2011 Log

8/1 to 8/15/2011

 

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We're currently in Bangor, Northern Maine where preparing to travel  to WI with Karl helping on the driving

This is the current period of our log for 2011. At the bottom of the page are links to this year's past weeks; our earlier voyages are in Prior Voyages.

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Updated on 02/01/2012

8/1/11 - Barry lost the next 25 days of data... brain jump.

8/4/11 - Karl and Kyle were homeward bound (Karl on the 3rd and Kyle on the 3rd). Amy and Angie arrived.

8/19/11 - Linda and Rory the 19th for a long weekend.

Gotta sign out for the night...Love you all....

8/25/11-Here we are in wonderful Maine getting up at 7:00 which is totally early for us to have repairs and additions to our land boat.  Well, we were a little late after toast and coffee but we had some major stuff done.  The front of our Honda Civic was off on the pavement and they put in a tow plate and then wiring for tail-lights. We also had the screen door welded, leaks in the roof and seal fixed, 2 new light fixtures put in and hopefully the water turned on for the ice maker.  (we're not used to ice as we lived on a sailboat for 5 years- oh my god)  They had the wrong part for the washer/dryer-who gives a shit....we can do that later.  The new parts for the recall on the refrigerator. (don't know if it's working better or not but that's cool- arrgh arrgh)

Barry had a good day today donning his raincoat and learning about the towing bars for our Toad.  Okay. we haven't told you.  The RV is now called our Turtle (he carries his house on his back) and the car is called our Toad. (he/she is towed)  Normal speak is Toad for your car following behind you.

We came into the campsite after all of our retrofits and we had our friends watching me come in with our RV and car towed behind it.  Of course coming into our campsite I was afraid that the car wouldn't make it around the curve so I was stuck in front of a tree.  Okay.  I can't back up with a towed car so we had 3 sets of friends help us unhook Toad/.  Toadally funny as everyone wanted to help us.  Finally got Toad off and brought Turtle into her pond and she was happy.  Toad came and touched noses with her so everything was cool.  No bumps, humps or problems.  Gotta love really good friends that help you out of logistical problems!  Thanks guys! 

8/26/11-We had a nurse come from VN and Barry's vitals are still very good.  I went and provisioned for our land yacht and bought candles and stuff just in case all goes phobar.  John and Clara came over as we had a campfire and Barry told lots of stories about his growing up and college,  It was very wonderful and the campfire was awesome because we don't know if we can another one with the storms coming.(I picked up another $20 load of firewood .with lots of good stuff in it.

8/27/11-Just did errands and stuff and tried to get on the WIFI but too many people had it plugged up.  Kinda anxious about the storm but we have everything battened down.  We've found when you are the most prepared for a storm it's not as bad as predicted so we're hoping this is just like it was in the past.  Had another beautiful night (surprise for us) so we had another campfire and I went over to a friends place and had a love fest with 3 kittens.  They all fell asleep on me and of course pictures were taken.  They wanted us to take "Mikey" home but we're not sure if we're doing the Canadian coast or US coast along the Great Lakes.  If we take the Canadian coast, the kitten would need a current health certificate.  ($120) for a Vet visit.  So, very hard for me we had to leave the 3 sweethearts behind.  We also have to address the concerns of landlords that will not allow pets.  Geez, are they weird or what?

8/28/11-Well, the pouring rain and "breezes" came.  Lots of really high winds where I watched the pine tree trunks move about 3 inches or so while they maintained.  No flooding and no damage but there's lots of stuff blowing around.  Watched 2 DVD's and settled in for the evening.   2moro is suppose to be sunny.  It'll be nice to dry things out as our folding chairs have about 3 inches of water in them.  Still thinking about the kitties but I know I can't do that right now,  Damn.

9/something/11-  You have to realize that we have no concept of time or date so we just let you know.

The travels from Maine to Wisconsin were, beautiful, rainy, beautiful and very interesting.  We traveled through Maine, NH and Vermont and when we tried to go West we hit closed roads 3 times so had to keep going South.  We stayed at Walmart resort in their parking lot the first two nights.  Convenient but not really our cup of tea.  However, during our 1300 mile trip we only saw wildlife once.  Believe it or not it was at a Walmart parking lot where we saw 4 deer coming out to feed.  Beautiful!  Go figure!

The 3rd nite we stayed at a campsite that we're thinking was very religious as the sign said something about Jesus loving us and they both hoped we would come back for another visit.  (I'm thinking this was Angola Indiana but things kind of blend together)  Well, we found that our tailpipe rusted off our muffler and melted part of our mud flaps on the back of our RV.  I thought I smelled rubber that day but you just don't think about the "where did it come from" being you.  We found a totally wonderful truck repair center on a Sunday during a holiday weekend and they welded the two pieces together.  We're thinking it will last awhile as the owner kicked it a couple of times and he said, well, I'm thinking it'll last for awhile.  Thought the bill would be astronomical but they came in at $98.  Karl (Barry's brother) drove all the way to Wisconsin through major detours that would hardly accommodate our width.  Spinter time was happening to me quite afew times.  The scenery was sooo beautiful with the mountains and general terrain.

The 4th night we stayed in West Bend at another campsite and decided to stay an extra night as we all needed to chill out a little.   It had been a long and tiring ride.  Barry did well all through this and we lit another campfire and had good relaxing times. Linda and Leo (Barry's sister and brother-in-law and their dog Smiler) visited us and we had our last fire on the 5th night.  It was very nice. 

Barry said he'll download all of the pictures we have when he's feeling better; he's a little dizzy today.

We're at Kalbus campground between Fond du lac and Oshkosh. (Nice people/good place) Now, we need to connect with doctors and find a place to live.  Barry said he's going down south and I can live up here because he won't ever be able to go outside because he gets chilled in 60 degree weather.  I'm looking for a place with a fireplace to keep him warm and all  of our friends and family will be there to provide support for us.  Well, gotta go,my space bar is sticking so I need to clean it 2moro.(probably salt, dust and grime)

Good to hear from all of you! Thankyou Karl for helping us make this trip! You are awesome!

9/11/11-Scarey  date!  Sorry I haven't written but we've had cleaning and many visitors. David came, (friend ofMilesandLaureen) Sorry, our spacebar isn'tworking. Bill andJill  came andmade us a  wonderful dinner when Barry was kinda down and out.  He's having problems  eating  and drinking liquids to keep his hydration up.  I  tookhim off from all diuretics to help himout.  Unfortunately, he's very weak  right  now. He  did eat some soup fordinner(clam chowder) and had a banana. It's really hardto get him to  ingest  anything. I finally  started  crying  and he took  some nourishment.

Great  that the Packers  won!  Not  sure if the Brewers  did or not.

Had company next door with a guitar and harmonica player and he came over and serenaded us!  So wonderful as I got Barry outside to enjoy him!

One of our old Buddy's "Bobbie" came tovisit.  We used to race with him on Paul's boat Javelin.  Blast from the past.  He looked 10years younger than the last time we saw him10 years ago.

The people in our campsite have been very wonderful! Very supportive and concerned about Barry. I;m hoping that he gets well enuf again to fish with him.

We watched a goodVID tonightand ofcourse I cried because it was a love story.  I put Barry to bed and hugged him til he fell  asleepand here I am now.

Thank you everyone foryour visits and love!

Monday 9/12/11-Went and got our "Toad"(car) washed. Major crap all the way from rubber to tar from bringing her to Wisconsin. She looks very happy and pretty now. 

Got breaded shrimp and crisscross fries for Barry and he LOVED the shrimp!  Ate it all! 

Had a surprise visit from sister Linda and husband Leo and Smiler their dog....They were sooo sweet!  We were gifted with homemade apple pie,  2 types of soup and good company. It is very special to have family and friends visit. Had a campfire with roasted acorns (fun to have them pop) and good conversation.  Barry is 100% better today as we've gotten past his dehydration.  Wow, it is a fine science giving him diuretics and trying to keep him hydrated at the same time.  He's still tiny but we're hoping to build him up with some Ensure supplements and loving care.

Not sure if I can publish tonight.....really bad connection all day long.  Not sure  what's causing it.  2moro, I need to clean our computer keyboard as it has major salt, dust and whatever clogging it up. Have to hit the spacebar 2 or 3 times to get it to work. The whole mess has blocked my publishing for several days.

Spent some time with our neighbors from Arizona.  They just found out that her sister is now cancer free from her cervical operation!  Life is real for lots of us, good to be there for others.

Sure is a roller coaster ride but thankfully it's at the top again!

Okay, sorry guys, it's now Thursday night and my font has definitely changed.  Barry has been awesome for 3 days now.  He's eating, I got him walking and he's doing his strengthening exercises each day as he probably thinks he wants to get stronger to be with all the people he loves. 

We've had awesome visits by sooo many people that love Barry.  He doesn't realize how many lives he's touched.  He always says that he's not special in any way but hello! 

9/15/11 - We had a visit again today from Ecky and his wife Rita.  Ecky raced with Barry for a billion years and Barry said for 5 years he thought his name was Ecky and not Bobby Eckstein.  Well, we had a campfire and our neighbors visiting from Arizona came over and the sun was very warm for a good part along with the campfire.  Very wonderful!  I asked Barry if he wanted to go inside when the sun went lower and he said no 2 times. 

Okay, we went to a local restaurant that's not too loud and he was totally shivering.  I asked it he wanted hot chocolate, decaf tea.  No No No.  So I asked the waitress for a favor and she brought someone's jacket to put around Barry as even his head was shaking.

He graciously said thank you, his meal came (texas chili and a baked potato with side of moz cheese stix)

He proceeded to make a wonderful meal we used to always have where he took the baked potato, added butter, scooped it out real good and added the Texas chili with cheese and put his  sour cream on top. It was one of his favorite winter dishes for day-old chili.  It sure stopped him from shivering too! 

We've been talking and talking.  His "Arthuritis" is getting bad from the weather turning cold and he can't stay warm because he's a little mite.  He really wants to go south so he can be comfortable.  What should I do?

I've been drinking and thinking and I'm not coming up with a definitive answer.  Do we stay here for support from family and friends or do we make him comfortable for the rest of his life; whatever it is.  I'm broken as I need my buds but he needs what he needs.  Any suggestions? Is it time for a nursing home?

Love and signing off.  Ruthie

Friday 9/16/11 -Tom and Sue Weiler visited this morning it was so awesome to see them! My color font won't change so bear with me!  Is it a woman?  Is she feeling kinda blue?  Whatever!  Sue made some zucchini bread, some raspberry pie and some eggplant parmesan all fresh from her gardens!  Wow,  I think I'll marry her and I'm not gay! Thank you Sue,  wonderful dinner on Saturday night!

We visited my sister Sue and Dave on Friday night and caught up on so many things!  They treated us to Wisconsin "friday fish dinner" and it was wonderful!  Watched a video that their son in law Brian and friends filmed (a western) and it was a stitch,  lot's of silly humor.  We're hoping to get a copy from Brian when we see him and Kris.  It's really weird to be back with Barry along as normally he's on the boat so watching him reconnect is really warming my heart.

Saturday 9/17/11-Barry's daughter Nikki, husband Tim and grandson Walker visited for quite awhile today.  Another great time watching people that love each other reconnect!  Had a blast with Walker showing him the campsite and gathering treasures with him to take home.  Found out that Tim is a pyro just like me and started a fire and escalated to burning acorns that explode.  All went well until Barry was saying goodbye to everyone and two acorns exploded right at us.  Well, of course everyone flinched and jumped back.  Poor Barry was bulleted to the ground and got owies on his hand and wrist but we took care of them and wrapped them up.  His skin is very vulnerable because you can touch him wrong and rip his skin.  Soooo,  no broken bones (thank you God) but will have our new Doc check his newest owies on Monday and make sure we help them heal.  Was so good to see Nikki talk with her dad.  Tried to give them space to interact alone and talk about what's happening in their lives.  Got more goodies from Nikki!  More bread, tomatoes, and goodies!  Wow!  I love gardens!

Just gonna hang out tonight with Barry and Buddy,,,,,, Letting the fire go out.......Good music and pedicure for Barry and of course he gets the full body cream treatment as his skin is very dry,  mmmm on his part!

Til 2moro!

 9/19/11- Brought Barry to a new internalist and had them look at his owie.  He unfortunately fainted when they tried taking his bandage off where they were sticking.  Blood pressure unreadable, here we go again.  ER room to try to diagnose why he crashed.  We know it has a name.  Visal vagal or something where you have sympathetic feelings that make you faint.  His EKG was okay but his blood samples had lots of highs and lows.  Used to that! They finally released him and I brought him to fabric stores for a new headboard for our "totally" boring bedroom that has a headboard with brill-cream or something on it.  Found nada.  Came home and let Barry relax as when he passes out he gets tired.  Well, he didn't sleep but he rested.  Gave him more diuretics to take swelling from his tummy and ankles.  Another Adventure.

9/20/11- Tom Weiler came to visit on his motorcycle and had magazines for Barry and they had some very good discussions.  While they were together, I FINALLY found material for our bed's headboard, took out 274 staples and restapled the new material on.  Looks awesome!  What a difference!  I'm so excited that I want to redo the window "decorations"  Tan, deeper tan and faded something.  Will be a challenge to take them apart as they are definitely factory something.

This paragraph is for Barry.  I have been evaluating, searching for a new home, trying to figure out Barry's comfort in the future and trying to figure out what is "really" important.  Well, Buddy, we are going back to the place you belong.  Back to Florida.  Back to really say goodbye to "Another Adventure" and bring her back to pristine condition.  I have a lot of work to do on her.  I would like to bring Barry out on her one more time with his mentoring to help me on the helm and anchor out.  I will first have her hauled and have the hull redone and everything rewaxed and the teak up to snuff.  Would do a lot for me as I'm gaining weight being back in Wisco.  It HAS been wonderful to reconnect with everyone and get hugs and tears and laughs and  and I know I am strong enough to go forward. You have all been wonderful and I'm hoping that you are not thinking WTF.

We can use our Boca Raton doctors in an environment that is kind to Barry's body and by the ocean. (Our touching stone)  This is what my heart tells me to do.  I know a lot of you would differ but you haven't had the wonderful life we've had and haven't experienced how good mother nature has been to us. I know deep down that this is something that would make Barry happy.  (nothing else)  Thank you all for being there for us and hope you continue to follow us on this new leg of our adventure. I didn't even think about what I would want if I was in Barry's position.  Dah!  I would want to walk outside whenever I wanted to and not be chilled all of the time.  So simple but yet it never dawned on me.  This will be wonderful for both of us.

9/21/11-Did lots of errands and set up repairs for our RV.  Linda and Leo and Smiler (their dog) came to visit and brought a humongous pizza and homemade cookies.  Had a very nice visit and showed Linda how you can add color to your campfire by cutting small (8" or so) pieces of old Christmas tree light strings.  When they burn they are blue, green and some red from the copper and metals or chemicals in wires, etc.   Not sure if the fumes are healthy but I think it's worth it! 

Barry is reading books again!  He's been wary of reading before because of his mental confusion but right now he's almost as clear as a bell so he's taking advantage of it.  He is also receiving lots of phone calls and his voice has been getting better and better. Now, if we could put some weight on his little body. (he's down to 145)  Everyone is on a campaign to fatten him up so the goodies are rolling in!  (This is getting fatter Ruthie talking as she's munching on a cookie.......oh well)  Signing off for now.

Okay, it's Saturday, and we went to Sprint as we are not getting our voicemails for 3 days and it's really annoying and not fair.  They said that whenever we change states that we should take our battery out and it will change our coverage for a new area. They also said we should do *2 and talk to get updates for our phones. Well,  we have never been doing this so maybe we've been very naive.  Oh, such is life! 

We visited my brother Mike (very awesome guy) and he gave us major veggies and beef roast meat and ground beef.  It was so great to see him and he also gave us a set of DVD train tours (both steam and updated engines) that Barry saw tonight and TOTALLY enjoyed.  He said when he was little, he could hear the engines breathing hard and when they would be ready to take off.  He thought when he was really little that they were alive!  Thank you Mike!  Can't wait to see the rest of the 6 DVD's showing the countryside.   Also saw my brother Dan and Peg and their grandchildren.  It was again very wonderful to hug them as it was with Mike.  The kids were sooo cute and we enjoyed them and our short visit.  Dan & Peg said next weekend they will come to the campsite with Mike.  I'm thinking they will really enjoy a campfire n Lake Winnebago .  It is very pretty!  Ducks, geese, cranes, cormorants, kingfishers and maybe shrikes or some kind of bird that eats fish and lots of other wonderful birds.  Of course we have major squirrels too as there is an abundance of nut trees.

Going to Bill and Jill's for the Packer game and dinner tomorrow. Two wonderful people and diehard Packer fans!

9/25/11-Had a blast at Bill & Jill's watching the game and catching up.  They treated us to some really tasty pizza too!  Good game and glad that the Packers won.  Barry had a dizzy day but did great!

9/26/11-We're going to move through the next couple of days fast as I've been naughty and neglected the web for awhile.

My brother Mike was able to get Larsen Co-Op to come and fill our LP tank. (we were using a little heater I bought as we were major "E")  Had a really strong storm in the morning that brought one tree down by us but our only damage was a skylight fan cover failed from the wind and we had to put towels and a bowl under it.  I cleaned up lots of branches and collected some good kindling from the fallen dead tree.  (free delivery of firewood!)

9/27/11- Tom and Sue Weiler came from Green Bay with lots of home-made goodies.  They were all appreciated and gobbled up!  It was great reminiscing with them and laughing about "our past adventures."  We always had a lot of fun with the 2 of them!

Dave Neuman from New London stopped by to say hi to Barry later in the day.  It's amazing how much New London has changed. (Dave updated us on who's who and what's gone and who's gone)  Very nice visit!

Made a beef roast with all the veggies the Mike gave us and slow cooked it.  It needed a little more flavor but it was still good.  I have to get used to my convection oven where I don't have to worry about wasting propane.  (need to get back my experimentation with spices again too)

9/28/11-Did major errands!  Finally found a place for the replacement of our huge wiper arm for the RV; our new mud flap for the entire rear of the coach came in, looked at more material for recovering the bench seating area by the kitchen table.  (Still haven't found the "right" pattern yet)  Stopped at West Marine to get a cleaner and it was really strange going through what used to be our 2nd home!  I got over it and exited with only spending $8.-cheapest trip on record I think!

Went to daughter Amy and Lofton's for dinner and further work on a 1000 piece puzzle.  She made some yummy jalapeno pepper/cream cheese, wrapped in bacon appetizers and some wonderful soup that we both loved!  She also made turkey and gravy in the crockpot for sandwiches that were delish!  Almost finished the puzzle and caught up with what grandson Lofton is doing in school.  He is 8 and wanted to know if he could catch what Barry has so we went through a little education with him.  Funny, he kinda thought he was okay because Barry wasn't his mom's dad.  I think this one is going to be a shining star!  Smart young man!

9/29/11-Just hanging out today.  Bill might be moving his boat to Oshkosh to haul it for the winter so there might be a later visit from him.

Barry's dizziness is almost gone.  (Due to low blood pressure)  We took him off his 2 blood pressure meds as his readings were dropping out of sight.  His brain (ammonia poisoning) is sharp right now too!  We're just tweaking his diuretics to try to bring the Ascites (water in the belly cavity) down so it doesn't have to be drained again.  Now, eating and strength building on the schedule........Talk to you later.

10/1/11-  I have no idea what happened this day except for preparing for everyone to come tomorrow to give Barry hugs.  Lots of shopping at the dollar store and other stuff.  Just did a lot of yada yada.

10/2/11-Got up early and started to stage the picnic tables (they delivered them last night-very sweet because I asked them if it was okay if we moved some of them) Had daughter Nikki and husband Tim and grandson Walker come early and we had some good quality time with them, then "oh my god" people just started streaming in (so wonderful)  I'm sorry, I didn't mention that I invited all of our friends (business and personal) to come and pay tribute (or my thinking give hugs) to Barry.  We had 30-some people come with only a two day invite.  (It's really hard because I had to evaluate how Barry was and in my world he was finally the best he was in 7 months, it's day by day)  Okay,  hurry, hurry and get people there to enjoy Barry as he was always.

It was an awesome time with seeing all the people we love.  It was hard to give everyone the attention that they needed and the reciprocal love but I'm hoping they all understand the circumstances of the event.  We were going to have a roast for Barry but the crowd was an ever moving event so it wasn't possible.  Well, anyone that knows him would have puns in their presentation....enuf said.

It was wonderful hearing people say that Barry totally affected their lives, that he was a mentor and an awesome friend too.  Way cool!

The presents we got from our friends and family were totally unexpected.  Warm clothes, wonderful naughty treats and lots of love.

Thanks to all of you for making this get-together heart warming for both of us.

10/3/11-Barry got up early and I nursed a hangover from having too much fun the night before.  Kind of a slow easy day for both of us. 

Went to Bill and Jill's for another major Packer win!  Wow, it was a great game and they made salmon with pesto and some really wonderful mixed potato/yam side that was awesome!  Their kitty-cats put up with us again for another visit.  One of them is shy but stayed on the couch the whole time.  (cool)

10/4/11-Went to Appleton and got carpeting for redoing the entryway to our RV as the carpet was light light tan and wasn't having fun with the traffic in and out.  We got a darker, kinda light carmel color for the entryway and carpet for under the sink where major nasty stuff went when the pipes were not connected correctly.

Had a doctors appointment with our internalist and Barry only weighed 140.  (137 in no clothes) Kind of a shock as he had lost 8# in two weeks.  Awwwwww.  The doctor told us that Barry can eat whatever appeals to him and please drink whatever he wants. (no alcohol obviously)  He said, nutrition, nutrition, nutrition,  eat whatever you are hungry for.  Try to keep ANYTHING going into your system. 

He also said that they only have prognosis for every 6 months for the situation that Barry is in.  He said if you have wanted to do anything in your life, now is the time to do it.  He could not say how long Barry has to live; that it was up to Barry and his nutrition (what he eats) which is what I have been trying to push for months now.  Okay,  Barry now TOTALLY gets it not just from me so we will see how he does in helping me help him.  I'm thinking it'll be better as the doc more or less said his life is in his control. He'll live as long as he wants to.  WOW....I know it's really hard for him because if he eats or drinks too many liquids his belly bloats up and he needs to be drained; flip side he gets too dehydrated and he crashes and ends up in the hospital.  What a hard balancing act but we need to do it and have been for about a month.  Thank god I educated myself so I know what he needs for meds to help him.

Okay, love you all for coming to see Barry.  Sorry if we couldn't spend enough time for each and every one of you but please don't forget that we love all of you!  (tough situation but wonderful for Barry)

10/5/11-Butch Atwater (sailing friend) came over and installed all of the carpeting.  It looks awesome, nice and fresh/crisp/clean.  While he was installing I went and found material for our little dinette cushions.  It was funny at the fabric store as we were all "area" challenged and couldn't figure out how much material we needed to have matched pattern repeats. (just like wallpaper) for the back cushions.  Have met people by us the last couple of days, a couple and their son from Colorado with a silver airstream and 3 dogs.  Their son was in training at Oshkosh Truck in their airport assistance division. Dad has been a pottery artist for 30 years so we discussed the market on the East coast.  Also a couple from Washington state going all the way across to Maryland.

10/6/11-We now have all sorts of sparrows, finches and cardinals coming to our bird feeder.  Don't know what they think of Buddy when they see her and not sure what she thinks either but it's fun to watch.  Our muffler/tailpipe "Truck service" guy is coming to see if the parts he ordered will work.  Then we'll make an appointment to go in and git it dun.  One more thing off the list.  Might take Barry for a ride out to brother Mike's to pay him for LP charged to his account.  Will write later

Went to my brother Mike's place and got DVD's from him and gave him wired tail-lights for towing vehicles behind him for his birthday (my birthday is the same day- Oct 12th)  Was a very wonderful visit, ate raspberries from his garden and caught him up with what's going on with us.  Also visited my brother Dan and it was good to get hugs and hear him bitch about stuff, totally Dan.

10/7/11-  Just did normal things and stuff and picked up perch dinner and Barry ate ALL of the 6-8 perch!

10/8/11-Oversight and hindsight, we forgot to tell you that last Friday friends Sarah Conklin and Patti Angell came to visit with a HUMONGOUS hero sandwich and we had a good time. Okay, this was until Sarah started trying to teach Buddy "Go Pack Go" as she has the appropriate green and gold colors....But then she started trying to teach Buddy FU.  Okay, almost put duck tape on her but she finally settled down.  Good hugs and love from people we hadn't seen for quite awhile.

Today, Saturday, Lynn and Renee Riviere and Renee's husband Jay came to visit around one or so. Wow, it was so easy to pick up with them again (real friends) and it was sooo wonderful to see them after I think it's been 10 years.  Had some good laughs, catching up and tears which is totally normal in a situation like this.  My heart felt so good to see them and I totally remembered how sweet and important they were in our lives.  Such good memories.  Hopefully we will see them again in the spring.

10/9/11-Big Packer Day!!!  We did the loop today.  Not the big one that took 10 months but around Lake Winnebago.  Saw lots of friends at High Cliff... It was great seeing them after about 6-7 years!  I bought some sherbet for Barry and used my fork to interview about how he felt about doing this "loop".  He said his ass hurts and his hip feels like it's going out.  Well, he said it with a smile.... Made my chili for supper and listened to the Packer game but Barry was cashed at halftime.

10/10/11- WOW- the Packers pulled it out in the second half and held things to no score for their opponents.  We wonder what was said in the locker room at halftime!

I drove the RV to a truck center to have a new muffler and tailpipe installed.  These guys are young and very capable!  This time the RV was easier to drive and I felt a comfort level with her that I hadn't had before.  I think I can really do this.  Will never be cocky, just slow and easy and always thinking ahead.  (Thanks to Karl, Barry's brother, I learned lots of driving tips)  Came back to the campsite and parked her good and hooked her back up.

2moro, Barry is going to a meeting with his TEC members in Appleton.  It is a group of company presidents that brainstorm to help each other with issues and future success.  While Barry is there, I will be with Patti Angell recovering the cushions of our settee.  Cool!

Wednesday, Leo and Linda (Barry's sister) are coming to visit.  Will be nice to see them again.

Thursday, we have an appointment with the RV center here to do more repairs to bring our "Turtle" up to snuff.  She's looking good and the weather is starting to turn so it's almost time to boogie!

10/11/11-Barry went to his TEC meeting at 8am and really enjoyed it.  I was worried as he was a little confused and his speech wasn't as clear as it has been.  He said all sorts of people wanted to help him go to the "head" but he told them with his walker he was okay.

I went to friend Patti Angells house to work on recovering our settee (dining room) cushions.  After a full day, Patti almost has all of them done.  I think they look awesome and if I can get Barry to update pictures (I don't have a clue how to do this yet) we will post our "new" dinette!

While I was at Patti's, our friend Sarah Conklin came over to visit.  Very wonderful to see her again!  Bullshitted, smoked together and caught up with each other.

Tom Weiler called and said he'd like to visit in the morning and Jill (Bill and Jill) wants to come for lunch to celebrate my birthday.  Well, do we really celebrate getting 59?  I guess it's not 60 so there you go.  Not sure what time Linda (Barry's sister) and Leo are coming but will look forward to seeing them tooo.

Barry is totally fagged from his stimulation at his meeting so just letting him nap again.  Til 2moro!

10/12/11- Happy Birthday to me!  Okay, it's normally just another day but we had visits from Tom Weiler, Patti Angell (they sailed the first leg of the loop with us) Sarah Conklin (they bought the first Another Adventure from us) Barry's sister and husband Leo and Smiler their dog. (She knew him before me) and daughter Amy and grandson Lofton. (She put up with me)  Amy and Lofton brought us to dinner; Sarah did not try to teach Buddy the "F" word again, Patti brought the rest of the cushions she recovered, Linda and Leo brought a compass so we would know where the hell we were going, Amy and Lofton got Grandma some new clothes (skinny ones I might add) and Ruthie topped off the night with a rum and coke by maybe the last campfire for awhile.  (Walmart parking lots don't do this)  Just kidding for all of you wonderful people!

Bill and Jill  (The "Ills") are coming 2moro night to say goodbye.  Can't wait as the have always been there for us and we've had a total blast with them for I'm thinking about 15 years.  Love them!

We're not sure when we are leaving....have an RV appointment 2moro to fix the last gremlins in our land yacht. 

Boy, we will miss you all and Barry finally found out how many friends and loved ones he has.  The most important thing in life is how we touch each other.  How we accept each other unconditionally.  Okay, that would be us.

10/13/11- Had major electrical problems with the whole forward part of our coach and had a locker that rusted out and disconnected fixed and finally a hookup to our antenna and we now have TV for the first time in 5-6 years.  Really weird but I did a happy dance!  We had a new back skirt put on as the last one got partially melted by the tailpipe that disconnected from the muffler.  (the muffler and tailpipe now look awesome but somehow in one week they've gotten a little rust-we're not even near the ocean)  Had a new carbon dioxide detector put in (after no electrical connection and a new fuse) and they helped me put our bed's headboard back onto the wall with 3 screws that I couldn't do by myself.  They also taught me how to use the directional feature on the antenna and how to orient it for correct reseating.  Got new fuses to help in the future.  They found that the whole right (passenger) side was suffering from a failed outlet in one of our outer lockers.  Wow, I would have never guessed that it would affect so many things.  The ice=maker cannot make ice because there is a gear failure.  Won't address that until we are in Florida or somewhere south.

It's major windy; forecasts of 25 mph winds with gusts to 45.  So the heater is working real well....

Purchased a new Sherpa throw for Barry from the gift certificate from Miles. Laureen, Tom and Sue.  THANK YOU. Barry loves it as it is sooo soft and warm.  Also got him a therapeutic square for his non=rump to give him more comfort on the couch. 

I told them that the doc told Barry to do whatever he's wanted to do real soon so I asked him what he would like to see or or where he would like to go.  We might be headed totally south and then to the deep southwest as neither of us has experienced the area.

Just thinking and dreaming....will continue to do this for a long time we hope....(okay, somehow the last 2 paragraphs morphed down lower.  Oops)

OH MY GOD, I HAVE TO FILL IN 10/13 til NOW!!!

Okay, we had cold, cold and colder weather so we boogied south.  First stop was south of Milwaukee at Walmart, nice free place to visit, second stop was Evansville IND, another Walmart and third stop was Hopkinsville KY, another Walmart.  Got lots of finishing goodies for our settee and bedroom.  Trim for the settee after stapling the material on the outside ends and buttons for the lampshades in the colors of our bedroom.

We have been through cotton fields and watched BIG cotton machines harvesting, lots of boring fields until KY and driven over rivers we have traveled on when we did the loop. 

We are now in W. Memphis Arkansas at Tom Sawyer's RV park.  We are now looking over the Mississippi from only 20 feet from it's bank.  Watching barges with towboats that we used to meet at respect but now we can just look on and not worry.  Largest push so far is 38 barges pushed by a towboat.  It's very pretty here and they have adopted Barry and I.  They have given us a Good Sam's discount for every night (we are not members) a free floppy hat like the ones that Barry loves....a free gift for him.....3 free nights and a tootsie roll pop that Barry really enjoyed.  They are awesome here and the view is very close to our hearts.

Ruthie had an unfortunate encounter with a motel overhang that ripped our TV antenna off the roof of our RV.  Okay, there was a semi parked face forward so we thought we could park there to go to the restaurant next door and we could just drive around the motel.  Oops, the semi backed and there was no back driveway so we had to drive through the overhang and painfully screeched through it.  Was kinda a spincter moment and didn't know we lost the antenna until I tried to rotate what was left of it.  Climbed onto the roof and oops, we now have a bare pole with a wire hookup hanging down looking very lonely for it's other wire.  Must have felt kinda like childbirth where there is some pain but then OMG it's out.  Hopefully we have the correct male connection for a new lucky female.

Today, Sunday, I went on a car ride for cigs and some type of treat for Barry.  Went to Walgreens and picked out a donut "doggie" cushion for Barry, some icecream for him and a nice bottle of wine for me.  OKay, the checkout sweetly said they don't sell alcohol on Sunday.  OH, I don't know if we can stay til Thursday, these people aren't Packer fans that drink and eat lots of bad stuff during the game!!!!  Calm down, it's okay, I have Rum....... smile  Barry LOVED his donut as he has NO butt and needs the cushion, enjoyed a dish of icecream immediately and agreed that THESE PEOPLE AREN"T FROM WISCONSIN!!!

Signing out for tonight.  Love to all of you!

Okay, I'm back again from my 3rd rum and coke since the Packer game started.  I wasn't truly honest with you.  I painted a somewhat "pretty" picture.  Here's the scoop.  Our "low air" alarm has been sounding very loudly and very annoyingly for 5 days now.  We went to 3 places to get it fixed and either they didn't have the experience with RV's or their "TEC" was not in.  A low air alarm should only go off when you don't have enough air for your air brakes to work.  The dash diagnostic says every thing is fine with the level so the alarm is farming out.  I went and tried to disconnect the fuse to it and that still didn't stop the mother. You know. ..... My air brakes are working fine.  So, I scooted under the dash where the wiring is for this wonderful alarm.  Mother of god, it was a spider's wet dream!  Sorry,  couldn't even find the small alarm itself.  So AHH AHH AHHH AHHHHHH all the way here.  Sometimes I was ready to rip someones throat out!

I also never told you that I totally love driving this Coach!  She has been very good to me and I respect her length and having her tow our car behind us. (by the way, she took no injuries from the ripped out antenna)  It's sooo wonderful that I feel her and how she needs to move around corners.  Sometimes, the limiting curbs at Walmart can't accommodate her curves as they are way too sharp but she is wonderful!  I never thought I would be driving this large beast but she is a real beauty and very good to us.

I also asked Barry if the generator needs oil as it's kind of an engine.  He said yes.  I checked the oil and it was down 2 quarts so we oiled that mother.  It's cool where I'm learning to check oil on both engines and making sure the mechanics of our home are okay.  I think I could do this if we didn't have to pay for the RV park fees.  (usually 35-40  bucks a night)  Multiply that out and it's NY or CA expense.  I need to explore and find alternative things like is there any "free" camping anywhere where the police don't kick you out????

All in all, it's been a great experience and I'm hoping Barry loves it!

Okay, it's Monday and we have a nextdoor wonderful person that is teaching me how to take care of our coach.  Fuses everywhere, seals on the slideout and he helped us find where the alarm for the satan "low air" is coming from.  I can now disconnect it from the top of the steering column (major spelunking there) or I can listen to it until we get to Tucson Arizona. (kinda sparse maintenance here and there).  I'm thinking I will disconnect it for my sanity and Barry's and Buddy's as she keeps saying "AWWWW" until we get to a service place.  I also found out that there might have been a shade pullout above our slideout to prevent leakage from coming in with rain.  Wow, that would be a major yes!  So all in all I am learning our coach Turtle.  Still have to install a new antenna that I ripped off so we can have TV but I went on the roof and it doesn't look like there's a hole or anything....just need a new antenna. (hopefully) 

Took out another loan on Barry's life insurance so we can live comfortably.  This life can be expensive!  However, this RV campsite has FREE laundry and free firewood.  (I was spending at least $10 every other day for firewood but they've had floods so it's massively available....just harvest)  One of the laundry locations is hanging precariously from the floods so that's not open but ours is.

Gotta go and get some zzzzzzz's.  Love you all!

It's now Wednesday and we've been just chilling out.  I washed the RV, reseated the cover on the fan on the outer port up on the roof and checked the damage again to the antennae.  I found that it's okay to replace the antennae as the whole assembly was compromised from UV.  Okay, when we get to Little Rock 2moro I will check into a replacement.

It's really kinda weird here as every other store on the main drag is empty and the ones that are operating are curtained with gates.  The Dollar Store I went today has a security company call the clerk every 10 minutes to see if she's okay.  I'm really having a hard time with the somewhat paranoia as I'm paying with credit cards so I don't open up my purse to show the cash we have. (our traveling kitty)  However,  the campsite is four star and the staff is too.  They take awesome care of the site and collect garbage 3 times a day, direct you to your site in a golf cart and make sure you are happy with everything.  They also have FREE laundry facilities.   Holy Moley!

Barry is still doing pretty good....always a challenge with his weight, liquids and tweaking his meds.  I really wish a fairy would come and expand his stomach capacity while he's sleeping so he doesn't get full so easy.  Then I can let him gorge on lots of good stuff,  oh well.

Watching PBS and need to put Barry to bed but might ply him with ice cream first.  Sorry if you don't hear from us for awhile....if you need to call try 920-213-0498 and if SPrint will let us have a signal we will answer.

It's now Thursday the 29th I think...the dates and days just all blend together... We are now in Morrillton Arkansas west of Little Rock at a Walmart.  Did some shopping for frozen fruit for making shakes for Barry and woke up Barry to watch TV for awhile with our "stick" up in the sky on top of our RV instead of a regular antennae.  We have been seeing some really awesome reds from sumac bushes and some of the trees are actually really red.  Very pretty. 

It's amazing how MANY trucks on our east/west Hwy 40.  Almost looks like a convoy. 

For some reason this morning when I went to wrap the "Low Air" alarm to quiet it I touched the back of the actual alarm and....oh my god...it clicked and went off.  Off where we don't hear it anymore.  All of the other alarms are still working so maybe it was a loose wire or a crossed wire but we will have it checked out.  It was much more relaxing driving with the peace.  Now we just have the refrigerator alarm going off because our propane tank is empty.  Will fix that 2moro at a truck stop. 

Went by Conway Arkansas with the old Kimberly Clark mill still there and now we are in Morrillton where there is a major board mill (was Arkansas Kraft) but not sure if it's the same name.  In my past life with recycled paper, we had a good relationship with them.....memories...

Ready to continue west to the area that we have never visited.  Cool and exciting!

10/29/11- Stayed in Walmart parking lot last night in Sallisaw, Oklahoma.  Seeing more and more colors and some of the areas are very hilly.  Had a casino next door so I decided to have some fun and I did!  Won $185.  Yeh for our team!  Also filled our propane tank.

Our fuel averages about $150 a day (150+ miles)  When we stopped for propane there were 2 horse trailers where the owners were giving their horses a break by walking them.  It's not to often that you can pet a horse at a gas station!  More and more horse farms too and a slew of pickup trucks.  Haven't seen any rifle racks yet in the trucks but will let you know when we hit Texas (most probable place to see the first)

Tonight we are at a KOA campsite in Oklahoma City OK.  It's very nice and has WIFI and cable but I'm still trying to figure out to do the tv remote setup to get cable channels.  Had lots of wind and lots of construction where my spincter  puckered a little going over some very narrow bridges where the width just let us squeak through.    We'll be staying here a couple of nights as we have an appointment for installing a new TV antennae and to buy a new connection cord that broke that enables the car lights while we're towing.

I see a stream down the little driveway I'm on so I need to go check it out and stretch my legs a little.

Barry is sleeping a lot but eating and drinking pretty good.  We can't talk while driving because his voice is so small I can't hear him so we just point and smile at things we see.

I have to remember to have the air conditioner fixed too before we get in the desert.  I can't wait to take time to really check some of the upcoming places out.

10/30/11-You're going to love this....I won't be bringing Barry to see the pretty pond/stream as when I went to check it out, there were actually 2 ponds with fences around them with a sign that said "Danger-sewage ponds". Oh well.  I did find a really cute "K-9" fenced in park with actual play things in it for dogs.  There were bridges and other neat toys to entertain them.  The campground also has a pool but it's closed and a very nice log cabin office with showers and lots of washers/dryers so we'll have to take advantage later and get Barry in the shower again. The office  has a nice front porch with about 5 rocking chairs and a fountain with water spouting out of a cattle head skeleton. (seemed pretty funny to me)

Well, I'm going to try to get our cable TV to work so we can watch the Packer game.  Wish me luck!

Wow, another catchup to November 4th or 5th.

We stopped at a Walmart in Weatherford Arkansas and it was pretty much a non event other than $5 footlongs and good soup.

Went on the next day to Amarillo TX...very long run in continuous 40 mph winds and gusts up to 60.  Started seeing mega tumbleweeds with the high winds.  Learned to feather the coach like a sailboat in high winds until we passed a double-trailer semi and the main awning started to come out.  Way scary but got off the highway in time before damage and locked it off as tightly as I could.  Okay, no problem, we went forward and the front awning over the door started flapping (Barry noticed this)  Pulled over again and put new zip ties on it to hold her down.

The canyons and the countryside was continuously changing and some of the canyons were deep and we both wondered how the wagons moved East without falling down them.  All of the creeks and streams are dried out as they are in the middle of a major draught.

During the same time the top window that has the in/out fan started flapping.  Went on the roof and secured it with duck tape but the front that came through didn't let the tape stick to the cold metal on the roof.  So did the best I could and it made it okay to Amarillo.  When we got to this great RV park in Amarillo, I literallly crawled on the roof to retape the skylight/fan to stop it from sieving cold wind down into the coach.  Worked!  Phew!

When I was hooking up the coach I noticed humongous acorns with the same half pod that we had in Oshkosh however they WERE 5 times bigger from trees that are considered yearlings in WIsconsin.  Wow, so funny I had to keep 3 of them!

Had a call from Bradd and Maeve that was very heart warming and a totally surprising call from Beaulah from Maine.  (One of the friends we made there)  She is in Florida now but it was soo wonderful to hear her voice again.  We laughed and kidded and I felt like we never left Maine.

On Thursday, I surprised Barry with the fact that they have a hot-tub and he was totally in heaven!!!! He said that he had been dreaming about this moment for 7 months.  They also have a heated pool but the hot-tub got Barry's heart.  BIG SMILE and AHHHHS.

Later in the day, the management brought us a gift certificate for 2 meals at one of the "sights" and places you need to see.  They have a long white limo with horns on the front and a driver with of course a cowboy hat.  The facility also has a fireplace, DVD $1 rental, book swap, $1 per machine laundry and showers.  They also sent a bag of M&M's back for Barry when I got the DVD "Precious".  Very said, enlightening flick where the star got an Academy Award.

I've been leaving the hot water tap on drip as we have had freezing nights.  The first night went good but this morning we woke up to a shower full of water leaking on the rest of the floor.  Oops, the valve I had open must not have been open enough and the raw water backed up into the shower.  Normally this would be no biggie but I put the dirty wash there and store other large stuff there too to get out of the way.  Okay, today the wash is going to drain until the morning so I can actually carry it without my back going out.

In the meantime during all of this, we had the roof window arm repaired so the fan is now usable and the pipes under the kitchen sink secured to the wall. (Oops, forgot to tell you we had another flood from the coach bouncing the pipes apart and all of the wonderful sink water going onto the new carpet under it)  The guys that helped us only charged $70 as the coach across from us was already paying the $75 service call.

Barry called his son Kyle and told him we are on our way, we are getting ready to buy tickets for a train ride at the Grand Canyon and one of my best friends from CA and her boyfriend are coming to see us in Nevada.  Barry's sister Kerry and husband Ross and flying out to Phoenix when we see Kyle so we can see them too.  Things are coming together!

Now, we just have the engine air-conditioner to fix and checking the tire pressure as it looks like one of our tires is low.  I lined all of the drawers with liners and they look great!  Can't figure out how to get the window dressings off to change the material but I'll keep on researching.

Buddy finally had a bath and she looks beautiful! So we are all happy campers!

Barry is eating and drinking better and the meds have him on a good balance!  Yeh for our team!  Signing out so I can watch TV with Barry.  Love you all!

Okay, geez, I forgot that we are "moored" here because of the 60mph winds we had this afternoon.  I guess this like living on a sailboat where you just hunker down and ride it out.  We had lots of major blasts hit us and rock our land boat. We are also here so long because the meds that Barry needs haven't been faxed to Walmart yet.  Hopefully, they will be on Monday.  On Sunday night, later because of hopefully watching the Packer game we will use our 2 free meal gift certificate.  I'm delaying dinner tonight....shrimp and chicken stirfry until Barry is hungry.  We're watching back to back Law and Order (we both really missed it in the last 5 years and love catching up).  Watching this flick for Barry is like reading a novel an hour!!  I love it too!

Winds have settled down to about 20mph or so and we have had MAJOR incoming coaches trying to escape the wind on the highway.  Have seen the 2nd coach with awning damage next to us.  Note to the guy next to us that fixed it with duck tape.....not going to work!

The guy next to us is my hero!  He has some kind of generator that lets him add air to his tires!  Damn, wish we had that!  He just easily started it, pulled out the spiral cord and zmmmm zmmmm did his tires!  Damn again!  Will visit the nearest truck service center for our engine air conditioner and to check ALL of our tires.  Will also check our oil 2moro.,  Have had the refill container out to remind me.  Okay,  night night again.

OKay. It's now Wednesday.  We went to the repair center for our "engine" air conditioner and they said that it wouldn't even take the freon they were trying to pump in so I guess that it's toast.  However, good news, I also learned that when going through the desert, I can turn on the generator and get air-conditioning from the upper air conditioners on our roof.  They said that the engine airconditioner is  only for the front of the cab but if we turn the upper vents I'll still get some of it; and regardless of that I didn't know I could run the generator while driving.  Big hello and lots of help!!

Went to Walmart in Amarillo TX to get Barry's meds and had them dig deep to find an existing prescription for Barry so we could move forward.  They (after I begged them to look on previous Walmart locations in FL and ME and WI.  Walla!   They found one!  At the same time, our prescription for 3 months came through from our doctor in FL>  (requested it last Thurs and it only took until today (weds) WTF.

Better news here.  We left Amarillo for Albuquerque(don't know how to spell it) and the landscape slowly changed.  People have told us that this is really a boring place to travel but when we got into the low fields with NOTHING out there, it was so pure, I felt like all of the cobwebs were cleaned out of my heart and my soul.  It all looked very peaceful like the ocean but it was the land.  Once in awhile you would see some cattle or cows or horses just like you see sealife on the ocean.  It was sooo peaceful and you could feel how it had been forever.  Awesome in my mind.

Then, there were little mesas with sparse vegetation,  Then there was bigger mesas with rust colored earth, then there were larger mesas with still sparse vegetation.  Then BOOM, all of a sudden there were mesas and looming mountains with lush green and very happy landscape.  The countryside started to open up to big inclines and mountains all around us and it was sooo awesome!  We were getting nearer to Albuquerque. I'll look up the spelling 2moro.  We took pictures of the moon coming over the mountain from the parking lot of Walmart.  Very neat to see for a "Walmart" location to park in free.  Gotta love it.

Next day, Thursday I didn't feel well so slept most of the day.  Later, I brought Barry to a Chinese/Thai/Japanese restaurant and found some wonderful food.  Barry ate really well and totally enjoyed the shrimp dinner he had with egg rolls and soup.  It was one of 20 restaurants within a mile or so from us.  Still, we have an awesome vista of the mountains and the full moon. We're now watching TV courtesy of our new antennae!  It's working kinda with the mountains all around us.  In and kinda out but still watchable. We are trying to figure out what to do next.  There is a tram in the mountains that I think Barry might enjoy but we have to find the info on where it is.  No WIFI here.  Will have to ask the people at Walmart.  No problem as they are very helpful!!  Gonna go night night now....

2moro, I need to ask Barry if he wants to go on the longest tram ride in the U.S.  He's not sure as he said it'll just be a ski hill.....we'll see.  WE would both like to go to Mexico via leaving our Coach in a campground and taking our car over the border.  Maybe or maybe not.  I want to buy some stuff for Christmas gifts,,,,,,,,,Yah,  time for thinking of that.  Gotta sign out as I'm tired.

Hi Everyone!  Sorry I haven't written for awhile but we were either at Walmart parking lots or a RV campsite without WIFI. 

We've been bogeying!  Tried to go on the World's longest tram ride in Amarillo but it was down for fall maintenance so we'll have to hit it on the way back.  Stayed in Gallup NM last night.  The scenery has been TOTALLY beautiful.  Haven't seen any wild life yet just dead ones on the roadside.....deer, coyotes, bobcats, skunks, rabbits and lots of tire pieces. 

We are currently at Flagstaff, AZ at at KOA campsite with cable so we can see if the Packer game is on.  We are right at the foot of a mountain that has snow on it and there's a little pile of snow on the road next to us.  Really neat!

On a more homey note, we've found that mice don't like living outside in the cold when they have a heated RV staring them in the face.  Last night I bought 2 mousetraps as I had to clean out a lower cupboard that had cereal, oatmeal, spaghetti noodles, dried soup and other goodies that gave the little shits a smorgasbourg. (sp?)  This morning I had one little bugger in the cupboard that I cleaned out and sterilized (and put everything in plastic containers)  He was the healthiest little mouse I've seen in a long time.  Even his fur coat was shiny from all of our good food.  Will put out the traps again tonight to see if he had any friends living with him.  Maybe we SHOULD get a cat.  I've been thinking about getting one.

Next stop on our journey will be Bearizona where you drive through wilderness with animals in it obviously.  Then the next day we'll go to the Grand Canyon trainride where it takes a whole day to do it.  Barry is really looking forward to this and so am I.

Later, I need to put on my new steering wheel cover as the current black one gets hot and my hands get sweaty from it.  Then, search for the Packer game and wait like a little kid to see if it snows tonight.  ....

Sorry, it's Monday and there was no Packer Game yesterday and no snow last night but the good news is that there were no new mice in the traps either.  The steering wheel cover is on and I'll try it out to see how it works2moro.

Ah, it's Tuesday the morning after another awesome Packer Game!!  What a nice way to end the day!

Good Afternoon!  We just arrived in Williams Arizona at The Grand Canyon Railway RV Park.  Very nice here and LOTS of mountains and actually most of the ditches and northern slopes everywhere has snow!  Had a few problems finding this place as the park wasn't listed on our GPS so we ended up at another one.  Oh well, got to see some of the countryside. 2moro is our train ride or Bearizona.  We're here for stay for 2 nights and get one free.  They have a hot tub at the hotel so we'll visit there too.  We're in hog heaven!

Okay, It's Thursday and we went to Bearizona and it was awesome on one count.  The baby bear cubs that were 10 months old (4 of them) started licking each others ears and they were all purring.  The Park manager that brought us through with a golf cart said in 2 years he has only experienced this 3 times.  First there was one cub purring, then another joined him and licked his ears, then another joined them and started licking the ears of number 2 and then another cute guy "Itsy Bittsy" joined them and licked the ears of his bud in front.  They were all purring and it sounded very much like a beehive and major bees.  Number 4 kinda tried to join in but never really finished his effort.  The zoo manager couldn't believe that they were doing this with people around.  He said the "humming" is their happy sound and they were all DEFINITELY happy.  Way cool and a memory we will keep in our hearts forever.

We also had a mule come to my driver's window after I told them they were eating too much and they needed some exercise.  (fat bellies)  He or she came to the car and stuck her nose against the window and breathed heavy and put a print on our window.  So cute!!  We saw soo many bear where they put the feed right on the road.  All of the adults seemed pretty happy to just mow down.

Then on Thursday, today, we went on the Grand Canyon Train Ride.  We listened to history and didn't see any wildlife until our destination where we saw major deer.  We both thought that we were going to be on a train ride on the rim of the Grand Canyon, but no, it only brought you to the rim and you had to hike/walk to see the Canyon.  I was so disappointed I had tears in my eyes but then I decided for plan B.  We went to eat at the hotel which had excellent food at a very reasonable price.  I asked if we could use a wheelchair as Barry almost didn't make the walk from the train to the eventual platform where the depot was.(about 3 blocks)  My heart was totally hurt here.  Okay, after dinner we got the wheelchair and I wheeled Barry all over the rim of the Grand Canyon.  It was totally awesome but 2 times he thought I might lose control of the chair as it was totally hilly (downhill)  He helped me by palming the wheel and we made it down and saw some awesome sights.  Geez,  what goes down must come up and I wheezed my way pushing him back to our origin in the thin air (elevation over 7000 feet)  Thank god I'm in pretty good shape but Barry wanted to get out and walk a couple of times.

Bottom line, I asked Barry if it met his expectations and he said no but he said it was still worth it and very beautiful.

He and I were exhausted when we came back to arrive at 6:00 but we saw massive elk as it was sunset.  We also had bandits rob our train and they were kinda lame but fun for the kids.

2moro, we are starting towards Phoenix to see Barry's son Kyle.  He now has a job and is in the process of moving so we need to find out where he actually is at this time.  Can't wait to see him as he is an awesome person.  If I ever had a son I would ask for him.  Good qualities and a good person.

Well, gonna go night night as Barry passed out from fatigue 2 hours ago. 

12/5/11-Today is December 7th and my oldest daughter is now 40!!  Wow!

Sorry I haven't written but where we were in the mountains there was no WIFI hookup.  Well, there was but it never worked.

We were in Bullhead City Arizona for quite a while after seeing Barry's son Kyle in Tempe.  It was very nice seeing him and we also had good news that he found a job and had just moved into a new apartment and was happily trying to find furniture as he sold it all before he moved there from Milwaukee WI.

In Bullhead City on the Colorado River we had a flock of 17 roadrunners (I thought but they ended up being quail)  I thought they were road runners as the dogs next door would chase them and they ran at the speed of light.  Funnier than all getout!  It was fun watching what they were going to do next as they congregated about 30 yards from our coach.  We also had very friendly pigeons.  When I had both doors open one of the days, one brave pigeon hopped up our stairs to come and visit Buddy.  I stayed very still and tried not to tummy laugh.

Barry's sister Kerry and husband Ross came to visit and brought goodies to eat from Chili's and just generally hung out with us and were there for support for me.  They also surprised us with a wonderful large envelope of pictures from when Barry was young.  They were all black and whites and it was fun to see him grow up.  During this time we had 60mph winds that rocked us to sleep but didn't tip us over. (whew)

One of my best friends from California, Frankie and her boyfriend Chuck also came to visit after driving some major hours.  Of course we drank wine and laughed our bottoms off for about 7 hours and caught up on what's going on in our lives as we hadn't been together from about 6 years.  They brought us a new PJ set for Barry and a tin of yummy popcorn.  It was awesome seeing Frankie again.  Like good friends are we just picked up where we left off like it was just yesterday that we had seen each other.

On Monday I think Dec 5th, I started out back East.  Within 30 minutes I started hitting snow and had hit and miss mini-storms all through Arizona.  After hitting New Mexico, I had to finally give up as I had just hit 25 miles of black ice with 2 overturned semis, one overturned car and some other major accidents that brought traffic down to 15 mph.  Turned on the generator and crashed to find out that it had gotten down to 15 below zero.  Gee, that's why the coach didn't want to start and the water pipes were frozen.  Finally got the coach started and drove to Amarillo Texas.  Still snow.....still frozen water pipes, the car wouldn't start, Barry was out of it, I read the mail and had 3 major problems to solve, my cellphone was going to be cancelled, but thank god I didn't have a dog that died and Grandma didn't get run over by the reindeer!  I cried and went to bed.  Got up and tackled the car, coach, medical bills, life insurance problems and only need to try to get a hold of Sprint on my phone.

Talked to daughter Amy on her birthday to find out she had a herniated disk and that she had not slept in weeks but was getting shots from the doctor to try to relieve the pain as her disk was doing a MAJOR job on one of her nerves. Talked to daughter Angela and their house was featured by a professional photographer as boyfriend Jason decorated the yard until the fuses kept on blowing.  Funny!

I'm doing okay today after a bad day yesterday and I'm totally ready to tackle some more miles 2moro.  Can't wait to get to Florida to see some warm weather and good friends.  Oh, forgot to tell you that awesome friends Bradd and Maeve pulled our boat out of the water in Ft Pierce so it can be worked on.  After talking with them in sounds like she needs major TLC.  Boats don't like sitting in the boiling sun in a calm harbor for 6 months without moving.  Major colony of stuff grows on the bottom.

Well, that's my abbreviated version and yes we had a nice Thanksgiving dinner thanks to Boston Market.  Actually pretty dam good!

Thanks for all the concerned emails and calls...time for more adventures.

12/29/11- I think I need to figure out how to put some of this page in history.  Will work on that next.

My last post was in Amarillo TX....wow, okay let's give some highlights.  Drove east each day for as many hours as I could and stayed at Walmart parking lots and truck stops.  Had snow til I reached Tennessee but the black ice was now only spotty.  When we reached TN, I had a decision to make as Barry was sleeping almost all day and all night.  (symptoms for end stage)  I talked with many friends and family that urged me to bring Barry home so they could help us.  Well, I turned North and experienced 4 different hawks strife the coach and another 30-40 hawks looking at me as I drove.  This was definitely a good omen as my brother Pat that died a few years ago said he was going to come back as a hawk or eagle.  Thanks for the encouragement Pat.  You're going to think I'm crazy but I asked my mom to give me a sign too.  Well we were on hwy 39 looking for hwy 55. Someone mentally slapped me on the head and told me to add these 2 numbers....  My sign was my mom would be 94 if she was alive today so I was making the right decision.

Now that we were heading North, I tried to boogie as fast and as long as I could.  I would take naps and then start out again.  I felt anxious and excited about going home to WI but also a sort of peace.

On Sunday, December 11th, I was driving down hwy 41 closing in on my destination.  I called daughter Amy to see what she was doing for the game and she was at her dad's making cookies and doing the game there.  I then called my sister Sue and brother in law Dave to see what they were doing for the Packer game.  Dave asked where we were and I explained that I was about 1 mile away from him and should I pick them up so we could park at the Neenah lighthouse on Lake Winnebago to watch the game on the coach.  Well, A BIG YES!  It was great fun seeing them and surprising them.  Ended up sleeping at a closed Perkins parking lot.

For the next 2 days I cleaned and packed the coach so I could have it winterized and stored.  Sue and Dave offered their home to us until we figured out where we would stay for the next couple of weeks.  Had wonderful friends offer their homes too but Sue and Dave said we could stay with them for however long until we found a place of our own.  Barry thought that was cool if it was okay with them.

Enter shopping, wrapping, visiting and taking care of Barry. Time literally flew by.  On the 21st, I went to visit daughter Amy and she answered the door and immediately layed on the floor on her back and started sobbing. Her disc was majorly working over her nerves by her spine.  I took her to get another shot in her back and it didn't even touch the pain.  I slept over and took care of her that night and next morning.  I got a call later in the day to find out that she was in the hospital Emergency room and was going to have emergency surgery.  Wow!  She had surgery and went home within a few hours.  Her husband Tom was able to travel back home to be with her so things were much better.  The best part was hardly any more pain!

During this same time, Barry developed a bladder infection so I had to take him into the doc so we could get him checked and to get meds.  On the way home it was snowing beautiful big flakes.....very pretty decorations now that they had snow.  The next morning I took Lofton (grandson) shopping for a gift for his mom and dad and he got sick at the store with the flu so we did a shop and run.

Enter Christmas Eve.  Sue and Dave were hosts to the whole family.  I started puking at 6 and ended up with a glass in the throat special (it feels like someone used a cheese grater on your throat)  Made it until 9pm and had to crash as I had lost my voice and felt like collapsing.  I was in bed until yesterday afternoon except to eat a little.  Was very sick with the flu and a cold.  Speaking of cold....I was hot...cold...hot...cold and soaked my PJ's really good!

Sooooooo, if anyone was wondering why I didn't call them on Christmas to say "Merry" it was because I wasn't in this world at that time.  I was drifting in and out. 

Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and we're sorry we didn't get in touch with you.  Love you all.

P.S. To reach Barry and Ruth 920-213-0498

          Ruth@rbhammer.com

 

1/10/12- Okay I just turner it to bold.  We have been living day by day and Barry is still sleeping about 23 hours a day but once in awhile we hear his walker and the door and he surprises us with a visit.  He has been totally wonderful in this Psyche --very sweet all of the time and very loving.  It is so easy to try to make him comfortable as he tries to communicate and we can usually understand what he wants after a few repeats.  We wake him a few times a day to try to give him a meal and his favorite liquids. (cranberry, apple and water)  His favorite meal right now is Cream of Wheat with maple syrup and brown sugar with a little milk. 

We have had so many people bring awesome goodies (thank you Laurie and Bob) and others.  You are awesome to appreciate what we are going through.

Got new insurance on the car and the RV.  Progressive totally screwed us but now we have things in balance.  Next is our boat insurance which is normally $2700 per year.  Hopefully, they will give us a discount for storing on "the Hard" (out of the water).  So, we are trying to do damage control as we spent major money on Barry's bucket list. (no problem-it was TOTALLY worth it as far as I'm concerned)  All in all, I'm doing damage control.  The 7 hospital stays and clinics and drugs have made me a monetary control nazi.  So far, it is working.

Wish I could give Barry some excitement in his life.  Jokingly, I said the best I could do is bring him through a car wash.  Pretty lame.  He really doesn't follow TV, can't read and has problems communicating.  Even a road trip now would mean nothing to him but discomfort.  So, we just try to joke with him and make him smile and include him in a normal life in a home with people that love him.

So, that's where we are.  Tweaking Barry's meds to give his body a break and loving him and enjoying every moment we have with him.

Kyle, thank you for the Christmas gifts.  You were so sweet to remember that I love Applebee's awesome Oriental Chicken Salad and that Barry loves the Craker Barrel and their biscuits!  You are an awesome son!

Love all of you!  Our address is 609 Hewitt Street, Neenah WI, 54956.

2/1/12-Hello everyone.  I've been very bad about keeping up the website blog but I didn't want to bore you with the same old same old every day.

I had a meeting with Hospice today and am getting help with Barry as I can't physically do some of the things that he needs.  Changing bed linens while he's in bed totally hurts him when I move him.

My heart feels very warm after my meeting with Hospice. They told me that everything that I'm doing is totally appropriate and adequate for Barry.  He's sleeping all day and they told me his in his last days with us.  So sad but I knew this already.  We've had sooo many wonderful visitors that have come to say goodbye to my best bud.  He is in and out with some of the visits.  Sometimes he tries to speak but the words are garbled but you know that he cares enough to try to express his feelings about whoever has come.

Last night I told Barry it is okay to let go.  We talked all night (or I did and he smiled) about memories and wonderful things we have experienced in our life together.  I told him his presence in my life has been one of the best gifts anyone could ever give me and that we have experiences that would fill up most people's 25 year spans.  We have been blessed.  I hugged him for hours and cried with joy and sadness.  He has totally been a wonderful man.  He now knows that I'll be okay and that my family and friends will always take care of me and help me.

Hospice said if anyone wants to visit him do it now as he hasn't eaten for over 5 days. (normal for someone passing away)

When Hospice came, Buddy our bird kept on giggling and got our 2 nurses giggling and almost snorting as it went on and on.  They said she is a treasure but I know she feeds on emotions and tries to help in her own little way.

I've been with soooo many friends of Barry's and shed lots of tears but I seem to hold back so I don't have a volcanic eruption.  Don't want that to happen when you are trying to support others.  I had my meltdown last night and it felt good to know that I loved someone so much.  Some people never experience what I have.

Thank you Barry for enriching my life with your presence and for being my barometer in life.  You are an unusual man with your curiosity, intelligence, patience and love for me.

This is sad, but will let you know when Barry's funeral is and where.

Love always,  Ruthie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Okay, everyone, it's later now and Barry is in bed.  He hasn't read the website for about 3 weeks so I can relate what's going on with me too.

I'm finding myself leaking tears that just trail down my cheeks without sobbing to let some of the sadness and stress out.  It is soo hard to hug Barry and feel all the bones sticking out and not feeling him hug me back like he used to.  I know this sounds really self-centered but if you love someone like I do Barry his touch and essence means so much.  I am still totally supporting what we are doing but it is in the night in the dark by myself that I can let the sadness leak out.  Please don't worry about me, I'm still strong but I need to mourn the different things that  I  took for granted. So many things; his walking, his talking, his companionship, his teasing and his intense intelligence.  I'm thinking this is all pretty normal and something that other people don't talk about.  At least Barry still comes up with a "nice ass" or something to let me know that he still has that connection to me and appreciates my female attributes.

It's really weird.  Sometimes when I try to talk to him he is totally there and sometimes he's just too tired or confused.  When I feel sad about this I just hug him and tell him how much I love him. Still no pity party for me just deep love for him.  Listening to the tugs and the crickets right now and feeling the nice caressing breeze coming through my window right now.  Signing out.  Hope I can write soon but don't know.

 

 

 

 

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Updated on 02/01/2012

 

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View our prior 2011 log postings as they are added below

Bahamas, 01/01 to 01/15/11 Bahamas depart for US, 1/16 to 1/31/11
Boca and Boat Show, 2/01 to 2/15/11 Boca and medical, 2/16 to 2/28/11
Stuck in Boca - Medical, 3/1 to 3/15/11 Boca - Medical, 3/16 to 3/31/11
Boca - Medical, 4/1 to 4/15/11 Boca - Medical, 4/15 to 4/30/11
Boca - Medical, 5/1 to 5/15/11 Boca Hospitals, 5/1 to 5/15/11
Boca to Bangor, 6/1 to 6/15/11 Bangor Hospitals, 6/15 to 6/30/11
Bangor - more, 7/1 to 7/14/11 Bangor -  our new home, 1/15/to 7/31/11
   
 

 

 
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