Palm Beach Soaker
Here we were in beautiful South Florida, escaping from the cold of Southern Pennsylvania and what did we get? Rain, rain, and more rain! All night the wind blew fiercely, driving rain and wet palm fronds against the side of our RV. When you spend rainy nights in an RV, you hear every drop that hits the roof and your sleep is disturbed by the constant flow of water from the roof gutters to the pavement. We had planned to take in the Seafood Festival in Delray Beach but decided to skip it. Instead we did some shopping and went to a movie.
Roberta Faber, Artist
This time our drive from New Freedom to Vacation Inn Resort proved uneventful. This was a huge relief after some of the engine problems and flat tires that we had of previous trips. We made a detour to Ocala to see Cousin Joe and his wife Roberta. Roberta is an accomplished artist. She paints the exteriors and interiors of clay pots, melding land, sea and sky scenes. Many of her compositions appear as dreamscapes or forays into the topography of alien worlds. However, others are realistically depicted as her series of scenes featuring the life of Christ. We thoroughly enjoyed holding each pot and marveling at the inspiration that went into their creation. Some of the more detailed pots take as long as a year to complete.
Our stay in Florida was a bit of a downer this time. On the very first day that we arrived, the folks who own the lot next door to us decided to jack hammer the entire pad and install new concrete and landscaping. Even though this would result in a more beautiful neighborhood eventually, we were subjected to tremendous noise and dirt for days on end.
Most of our time on this trip was given over to caring for my parents. Paul and I took them shopping and we went out to lunch once or twice. I helped my mom to put together bags of goodies for all the service personnel that are so essential to their way of life these days. Unfortunately, Mom was under the weather for most of our visit.
The Publix Grocery chain in Florida features a wonderful bread in their bakery department. After missing out on several visits, we discovered that they offer this treat on Fridays before the weekend. This delectable loaf has a yeasty flavor and is packed with dried fruits such as apricots, prunes, raisins, and cranberries. It is also full of nuts. As you can see, there is no icing on the top and indeed, this bread is not sweet in itself. The only sweetness is in the fruit. Paul managed to eat a loaf and put two loaves in the freezer for our return trip! Never let it be said that I don’t keep my husband and my pooch well-fed!
Paul and I had a lot of time for discussion this visit. We have been thinking about ridding ourselves of some of the encumbrances that we acquired over the past few years. We no longer use our Florida property very much and we are now saddled with an RV that is too big for vacation travel. To that end, we decided to list our lot for sale and use the proceeds to purchase a small motorhome. We will still be able to stay at VIR as renters when we visit my sister and my parents. We would also have the option of staying at Jonathan Dickinson State Park nearby. Some of the other owners in the park have expressed an interest so we will wait to see how things shake out. And as for that smaller RV, perhaps we should consider this model?
I’ve been trying to upload a blog post since we arrived at Vacation Inn Resort in Palm Beach County. None of my photos will load and the signal is very weak here. Paul is looking for a booster but I may not be able to post while I am here. Unfortunately our internet connections here at the resort have not grown as the park has grown and there are now too many people trying to get on-line all at the same time. Since my battery port on the Viao has been non-functioning for quite some time, I won’t be able to go to a Starbucks either. I’ll have to see you when I get home!
Hope this post even makes it!
“Beavering away” is a term that the Brits use to describe working diligently and constantly on something. That really describes my process with this shawl! I finally have the shawl on the bed for blocking. Now I don’t know how I ever got along without those blocking wires. They are great! Especially since one of my edges ended up a slight bit slanted. No matter how long you’ve been crocheting, counting your stitches is still important! But never mind, the blocking covers a multitude of sins.
This shawl is still coming out about 7″ shorter than the pattern states even though I switched to a J hook. Using a K hook would have made the stitches much too loose for my taste so I am resigned to the shorter length. This is really not a problem because I am a short person! The trick will be to make sure that the back portion hangs down far enough. With the gauge being so off on this project, everything had to be re-worked.
It’s that time of year again! Time to pack up the RV and hit the road to palm trees, sunshine, and sandy beaches. In the next few days we’ll be busy tying up last-minute chores. I’ve already cooked and frozen several different types of meals to take with us on the road. Cooking in the RV is possible but I wanted to avoid having to take all the staples that go along with making meals. And while we eat out quite often, I usually prefer to eat at home.
Paul actually wanted to take some of our patio furniture! When we were spending winters in West Palm Beach, we had some very nice and comfortable tables and chairs but now that we rent out our lot for most of the season, we opted to provide only a picnic table. It looks like we’ll be making do with our portable bag chairs. As you can see, I need all the available space for my yarn!
Nevertheless, arriving at Vacation Inn Resort is almost like returning home after a long absence. We’ll get set up quickly on our newly re-surfaced space and before you know it, we’ll be sipping a cool drink under the awning and watching the egrets tip-toeing along the top of our hedge!
My internet friend Gigi lives in Nimbin, Australia. If you Google Nimbin, you will find descriptions of a colorful town, home to a counterculture not seen since the 1960′s. Folks from all over the world visit here to enjoy the slice of life that is on display. Gigi and her husband Peter own a farm. When they are not farming and caring for animals, they are traveling the world to visit their grown children who have all decamped to various parts.
Gigi and Peter live an interesting life, far different form the life most of us live in the United States. I am constantly entertained and amused by Gigi’s account of what happens on the farm and by her fascinating description of their travels. I thought the rest of you might enjoy reading a bit about Gigi and her family, human and animal alike. Page down to the previous post and enjoy!
Beating a Dead Horse
My Lisdoonvarna Shawl is finally progressing nicely. The designer, Bonnie Barker, informed me that there was a misprint in the published pattern and she was nice enough to give me all the measurements for each section of the shawl. While I was fighting to achieve a 17″ width, it turned out that the shawl is only 15″ wide. Big difference! I discovered that I did indeed have to go to a J hook size so I ripped the whole thing out again and started over. Even with the larger hook, my woven stitch rows were not high enough so I had to add 4 extra rows to that section. Now I am just merrily crocheting along. It’s a large project so it will take me a while.
It is hot and windy. The spring winds are dry and the earth is parched. Some rain is definitely needed at this stage. Some plants are already suffering as we can't attend to the watering of all of them. We are on tank water hence restricted to a certain extend.
What I have noticed in times of stress is all the bamboos that we planted are shedding their leaves.