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Thursday, July 29, 2010

Getting Back to a Routine

I like routine. There, I've said it. Out loud. And I am not ashamed. :) I like structure and having a plan. So, getting back to some semblance of a routine makes me happy.

Went to Curves this morning. Only got to go a few times while in Kansas, so it's gonna take a few workouts to get back up to speed. But, that's okay. I'm retired – I got time. :)

And it's Thursday, so I was over to Lindsay's by 10am to do laundry. Once that was done, Lindsay, Reagan and I went to see the movie, “Marmaduke. “ It was very cute. And anytime I can watch Reagan laugh out loud, I'll take it.

Randy was working hard while I was out hardly working. He got the outside of the rig set back up – awning out, chairs set up, etc. He also got the meatloaf ready for baking. I am such a lucky woman! I got a guy who takes such great care of me and our life together. There isn't a day that goes by that I don't thank God for Randy Guiler!

This weekend our campground celebrates Christmas in July. Every year this is a big deal. Folks really go all out in decorating their sites. It's fun. There's also a big “Christmas” dinner. The park supplies the meat and sodas while everyone else brings a dish to share. It's always a fun time.

Hope you've had a good week. Until the next time . . .

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

The Return Trip

We are home. Praise God for a safe, uneventful trip.

On Monday morning, bout 6:45, we pulled away from Kevin & Sara's to begin the long drive home. We had almost 1200 miles ahead of us. But, we had one last stop to make before we really got on the road.

About an hour and 45 minutes up the road, in Lawrence, KS, we stopped at IHOP to have breakfast with . . . Mac & Netters!!!

With Mac & Lynette in KS

Mac & Lynette had just gotten back home to Garnett, KS, from a trip to Nashville. It was our luck that our leaving KS coincided with their coming home. We were thrilled that they were willing to drive an hour, early in the morning, to have a meal with us. The stop was on our way, but they went out of their way to meet us. That's RVing friends for you!!

We had a good breakfast, some laughter, and lots of good conversation. The hour and a half went by wayyyyy too fast, but it was better than not seeing them at all. It's amazing how fast friendships form in this RVing life. God sure does provide. :)

With full bellies (and hearts) we said good-bye to Mac & Lynette and headed east on I70. Next stop, Indianapolis, more than 8 hours away. :) We pulled into LaQuinta Inns & Suites about 8:45pm, ready to be out of the truck for awhile.

Yes, we stayed in a hotel overnight. After sleeping (or trying to) in the truck on the trip out to Kansas, I vowed that wasn't going to happen again. But, you know? I sure did hate having to pay $76 and some change for a room in which we were staying less than 12 hours! Call me cheap, but that's the way it is. I gotta admit, though, that bed sure did feel good, as did the shower the next morning. Plus, LaQuinta is pet-friendly, so Blackie wasn't an issue.

We were back on the road at 7:00 Tuesday morning. We stopped in Springfield, OH at a Cracker Barrel for breakfast, This is CB #79, I believe, maybe 80. I'll have to check. :) Once again, we were back on the road, heading for home. Just another 7 hours and we'd be pulling into our site. I was so ready.

Smooth sailing all the way home. We got there about 6pm. Easy trip. SOOOO much better than the trip out. I'm sure our concern about Kevin made the trip out to Kansas less than ideal and, knowing he was doing better, made our trip home an easy one.

It's good to be home. To relax in our recliners and be in our own space is priceless.

Please continue to keep Kevin and Sara in your prayers. Kevin is doing much better, but we found that he is definitely struggling to adjust to life back home. Those of us who have never been in a combat situation or deployed to a combat zone can not understand what our soldiers endure. Gratefully, Kevin was not in an active combat situation, but he was exposed to experiences that are beyond our comprehension. I'm thankful God brought him home safely and will continue to pray for him as he gets back in the swing of a “normal” routine.

And my mantra is, “God is in control, all the time; even when I don't understand.”

Until the next time . . .

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Hot Weather, BBQ and a Rodeo

I cannot get over how dadgum hot it's been. And from reading the blogs and Facebook, as well as talking to family back East, everyone's dealing with the heat. I really don't like it. At all. Guess I am not one for extremes in weather – didn't like the cold last winter; don't like the heat this summer. Give me 75 to 80 degrees all year round and I'd be doing a happy dance. :)

Well, the Army doesn't stop for any kind of weather and yesterday Kevin's troop BBQ was scheduled. Outside. So, guess what we did? Yep, we went to the BBQ. :)

C Troop BBQ P1120161 Time to eat!

I thought this was just a get-together for the families to just relax and enjoy. And it was that, but it was a recognition moment, too.

Kevin's CO, Captain MiletichCapt Miletich

recognized the three platoons in the troop for their service during the past 11 months in Iraq. He was very encouraging and spoke a bit of how proud he was of the job these young men did during their deployment.

Kevin’s platoon (he’s far right w/sunglasses)Kevin's platoon

Officers thanking each soldier for their serviceOfficers thanking the soldiers

I'll admit it – there were tears in my eyes. :) We were the only parents there and, as I looked around, it just amazed me how young these soldiers are. Even the officers.

We had a nice lunch and I got to watch Kevin in his element.

Mingling P1120163

It was nice. I even got to catch a few moments of Captain Miletich's time to thank him for supporting my boy as well as the other men. I also took a minute to thank the officers' wives for their support and encouragement of the young wives in the troop. What a nice group of people. I am so grateful that God has placed Kevin here.

Kev w/his Iraq roomie, RenakerKev with Renaker, his roomie in Iraq

Kevin, Sara, Randy & IThe four of us - proud parents 

After a couple of hours in the heat, Randy & I were ready to come back to the house to cool off. We had a few hours before we had to be back out the door to go to the rodeo at the fairgrounds. I could have easily done without that, but the kids had bought us tickets, so off we went.

Man, it was ugly out! As I said in my Facebook status last night, I don't think I'd ever been that wet outside of a shower or pool – that's how humid it was. We watched a bit of the rodeo, but left early as Kev wasn't feeling well. Can't say I was disappointed to get out of the heat!

Today has been spent inside. The kids took their dogs to the dog park for awhile, but Randy & I chose to stay home. It is a bit cooler today, but still in the upper 80s.

Tomorrow's schedule just has church on it. Then, we'll need to pack up so we get head out the door early Monday morning. Not sure when I'll post again. Maybe not until we get home. So, if you don't hear from me, don't worry. You know I won't stay quiet for long!! :)

Until the next time . . .

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Each Day is Like the One Before

We've not been doing much, so there's not been much to share with you. The weather has been atrociously hot and we've not left the house much.

Sunday, the four of us did go to church. Randy and I found this church last year when we were here. It's a small Southern Baptist church and the pastor is very down-to-earth and humorous. We really liked him. The kids liked him, too.

That's been the highlight of the week thus far. I had been fighting a headache Monday and Tuesday, but made myself go to Curves anyway on Tuesday.

Today Randy & I took a ride to the AT&T store as we needed to have our air card checked. When we entered Indiana on our way here, it just cut out and wouldn't connect. I tried it here as well, but nothing. I'm grateful the kids have wifi so we've not been without the internet.

(I don't think I'd make it without being online! The kids don't have TV so if I was without the internet also . . . well, I'm just not sure I'd be responsible for my actions!!)

Anyway, we got to the AT&T store and as soon as I told them my problem, they said it probably wasn't the air card – they don't have 3G technology here!! Can you believe that? But, I was glad to hear it was most likely not my air card.

And that's been our big adventure here in Kansas. Tomorrow is Kevin's MRI. He's been doing so well, that we really don't expect to find anything wrong, but you never know. If that's the case, then we plan to leave here Monday morning.

On another up note, we found out that some RVing friends, Mac & Lynette, will be back home in Garnett, KS this weekend. We're making plans to meet up with them on our way out of Kansas. We met Mac & Lynette at the Escapade we attended last year, so it will be fun to catch up with each other.

Okay, that's it. Until the next time . . .

Saturday, July 17, 2010

We’re Still in Kansas, Toto

Sorry for the lack of posting; I just know you all have been biting your fingernails wondering what we've been up to! :) The answer is: not much and that's why I've not posted.

We are still visiting Kevin & Sara at Ft. Riley. Kevin's doing much better, but still not 100%. He's got some testing coming up and we are going to be here through some of that.

We've been enjoying spending time with them and doing the things we'd be doing at home. With the exception of watching TV – they don't have TV. And I have been missing it, I'll tell you that! It's funny, I never thought I would but I've gotten very used to my DVR and all the shows we watch. Pitiful, huh?

Anyway, we appreciate all the emails, comments, etc., that you've sent regarding Kevin & Sara. They are doing okay and are determined to get past this bump in the road.

The only disappointment we have is that we will not be attending The Maine Event at the end of this month. We were so looking forward to seeing Darrell & Judy, Mike & Peggy, Mark & Dortha and Glenn & Sylvia. It was going to a little vacation from the norm. But, God had other plans for us and that's how life goes sometimes. We are where we need to be and I know our friends understand that. We will see them somewhere “down the road” and catch up then.

I probably won't be posting as often because there's not much to share. Just keep praying! :) But, I did want to show how what I came downstairs to yesterday afternoon. I had gone up to get a shower and read my devotion and when I came down? This is what I saw:


Your tax dollars at work :)P1120142

And they stayed that way for the next couple of hours!! Well, at least it was a quiet afternoon. :)

Until the next time . . .

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

One of Life’s Curves

I am posting from Kevin & Sara's living room at Ft. Riley, Kansas! We didn't expect to be here at this time or even see Kev & Sara until Christmas. But, as happens sometimes, life doesn't always go the way you plan it.

Kevin is having some health problems so we came out to help he and Sara as they go through the diagnostic process. We don't believe it's anything serious, but Mom and Dad were needed, so we came. :) 'Cause that's what parents do, right?

Please keep Kevin in prayer as well as the doctors who are treating him. We sure appreciate it!

Until the next time . . .

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Weekend Wrap-up

We've had a very laid-back weekend. The biggest event of the weekend was dogsitting Jason, Lindsay & Reagan's dog, Bolt. I meant to get a picture of him with Blackie, but it didn't happen.

Our weekend consisted of walking the dogs, watching TV, playing on our computers, and just hanging out at home. Now, you see why I didn't blog everyday. :)

Bolt went home this evening and we splurged on Chipotle for dinner.

That's it. Until the next time . . .

Thursday, July 08, 2010

Just a Normal Day

Today was very normal. And I liked it. :)

The first thing we did was walk the dogs. I am not used to having to do that. Randy's always been the one to walk Blackie. But, when we dog sit, I have to get in on the act, too. Not my favorite thing to do, but hey. You do what ya gotta do.

Next thing on the agenda was laundry, this being Thursday. So, I headed over to Lindsay's. They had left this morning for their weekend at the beach. Boy, was it quiet. Just the hum of the washer and dryer and the TV. No Reagan hollering, “Nana, come here!” I missed that.

But, I got the laundry done, even though it seemed to take forever. Even though it was three loads, I guess they were bigger loads than I realized. That's the nice thing about doing laundry at laundramats or campground laundry rooms – there are several machines and you get it done in a short period of time.

I had one more errand before I could go home. Bolt was prescribed an antibiotic yesterday, but because of the power outage Target couldn't fill it. So, I stopped at Target on the way home and picked that up. Now, I was done with my chores for the day.

We are still dealing with severely hot weather here in PA, just like the rest of the East Coast. You break out in a sweat just walking from the air conditioned car to the air conditioned RV. Ugh. But, there may be some relief this weekend 'cause there's rain in the forecast. I sure hope so. We need the rain AND the cooler temps.

Lots of you have never met our son, Kevin. He just got back from deployment to Iraq. His wife, Sara, sent me a picture of him in some new civilian duds she'd bought for him. He looks great to me – a little thin, but wonderful. So good to see that smile and know he is safely ensconced with Sara at Ft. Riley, Kansas. Thought I'd share the picture with you.

Kevin - home from Iraq

And that's it from Pennsylvania. Hope you're staying cool wherever you are. Until the next time . . .

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

A Whirlwind of a Day

Whew. Today turned out to be a little crazy. I'm glad to be home, in my recliner, in the A/C and done for the day.

We started the day with a leisurely breakfast at Bob Evans with my mom and Reagan. Lindsay had lots to do today to get ready to go away this weekend, so I figured getting Reagan out of her hair for a couple of hours would be a help.

After getting our bellies filled, we headed over to WalMart to get some refills for our cupboards. All four of us went. My mom and Reagan meandered around while Randy & I did our grocery shopping.

With that chore done, we headed back to Lindsay's to drop Mommy and Reagan off. Then, we were on our way home to unload the groceries.

We spent a few hours at home (I even got in a short nap!). I put spaghetti sauce and meatballs in the crockpot for dinner. About 4pm we got ourselves back out the door to go to Lindsay's for dinner.

As we drove to Lins', we saw that the traffic lights were out. We figured there'd been an accident or something. We got to Lindsay's and found their power was out as well. The power was out EVERYWHERE! There went our spaghetti and meatballs dinner. Daggummit, I was looking forward it, too.

Now, in between all this, Jason had to take their new dog, Bolt, to the vet. He came back with a prescription for the dog. So, he and Lins took the prescription to Target to be filled and checked out the area restaurants to see if anything was operating. They found that Bob Evans had power and was open for business. So what if we ate there this morning? Randy, Reagan, my mom and I got ourselves over there just in time for their power to go out!! UGH!

We decided to take the spaghetti dinner fixin's back to the RV. So, Jason, Lindsay & Reagan went to their house to pick up the meal and Randy, my mom and I were going to the campground. Then, we realized how long it would take us to get there because of the traffic tie-ups due to the power outage. So, plans changed again, and we picked up a bunch of burgers and fries at Burger King which had power in spite of being right across the street from Bob Evans. Weird.

We took the food back to Lindsay's and ate. Jason, Lindsay & Reagan were leaving tomorrow for a weekend at the beach, but decided to leave tonight because they had no power. Once they decided that, they got moving to get themselves ready to go. Well, wouldn't you know the power then came back on?? When it seemed the power was on for good, we left with Bolt. He's in our care for the next few days.

Craziness!! I felt like we'd been on a Tilt-a-Whirl for a couple of hours! Ugh.

Now, I get to join Randy on his walks around the park with Blackie & Bolt.

Until the next time . . .

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Getting Back to a Routine and Some GREAT News

This morning I got myself out to Curves first thing this morning. It never ceases to amaze me how hard it is to exercise after being away from it for just a few days. But, I did it.

Randy stayed home and relaxed today. I headed over to Lindsay's to hang with Reagan this morning. Lins had something she needed to do and asked if I'd keep Reagan for a bit. Of course, I said yes.

My mom is still here and she was ready for some down time since we ran her around all day yesterday. :) So, Reagan and I left her at home while we went to the movies. We were going to go play at a park, but it was too daggone hot to do that.

Our local Regal Cinemas has free family movies on Tuesday and Wednesday mornings. It's the greatest thing! They are totally free – even for adults. AND you're allowed to bring in your own food, too. Reagan and I saw The Cat in the Hat with Mike Myers. It was pretty good. The best part was spending time with Reagan. She is so much fun!

Back at Lindsay's after the movie, we found that Lins had gotten home. So, we got some lunch and I stayed for awhile visiting with my mom.

Once I was home, I sat myself in my recliner and started watching some of the programs that had been recorded while we were in North Carolina. However, I soon found myself napping! Randy was upstairs “watching” his programs. Yeah, he was napping, too. :) We both napped for a couple of hours. It's been awhile since we've done that. But, it sure felt good.

The best part of the day came late this afternoon in a phone call. Kevin was calling from Bangor, Maine! He is back home on American soil!! I've heard his voice and seen him via Skype over the past year while he was deployed to Iraq, but somehow his voice sounded stronger and closer when he called today. Of course, I cried and of course he laughed at me. But, I don't care. In a few hours, Kevin will be back at Fort Riley and home with Sara.

Tonight Randy & I are giving thanks to God for His protection of Kevin while he was in Iraq. We are grateful for his safe return and continue to pray as he transitions back to life in the states. But, it makes me so aware of those who do not have their loved ones back home, so continue to pray for those families.

Until the next time . . .

Monday, July 05, 2010

Covered Bridges, Chocolate & Pretzels

With my mom visiting for a few days, we wanted to do something different. Mommy wanted to see a bit of the Amish country so we took a drive through Lititz and Lancaster.

The first part of our drive took us through a few covered bridges. I'm not sure what it is about covered bridges, but everyone I know thinks they are cool. Even Reagan at not quite five years old was excited about seeing them. You can follow our drive at I won't go into a lot of detail about the bridges as you can read about them if you're so inclined.

The first bridge we came to was Hunsecker's Mill Covered Bridge, built in 1848. It allowed us to cross the Conestoga River. Hunsecker's Mill Bridge, 1848

Overlooking the river was this beautiful home.Beautiful home on Conestoga River

From there we continued our drive to Pinetown Covered Bridge, build in 1867. Pinetown Covered Bridge, 1867

And then on to Zook's Mill Covered Bridge which was built in 1849. Zook's Mill Covered Bridge, 1849

Hurricane Agnes watermark on Zook's Mill

Our last covered bridge was Erb's Mill and it was also built in 1849. Erb's Mill Covered Bridge, 1849

I know you all are thinking I took pictures of the same bridge, but from different angles, but I promise – these were all different bridges!! Many of these bridges have been rebuilt due to damage from Hurricane Agnes. Only Zook's Mill had a watermark sign indicating how high the water came up in it.

All this bridge crossing made us hungry, so we were off to the town of Lititz to find somewhere to eat. We decided on a little deli called Spill the Beans. Lins, Reagan, Great Gma & Randy

We each enjoyed our meals and then it was back in the van to find the Wilbur Chocolate Factory.Wilbur Chocolate Factory

At the chocolate factory there was no actual tour, but there was a display of items used in chocolate making years ago. Inside the Chocolate Museum P1120088

We also got to see ladies making chocolate goodies. It's amazing what can be made out of chocolate!

Ladies hard at work Chocolate carousel The Frog Prince in chocolate

Our last tour in Litiz was the Julius Sturgis Pretzel Factory. Again, you can read all about its history by clicking here.

Julius Sturgis Pretzel Lins & Reagan

During the tour, you are taught how to make a soft pretzel. Reagan was having a blast! P1120104 P1120105 P1120108

Randy’s pretzelRandy's pretzel

My mom working on hersGreat Gma making a pretzel

We did learn the meaning of how the pretzel is formed. The crossed pieces symbolize the position of the children’s arms as they prayed. The three open spaces symbolize God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit. Isn’t that cool?

You're then given an overview of how pretzels were originally made in these brick ovens. Pretzel ovens

The heat in those ovens got up to 550*!! And it was pretty hot in there today – I couldn't imagine what it was like with the ovens blazing!

The town of Litiz is very quaint and filled with lots of shops. P1120123P1120120 The town of Lititz

I know a lot of you gals would love walking up and down its streets, peeking in those shops. :)

From Litiz, we drove to Lancaster, admiring the beautiful farmland. We didn't see many Amish folks out and about, but it was great day of family fun anyway. I gotta admit, it was pretty cool spending time with my mom, my daughter and my granddaughter. Of course, having Randy around is always a good thing! :)

Until the next time . . .

Sunday, July 04, 2010

The Weekend Wrap-up

We left Winterville about 7:35 Friday morning, beginning our seven hour trip home. Gratefully, it was an uneventful trip and we pulled into the campground about 3:45pm. Oh, it was good to be home!!

The campground was holding a fireworks display Friday night, so Jason, Lindsay & Reagan came over. They brought pizza for dinner which was wonderful 'cause I sure wasn't gonna cook after traveling for eight hours. :) We had a fun evening of catching up after being away from each other for a couple of weeks. The fireworks display was a great way to end the night.

Yesterday my sister, Paula, and her husband, Lou, held their annual 4th of July picnic.

Lou (in the red hat) making sure folks are having funLou playing host

Paula’s making the rounds (in the red shirt)P1120063

They do a fantastic job of making everyone feel welcome in their home. The weather really cooperated, too. There was a fabulous breeze and there were huge tents set up for shade.

Lou & Paula's 4th of July picnic

There was enough food for twice the number of people who came.

Wonder if there's enough food . . . Yummy desserts

Lots of fun and folks. Just the way a picnic should be.

P1120059 P1120062 Randy & Daddy

My mom came home with us from Paula's to spend a few days with us and Lindsay. She wants to explore the Lancaster area a bit as she hasn't been there for years. It was fun to have her spend the night with us last night and experience a little of the RV lifestyle. :)

This morning we were lazy. We moved slowly and didn't go to church. I just enjoyed having my mom here. I took her for a ride around the campground, introducing her to the owners and some of the folks we know.

This afternoon we went to Lindsay's for a cookout/eat-in. It was just too dang hot to eat outside! After a lazy afternoon, we went for ice cream and then Randy & I headed home. My mom will be staying with Lindsay for the next couple of nights.

All in all, it's been a good weekend. Very glad to be home and sleeping in our own bed. Tomorrow we'll spend the day with Lindsay, Reagan and my mom. Who knows what we might get into!

Until the next time . . .

Thursday, July 01, 2010


This is going to be a busy month for the Guilers. We've got lots of fun things planned – even an RV road trip! It'll be good for us to mix things up a bit.

I did go to Curves this morning; wasn't sure how much I'd be able to do with this respiratory thing I've got, but I'm glad to say I did my three turns around the circuit and was still breathing when I was done. :) Then, I went to the bank to get our monthly cash.

Most of the day was spent in front of the TV with computers and cross stitching. I did lay down for a bit this afternoon 'cause I'm just not feeling one hundred percent. Randy is still downloading programs to his computer so he can get it back to where it was before he took it to the shop. He thinks it's just about there. Let's hope it stays healthy. I told him we've spent almost as much to get it fixed as we did purchasing it.

We ended the day with dinner at Red Lobster with Dan & Debbie.

Dan, Debbie, Randy & Terry at Red Lobster

It's our last night here and it was good to sit across a meal and just enjoy one another's company without interruption. The four of us get along so well and we have lots of history so there is nothing we can't say to one another. It's fantastic to have friends like them.

Now we are getting ourselves ready to go home tomorrow. We'll be leaving around 7:30, hopefully, so we can get home early enough to settle in before the fireworks begin at the campground. Jason, Lins & Reagan may come out! That's the kind of homecoming I like. :)

Until the next time, from Pennsylvania . . .