Sometimes we look at sights in nature but don't really see. While hiking in the woods the other day, it became a realization that we need to open our heart and eyes to see the beauty of the simple things in nature with each season. There is so much order and purpose in His creation. God has given us awesome beauty in this world to see and enjoy... if we would but stop to see and feel it. Join us as this blog is about stopping to see the real beauty around us...to touch and feel it... "Through the Lens".

Our Friends

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

A Morning Hike

It seems winter hung on for as long as it possibly could!!  Just when you thought it was going to warm up...another chilly day!!  So finally, old man winter decided to give it up and just as many of us thought, we skipped most of spring and went right into summer!!            


But last week we had an unusually nice couple of days.  Really pleasant temperatures but best of all....no humidity.  In the south that is huge, wonderful, amazing and nothing short of a miracle!!!                   

Mike and I took advantage of the nicer cooler temperatures and decided to go for a hike in the woods.  Not a walk in the campground but a true hike!!  We used to hike a lot but recently we've been somewhat sidelined but we are now getting back in the groove.               

We chose one of the many hiking trails in the park and set off with our cameras to enjoy and have a great morning!!  It was a beautiful hike with such solitude...we had both forgotten how nice it is on a trail early in the morning!!  

I will just let the pictures tell the beauty!!  I hope you enjoy and thank you for stopping by to visit!!               


            
             
                     
                
         
This guy and a few other animals is all the wildlife we saw on this hike      

"Lets take our hearts for a walk in the woods & listen to the magic whispers of the trees."    Anonymous
 



Friday, June 8, 2018

It seems it has been raining ever since we got back from the Oliver rally in May!!  How do you say...water logged!!  



 We returned to our "home base" to get a few things in order before our son moves to Baton Rouge.  We got a little lazy and rented a storage unit here in Auburn to store a few RV related items and our Christmas stuff.  Our main storage unit is in Lagrange and it houses our furniture and most of our boxes.  Having one here meant we could leave things we weren't using whenever we were in the area or pick things up when needed.  So we knew we had to close out this unit since this will no longer be our "home base."  It is amazing how much stuff a person can collect without even thinking about it.     


About two weeks ago I was eating something and ooops!!!!  I broke part of one of my back molars.  As luck would have it my dentist in LaGrange was going to be gone for a week.  I was able to see him briefly, get an x-ray and he filed part of the rough edge down so my tongue wouldn't be getting nicked each time it hit it.  Last Tuesday I was able to get in to see him.  He drilled out all the old filling and put on a nice temporary crown.  My permanent crown won't be in for about three weeks.  Since we won't be here I will have to wait until the end of July when I return to LaGrange for my doctor(s) visit to get it put on.  Unless....it comes in early!!         


As you can see...no excitement here!!  Things might begin to get more interesting in a week or so.  We plan to go to Baton Rouge and help our son, Stephen, get settled into his new apartment which probably means we'll be taking care of his two doggies!! 
           


If all goes well we will scoot over to Livingston, Texas and become Texans!!  With Stephen no longer living in Alabama we have had to get a mail forwarding service through Escapees in Texas. We've had our mail sent to Stephen's apartment lately. We knew we needed to decide which state we would domicile in and after reading and researching we decided to make Texas our domicile.  This is what we did when we full-timed before and it worked for us then so we feel like it should work for us again.  
We should be pretty busy for awhile and hopefully get in some fun exploring as well.  

Thanks for stopping by and visiting...even though things are kinda boring right now.          


"Be true to yourself.  Make each day a masterpiece.  Help others.  Drink deeply from good books.  Make friendship a fine art.  Build a shelter against a rainy day."       John Wooden







Wednesday, May 16, 2018

On to Another Great Campground

                           
It was sad leaving after the rally was over because we all had so much fun and we met a lot of people and got other's ideas.  We got packed up and were on the road by around 9:15 for what would have been about a 4 and half hour drive.  We decided to stop half way and spend most of the day and night at Oak Mountain State Park...glad we did.  When we entered the park, the lady at the gate said we had a 5 mile drive to the campground...wow it is really a big park.  We asked for a woodsy site near the lake, if one existed....well, it did.

   


We ate lunch and just chilled the rest of the day and night.  While we were sitting outside, we spotted a woodpecker and took a few pics.
         


Later in the afternoon, Mike found a trail that took him down to the lake and he got some pics of the lake and area.




We had a great stay and the area our site was in was so very quiet and woodsy, one wouldn't know
you were on the outskirts of Birmingham.  The next morning we packed up and headed back to
Auburn to meet some of our commitments we had made prior to leaving.   







Tuesday, May 8, 2018

2018 Oliver Owner's Rally

   
As we last posted, we arrived Friday in Lake Guntersville State Park for the 3rd annual Oliver Rally.  We booked reservations 8 months ago and have a prime lakeside site.  As the day rolled on, about 80 Oliver Travel Trailers were nestled in the mountains of north Alabama.
     
This front Oliver is ours

 The Lodge here is on top of the mountain and overlooking the lake as it intertwines through the hills...it is really a beautiful setting.
     




We had activities all throughout the 4 day rally as well as free time to visit around and meet a lot of people.  The schedule changed a bit as rain was in the forecast for Saturday afternoon, and as we all came to realize, that change was a good call.  Unfortunately that storm came up so fast that a couple of folks lost their awning because of the high winds.
   


Sunday afternoon we had our cookout at the beach pavilion and then a big bonfire after the cookout.  It was quite a fire and the cookout was very good. That night we just kind of walked around and took our environment in...what a peaceful night.


       

                     
 On the last day of the rally, we had the afternoon to visit other Olivers to see their mods as well as their decor.  That night, we had a buffet dinner followed by a program and closing remarks. However the evening was briefly interrupted by a beautiful sunset. We all kind of eased outside to take a few pics.
     



Tuesday morning came and we slowly got our things put up and broke down camp...that was a sad moment because we all had so much fun!!

Saturday, May 5, 2018

On to the Rally

After a quiet peaceful nights sleep we were on our way to the Oliver factory Tuesday morning!!  We backtracked into Florence so we could catch that section of the Natchez Trace!!  Since we had already completed this part of the Trace we didn't pull off too many times.  We had never seen the Trace during late spring before.  Every season seems to look a little different and beautiful in its own way.  
We pulled off at a picnic area to take a bathroom break...so nice to be able to just carry your own bathroom around with you.  I know its clean!!      



Anyway, we found this lovely creek with lots of running water.  What a beautiful sound!!  We stood there for awhile just enjoying the serene view and listening to the soothing sounds of creek water.  
A little further along the way we rediscovered our first stop and picnic on the Trace.  This is Metal Ford.         




  When we were here in late September the water wasn't running nearly as fast.  What we did discover is that in May there are plenty of little black gnats all over the place!!  Very annoying!!  I doubt we could have had a picnic there on this day!!  Still a beautiful area and obviously a favorite of local fishermen!!

We made it!!!!!   We arrived at the Oliver Sales Office Tuesday afternoon and got all set up in our spot.  We wanted to have our Oliver at the factory first thing Wednesday morning so spending the night here would really help us make that schedule happen.  This is such a nice privilege offered to Oliver owners (if space is available).  We usually call in advance to make sure there is space for us.  We are able to hook up to electricity and water.  So Wednesday morning we were at the back service area of the Oliver factory at 8:00 sharp. We were there to have a kit put on our Truma Aqua Go Tankless Water System that will allow us to decalcify the system so the water flows proper, not clogged and the system is easily maintained for proper use.  We have an endless supply of hot water in about 15 to 20 seconds from turning the hot water on.  Wow, it sure is nice to take a long hot shower and not worry about running out of hot water. That process took the factory a little over 2 hours to install and we received a discounted rate since they installed the system to begin with.  Always nice to save money!!               


Yoders Amish Market outside Hohenwald
While all of this work was taking place at the factory we made our pilgrimage to Yoders Homestead Market for Mike's favorite....homemade sweet rolls!!!  They are awesome!!  We also bought some of the homemade soaps they sell. 

The Old Natchez Trace Trail at Meriwether Lewis

This is just outside Hohenwald

 We drove through the Meriwether Lewis area of the Natchez Trace.  Once again, the bugs were pretty bad so we opted to return to the sales office and eat our lunch.             
Entrance to Cedars of Lebanon

 Our site at Cedars of Lebanon
From Hohenwald we headed east to Cedars of Lebanon State Park in Lebanon which is just outside of Murfreesboro which is where Mike's mom lives.  We wanted to spend some time with her and for an added bonus our very good friends, Darrell and Judy Patterson, were going to be camping at Cedars of Lebanon so they can visit their kids in Murfreesboro.  We hadn't seen Darrell and Judy in about a year and half but we picked right up as if no time had passed at all.  I keep in touch with Judy through emails, text messages and phone so we do keep in touch!!  Darrell and Judy full-timed for many years before buying a home in Crossville, Tennessee.  We met them when we stayed the winter at Rainbow Plantation in 2010.  

We were able to visit with Darrell and Judy on Thursday as well as eating lunch together at Demos Restaurant.  This is a new place to eat for us and we were very impressed with the food and the service!!  A definite place to return to.  We visited with Mike's mom, who lives in an assisted living facility in Murfreesboro.                         

Mike and Mimi, she is 95
She showed us this neat bird exhibit that had been placed in the main lobby since we were there last.  It is definitely a big hit with the residents but also the guest.       


It's been a great few days since leaving Chewacla.  We have accomplished quite a few things and now its on to the rally!!

We are now in Lake Guntersville State Park just outside of Guntersville, Alabama for the third annual Oliver Rally!!  This will be the first one we've attended and we are excited about meeting some owners we have corresponded with via facebook or blogs.  
Stay tuned for the fun and excitement of the Oliver Rally!!

Thanks for stopping by our blog!!