Wow, time sure flies when you have a full calendar! My last post was back in September after Alex and Erin’s wedding. Since we knew we would be on the East Coast for the wedding we had decided to return to Florida for the winter so after lots of family time we turned the coach around and headed to the
Atlantic coast. Our return trip south had us stopping at several of the iconic Atlantic beachside resorts. First up was Chincoteague and Assateague Islands where we stayed at the kid swamped Jellystone Chincoteague Park. Though we tend to stay away from these kid-centered type parks, this one was in the perfect place to explore the Island National Parks. We spent a lovely week recovering from all the wedding festivities, checking out the NASA Wallops Flight Facility, hiking the trails and along the beach, and searching for the famous island ponies.
From there it was south over the Chesapeake Bay Bridge (made famous in my GPS Wars stories!) heading down to Cape Hatteras. Here we stayed a bit off the beach at The Refuge on Roanoke Island RV Park. It truly was a refuge away from the hustle and bustle of the Cape and most days nearly empty. We drove the entire Cape and explored the Wright Brothers National Memorial then checked out the Lost Colony National Historic Site and Fort Raleigh.
A week later it was on to Myrtle Beach where I decided I really needed a bit of beach time, so we stayed right on the Atlantic with just steps from the beach at the Ocean Lakes Family Campground. This is a massive campground, again a place we might not normally have picked as we prefer smaller more out of the way campgrounds, but it fit the requirements for getting my feet in the sand. I spent every day of the 4 days we were there in the water and sun. We even got to see our friends, Barb & Dan who were also vacationing in the area for a too short lunch and time catching up. We spent so much time catching up we forgot to snap a picture!
One of the last iconic Atlantic resort areas we visited was Hilton Head. We stayed up near I95 at the
Yemassee KOA as we only had a couple of days left before we headed back to Florida. Some of you may remember that we were supposed to Workamp at a brand-new resort in HH in the winter of 2021. That position fell through and after we took a trip to see the resort, we are very happy that it didn’t work out. Just not the type of resort we prefer, and Hilton Head was soooo crowded.
Our last stop as we headed back to Umatilla was for a bit more family time in Jacksonville spending 10 days staying near my brother at the Stagecoach RV Park in St. Augustine. This park was much more our style, small, out of the way, but close enough to my brother and I95. We spent quality time with Skip and Paige seeing the Jacksonville Arboretum and Botanical Gardens, Villa Zorayda Museum & dinner at Capps on the Water restaurant. We even got Skip onto the pickleball courts for his introduction to our newest obsession!
Then it was back to Olde Mill Stream RV Resort in Umatilla, FL. We love our new site (we changed from the one we were on last year to get out from under the huge oak trees and the constant pelting of acorns) and have fallen back into the snowbird life. We’ve gotten several trips to Disney in since we have been back including a stay with Becca at the Coronado when she came down for a conference. We are playing lots of pickleball, getting to all those pesky doctor appts, and back to volunteering a bit at the Barberville Pioneer Settlement. This year I am continuing to coordinate the storytellers at the monthly events as well as the Fall and Spring festivals but only doing the occasional school program.
Speaking of storytelling, I have gotten involved with the Storytellers of Central Florida Guild and have performed with them for a Halloween special at a local library and will be doing a winter tales event. I have also been chosen for two performances at the Florida Storytelling Festival the last weekend of January. It is wonderful to be performing again on a more regular basis!
All the kids are doing great! Rebecca and Jason are settled into their new home in Edmonds, WA where they keep swearing they’ll stop demolishing and building…someday. They are still working at the same companies, while spending spare time teaching: Rebecca at the local community college and various writing programs and retreats, Jason at North Seattle College and with several youth coding organizations. They have also begun the process for private open adoption and hope to grow their family sometime in the next couple years, depending on the needs of families in the community. Rebecca is still publishing stories at a rapid pace, including a project sponsored by the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) and is slated to appear in a Seattle local NPR article about Elsie Olmstead, a historical figure from Seattle’s rum running days.
After a quick honeymoon in the Poconos, Alex and Erin returned to Brooklyn but to new jobs. Alex is now the Corporate Engagement and Events Manager at the New York Food Bank, and Erin is a manager at BSR, an environmental sustainability consulting firm. Erin has only 6 months left before she will finish her master’s degree at Bard and they are both looking forward to being back to just working the two jobs and caring for their pup, Marvel.
As the year comes to a close it is time to see where we have been, we traveled a bit less than most years hitting only:
- 8 States
- 3,725 Miles in the RV
- 8,803 miles exploring in the Jeep
- 17 Campsites
To finish off our travel for the year we are going to change things up a bit and leave the RV in Florida and fly off to the islands for a pickleball camp at a Beaches resort in Turks and Caicos. Not sure how much the camp will improve my game, but I am looking forward to a little island time. This will be a test on changing how we travel. After 7 years of this adventure, we are looking at more international and less RV travel in the future.
We hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving and are looking forward to lovely Christmas and a bright New Year!
Till next time,