Once we left scout camp, we headed to SE WI to spend quality time with family, take care of Dr appts, including a colonoscopy and then relax. Little did we know that we would be fortunate to be in town when Rick's dad had a medical emergency and was rushed to the hospital, only to have surgery on a brain bleed the following day. He is doing much better and is in rehab, getting stronger every day, to return home soon. It was great to see everyone again, albeit the circumstances were not what we wanted and the whole Covd thing made it much more stressful since we were unable to see him or be there speaking to the Dr's. Rick's mom was a trooper though, being the only one who could be with him and we were able to speak to the Dr and his dad via phone, from the hospital grounds below.
We also were able to spend time with my family as well with a family get together. We had a wonderful time with great food and drink, laughs and as always, a very contentious washer box tournament $$$. A complete surprise to me since it has been years since I played but the winners were...yup, my brother and I! Wohoo! Winner, winner, chicken dinner!!! We also had several contestants instantly win a game by getting a washer on the rim of the box and we had to take the traditional pictures.
Our oldest son works at a boat/sales and service business and was able to reserve the company "test drive" pontoon boat for a day and we went out on the lake near our old home for a relaxing cruise. What a beautiful day for it!
After saying our goodbye's, we headed south to get some work done on our RV at the Grand Design Service Center. Again we cannot say enough wonderful things about our manufacturer! They go above and beyond to earn customers for life. We arrived at their campsites on a Monday and were up early Tuesday to have the RV ready to go in to the shop at 6am. We had a couple things for them to look at and they also do a once over as well to check the rig out. They did find an issue that they wanted to address so we spent a little over a week in the Elkhart area while our coach was being worked on.
Being smack dab in the middle of Amish Country we had to check it all out, even if we have been here before. That included a visit to the Menno-Hof museum in Shipshewana, an Amish dinner at the Essenhaus, a buggy ride through the countryside and perusing several stores to purchase Amish made goodies. We even found several "quilt" flower gardens on our drive around the area. Soo pretty!!!
We had another day to burn while our rig was at Grand Design so we started off with a very interesting visit to Bontragers RV Surplus. They have several buildings that have just about every piece you would need for your RV! After an hour and 93 degree temps with 85% humidity, we threw in the towel and got back into a nice cool truck. From there we headed on over to one of our most favorite food haunts in the area, Flippin Cow. This place has such great burgers and a really cool vibe that we make a point to stop every time we are in the area! We even went back again before we left town, with our dear friends, the Golden's, who were also having work done at MORryde.
From there we headed to Costco to pick up a couple items and then went to a place we have not been for what seems like years...A Movie Theater!!! EEEKKK!!!! Well to say that we felt safe is an understatement! Cinemark definitely has gone the distance to ensure everything is thought of to keep the customers and staff safe. Our show was at 4pm and we were the only ones there! We had the movie theater all to ourselves. We saw Unhinged and let me just say that I will never look at Russell Crowe the same way ever again!!! It took awhile for our heart rates to come back down after that one! When we came out into the parking lot, there were several more folks there and the staff seemed sincerely happy to be back at work.
It just so happened that our extra time in Elkhart caused us to have to cancel our reservation at Maumee Bay State Park on Lake Erie. It looked like a really nice park on the lake and had great reviews but alas...RV'ing plans are usually made in jello. This wasn't the only change we needed to make. Due to the whole Covid fiasco and NE states having strict quarantine guidelines, we had to cancel our plans to go to PA and NY, including Niagra Falls. Oh well, the Canada border was closed as well, so we will make that trek once it is all open again. It was quite interesting when canceling reservations as to the different policies in place. Some were just a nominal cancellation charge, another had a $25 cxl fee but would be used as a credit on a future stay within a year and then there was yet another that would not refund any deposit and laughed when I asked if the 1 night deposit could be a credit a later date. Yup that one was in NY! Grrrr. Oh well, it is what it is. Lots of wiggly jello plans that change. We quickly examined our options and decided to explore West Virginia next. I must say though that we have been quite lucky, as I have seen other folks have their travel plans completely upended.
Our next stop was a couple nights just outside of Cincinnati at Winton Woods County Park. What a gem! Fantastic county park with camping, a petting zoo, boat rentals and soo much more to offer! We were also blessed to have our friends, The Golden's, stay for a night on their way to TN. From here we said our "See You Again's" and hope to meet back up with them next summer.
We also were able to snag some Skyline Chili. Oh yumm!! For those that have not experienced it's yumminess, Cincinnati chili has a very distinct taste. It is a meaty chili with cinnamon and allspice. You can then add beans if you'd like and their most popular is the three way which is on top of spaghetti with a mound of cheddar cheese on top.
The social calendar continued to hum along as we met up with more friends. Good friends, good food!!! Right up our alley!
We met up with Ginger who we met way back in 2018 when we did a workamping stint at their private grass airstrip in Hanover, IN. Unfortunately Rich wasn't able to join us since he was on call for work, but hopefully next time! We met Ginger at the Incline Public House on historic Price Hill in south Cincinnati. The food was good, the company was even better and the views of downtown Cincinnati were amazing!
The next day we met up with Terri and Mike, friends we met at the 2018 National Grand Design Rally. We had a great lunch at LaRosa's Pizzeria. Since there was no rally this year in Elkhart we brought them some yummy Amish goodies and they brought us some delicious bounty from their garden and Mike made us a beautiful 5th Wheel RV charcuterie/cutting board. Thank you both!!!
Our busy, social time in Cincinnati quickly came to an end and we needed to pack up and head down the road to our Labor Day weekend destination. Until next time...
Well our time here in the beautiful north woods of WI is coming to an end. We finished up at the scout camp Saturday, breaking down the sites and tidying up. Camp went pretty smooth this year, despite the whole Covid pandemic. The scouts had fun, as did we!!! Elvis, the Camp Ranger, gave us beautiful glasses with a panoramic picture of Crystal Lake as a parting gift.
Rick helped out as an Assistant Ranger this year and got several things done, including cutting in and grading a new road to the maintenance shop, leveling out some land around the shop, grading some sites and roads, packing up sites for logging company to come in and clear, painting the welcome center, storm damage clean up, among other misc things. A productive summer!
We had a wonderful site for the summer, although there was a point when we thought we might need to build an ark! It was the second wettest July on record for Rhinelander.
Campfires, smoking lots of meat and get togethers were plentiful this summer!
We even had plenty of time to explore new eats, visit old haunts and celebrate birthdays.
Adventures were many.
Hikes with beautiful views...
Of course we found some strange characters in the northwoods...
There was definitely a train theme this summer...
We also completed some work on the RV as well. We were looking for a better solution for our entry door to keep the heat and light out. After hearing positive reviews from friends, we decided to install a Lippert Thin Shade. Besides the obvious awkwardness of trying to install a window on a swinging door, up on stairs; the install went pretty smooth. The shade can either be pulled down or left up...or in our case, pulled down 99.9% of the time. But, it might be nice to have the shade up in the winter to let the sun in.
We also took down the roman shade behind the stovetop and put blackout UV window cling on to cut down on the heat. With cooking, the shade was getting dirty and we would put it up when cooking, which leaves a non tinted window with the sun beating in. It is really nice now and have noticed a difference with the interior not getting so warm when the sun shines on that side. I am toying with the idea of putting some sort of applique on it to dress it up a bit. We will see where we land with that, but we really like how it turned out. Alot cleaner looking.
When moving from a spot after a bit and being in trees, especially pine trees, there is bound to be some roof cleaning that is needed. Rick spent the afternoon closely inspecting and cleaning the roof. He even took a look at the AC's to ensure we were not bringing any hitchhikers with us. We are done with hitchhikers and I am pretty sure we have rid ourselves of those other four legged critters!
From here we are heading to our favorite family moochdocking spot for some Dr appts and family time. Then off to IN for some rv repairs and after that is up in the air. We were planning to head to PA and NY and then to Washington DC, but with this neverending pandemic, we will most likely be scrapping all of those plans due to the travel and quarantine restrictions in the NE area. Stay tuned to find out where we land...
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