Friday, February 20, 2015

We're Grandparents!

Kelly and Jon gave us a call early Sunday morning that they were headed to the hospital.  We got there about 8:30 AM and baby Brooks was delivered at 11:33 AM!!  It's hard to explain all the emotions of having our first grand baby.

We never had any inclination that this would be an other than 'ordinary' delivery.  But there were still the normal concerns about this life changing event.  We just tried to hang out in the waiting room and we got periodic updates from Jon.  Then he sent us this text:
Brooks is born!
Not sure how long it will take for him to join the ranks of the bearded ones (like his dad) so they helped him a long with a matching hat and beard combo.  

Then a few minutes later presented a picture of him clean shaven:
After a while, when things calmed down some, we went to see Kelly and Jon and hear all about it.  I noticed how good Kelly looked.  It was no easy task, but she came through having a baby with flying colors!

Brooks had a brief stay in the NICU to assess/monitor his breathing, and later the next day he joined Jon and Kelly in their room.  (He is doing great a home now.)  But back to our story --

The hospital was really great and Pam and I were very impressed.  They have so much more technology to monitor things and record stuff.  I am still amazed at the electronic records.  No more charts hanging on the door for nurses to update.

They let us in to see him pretty quickly and in no time we got to enjoy the little guy.
And we have been enjoying him for the past few days.

I was hoping to upload a few more pictures but am using Picasa 3 and it doesn't want to let me import them from my iPhone.  Anyone else have Picasa 3 issues?  Instead of waiting longer to figure all that out, here's a two more pictures that I was able to grab.

Latest photo while at the doctor office today:

And then his latest award:
He's already an over-achiever!

That's all for this edition of the Roadrunner Chronicles.  Thanks for joining us.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Hiking the First Landing State Park

We've been here in Virginia Beach for the last couple of months and have had a new routine to say the least.  Sadly, I have not exercised much.  Although I have done a lot more reading and we have been involved with some projects around the Roadrunner, at Kelly and Jon's, Adam and Melissa's and at the local Habitat for Humanity.

On Saturday we changed things up a bit and went to the First Landing State Park for a hike.  The State Park is about five miles from the campground.  In a word - it was fantastic!
It was a very cold but a very clear and beautiful day.  We picked out a short trail and started off on the Bald Cypress Trail.



It was stunningly beautiful and we realize how much we miss our hiking.

Its been a few months since the last one.

We didn't want to overdue it so we settled on the short hike this time and vowed to take some more trails another day.
Thanks for joining us to day on the Roadrunner Chronicles!

Monday, February 2, 2015

Organizing with Stackers and Hangers

I'm always looking for new and better ways to organize and I found two things I wanted to show you. Maybe you'll find them helpful.

A few months back I was removing the numbers off the front of Kelly and Jon's house so I could paint the trim.  After painting I was putting them back in place and I took my organizing nuts and bolts tray over to the ladder so I could find the right size nails.  After putting up 2 of the 4 numbers, I knocked the plastic tray of nuts, bolts, nails, etc off the ladder.

It was still usable with some mends with duct tape, but I started looking for a replacement set.  After checking out the usual places like Home Depot, Lowes, Sears and Harbor Freight I decided on this:
These stacking trays are the greatest!  I love how they fit on top of each other and therefore don't slide around.
Next, I like the interlocking capability.  The orange slides on the sides made them lock together and in our case, we have for so they all four lock together.  I can carry 2 or 3 or 4 as one unit which is handy.


It also has a better front orange tab that locks the individual tray.

And they sit well in the corner of the basement bay tray.

Another project was getting shoes off the floor in Pam's side of the closet and in a place where they wouldn't fall off their perch.
She would store them in clothe/cardboard box organizers and when we moved the coach, they would spill forward and scatter.
Not good.  Her idea was to get a cloth shoe bag where she could hang them up in pockets onto the back of the closet.

We hunted a couple of months before she found what she was looking for:

It happened to be the only one left so we got the floor model for $2.50.  A great deal.
Others we had seen were $15 - $50. So we were glad for getting that one.

I measure the where the holes were to hang it on a couple of nails.  But I then decided to put large pieces of velcro across the back and down each side.
The finished shoe holder is holding up and working well.
That's two of the latest ideas we have used to organize nuts and bolts and Pam's shoe in the Roadrunner.

Thanks for stopping by today on the Roadrunner Chronicles!  We always appreciate it.  And when you leave comments.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Weekend Projects

As you may know, we love to do projects around the house.  At least those around someone else's house.  We got the chance to do that over a couple of weekends when we visited Adam and Melissa in Fairfax.

Their townhouse needs some things done that make it more and more 'theirs'.  One thing they did after they moved in was pull up all the carpet and expose the beautiful wood floors.  They also had some wall paper they wanted to remove.  Pam and Adam jumped on that project.  The wallpaper wasn't your standard paper type.  It was something else that was raised, had some designs in it and was the color that made it look a little like metal.
Fearless Pam took a look and treated it like regular wall paper.  She got a plastic putty knife, a water spray bottle and away she went.  The first layer came off pretty well but the adhesive was still on the wall.  The goal here was to take it down to the bare wall and not damage the sheet rock.
After a couple of hours of elbow grease with some TLC, Adam and Pam got it all off.

They let it dry a day or so, then Pam put two coats of paint on it and it looks just like the other walls.
You can see the paint line and the difference from the painted to unpainted.
While that was going on, I was downstairs in basement/laundry room/work shop area. We talked it over and decided to put in a small L-shaped work bench in the corner.

We measured things out and decided we could come up with a surface area of 2' deep, 6' across the back and 4' down the side.  With a shelf using the same dimensions, it only took 1 sheet of plywood 3/4' thick.  We also got some 2" x 2"s for support/legs and 1" x 2" for trim.
Then we secured a 2"x 2" across the back and side 30" from the ground and we were on our way.  We got the sheet of plywood cut to the right size at Home Depot before we left the store.
We went slowly and tried to fit the shelves and posts in place before we secured them.  Then it was fairly steady going and a couple of hours later, we had a workbench!
We love doing these things and enjoyed our time with Adam and Melissa.  More projects to follow...

Thanks for joining us on the Roadrunner Chronicles today!



Saturday, January 24, 2015

Friendly Weekend and Week

We made the three hour drive again this past weekend north to Fairfax Virginia again to see son Adam and fiancee Melissa.  We packed lunches and ate along the way after getting on the road a little after 9:00 AM.
It was a bright and beautiful day and the traffic wasn't too bad along I-95.  It was busy, but then I-95 is usually always busy! We filled up in Fredericksburg about 1/2 there and stopped in to see old friends Jeff and Tiffany in Fairfax Station.

We had a nice visit with them and got to see some upgrades they had made on their finished basement / den area.  Tiffany picked some nice colors, did a lot of painting and moved some things around which turned out really well.

Next we went over to the Chantilly RV show that was last Fri/Sat/Sun.  We wandered around a little bit and didn't stay too long.  This year's event was held in one Expo Center building.  10 years ago (or more) when we first started going to these) the show was help in two Dulles Expo Center buildings
but one of them is now a WalMart.  So there were not as many displays and RVs as we have seen in the past.

After a short stop there, we went Adam and Melissa's place and started to work on some projects.

Quite a while back, I got an email from a reader in Maryland who indicated they too were looking at the RV full time lifestyle.  He (Dave) and wife Pattie were looking to hit the road in the summer time after selling their home and getting things in order.

Over the past few weeks we have continued to correspond and they indicated they were going to be at the Chantilly RV show this past weekend.  I left Adam and Pam to work on his place while I met them for lunch in Chantilly.
It was great to meet them and to hear their story and think again what it what it was like to be in the preparation mode.  It really is an exciting time with lots to do and plan for.  They couldn't be nicer folks and we have a lot in common.  Including a 2007 Tiffin Allegro Bus.  They got theirs last fall and have it in their driveway until they hit the road.

Dave just started an RV blog which can be found here: Keepingupwiththejonesrv.blogspot.com
Stop by and say 'hi' - I am sure they'd appreciate it!

We spent all day Saturday and Sunday working on Adam and Melissa's place and built a workbench and pulled down some wallpaper and painted.  And built some shelves in the closet and hung some blinds.  It was productive and we love doing that kind of stuff.

We drove back down to Virginia Beach and got started before noon.  We again stopped in Fredericksburg for gas and then went over to Burger King for lunch.  To our surprise Roger and Phylis were finishing up.  We first knew them 20+ years ago in Fairfax.  There kids and ours were about the same age.

Roger and Phylis relocated to Fredericksburg about 8 years ago.  He is now retired and she is a school teacher and doing some great things with a kids after-school program.
It was great to run into them.

We got back to the Roadrunner and all was well so we were glad about that after being gone for a few days.

Later in the week, we ran some errands and ended up in Costco around lunch time.  We went with the 'lot of food for $4.00' menu and got a slice of pizza, hot dog and a coke.  While eating there the older lady next to us made a comment and we didn't think much about it.

After we finished, I said something to her and we got to talking.  She was the sweetest lady!  Her name was Mary Lou (for Mary Louise) and she is 80 years old.  She grew up in Virginia Beach and is a life long resident.  She was there at Costco because 'it is good for her to get out and have some social contact'.  ? What?  She said her husband drops her off there and she sits in the Costco food court area and watches people and talks to some and gets some 'social contact'.

She told us about her Portuguese and Irish background and how the family ended up in Virginia Beach.  She doesn't get out much since she fell and broke her hip.  She now uses a can and forces herself to do this and meet people.

It was a highlight of my day!  Pam and talked with her for about 20 minutes and then picked up a few things.  We circled back by the food court to see if Mary Lou was still there, but she had left by the time we got back.  I think every time we are in Costco, we'll be looking to see if Mary Lou is there.

And then yesterday Pam and I went to our favorite restaurant in Virginia Beach:  Nick's Raw Bar and Grill
It is owned by a friend of Jon's boss and has been around over 30 years.  They have good food, a friendly atmosphere and good prices.  I think I've been to it 5 times already in the 6 weeks we've been here.  And I'm sure we'll be eating again there soon.  On Friday Pam and I met Jon for lunch and met one of the waitresses - Chookie "like Cookie with an 'h'".  She's probably been there 25 years and was telling us about the ceiling tile.

When a customer wants to paint one up, they can have a blank one and then when they bring it back they replace a blank white one with the painted one.  A unique local touch!
And it was nice meeting another friend - Chookie.

In fact, where would we be without our friends?  Our old friends and meeting new ones?  I love it when I meet new people and see old friends.  And the last week has been one of those!

That's all for this edition of the Roadrunner Chronicles!~ Thanks for joining us!