Monday, June 29, 2020

Catch up Post

It has been about a month and a half since I have last written in my blog. When we got back to the ranch, I was tired and ready for a rest from everything including writing. I have continued to take pictures of our many activities, but wasn't sure if I would ever write about it. I have decided to put this entry in the blog as an update to all of our friends and family and to publish a few pictures that I like.

We enjoyed a very wet spring at the ranch in Missouri. We stayed there from April 18 to May 14. We mainly spent time with our children and grandchildren. 

This is a picture of the creek at the ranch after a hard rain. Just to the right of the rocks is the swimming hole. It is about 8 feet deep in this picture. As I write this it is totally dry. 

On May 15, Kim, Our granddaughter Isabella, and I took a trip to check on the boat. We stopped off at our Son, Michael's house to see his family. When I arrived, our grandson, Connor had a list of all he wanted to do in the one day we would be there. There was no way to do that, so we decided to stay an extra day to complete the list. We played games, went for walks and hikes and had the best nerf gun war of all time. 

Michael, Audrey, Cameron and Connor in front of a waterfall we hiked to. 

We also stopped in to see our friends, Dick and Cathy for a too short visit. Then we headed for Alabama to check on the boat. I did a number of maintenance tasks and tests and determined that the engine was good to go. We then motored up the boat up the river about 7 miles to anchor out for the night to show Isabella what that was all about. We had a blast going on a dingy ride and playing on the river bank. Isabella even found some "quick sand". 

Isabella at the helm.

Isabella - a straight A student

SHIFT at anchor on an oxbow of the Tombigbee river

Isabella and Kim playing on the river bank.

Our Daughter, Shannon and family decided to go to the Great Smokey Mountains while we were in Alabama, so we decided to join them. We had a great time hiking and doing some of the tourist stuff. The bad news is that our Grandson, Jake broke his leg when he crashed on a scooter the first day we were there. He is now in a cast and should be good to go by the end of the summer. The crowds were smaller than normal because of the virus, but most outdoor activities were open. The other bad news was that Kim and I had to stay 5 days longer than planned to get a new turbo installed in the truck. We took advantage of the additional time and did some hiking on our own and saw some more remote areas of the National Park. 

We saw 9 black bear on the morning that we drove the Cades Cove loop.

A homestead in a beautiful setting along the loop. We enjoyed all of the short hikes.

Our granddaughter, Amelia found a waterfall and had to show Grandpa. 

The whole crew at another homestead. Brian, Shannon, Amelia, Isabella, Will, Kim and Eve.

Kim made the hike to Laurel Falls

Eve, Amelia and Isabella behind Grotto falls. The second hike of the day.

We finished off the day by hiking up to Clingmans Dome, which give you a 360 degree view of the Great Smokey Mountains National Park and surrounding area.

What a view!

This old couple made the hike to the top.

Now on our own we did the 4.5 mile hike to Hen Wallow Falls. It was worth the effort. 

The trail was empty and we had the falls to ourselves for a while.

We drove from Cosby to Big Creek on highway 32. I believe it was the curviest road I have ever driven. We saw a family of Black bear in a tree along the side of the road.

Our dinner view along Big Creek

Soaking our feet in the cool water after all of the hiking felt so good.

We arrived back in Missouri on the 5th of June. We made it in time to meet up with fellow blogger, Mark from Missouri. Here is a link to his blog: ourfutureinanrv He is a new RV full timer and has a very informative writing style. Mark and his wife, Karen took a tour of the ranch. We had an awesome time and can't wait until our paths cross again. 

For the past month we have been going to our grandson Will's baseball games. He loves to play, but his team has had a tough year. They had lost all of their games until last Thursday night. They had a double header with two of the better teams in the league. They ended up winning both games! Yeah!!!

Not a great picture, but Will at Shortstop. He is still pretty small, but he is a great fielder and when he uses proper footwork, has a strong arm. 

Fathers Day weekend was awesome! I was able to see all of my Children and Grandchildren. We all met at the ranch for some riding and then a float trip. Michael's family and Scott could not make the float, but it was still plenty of fun. We were very glad that Mark's girlfriend, Callie joined us. We are very impressed by her and would be happy to see her stick around for a long time. 

Beautiful, cool North Fork of the White river.

Isabella in the closest boat, Mark and Callie in the canoe, and SIL Brian and Eve in the two person kayak. Yes, Mark has been working out.

When I sat down to write this entry, I did not know what I would write about. I did not know how much we have done until I started looking at the pictures. We are now talking about our future plans. Just like everyone, our plans are very uncertain. I will write about that in my next entry, whenever that is. For now I will leave you with an awesome rainbow that Kim, Isabella and I saw in the Marina in Alabama.