Monday, June 17, 2019

Pictorial Of Our New Home

As we walked into Scott's this is what we saw!!
And here is what we received!

Heading for home!
Perfect place to start out
The drive into the campground

Got her backed in perfectly!!
He is a natural at this!

Our Kitchen
Add caption

Add caption
Our first sticker! Can't wait to see this get filled!

First Dinner in our new home

Dining Room
Living Room
Bedroom with True Queen Size Walk Around bed!
Teri's View
Paul's View

Split Shower! Nice 

Cab and over head bunk
We all need a mascot and garden!

Haven't actually driven it yet But will

Our New Home! Oh and how we love it!!
I was planning on updating on our new RV and our moving into it but I have decided to put that off a little longer. Last week a very special person in my life past on, I want to take this time to remember him and the others who have played a significant part in my life. Uncle Bill Meyer means so much to me, he, Aunt Kay, my mom, and my dad are the reasons I am and have always wanted to "take to the road in an RV. Uncle Bill was my dad's best friend since I do believe sometime in their teen years and throughout their lives. It is with the Meyer's we went camping every summer, had many Sunday dinners, picnics, BBQs, sleepovers, etc. Uncle Bill and Aunt Kay were not blood relatives, but the relationship between the families was so strong they earned the honorary title. They were Aunt & Uncle, their children are my cousins and dear friends, heck, even we and their cousins call each other cousins. They are and always will be Family.
 As I mentioned, we traveled and camped most of the summer together every year well into my teen years. My folks and Aunt Kay & Uncle Bill continued to camp together many years after that. The love of nature and the great outdoors was a constant in my life because of this. They taught me the plants, animals, fishing, and how to have fun just being outside. I hold each and every trip in my memories. 
  I do chuckle sometimes wondering if Uncle Bill actually knew my name. I was Pumpkin, Cookie, Kid. All precious pet names, not sure if he every called me Teri LOL. But my goodness did we travel. All up and down the East Coast, from Maine to Florida. The memories I have: Bears in Blue Ridge Parkway, the freezing waters of Maine, Kon Tiki Beach Campground in Florida and of course, Delaware. That's were the four settled with the campers when they decided not to do as much travel. Holiday Park, Lewis, De. Many a day and evening at Rehoboth Beach. Campfires, eating crabs, out on the boat. I could go on and on. 
 He was the last of the foursome, he will be missed. Now as I embark on this wonderful new phase of my life I dedicate it to them. Mom, Dad, Aunt Kay, Uncle Bill, I thank you for all you taught me, I thank you for installing the love of adventure and travel, I thank you for all the wonderful experiences and places I was able to have and to see because of you, I thank you for being there for me. I will take you and my memories with me as I travel across this great country knowing your love will always surround me. I know you will hear me when I point out the many wonders and I know you stand proud knowing how much you influenced my life.  I love you always. 

Thursday, May 30, 2019

Picking up speed

When I first started this blog I spoke about our plans to sell the house, get a winter rental, retire next year, buy an RV and head out next spring. Well, scratch that! We are most certainly still going Fulltiming but our time frame has changed. My how it has changed. To catch you all up:
  Let's see, Paul retired the end of March from his fulltime job. Since then he has been crazy busy getting the house spruced up and working part time. He has done an amazing job, painting, fixing, cleaning, etc. Love that man!
  I have put in my retirement papers and my last day after almost 30 years at the library will be September 27. Now that's a great birthday present to me, LOL. I too have been busy sorting, tossing, planning, going over the finances again and again. With this is mind we have decided to fast forward the timing of heading out. If all goes as planned and the house sells relatively quickly we are looking at sometime in October to be on the move.
  Speaking of the house. We have a realtor and the place is going on the market! Wish us well for quick sale.  Now thinking of the logistics of selling the house and having somewhere else to live was getting a bit nerve racking for us both. Which led us to decide, well just go for it now. We have purchased our new home! A Coachmen Freelander 27QB, Love love love the floorplan of this one. A Class C motorhome, no slides, 30 feet bumper to bumper, a true queen size walk around bed. It has a dinette and a sofa and adorable kitchen space. I fell in love at first site seeing it at one of the many RV Shows we have gone to, it showed up at a our favorite local RV Dealer, Scotts RV Center, in Lakewood, NJ. I like to think they got it especially for me as I have been back and forth with Anthony (salesperson) about what we wanted and low and behold, there it appeared! Thank you Anthony! After going down to look at it on their lot and Paul (who we call Taller Paul for obvious resaons) (other salesperson, Anthony couldn't be there the day we went down) giving us a great tour and overview, pointing our feature after feature, we decided to talk turkey. We had already been online looking at what other dealers were asking for this unit so had a ballpark figure of what we would be willing to pay. When they came in even lower then that right off the bat, well, yes, done deal! I highly recommend this dealership to anyone looking to buy an RV. They are straight shooters and show you what you want not what they want you to buy.

So there we are with a new RV and hmmm, okay, so now what are we doing to do with it? Certainly can't park it in our parking lot. We wanted it close enough so I could travel easily back and forth to work after selling the house. We found a great site at a local campground. The owner was so helpful, explaining the way she runs her place and suggesting several sites for us to look at. Told us to walk around the park and let her know when we settled on one and if down the road we weren't happy with that site we could easily move to any other open site. So that's what we did, we walked around and around and back and forth, eyeballing each site as carefully as we know how. Walking front to back looking for evenness, bumps, roots, ruts etc. I think we found the best site for us. Signed the agreement and will be moving the rig in Tomorrow!!!!
  Phew! yes, tomorrow we go back to Scott's, get an approximately, 4 hour training session to learn all the ins and outs of our new home. Then we get to drive it over to Pine Cone Resort and Campground where we will stay until heading out Fulltime. Oh my my my. As I said our plans have certainly accelerated.   With all this I am hoping to post more here about our experiences learning our RV and our new life adventure.

Of course More and better photos to follow.

Ta for now!

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Catching up

It's been a while since I have posted anything so thought I'd catch everyone up on the goings on.  We've been quite busy clearing out and cleaning up. Since Paul retired he has been a whirlwind of activity here. The spare bedroom ceiling and walls are painted and is now our staging area for going through things. He is working on sanding down and repainting the kitchen cabinet doors, 14 down, 4 to go. He has gone through his music collection and now has a plethora of songs on the IPOD. We have gone through each closet and cabinet getting rid of things right and left. Amazing how much one has! Several will need to be gone through again and again. Patio and front garden have been spruced up and planted with pretties. Floors scrubbed, rugs cleaned. Still have a couple of things that need tending and then it is ready to put on the market!  WOW! 

 Yes, things are moving fast, actually faster then we original thought. If all continues to go as planned could be as early as Mid Summer to buy the RV and heading out in October. Oh My. It seems so unreal at times. The mixed emotions one feels is like being on a roller coaster. So very excited to be finally able to live this dream but yet again, it is scary as all get out. The "What Ifs" run strong and sometimes it is real hard to quiet them. What if we don't like it. What if we hit really bad weather, What if we breakdown, What if one of us gets sick, What if, What if, WHAT IF????? Seeing the house get emptier and emptier is exhilarating, but no wait, how can I get rid of that, its my stuff! It's what I know. It's my life. Can we actually be doing this??? WHATAREWECRAZY!!!!

 Phew, calm down, you got this, just need to focus on what's ahead, where we will go, what we will see, the incredible wonders of our great country.

I read a quote attributed to Henry David Thoreau, "We must walk consciously only part way toward our goal, then leap in the dark to our success." Yes, that is so how I feel at this stage.

Well enough for now, back to sorting, tossing, sprucing, planning,

Oh and since it was read publicly at last night's council meeting I guess we can call it official. My retirement date is September 27!!  Yep after thirty years I am leaving the library, another mixed emotion. Will so miss the people but am so done with the working!
 Little bragging moment: The business administer of the boro went on the record to say I was Classy and Professional, whoa that is an ego boost! 

Okay til next time! Ta

Monday, April 8, 2019

A Productive, A Fun, An Informative, An ODD, A Wow and A Finally!

Well, the past several days have been busy ones, and as the title alludes to, we have had events that were: A Productive, A Fun, An Informative, An ODD, A Wow and A Finally!

Saturday was quite the productive day, We sorted and boxed up everything we will be selling at the CVA Flea Market next Saturday. We have six or seven bins of goods as well as several bigger items hopefully finding new homes. With all the twisting, lugging, bending, stretching, lifting I did, my body got quite the workout! Two things accomplished at the same time, Now That's Productive!  If anyone is interested the Flea Market is Saturday, April 13 from 9 - 3, at the CVA Clubhouse, 33 Galewood Drive, Cheesequake Village.  Stop by and say hi.

  Sunday found us at the Hunterdon Land Trust Farmers Market.. Wound up there to meet Phil as he picked up some plants from ToadShade Wildflower Farm. The farm is located in Frenchtown and all their plants are native to the area. What a great service. There were several other vendors including Pickle Licious of Teaneck. They had lots of samples of their wares and were they good! Next time we go we will remember to bring a cooler!  There was bread, cheeses, meats, fresh produce, honey and much more. We could have had a lunch feast right there!
    There is a walking trail behind the farm, so of course, that's what we had to do. Fun trail through woodlands, swamplands, meadow and marsh. Lots of bird life, fish in the brook, and early spring flowers. Several families with young children were playing in the shallows trying to catch a frog or two. Love to see that. Always feels good to get out and hike.
    The Land Trust is located on the Historic Dvoor Farm, 111 Mine Street, Flemington. This 40 acre site is listed on State and National Registers of Historic Places. Having barns from the 19th century and a 1798 stone farmhouse makes it a interesting place to stop to see, with the Farmer's Market it becomes a destination.
   Following the market was a lunch at Cracker Barrel, then helping Phil plant his plants. Any day spent with him is a special day for me and with the weather what it was, just perfect.
One has to cross a bridge when you see one! 
And then came Monday!

First was a trip to Trenton to gather information about applying for retirement and pension benefits. Lots of good information, even if I do dislike going into Trenton. Paul drove in with me which made it a lot easier, one of the perks of him being retired! Looks like I am all set to pick a date, submit my application and letter of retirement. Rather exciting.

Right outside Trenton is an area called Duck Island. I have seen the sign for it since, gee, who knows and have wanted to check it out. The day was lovely and we had no set plans so decided what the heck, let's go. I knew there was suppose to be a walking trail somewhere, so off we went. Well certainly didn't turn out to be the experience we were expecting. The road (yes, only one) wound around several factories, warehouses and the like, not the sort of area we thought it would be. Several No Outlet signs had us second guessing whether or not to continue but onward we went.till we got to the end of the road which dumps one into a parking lot. And when I say dumps I rather mean it. Quite obviously this is an area that doesn't see much, umm, tending to.  We saw a trail sign toward the end of the lot and hesitantly got out and headed over to it. The trail itself looked at first inviting as it followed along the waterway with wooded area to the other side. BUT, as we got closer Oh MY. There on the ground was the carcass of a canine looking animal. Couldn't tell much from the neck down as all that was left was bone,but the head, well, could have been a hybrid. Without getting to close, it looked like across between Shepard, wolf and coyote. Man did that give us pause. Talked about Odd feelings. Okay so this is starting to feel right out of the movie Deliverance. Any moment the Banjos were going to start.  Needless to say we decided no, not going down that trail.  So anyway, I can now say I have been to Duck Island and tain't going back!

We then headed to DMV. We recently paid off both cars and were going to see about getting clean titles. WOW, what a nice surprise when the woman there told us she would take the lien holders out of the computer but we didn't need a new physical title. That just saved us $60 a piece! NICE! 

Was such a beautiful day and having done what we wanted to accomplish, we decided to head over to Sandy Hook Lighthouse. I have found it quite ironic that having seen and climbed so many lighthouses both here in New Jersey as well as many other places, the one I had never been up was the one in my own backyard. Every time I have been there, the lighthouse was closed, private tour being held, closed for renovations, etc. Well, today was the day, Finally I got to go up. Loved it!
 For those who don't know, the Sandy Hook Lighthouse house is located, well, at Sandy Hook, Gateway National Recreation Area. I shall write a bit about it another time, I'm rather done for today.

A wonderful abundance of what looks like small Yellow Water Lillies!


Monday, March 4, 2019

I'm In Love

Paul and I went to the Greater Philadelphia RV Show held in Oaks, PA at the Expo Center. This is the third RV show we've been to this year and so far, the best. There were lots of dealers with many different makes and models. The two in NJ, Edison and AC, had the same dealers and mostly the same models, that in itself made this one better. There were also so many more to see. Knowing we have narrowed the field down to a Class C or small Class A, we focused on those. There were three good possibilities and a couple of, "well, it could work". Thing is, this is where we plan on living for the next, oh who knows, at least a year and hopefully, five or ten. We don't really want a "well, it could work", we want a, "Yes, This is good" And, we found it, if it were six months to a year from now, we may have drove out of there in a new RV.

What, you may ask, set it a part from the others, many things. Having looked at so many different units, we know more and more what is important to us. Two concerns are on the top of the list: Small enough to get us in the State and National Parks yet big enough for Paul to be comfortable. Believe me, this is not an easy find. Paul is 6'4" and most Class C so called queen size beds are 74" long. That is several inches to short for him and no, he is not going to forfeit being able to stretch out in bed. Speaking of beds, so many of the smaller unit have corner beds so one of us would have to crawl over the over and slide out the bottom or the bed is on a slide and folds when the slide in is. That leaves the mattress with a horizontal ridge across the middle. If you ask me that is going to get uncomfortable real fast, rather like sleeping on an old sofa bed with that wonderful bar across the middle! The other issue most units have is the shower is to short for him and the ac unit, which is mounted on the roof hangs down into the living space and becomes a nasty head banger.  He could just crawl around on his knees, but that's not really a option.

Along comes the 27QB Freelander by Coachman. It hits all the marks. It has enough head space for Paul to walk freely and stand up in the shower. The bed is a true queen size and not only that but is a walkaround, which means you can access it from the bottom and both sides. It has a couch as well as a dinette, which gives you more seating space and if we have the families along from time to time, can sleep 7 - 8 people. Two in the back in the queen, two in the space over the cab that coverts to a almost queen, two in the dinette converted into a double and one (or two small kids) on the sofa bed! With Sara and Kevin having three boys, that is a bonus. It has nice storage and is well appointed, not flashy and glitzy like some of the Class A's. Another big bonus, it has over 3800 lbs of Cargo Carrying Capacity!!! Many of the Class Cs have just over 1000 lbs and when you consider the weight of the people, water, propane and all your stuff, it adds up fast. We also like that it has no slides. Slides are nice in that they give your more room when out, they are one more thing to go wrong and sometimes you can't walk from one end to the other when they're in. Yep, just about perfect and that's pretty much the best you can get with any RV. Just about perfect for you.

So this is my some day soon!!

Yep, Nice fit!! 

Sunday, March 3, 2019

The Poet Of Matawan

Recently, I had the pleasure of meeting a friend for dinner at a local restaurant, The Brass Rail, located along a stretch of Route 79 also called Freneau Avenue in Matawan, New Jersey. Good food, good prices, and welcoming atmosphere makes it a worthwhile stop. I did a bit of reminiscing as I was leaving, thinking of all the different names the building has had over the years. The one that stands out: The Poet's Inn.

The Poet's Inn opened in 1961, with the name honoring the memory of Philip Freneau, who lived in the original house at that location, circa 1700's. Philip Freneau was, among other things, a poet, and newspaper editor. He was often called the "Poet of the American Revolution". Through his newspaper he a strong critic of George Washington and was close friend of James Madison. 

The area surrounding the restaurant is also known as Freneau and has a Fire Company, cementary (where Philip Freneau is buried) and several parks with that name.

One of those parks is tucked in a quiet area where Matawan, Marlboro and Old Bridge borders converge, off Monastery Lane. Freneau Woods Park, part of the Monmouth County Park System, covers 209 acres of wooded land which once belong to a Basilian monastery, the Basilian Fathers of Mariapoch, as well as the Freneau family. There is a 1.6 mile trail with more trail development planned in the near future.

We went to explore the park over the weekend. We were disappointed that while it boasts a Visitor Center, it was closed. 
Visitor Center

Love this old tree

We did walk along the unmarked trail, which was easy to follow until we came to a fork. Going to the right, we found, leads to an large swath of land following the electrical power lines. There were further paths along this but the area was so swampy at this time we couldn't go far. Backtracking, we picked up the park trail which loops around to the parking lot once again. Perhaps, one day we will go back to visit the center and see what progress has been made on the other buildings. We didn't see much but did get to listen to a woodpecker and watch a nuthatch climbing around a tree.
It could be considered one of those little known gems.

Not much green this time of year but this tree like moss was pretty.
We decided not to take this path!!

On the Death of Benjamin Franklin
By Philip Freneau (1752–1832)
(April 17, 1790)

THUS, some tall tree that long hath stood
The glory of its native wood,
By storms destroyed, or length of years,
Demands the tribute of our tears.

The pile, that took long time to raise,      
To dust returns by slow decays;
But, when its destined years are o’er,
We must regret the loss the more.

So long accustomed to your aid,
The world laments your exit made;      
So long befriended by your art,
Philosopher, ’tis hard to part!—

When monarchs tumble to the ground
Successors easily are found;
But, matchless Franklin! what a few      
Can hope to rival such as you,
Who seized from kings their sceptred pride,
And turned the lightning’s darts aside!

Pictorial Of Our New Home

As we walked into Scott's this is what we saw!! And here is what we received! Heading for home! Perfect place to start o...