Thursday, November 29, 2018

Looking An Alligator In The Eye (Key West, FL)

Well, not quite in the eye, but close enough to get some good photos using my telephoto lens.  On our way to Key West, we spent two nights at the Midway Campgrounds so we could spend the day exploring the area.  With 26 RV sites, we almost had the place to ourselves except for the one family that decided to park only two sites away from us.  

We visited the Oasis Visitor Center at the Big Cypress. just to view the alligators.  
There were only two close enough for us to see from the walk area.  
This guy was directly under us so I got some good close-ups of his leathery skin.

I'll never complain about dry skin again!
This is the second one.  The water was clear enough for us to see his legs floating in the water.  Perfectly still.....
Okay, back to Key West... We are enjoying our days in the sun by taking walks around the base, sitting outside with our cats, and watching the sunsets.  We have only been downtown a couple of times.  Between different celebrations, crowds, and too hot to walk, we decided we can wait until it is a little cooler.
We have rotated twice from full hook-ups to one night stays in dry camping. 
We have been very lucky with cold fronts cooling off the area just in time for our dry camping making for a perfect night's sleep with open windows. 
Since our arrival, the weather has been above average.  No complaints since I have been monitoring the weather in Sutherlin, OR.  It has been a wee bit chilly there.
We are trying to get our walks in early which is perfect for viewing all the wildlife.
The Ospreys have been busy building their nest.  Soon, we will be able to see little ones begging for food.

This Egret was up early looking for handouts and not having much luck.  
So, that's it for now.  Not a whole lot going on and yet, I go to bed every night feeling like I had a full day enjoying paradise.

On The Cutting Board
I guess I am doing more than just sitting around and watching sunsets. 
I am getting ready for the Yard and Crafts sale.  Hopefully, the MWR will schedule one in mid December.
Small Happy Campers $12 - $12.95
I have 25 new Happy Campers ready for my table in addition to my items listed in my shop.
Medium Happy Campers $14
I'm hoping to sell as many as possible before I need to list them online.
Large Happy Campers $14.95 - $15
While I wait, I decided to make three muslin bear angels with crazy quilted wings and bent halos, so back to sewing!
Happy Quilting!

Friday, October 26, 2018

Bitten by Paradise (Key West, FL)

I'm not feeling very chatty, but it is time to get caught up on our travels.  After my last posting, we spent 3 weeks in Peace River, FL.  We spent most of our time watching the river rise and slowly go back down.
Flooded river with only a couple of inches of sign at the boat ramp showing.
We were in no danger of waking up to find the river at our front door.  Except for a few rainy days, our site stayed very dry.
Same sign after river went back to normal.
About half of the campground was flooded during the first week of our stay.  Walking was a little more interesting.  The flooding attracted all sorts of birds including a Spoonbill and I saw my first Wood Storks.
flooded campground
same road with water receding
Last week, we moved to Key West for our winter stay.  
I'm so happy to be back that I haven't had much desire to go off base to explore.  I mean - just look at that view out our front window.  Who could ask for more?
And my walks in the morning have been delightful.
We did take a drive around town by the third day.  As you can see, Key West is back to its normal lifestyle.
We haven't seen a single chicken on base, but we saw quite a few of roosters, hens, and these three chicks on the south side of the Key.
I think there are more iguanas now on the base then there was the last time we were here. 
For now, I'm happy to just relax and breath in the sea air.
On The Cutting Board
I am working on new Happy Campers for the Yard and Crafts Sale in November.  I cut out a large stack of mug rugs last winter then spent this summer designing and embroidering most of them.
I'm hoping to sell quite a few before I need to list them in Etsy.
Well, it is about time to take our cats outside and enjoy the cooler weather as the sun goes down.  Tomorrow, I will pull out the sewing machine and start assembling the Happy Campers.
Happy Quilting!

Friday, September 21, 2018

Moving South (Zolfo Springs, FL)

We have covered a few miles since my last posting.  We are still making our way south towards Key West, FL.  

We stayed for the first time in Three Rivers State Park with a site on the river.  We had a great view of the airboats passing by while letting the cats explored.  We only stayed for one night and wished we had planned for more nights.  Maybe next time. 
 Our next stop was at the Suwanee River State Park.  We have been here before and had enjoyed walking the Lime Sink Run Trail several times.  This time of year it is not so much fun between large spiders making huge webs to walk through and mosquitoes having lunch on us.
Needless to say, we only walked it once this time. 😐
I did get a few good photos between ducking and dodging....
The big wheel below is from an old paddle wheel steamboat near the river path.  A much better walk under big shady trees with Spanish moss.
Next stop was Clermont, FL near Orlando.  Since June, my schedule has been to get out early before the day becomes too hot and humid for walking.  As soon as I return, we take cats out.  Hard to believe Fall officially starts tomorrow.  The weather still feels more like mid-July.
Most days have been very hazy so we end up spending most of our time indoors unless we have some shopping to do.
One good thing about hot days is that it does motivate me to get moving early enough to get those golden moment photos!  I'm rarely out the door before sunrise. 😀 ...or out of bed. 😴
By noon, the clouds are building up and soon we have a downpour that will last for about an hour or two.
We even had a nice rainbow one day.
Did I mention that our site backed up to a cattle's field?  It must have been a large fenced in area because the cattle only showed up once in awhile. I have never seen such happy cattle with so much energy by showing off their prancing and head butting skills.
We had a couple of visitors one day.  One of the Sand Cranes was begging for food until I showed him open hands.  Can a Sand Crane looked disgusted?  This one certainly gave it a good try as he walked away from me. "The nerve of some people.  Take a photo and NOT offer any food! Really!"

One more photo of the lake reflecting the clouds before we left the Orlando TT campground.
Dan discovered a Cat Cafe nearby.  I have read about the cafes in Japan and never thought we would have the opportunity to visit one in the US and here was one within a 10 minute drive from our campground!
The Orlando Cat Cafe is a partnership between the Axum Coffee and the Florida SPCA. All cats are up for adoption.
We ordered a small lunch with drinks from the cafe and paid $8 each to enter the Cat's room.  They limit the cat's room to 20 visitors at a time.  It was a slow day for visitors so it was nice and quiet for the cats.  We spent our time eating lunch, watching cats play or wander around, and hearing about their stories.
A very relaxed atmosphere for cats to meet their humans.  After visiting a Humane Society and seeing so many stressed out animals in cages, I have to admit that I was a little worried that I would feel very guilty for not adopting a cat, but they all looked very happy with their new temporary home.  Except for this one....such a woeful look.  Her look must have worked well on someone because her photo is gone from the adoptable list.
I felt good that we were able to donate some time and attention to the cats.  Adoptions have been very good since they started the Cat's Cafe.  I hope this idea catches on in other towns and we start seeing more of them.  

On The Cutting Board
I finally finished quilting all four quilt tops.  
I'm binding them now....
...and getting plenty of supervision from Max.  😻
2 down and 2 more to go!
Happy Quilting!

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