Ah, the slacker finally got inspired to write again!  Seriously, time has been jam-packed with activities, pretty much from the moment we arrived in Florida.  My last post was pre-Christmas, so I shall continue from there.

The first few weeks after we moved into our house, we pretty much spent cleaning.  And cleaning.  And cleaning.  I suppose the curse of having worked in the commercial cleaning business for so long is that we are extremely picky about the quality of cleaning.  To say that the previous owners were not even up to the level of experience of the worst franchise owner we worked with is being kind.  In all honesty, I still haven’t gotten everything cleaned to my satisfaction.  However, I just don’t have the stamina to deal with things like scrubbing walls and floors, screens, windows, etc.  We will attempt to tackle that before we close up for our mid-Spring departure.

Along with cleaning, I was getting last-minute Christmas gifts hand-crafted.  Lots of sewing.  I really enjoyed making almost everything we gave away, so I should make it a point to plan a little further in advance this year! 

Christmas Day was relatively quiet, but we did join our friends from the campground for a Christmas afternoon feast.  It was nice to share the meal, as well as be around others who are also missing family members during the holidays.

New Year’s Eve was just another night, except for Tim.  He was scheduled to work at Sea World, and wasn’t able to clock out until 1:30 am.  At least one of us was awake for the clock to strike midnight!

Our big excitement came when Lauren, Josh, and Penny flew down for a visit!  We towed the rig over to Fort Wilderness (the campground at Walt Disney World) for their accommodations.  The benefit of that was that they could take the Magical Express bus from the airport, and then travel all around the parks without having to worry about a car seat for Penny!  Oh, and we got to drive the 20 minutes home and sleep in our own bed!  We had picked up a used stroller through Facebook’s Marketplace, so Penny had a break from walking around quite so much.  We packed so much activity into those 3 full days they were here:  Magic Kingdom on the first day, including meeting Princesses Cinderella and Eleana (while dressed in her own Cinderella gown, courtesy of her Gigi’s sewing machine!) and a character dinner at the Contemporary in the evening, as well as the best fireworks and light show anywhere!  The second day was a trip to Epcot, where Penny got to meet Elsa and Anna.  The look on her face when she met the princesses (especially Elsa) was pure heaven.  To say she was awestruck is an understatement.  She was speechless…….and that does not happen often with her!  We did another character dinner at the Garden Grill in The Land, and between the both meals, we think she absolutely adores Mickey Mouse.  “He” fawned all over her at both locations, and she ate it up!  The third day, Lauren and Josh took a little time to head up to Universal on their own while Gigi and Peep had fun time with Penny.  All told, she got to go swimming in the pool at Fort Wilderness 3 times, and she claims that was the thing she liked best about her trip!  We had rented a golf cart while we were there, so getting around was all kinds of fun for all of us.

After they left for the cold, cruel weather of New England, we towed the rig back to our campground and parked it in the storage area.  We set about cleaning it thoroughly to get ready to list it for sale.    Two weeks later, it was sold and had a new home with a gentleman who had lost his house to Hurricane Michael in Panama City Beach.  It will take anywhere from 2 – 3 years for his new home to be built due to the overwhelming demand on contractors in the Panhandle, so The Beast will make a comfortable home for him in the meantime.

Currently, Mongo (the truck) is actively being courted by 4 different potential buyers.  By next week, we should have a check in hand for that.  Since we are going to need new wheels ASAP, we’ll be picking up a new (to us) car on Friday.  It’s a year old and is coming off lease, so it’s in good condition, and will be just perfect for flat towing (aka 4 wheels down) behind the Class A motorhome when we make that next purchase.  We’re aiming to start looking for that in another month.  For now, we also had a bit of a splurge and bought a used golf cart to putt (ha!) around our development in.  What will be really helpful for me is that I have been wanting to go to the quilting group that meets at our clubhouse every Tuesday, but having to lug my fabric, sewing tools, and sewing machine while walking is a bit much.  So, now I have my own set of wheels, even if I can’t leave the development in it!  But, when we pick up the car, I’ll be the one driving it home.  Me, who hasn’t driven a motor vehicle (Mongo) since December 2017, and a car since June 2017.  Gee, I hope I remember how!!!

We’ve finally been getting out and meeting our neighbors a bit more.  Folks a few doors away on the opposite side of the street invited us for a Super Bowl party.  They’re from Cape Cod, so it’s kind of obvious who our hosts were rooting for!  Another neighbor is from Millville, NJ, so we had a good time talking about New Jersey.  And we finally met our elusive next door neighbors.  Everyone is so nice!  After living in the middle of the woods for so many years, I wasn’t sure I remembered how to people!  J

We have guests expected in the next 2 months as well.  My BFF, maid of honor, and high school cohort, Sue, will be in Florida to visit another friend who had an unfortunate accident, and then Sue will spend a night with us before flying home.  It’ll be nice to have her visit for the first time since we lived in Etna, NH back in the early 90’s.  And………….Tim Jr. and Lucy will be visiting us in March!  Their whole family  spent Christmas in Costa Rica with Katy’s parents, siblings, and niece and nephew, and Abe turned out to be a challenge on the airplane.  So just Tim Jr. and Lucy for this visit.  Given the brutally cold winter they’ve been having in Vermont, I think that a certain little girl will enjoy being in a swimming pool as much as her cousin did!

So, that’s the recap of our reboot.  Plans are made, plans are changed, and life never gets dull.  After feeling like we were living our own version of “Groundhog Day” for 14 years, it’s nice to shake things up.


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