MAY---Deltaville, VA to Pentwater, MI
DISCOVERY was pulled the last day of April. The two of us cleaned the hull to remove the ICW mustache and mud from anchoring in creeks and rivers in North Carolina. Put one coat of wax on the hull to help protect the gelcoat from UV waves. The stainless steel is about 95% complete (will finish it up in the fall).. All systems have been "summer-ized". Cleaned out the refrigerator giving unopened items to Mark and Julie (RACHEL) who will be heading up to Maine from Deltaville for the summer. Packed the car for the journey home.By the way, packing is not one of my favorite tasks. Why do we haul so much stuff back and forth? Went out for pizza with Kris and Craig our last night in Deltaville. The pizza place in Deltaville has new owners.......no beer and the quality of the pizza has declined. Bring the old owners back please.
The trip back to Pentwater was rather uneventful other than the fact that I hit a huge turkey vulture about 15 miles from Deltaville. The vulture was eating road kill staying on the pavement for one extra bite. It tried to fly away but not soon enough---hit the driver's side bumper and bounced to the side mirror which broke. The trip improved.....the drive through the beautiful mountains of Virginia and West Virginia is so beautiful. The Toyota chugged up the mountains in the slow lane along with all the trucks (small engine and lots of weight in the back seat and trunk) and like the trucks--picked up speed when going downhill. Encountered rain, wind and thunderstorms when we drove into Columbus, OH (area with the most traffic and the worst driving conditions). It stopped raining just north of Columbus. Noticed some nasty clouds moving southeast as we traveled northwest.....missing that nasty weather. After driving 13 hours we finally stopped and stayed in Dundee, Michigan. Up fairly early the next morning to continue the trip. Stopped in Grand Rapids to visit friends, Al and Laurie. The four of us went out for lunch at Brewery Vivant .....a new micro brew pub inspired by Belgian brewing traditions. I loved the pomme frites and the beer. Carl did not like the sandwich he ordered at all.....he hated it. After lunch, stopped at Pam and Brian's (they were out) to pick up two packages Carl had delivered to their address before heading to Pentwater.
Once we were in Pentwater......the homeowner's work started. The cottage interior made it through another winter without incident other than the battery for the furnace thermostat died. Don't know when the battery died but without a battery the furnace did not "kick on". This did not cause a problem due to a mild winter and Carl winterizes the cottage really well. The furnance started once the battery was replaced and the hot water heater fired up. Found the sheets and made the bed. No TV or internet so went to bed with our Kindles just like we do when cruising!!!
When we leave in September......the leaves are still in the trees so when we returnin May the yard is FULL of leaves. Carl started the exterior work by climbing up on the roof with the leaf blower to remove debris then he moves down to the deck and finally down to the lawn. It had rained a couple days before we arrived so the county and township issued burn permits.....we burned leaves for 4 days. I used the leaf blower on the flower garden. I think the leaf blower was hard on the plants but it certainly wasn't as hard on the operator. In past years, I removed all the leaves by hand so the plants would not be damaged. However, my back ached until the job was done. When the yard was cleared of leaves, Carl was back on the roof to remove roof moss. Last fall we had several trees that shaded the roof cut down. Shade along with moisture created the perfect environment for moss to grow. Decided to spray the roof with a bleach solution and sweep it with a shop broom to remove the moss. Removed about 80% of the moss. Waiting to see if the sun kills what is left.....it is doesn't Carl will re-treat the roof in August.
Yard work. Carl with the lawnmower after he raked up all the leaves. On the right is a section of my flower garden before hitting it with the leaf blower.
Picked up our mail from Ron and Jackie (8 months). It was fun to open all the Christmas cards. No surprises in the mail......Ron and Jackie have been handling our mail since 2005. They let us know via email if something "unusual" shows up and we deal with it. Started making appointments for annual physicals, teeth cleaning, financial adviser and tax consultant.
Drove to Grand Rapids to help Al and Laurie celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary. Left early so we could look at used cars (need a second car). Stopped at a Toyota dealership in Muskegon (didn't see anything we liked) and at another Toyota dealership in Grand Rapids. Originally looking for a Camry or a Corolla. The dealership in Grand Rapids had a 2007 Honda Accord with a V-6. This car was in excellent shape. Drove it and liked it. Told the salesman we would think about it over the weekend. Left the dealership to drop the boat alternator off for repair then headed to Pam and Brian's place. Pam introduced me to her neighbor, Carol, who sells the jewelry she makes on the internet. Carol has not worked with sea glass so I showed her my pendants and earrings. In return, Carol showed me her jewelry.......she makes a variety of jewelry. I really like what she does with copper. She has a source of copper from around Houghton-Hancock, Michigan. Very nice work. Carol offered to buy a pendant from me.....I said only if it was an exchange for something else.
Pam, Brian, Carl and I drove to the anniversary celebration together. What a wonderful party. Did not count the number of guests but I am guessing around 32. The celebration started with champagne and appetizers. Before dinner, Al and Laurie renewed their vows in a brief but lovely ceremony. Next the feast began: salads, soup, risotto's, pasta dishes, fish and chicken. For dessert....cake and chocolate truffles. Enjoyed the party but ate way too much. Returned to Pam and Brian's for a good night's sleep in the Irish Guest Room. Too tired to watch Saturday Night Live hosted by Mick Jagger so Brian taped it for viewing in the morning. This SNL show has to be the best ever. Thanks Brian.
Photos from the Anniversary Party taken during "Happy Hour".
Photos taken during the Vow Renewal Ceremony. First two are the happy couple. The last two are Laurie's family. Thought it was so sweet that during the ceremony Scott and Rae (Laurie's sister) were holding hands. The last picture is Laurie's Dad, Lee, and Lee's girlfriend.
Between courses, friends and relatives were invited to toast the couple. It was also an opportunity for pictures. The two pictures below show the "friends" that attended both the wedding and the 25th Wedding Anniversary. This was a fun but also emotional party for Al.....had to stop to wipe the tears from his eyes and clean his glasses.
Below...Al, Laurie and daughter, Jamie.
Love the Irish Guest Room at the Pam and Brian McLenithan house. This is where we stay when we visit them. Pretty darn nice.
Monday....the wheeling and dealing on the Honda Accord started. The salesman called to follow up......Carl made an offer. This offer was not accepted. The used sales manager called 10 minutes later with a counteroffer. Carl made a second offer (lower than the counteroffer). Well......no more counteroffers were made and the car sold the following day. Both of us were disappointed. Before going to another dealership......Carl did more research on the various car websites in terms of the models and asking price. Decided to drive to Holland, Michigan to look at Honda Accords. Crown Motors had several used cars on their website. On the way to Holland, stopped at the Honda Dealership in Muskegon.....they had a limited selection and since we had an appointment at Crown Motors we did not stay long in Muskegon. Looking for a good used car is difficult. Because of the poor economy......people are keeping their cars. The selection is limited and the price is high. Our dilemma......what we need (reliable, low mileage) versus what we want (reliable, low mileage and some luxury) versus what is available. Bought a 2011 Honda Accord with leather, moonroof, moderate mileage and certified (hopefully reliable). The "new to us" car is what we wanted.
By the fourth week of May.......most of the cottage work has been completed (still need to wash windows and the garage needs cleaning). So what do we do to occupy our time? Carl has been working on designing and installing an antenna for his single side band (SSB) radio. If you have followied our activity log, you know our SSB died in March. Purchased another SSB and sent the original in for repair. Both SSB radios are now with us in Michigan along with the tuner. So......Carl decided to use the radio this summer. What do I do to stay busy? I, have been working on my sea glass. I washed and sorted the glass I picked up this past cruising season into two categories:glass for crafts and glass for jewelry. Ordered supplies from Fire Mountain. Go to the Pentwater Artisan Center on Tuesdays to meet with other women who make jewelry.
Below is a necklace I made for my Mom's 80th birthday. My first piece of jewelry that is all sterling silver.
Below are Rocking Horses made at the Artisan Center. They will be sold at two different benefits. One benefit is to raise money to dredge the Pentwater Channel. The other benefit it to raise money for the Artisan Center.
Ken and Sharon invited us to their lake home by Ludington the Sunday of Memorial Day weekend. Additional dinner guests: Ed and Leslie, Mike and Jill, and Chris and Paul (all from our neighborhood on Lakeshore Dr). Appetizers: chips and guacamole (I made), smoked salmon, goat cheese with a marina sauce (baked in the wood burning oven), and artichokes (also baked in the wood burning oven). The weather was beautiful but too windy to eat outdoors ......gusting 25-30 knots. Dinner was a chicken dish....one of Leslie's Mother's recipes. Sharon made a risotto with basil and white beans. Did go outdoors for dessert on the deck (still windy). Jill made strawberry shortcake (with real whipped cream). I made a rich and delicious chocolate tart!
Photos from the dinner at Ken and Sharon. First grouping...Hapy Hour. The igloo shaped thing is a wood burning oven. It is on wheels. It was windy so Ken pushed the oven from one end of the deck to the other. No matter where the oven was placed.....the smoke curled around to where people were standing. Oh, the table we stood around is also on wheels to when Ken moved the oven to one end of the deck......the table was moved to the other end.
Attended the annual Pentwater Memorial Day Parade. Love this parade......it never changes. First in the parade is the Pentwater Police Car followed by the Veterans, Pentwater Junior Marching Band and last the Pentwater Senior Band. Everyone moves from the sidewalk to the City Marina grounds for the ceremony .....prayer, speaker, laying of the wreath, gun salute followed by taps. It always brings tears to my eyes.
We have adjusted to life on land. Love using my own washing machine (no quarters required). Groceries are easy to get. Have cable TV but find nothing good in on it (except the History Channel mini-series "The Hatfield and McCoys". Walking the beach several times a week is a substitute for the ocean. I complained about hauling too much stuff from the boat to the cottage.....well this year I forgot several things like my camera's battery charger and Carl's belt.
June 01, 2012