Getting Here

We’re getting nicely settled in our January spot (check out the So Where Are We Now page for more details!) but getting here presented some interesting challenges.
Tuesday night as we were packing up and preparing for an early departure Wednesday morning, Gary did his standard tire pressure check. We’re thankful he did! One of our rear tires was dangerously low and was a cause for concern. He got the pressure up (yes, we carry an air compressor with us), checked it in the morning to make sure it was still safe to drive, and headed to a local tire shop, hoping for a quick repair and then we’d be officially on our way.
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The first shop couldn’t find the leak. The second shop couldn’t fit us in until (maybe) later in the day. The third shop was the charm – there was only about an hour wait. (Kinda hard to believe that the little town of Bonifay (FL) has THREE Tire shops!) We found an empty parking lot to wait, and sure enough we got the call just a little over an hour later. Gary maneuvered our beast into their work area, and the mechanic started working on the tire. He found the leak in the valve extension (that’s where Gary thought it might be), and removed it to fix the problem, filled up the tire, and kindly said – “NO Charge” when we went to pay the bill. Unexpected blessing to be sure! The morning was just about gone, but we were on our way at last.
Except. The engine was running rough. It would go along fine, but then it would give a little cough or jerk like it wasn’t getting enough fuel. This has happened before and each time the problem has been the fuel filter. So now we carry a spare or two just in case! We limped into the next rest stop and my dear husband worked his magic once again.
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We were very thankful that that did indeed ‘do the trick’ and we were officially on our way a little after noon, aiming for a rest stop/overnight near Ocala.
Except. During one of our ‘waiting times’ we had tried to start the generator. Nuttin’. Click-click-click -whrrrrrrrrr. We don’t need the generator to move down the road (or when we’re plugged into power), but because we now have a residential refrigerator (which we love) we do need to run the generator periodically when we’re not going to be plugged into power for over 24 hours.  We’ve found that running the generator for a couple of hours in the evening and then again in the morning (we have to make coffee, after all!) keeps the fridge nice and cold. But an overnight with no generator could be trouble.
And Then. We realized that the water pump was not working. Now we carry some bottled water with us, but we weren’t really excited about flushing the toilet, washing our hands, etc. using 16oz bottles of water.
And So. We broke our ‘golden rule’ of two day travel (rest stop or Walmart for sleeping) and pulled into a campground right off the highway for a quick overnight. Power, water, all the good things – and even a bit of TV! I think it was a well spent $29.00.
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We had a leisurely morning, and finished the last 120 miles of the trip with no problems, just a bit more Florida traffic than I like! Today we ordered a new valve stem extension to complete the tire repair and a new water pump control (we don’t need the pump as long as we’re hooked up to ‘city water’) along with some other miscellaneous RV parts that have been hanging out in our shopping cart on Amazon! Oh, and the generator started right up once we got to our new spot. That little glitch remains a mystery.

So once again, God has gotten us safely to our next location. We cover our travels in prayer (and I know others pray along with us), and we never take for granted a safe arrival. We’re thankful to be here, safe and secure, and ready to see what the LORD has in store for us this month!
Thanks for coming along for the (somewhat bumpy) ride!
Steph

I guess it’s ’bout time!

It’s been more than two weeks since my last “non-holiday’ post, and I figured it’s about time I get this whole blogging thing back on track! We’ve returned from our lovely time at the beach, and are sifting through all our post-vacation debris and getting ready to hit the road tomorrow for our January SOWER project in Lake Wales, FL.  New adventures await!

But first – The Beach!!
Ahhhh……
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I’ll be honest with you, Gary & I are not really ‘beach people’. We gravitate more towards mountains and cabins than sandy beaches and condos. But we truly did have a delightful time in our little ‘condo by the sea’.
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No alarms, a fair bit of eating out, and even a bit of time on the beach.
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We weren’t sure what bird made these footprints
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but I am glad I never ran into whatever it was on a dark night! (Probably a Great Blue Heron, though we never actually saw one!)
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While we had some beautiful sunshiny days, the temperature never got up high enough to tempt us to pull out those swim suits. In fact, on Christmas day – high of 46.
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Brrrrrr…. (If you can zoom in on that picture you might see some crazy folks in the water (with wet suits on)!.
We were on the fourth floor of a 16 floor condo, and were pretty much lined up with the boardwalk out to the beach.
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So even when we didn’t feel like heading to the beach, we could still watch the ocean (and all the folks coming and going!). I never tired of the view, and was delighted with both the sunrise
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and the sunset
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most days.

It was a very different Christmas for us, and we did indeed miss seeing our kids and grands. Zooming is fun, but it’s not really quite the same thing, is it? But for this year, and this season, our little beachy Christmas was just the right thing.   Thank you, Lord, for the beauty of the sea!

As always, thanks for stopping by!
Steph

PS – If you’d like to see more pictures of our time at Orange Beach (’cause you I took MORE!), you can check them out HERE!

Twenty Twenty One

We didn’t know (nor could’ve predicted, I dare say) how 2020 was going to turn out. And truth be told, as happy as we are to be done with 2020, we really don’t know what 2021 will hold for us either.  But my Heavenly Father does! And so my prayer for this new year can be summed up in this beautiful poem written in 1874 by Frances Havergal.

Another Year is Dawning

Another year is dawning, dear Father, let it be
In working or in waiting, another year with Thee;
Another year of progress, another year of praise,
Another year of proving Thy presence all the days.

Another year of mercies, of faithfulness and grace,
Another year of gladness in the shining of Thy face;
Another year of leaning upon Thy loving breast;
Another year of trusting, of quiet, happy rest.

Another year of service, of witness for Thy love,
Another year of training for holier work above;
Another year is dawning, dear Father, let it be
On earth, or else in Heaven, another year for Thee.
Amen

Another year is dawning, dear Father, let it be,
On earth, or else in Heaven, another year for Thee!

Tomorrow

Tomorrow (Tuesday) we are heading out for our Christmas Getaway – 12 days at a “Gulf View” condo in Orange Beach, AL.
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Even as I dig out the beach towels and bathing suits from under the bed(rather optimistically since I’m pretty sure the temperatures aren’t even supposed to hit 70 while we are there!), and organize the power cords for packing, I must admit I am a bit conflicted. Oh, we’ve had several years when we haven’t been with family on Christmas Day, but I cannot think of a Christmas Season where I wasn’t kissing little faces or snuggled up with a slew of kidlins watching Christmas Story or playing games around the kitchen table at some point. We would be the “Phase II” Christmas, and it worked pretty well (plus the kids loved having two Christmas mornings!). But this year, long before the huge up-tick in COVID-19 cases and the “stay home” recommendations, we had decided to do Christmas just on our own. (We actually had considered taking a cruise. But you know…cruises and pandemics….no. Just no.) We have no agenda for our time at ‘the beach’ =). I’m bringing books and my cameras and my computer and I’m sure the days will fill up just fine! Along with the beach towels I’m also packing hats and scarves and warm jackets so we can take long walks on the beach regardless of the ambient temperature! And with today’s wonderful technology (and WIFI at the condo) there should be lots of opportunities to be part of the family festivities without anyone actually having to find us a place to sleep!!

Before we head out tomorrow, though, I wanted to give you a quick wrap-up of the work here at Teen Challenge. With the help of that fine tool (the Gecko Gauge), the section we were working on went up like a dream. We completed the entire section in just 2 1/2 days,
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and that left plenty of time for clean-up and fine-tuning some of the ‘mechanical’ areas around back.
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Next month there are three SOWER couples coming so they should be able to finish off the front with no problem (we’re leaving them that miracle tool). I don’t know if they’ll tackle the end of the building, but once it does get all done, everything will get a fresh coat of paint so it won’t have such a patchwork look (from the different ages of the siding). We might have to stop back next year to see how it all comes together!

Praying you all have a blessed Christmas week! I know there is a lot going on, and for many of us it will be a Christmas like none we’ve had before (kinda like 2020 in general!). Don’t know how the blogging schedule will develop over the next two weeks – but just in case –

Steph

Seeing the country……Serving our Lord!