Monday, March 31, 2008

The Great Bird Hunt

Friday afternoon I drove the RV to Siloam Springs State Park setting up in site 97. We had never parked here before and wanted to try it for its' view of the lake.

Looking out the door you can see the lake through the trees.
I had pretty much everything set up when Cindy arrived. All I needed to do was light a fire for the evening. I had loaded the fire wood in the back of the jeep, which Cindy was going to drive to Siloam when she got off work.
Before lighting the fire we decided to visit the lake via a path at the back edge of the camp site.

Some green was starting to show through the leaves.

At the lake we saw our friends the geese.

Walking back we could see our RV on the left and Tom and his family on the right. Tom usually camps in site 97. He had just purchased a new to him travel trailer and brought the family out to try it out. If I knew he was going to be camping this weekend I would have parked in our regular area up the road so he could have tried the new rig in his regular site.

While backing Baby into the camp site I could not help but notice a redheaded woodpecker flying around this hollowed out tree. Later I noticed that there was another one in the area also. I decided I was going to try to get a picture of them, but they had disappeared for the evening. After supper friday we spent a comfortable evening by the fire. It was clear and cool as in sweatshirt weather perfect for a fire.

Saturday moring while Cindy was sitting with the dogs she told me that the wood peckers had returned and that they had been right out side the RV. That did it! The great hunt was on! I was now determined to get a picture of the woodpeckers.

Got a picture of a robin .. they are easy.

Got a picture of a phoebe.
Did not get the nuthatchers that flew into the tree not ten feet from me. They flew away while I was fumbling with the camera. The red headed woodpeckers were still my target. I would see one or the other but always too far away or they would be on the other side of the branch and fly away when I moved to that side of the tree. One woodpecker seemed to favor this one branch over any other tree or branch in the area. So I decided I would sit where I could get a picture and wait for him. But NO! He decided he did not like that tree anymore!

But he landed in a tree 90 degrees to the right of where I was sitting. Got him!

I was not sure if I got a good picture of him, so I followed him down the hill toward the lake. The sun was refecting off the lake causing the water to shimmer.

I got one more picture of him before I gave up for the day.

That was how I spent my afternoon. Cindy spent her afternoon doing what she likes to do best.

Another nice weekend at Siloam Springs!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Easter At Siloam Springs State Park

Easter weekend forecast was nice on Friday, cooler on Saturday and Sunday. Cindy had Friday off for Easter, so we decided to get Baby out of hibernation and go RVing. I spent Thursday de-winterizing Baby and getting as much ready to go as I could. We finished packing Friday morning and were off.
Siloam Springs State Park has several campsites that they keep open year round. These campsites are near the entrance to the main campground and shower house. They are nice campsites in that the are level and well shaded with mature trees that give an element of privacy. However, these campsites are raised sites. They are made by building a wall then back filling with dirt and covering it with rocks. There is room for picnic table and fire, but not much room for tying out two dogs.
When we got to Siloam, we parked Baby in the shelter house parking lot and unhooked the jeep to check out the campsites and see which would be best for us. While driving to the campground we saw several wild turkey on the roadway. I slowed to a crawl and we crept up to within 30 feet of the turkeys before they decided to run for cover. Unfortunately we had left the camera in the RV and we missed a great photo opportunity.
When we got to the campground we were surprised and delighted to find that they had opened the main campground. Now we could park at one of our favorite sites and have plenty of room for the dogs.
It did not take us long to set up. It was in the high 50's or low 60's and the sun was shinning.

While Cindy setup inside I was taking pictures and pretending to setup outside.

Homer heard us talking about the turkeys and decided that he was going to watch out the front window to see if he could spy a turkey or deer or two.

I had built a fire as we had decided that our afternoon activity was going to be watching the flames dance. After I had a nice fire burning the wind suddenly picked up. The wind was blowing pretty hard. With the direction of the wind and the placement of our fire, I was afraid that the wind was going to blow the fire into the leaves that were all around our campsite. So I knocked the fire down and let it burn out. After that we sat for a while looking at the cold and empty fire pit.

It did not take long and we we off for a walk. As we walked towards the lake a gaggle of geese landed on the lake making a lot of noise with their honking. We decided that we needed to see them. We cut through the woods to the lake and a small landing and there they were.

These two stayed fairly close to the bank and did not seem to mind either Cindy and I or the dogs.
Ditka and Sox really liked those geese and would have jumped in to go play with them if we did not keep a tight grip on them.

After our walk we retired to the RV for supper and the NCAA basketball tournament. Cindy pretended to read but I saw her many times looking over the top of her book to watch the games.

Saturday morning was cloudy and cool. Too cool to do much outside. So we took our time with breakfast and cleaning up then took the dogs for a short walk. Later, we decided to head into Liberty for lunch at Mike's Place. Cindy really enjoys Mike's place. They do have really good food and have very reasonable prices.

We got to Mike's around 1:30 and there were still several groups of people eating lunch.
This is Mike standing behind his pies. He has a sign that says: "life is short, eat dessert first." After looking at his pies you'll want dessert first!

After that big lunch we had to go for another walk!

Friday afternoon when the wind was blowing hard, we saw quite a few big black birds riding the wind over and around our campground. While on our walk we saw them again and watch them land in the trees.
Creepy looking, aren't they!
Cindy told me they were attracted to me because of my sour stomach and my bad gas! After all she said they are carrion birds!

Homer was still watching for those turkey and deer when the sun began to set.

This is the only sun we saw all day Saturday...but it was worth the wait.

Easter Morning!

Homer still looking!

It was a pretty snow with the sun shinning and no wind. But it felt like we were in for more snow so we packed up and headed home. Even with the cold and the wind it was still a nice weekend.
Someone sent a note asking for Cindy's recipe for Fried Apples. Well she does not have one. She cooks the apples in butter till they are almost tended then adds brown sugar and cinnamom til it looks and tastes right. Cinnamom, apples, brown sugar, and butter it all sounds good ... use lots of all of it!
Someone also sent a note asking about Trevor's shoulder recovery. It is going well, he still is not allowed to lift weights with it or to run sprints, but it is doing fine. He did have one set back the other day when he slipped and started to fall and caught himself with his right arm. He said it hurt a lot and the team trainer told him not to use it for three days. We are very happy with the training staff and team doctor at Eastern. They seem to be more knowledgable and caring than alot of the other schools we looked at and visited.
This is the first year that Trevor will start the season pain free since his junior year in high school. He is looking forward to having a good year!
Ken F.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Mom's 90th Birthday

Mom's 90th birthday was March 16th. We celebrated at her apartment complex as they have a room available for just such events.

Picture on right is the birthday girl!

Picture on left is also the birthday girl!

Most of the family was there to help celebrate!

Including her remaining brothers, sisters, and inlaws.

With lots of cake and drinks a good time was had by all!

Ken F.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Dilemma Revisited and Resolved

As some of you may remember Luke and Lindsey gave us a Sailor Jerry Girl for Christmas. Their thoughtful gift caused some consternation in that we had to decide if we would replace Homer with Sailor Jerry Girl. (See the January 27th blog) During our first year of RVing Homers' words of wisdom have enlightened us when ever we pushed the button on his foot. His most fitting words of wisdom were: "feelin' stupid, I know I am." It is because of his infinite knowledge and appropriate timing that I was reluctant to remove him. So the decision was made. Sailor Jerry Girl would be place on the dash in the jeep.

So one day a couple of weeks ago I took the Sailor Jerry Girl out to the jeep to see where she would ride. I tried to get her to stick to the dash with an assortment of adhesives but it was as if she were saying "ain't no way I'm riding in the jeep when Homer leads the way in the RV." Here we go again! What is a guy to do! A pretty face vs. only a face his mom could love!

Then it came to me. My mom always told me that you could draw more flys with honey. (I never did understand why you would want to draw flys) Anyway, when the weather got warmer, I made a base plate for Sailor Jerry Girl and fasten her to it. I told her it was a pedestal. Then I set the pedestal on the dash so that the courtesy lights put her in the spot light when ever anybody opened the door. That did it! The pedestal and spotlights worked, she was finally happy in the jeep.

Dilemma resolved!

Ken F.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Beautiful Day!

Beautiful day today and a weekend too! We did paper work this morning to get ready for the tax accountant. Then after lunch it was outside! Fifty eight degrees and sunshine! We went to visit "baby" to check her batteries and to put a few things in the interior in order. It was such a beautiful day that I decided replace a damaged vent cover on the roof. While I was on the roof I was surprised to have two bald eagles fly over. I watched them circle, climb into the air almost out of sight then and dive and circle again and disappear.

Ken F.