pennsylvania to Harrisonburg, VA

We had such a great visit with Dieter and Helen........... wish we could have stayed longer.  But we set out for our first stop on the way back home, right around 8:00AM.

Driving through PA is very very slow when not on a major highway, and this trip was just that!   We had a good distance to drive before getting on I-81, and while I love the scenery...........the traffic was a royal pain!!!

Here are some of my favorite pictures show the beauty of the area.  The Susquehanna River, Farmlands, Stone/Rock Cliffs along the roads,winding roads and rolling hills.......

We stopped about 10:00 o'clock for about a half hour for  gas at Sheets ($3.05/gallon) and at McDonald's for breakfast.......and then the stop and go began!   First traffic jam wasn't too bad......that was the exit off PA 15 to PA 22, but only about 10 minutes.  Then at 11:00 o'clock the bumper to bumper traffic began as we attempted to merge on to I-81 S. It took us 10 minutes to merge on.  About 11:10 - bumper to bumper again for about 1/2 hour...... and then again for a third time a little bit later that lasted again for just over 1/2 hour!   And to top it off - just before 2:00PM in Virginia we encountered a heavy thunderstorm!

We made it to the PA/Maryland State Line around 12:50, the West Virginia State Line at 1:00, and the Virginia State Line at 1:19, where we always stop at Exit 323 for Cigarettes and Gas. ($2.61/gallon).  And finally, we arrived at our hotel, Quality Inn, in Harrisonburg, VA.   Very nice stay - recently remodelled!

And IHOP was located just across the street where we enjoyed a delicious meal.  Rich selected the Philly Cheesteak Sandwich, and I had the Fish n Chips!

Good night's sleep was in order!!!!