PopPop Sailing School, Grands and Weddings: June 2018

We received a call that it was most likely going to happen in the next 48 hours! Grand-baby number 8, Zayden Damien Baringer was on his way. So we rented a car, drove it and the jeep both home…and…it didn’t happen.

I seems Zayden wasn’t ready, he had other plans in mind.

So being the resourceful last minute planners that we have become accustomed to being, we loaded up the rental car with two other grands, and headed back to Marineland to bring the sailboat home. Hopefully we would get it back before Zayden came, and with enough time to get her out to Indiantown and tied down before the upcoming wedding of Russ’ brother Steve and his fiancee, Terri.

Graduates of PopPop Sailing School, Austin and Kiera. Honoree acknowledgement for Ruger the pup.

Before we left Marineland, we spent the morning at the Dolphin Adventure and slinging sand at each other on the beach. I blame PopPop!

Marineland Dolphin Adventure June 2018

Playin around.

Marineland Dolphin Adventure June 2018

Austin, Marineland Dolphin Adventure June 2018

Kiera, Marineland Dolphin Adventure June 2018.

Newly opened tourist picture rock. They reopened the original entrance for the 80th Anniversary. Marineland Dolphin Adventure June 2018.

I see it!

New shark exhibit at Marineland Dolphin Adventure June 2018.

Russ, Austin, and Kiera, Marineland Dolphin Adventure June 2018.

Marineland Dolphin Adventure June 2018.

Hey, thanks for coming! Marineland Dolphin Adventure June 2018.

Sand slinging Baringer style at our favorite beach.

Got PopPop good!

Farewell Marineland Beach, we will miss you until next time.

We didn’t have a plan for PopPop Sailing School, it just sort of morphed out of keeping a 12 and 10 year old off of their tablets all day and not whining “are we there yet.” In the end…I think we did a pretty good job…at least they were still smiling when we tied up at the dock!

For several days the tablets stayed charged up…we did relent a bit once the everyday rain kept us down below all afternoon.

PopPop Sailing School starts with knots. I’m sure glad to have extra hands…cause I still do not have all my knots down.

Knot tying 101. PopPop Sailing School.

Austin’s bowline.

Ruger failed knot tying. It might be a thumb problem.

Taking the helm seriously.

Captain Austin.

Captain Kiera.

And there was dinghy training.

Dingy training was an after hours affair.

Kiera practicing her maneuvers.

Austin does a fine job with his sea trial.

Fortunately PopPop Sailing School had lots of breaks.

Scrabble can be won with three letter words.

Cooling off after a long day.

That’s my line.

Oh noooo PopPop!

Was that the best you got?

No grandchildren were injured…but PopPop may feel that for a while.

There was plenty of fishing…just not any edible catches.

Can we catch our own dolphin?

This is bait?

I’m not sure Kiera is cut out for this part. But Ruger is willing to help out.

Biggest catch of the day.

Not bad, Kiera.

In other news.

Small spaces make for big messes. Really Ruger?

Nanny wants to know if we are there yet!

Every day afternoon storms!

But the storms bring beautiful rainbows.

And relaxing sunsets.

Some well earned tablet time.

Whose bunk is this?

And before you know it, its our last sunrise.

ICW sunrise.

Then it was time for the PopPop Sailing School final.

Kiera’s knot final. Check and Pass!

Austin’s knot final. Check and Pass. (He’s twelve…they come with faces like that.)

Yes, it was there was a written test.

Success. Great job PopPop, Austin and Kiera!!!

With the Roosevelt Bridge in view, we are almost back to the dock.

And just in time…because Zayden Damien Baringer decided that this morning, June 8, 2018 he would make his appearance.

So exciting!!! Grand #8

Proud PopPop.

Three Generations of Baringer Boys.

Mom, Dad, big sis Choloe and baby Zay are all doing great.

Welcome Zayden Damien Baringer!

After some baby hugging and holding, we got onto the task of settling No Ka Oi for the hurricane season at Indiantown Marina. She is filled with cat litter and damp rid, stripped of all her sails and canvas…so we are pretty sure everyone can take a deep breath because we won’t be having any hurricanes in that area since we are totally prepared this year.

No Ka Oi’s first trip through the St. Lucie Lock since we have had her. Thanks Captain John for the assist, we couldn’t have done it without you.

Filler up please.

Hauling out at Indiantown Marina.

She’s on the hard for the summer.

All tied down and no where to go!

And finally, and not just finally for us to be ready to go away for the summer….but finally these two FINALLY tied the knot after eight years together. Russ’ brother Steve and Terri had a lovely wedding at Indian Riverside Park on Sunday, June 17th. It was a perfect June day for a wedding! Congratulations Steve and Terri!

Mr. and Mrs. Steve Baringer.

I know this is a long blog, thanks for sitting through the slide show of the grands…I’d do it for you! We have said our goodbyes, given out lots of hugs and kisses, and we are on our way to SOUTH DAKOTA for the summer and fall!!!! Updates and exciting news along the way, stay tuned, and thanks for following along with us.

 

Adventures in Marineland: May/June 2018

Happy Day!

I have two posts to close out our spring trip to St. Augustine and Marineland. The first one will focus on the weeks we were finally able to relax from what seemed to us non-stop busyness since Irma hit last fall.

Marineland is one of those spots for us to relax and unwind. The simple life of walking the beach and kayaking filled our time, and this year…a few extra naps…due to all the rainy weather.

We were blessed with time to visit friends who were passing through, by car (Debbie and Gary), and by boat (Georgette and Gary). Other friends (Pam and Dan) came for a long weekend stay in the marina and we had a great time boating, fishing and tourist-ing the Dolphin Encounter.

Pictures speak louder than words…some sights while walking near the marina.

April Showers bring May flowers

The field was on ablaze with the wildflowers and water was still standing all around from so much rain.

Florida wild flowers

Stop and smell the…weeds, I mean flowers.

Rain, rain, go away. And you can skip another day!

I found these parrots with a little guidance from Brandon, and they sure were noisy.

Make a joyful noise

Good mornings have a beach.

Another storm on its way.

It’s sea turtle nesting season from March to October. This mama had a false crawl, which always makes me a little sad because all those eggs will be dropped out in the ocean.

False crawl.Getting some practice in with the new 600mm lens with a 2x teleconverter.

Getting some practice in with the new 600mm lens with a 2x teleconverter.

Love the birds doing their bird thing along the surf.

Somehow the last time we were here we didn’t go to the Marineland Dolphin Adventure. But we made up for it this time with three trips. This June they were celebrating their 80th anniversary. We had free entrance passes and for ten dollars we turned them into behind the scenes passes, and had a great tour time with our friends Pam and Dan, and Gracie too!

Russ, Dan and Pam from Beufort, SC.

Gracie.

Behind the Scenes Tour:

Marineland Dolphin Adventure. The G is for Georgia Aquarium, who runs the facility.

Behind the scenes, Lion Fish.

You can’t see me.

I’m not an enemy.

Chill.

The underwater viewing area in the behind the scene tour.

The underwater viewing area in the behind the scene tour.

What’s the last thing you hear a redneck say?

Watch this!

More from the top-side.

Oh yeah! Here comes lunch!

 

Me! Me! Pick Me!

How many fish do you have in that there bucket?

Will work for food.

Game on.

Take that!

Hi.

I got this.

I need this for my sailboat.

I just need a little time out.

Bottoms up.

Come cool off with me.

We got a weather window to take a kayaking trip to Princess Place Preserve. These historic grounds are technically in Palm Coast, but just a few creeks away from Marineland by water. We went to the west side of the park and followed creeks keeping to the left and we ended up at this eagles nest. We were not aware it was there ahead of time (here’s more information) Mama and papa were visiting the nest just as we noticed them and then they left, so I didn’t get any pics. But here is juvenile brother. A little research revealed he was not a very nice guy…took out the sibling not too long ago. But that’s the way of the wild.

Juvenile Eagle in nest, Princess Place Preserve.

And a short fly over.

More pics from the kayaking trip.

Nice kayak bud.

You’re interruptin lunch here.

View of the ICW.

We are usually blessed with many beautiful sunsets on our cruising trips, but the weather had a different idea this time. I did manage to catch one or two.

Sun setting on Marineland Marina office and docks.

When there’s no rain, the sunsets are magnificent at Marineland.

Next up will be our trip back to Jensen Beach. Hope you can join us. Thanks for sharing our adventure with us.

Captain Ike, Sailing, and Good Men

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Captain Ike on Vela, May 2014

Our friend Captain Ike passed last night. He won his battle with cancer, he is now home with Jesus and free of pain. We saw him only three weeks ago, as he was heading out with a few sailing buddies for an afternoon on the North Fork.

I looked for Vela (his sailboat) as we drove home across the Roosevelt Bridge. I knew her sails would be up as soon as she exited the harbor. But I wasn’t able to see her from that side of the bridge. I was disappointed.

This how we feel right now, we would like just one more glimpse, but it’s not to be.

He has sailed away to his next port.

We’ve lost others to that port. So have you. We go on, knowing we will be reunited with them again, but the ache in our heart is real.

For many reasons, we will miss Ike.

Russ bought his first car from Ike, a 1969 Chevelle for $300. Ike and Russ’ dad were life-long friends and business partners for many years. Russ has known Ike all his life.

He loved our pups, and never missed an opportunity to come and get some doggy kisses. He had a regular weekly stint with the shelter dogs at the Humane Society.

His love of sailing was contagious. He had a career, he was a barber, and before that a merchant marine. We never heard barber stories though, he loved to share the stories of his sailing travels when he was younger. He loved to hear about where we were going and where we had been on our sailboat – and what we were planning next. He encouraged us to go.  He went sailing any and every afternoon he could, even if it was only for an hour. He daydreamed sailing.

He was a mentor. He tried (unsuccessfully, but not his fault) to teach me (Jennifer) a few knots. I would learn them, and then for lack of use, I’d be back to a fumbled mess of line. He shared insight, ideas and taught us much. He was always available to help us in any way he could.

He made time. Whether we were working on our sailboat, loading, or unloading, he always stopped whatever he was doing to come sit on the dock and talk a spell. He regularly invited us to go out sailing with him, on a better boat.

Vela was immaculate and shined. Ike was meticulous.

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Vela, Biscayne Bay, 2014

A few years ago in 2014, he followed us to Key Biscayne. We had planned a trip to the Bahamas, but the weather that year wasn’t cooperating. We still had jobs and just a few weeks for a trip. A few days into the trip he got sick, it was Memorial Day weekend and we hunkered down in the Marine Stadium in Miami, before making our final jaunt to Elliot Key. I can see him on our port side, sailing through Biscayne Bay, because as soon as he felt just a little better, he wanted to be on the way. Happy all over his face, he enjoyed the trip, but he really wanted to go to the Bahamas one more time. He was almost 80.

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Captain Ike on Vela, Biscayne Bay, 2014

Two years later, while we were cruising in the Bahamas, Ike got his Bahamas trip. His friend John accompanied him for a two week trip. They met us in Green Turtle, he enjoyed cracked conch and conch salad with us one night. Enjoyed walking around the old town and reminiscing about the time he had spent there. As we moved around the islands, we saw them in Marsh Harbor and again in Man-0-War, in between their visit to Hope Town. He still had happy all over his face. He turned 82 that October.

When he returned home after the Bahamas, he received the cancer diagnosis. The doctors really thought it wouldn’t be too long, but Ike was stronger than they thought. He started chemo. He had good days and bad days, and in spite of the chemo, he got out to sail locally. He fought back the cancer for almost two years.

He was a strong man. He was a wise man. He was a kind man.

Last summer, while he was working on a project in his backyard, he told me he didn’t know how long, but he knew he was in Jesus’ hands and that was all he needed to know.

He was a good man. Our hearts are sad, but glad we knew him.

Sail on our friend.

Captain Ike, we love and miss you already.

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Captain Ike, tough as a pirate. February 2017

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Aargh matie, Captain Ike, on Vela, February 2017

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Vela, coming into White Sound, 2016

Spring Forward: St. Augustine 2018.05.01

We arrived in St. Augustine. Six days wasn’t overly ambitious of us, we would have taken longer, but when there’s favorable winds you do what sailors do…sail!

Here are a few pics from the trip, enjoy.

Home is where the eggs are.

 

Salty getting his sea legs.

 

Obedient Pelican.

 

No Ka Oi in the Mosquito Lagoon.

 

Sunset Mosquito Lagoon.

 

Sunrise Mosquito Lagoon

 

Ponce Light, New Smyrna Beach.

 

I’m sure I’ll fit, right here!

 

We have seen many old bridges go and new high rises replace them, but we never saw one torn down before the new one was built. Memorial Bridge, Daytona Beach.

 

Nice Ride! Daytona Beach.

 

Good dog/Bad Dog?

 

Marineland Beach.

 

Marineland Beach.

 

Marineland Beach.

 

ICW sights.

 

Sunrise, St. Augustine Marina Mooring Fields.

 

Our favorite bagel shoppe!

 

Bagel bites for Salty Dog.

It’s going to be a laid back week for us. Thanks for stopping by and sharing our adventure with us!

Spring Forward to Our Next Adventure

Ruger sets sail

I’m not even going to try and fill in the blanks from the last time I posted…last August…from Key West!

That was before a three week trip to North Georgia.

Before we left No Ka Oi tied to a seawall in Marathon, Florida.

Before Hurricane Irma.

When we couldn’t get back to get her out.

When it took forever for us to get back in.

Before we cried our way south through piles of debris and sadness left in the wake of Irma.

We were spared and consider ourselves fortunate. Irma tried to chafe a hole in her belly, but she’s a strong old girl.

We were able to get a patch in place and take her home in early October.

Others were not so fortunate.

Many still deal with the aftermath and will continue for sometime. We are sad and heartbroken for all the loss.

No Ka Oi has had her repairs, a little lipstick and a new coat of paint.

While that was happening, we got busy with the things of life, hurricane clean-up and repairs, sick parents, grandchildren visits, and things we can’t even remember.

The sidetracks are part of the adventure, but not all that exciting for a blog.

But now that we are back out adventuring, No Ka Oi is a happy girl. With the wind in her sail, she is pointed north.

We are St. Augustine bound or maybe waylaid at some place we couldn’t pass up. Hoping for some sunshine and crew restoration.

This is our first adventure with Ruger the pup. He came to his forever home last October via Martin County Humane Society. He ain’t right…but that’s probably good, cause those running his forever home ain’t all there either.

Pepe Le Pew is glad to be back at it, as are Russ and I (and Ruger isn’t sure yet). We sure hope everyone will join us in our newest adventure, and as always we hope you might come out and join us along the way!

Here’s a few pics from today.

High tide. Check.

Roosevelt Bridge

Roosevelt Bridge and railroad bridge up. Check.

Pepe Le Pew. Check.

Ruger. Check.

Ruger working out his chill skills. Check.

Sail up, check.

Always a nicer view from this side of the gate.

All systems checked and ready to go!

We did our first Facebook live video this morning! I’ll figure out how to make them play here. Technology issues at are real at our house. But there is time to figure it all out.

Sunset from Vero Beach City Marina

Welcome Committee

Thanks for sharing our adventure with us!

Georgia 2017_04_01 to 2017_05_31: The Fun People

Fun wouldn’t be the same without all the great friends we have made along the way. Our time in North Georgia was filled with friends and family…what a blessing!

Rick and Jennifer came up to their cabin in Blairsville, the second week in April, and we had a great time with them.

They came over to Cleveland to check out our camp site, and then we took a ride, to Helen, along with some of our Paradise neighbors, Bruce and Teri, and Brian and Lynn. We had a great lunch at the Old Bavarian Inn. I look forward to their Reuben sandwiches any time I can get one.

Reuben Sandwich, Old Bavarian Inn, Helen, Georgia

However, this was not the highlight of our afternoon. It seem that a certain someone forgot the key FOB for his motorcycle. It is possible to start your bike if the key FOB is nearby (say hanging on the hook in the camper) and then one is able to drive far away from their key FOB. It only becomes apparent that one has made such a mistake, when, upon shutting down the bike, they cannot start it up again.

There is another way to start the bike, if a security code has been set up. Everyone was hungry, so over lunch, a security code was searched for in the owners manual, phone calls were made, and Iphones diligently searched. To no Avail.

NASA we have a problem.

I’m not going to name any names, but dessert on this ride was humble pie.

Humble Pie for dessert.

The guys went to retrieve the key FOB, while the ladies did some shopping in Helen.

Feeling a little Jerky?

Fortunately, Helen isn’t that far from Paradise Valley R.V. Resort, so once the key FOB was retreived, we still had time for a great afternoon of riding.

Sunday afternoon ride through the mountains of North Georgia.

Hanging with Rick and Jennifer means relaxing on the porch, enjoying the beautiful mountain view.

Best seats in North Georgia. Rick and Jennifer’s porch

Great riding.

Out riding with Rick and Jennifer.

A picnic lunch at Brasstown Bald.

Hey…we have cell phone service! Can we make it all the way to the top? In these motorcycle boots???

Getting silly after all those curvy roads.

Out for more riding with Rick and Jennifer. Hay, what’s the hold-up?

Rick and Jennifer’s cabin is not only comfy, but it has a beautiful view!

Finally got to see their dogwood tree bloom.

Relaxing sunsets.

Sunset at the cabin.

We also finally finished up the curtains for the man-cave, had many wonderful meals, and Spades! Alas, our week went too quickly…time to retire you two…hurry it up already!

Right after our week with Rick and Jennifer, we headed over to Charlotte, to spend Easter weekend with my brother, his wife and family. We had a great weekend, which included fabulous food, great games, and some hiking to work off the calories. I’m going to group their return visit to us, over Memorial day Weekend, right here. It is so wonderful to get to have more time for family! Time with Bert, and Soher is always full of love and fun.

Easter weekend with Bert and Soher, in Charlotte.

We focused on seeing a few water falls, while Bert and Soher came to visit us. Anna Ruby Falls, Vogel State Park, and Helton Creek Falls, as well as…lots of good food.

Anna Ruby Falls, with Bert and Soher.


Helen, Georgia, with Bert and Soher. Hofers Bakery and Cafe for dinner and some take home desserts.


I have to go back…they are closed! Helen, Georgia, with Bert and Soher.


Relaxing after dinner in Helen, Georgia. Bert and Russ. FUDGE!


Too many Jerky signs in this town! Helen, Georgia, with Bert and Soher.

At trip anywhere near Blairsville, has to include food at Jim’s Smokin Que.

Lunch at Jim’s Smokin Que, with Bert and Soher.

Then onto Vogel State Park and Helton Creek Falls.

Vogel State Park, with Bert and Soher.


Vogel State Park, with Bert and Soher.


Helton Creek Falls, with Bert and Soher.


View from Richard Russell Scenic Highway, with Bert and Soher.

We spent a great day with John and Janet. Of course it started out with a quick lunch at Jim’s, but we took the adventure to Paradise Hill Vineyard, for a bottle of wine and great music on their patio. Then back to our campsite for dinner, which unfortunately did not include a camp fire because of the rain!

John and Janet, at Paradise Hills Vineyard, Blairseville, Georgia.

It’s nice having some retired friends around! Gary and Debbie, whom we met in Marathon a few years ago, when they were sailing Aldeberon, have moved along to Hiawassee, Georgia. They build an adorable little retirement house and we enjoyed our visits. We really enjoyed the building project, because the “pay” was completed with fantastic gourmet meals prepared by Chef Debbie!

Russ and Gary built steps and a deck to connect the driveway to the beautiful front porch.


Completed front porch access deck.

We all know that all work and no play…is just not fun, so we made sure we had lots of time to go out and explore, a few fire-side nights by the creek and plenty of hiking outings were fun for all.

Hiking Brasstown Bald with Gary and Debbie.


Hiking Amicalola Falls, with Gary and Debbie.


Hiking Smithgall Woods State Park, with Gary and Debbie.

We made fast friends with Bruce and Teri. It seems we have lots in common, their winter home is close to our place in Umatilla. They love motorcycle riding. They just love life!

Shortly after they arrived from their winter home in the Villages, they began making preparations for the newest addition to their Paradise homestead. Their caboose arrived with much fanfare and activity. Finally by the end of the day, I spotted them relaxing in their chairs, admiring the caboose!

The Caboose arrives, Bruce and Teri’s new RV! (look how cute they are sitting their at the end of the day)

Out for a beautiful ride.

Riding the mountains in North Georgia, with Bruce and Terri.

These two love-birds do this at the end of every ride!

Love this…they do this at the end of all their rides. Sooo cute!

We are always excited when we get to spend time with our family. Especially our California gang, who don’t get back to this coast as often as I want them too. Fortunately for us, Ray’s younger sister graduated from UF (Go Gators, Yeah Maggie!) We became part of the two week loop they did from Orlando, to South Florida, to Gainseville, to Georgia and then South Carolina! Wow, I’m tired for them.

Nanny is ready for two little grands!

Ready for the Grands!

Good morning Nanny. Is PopPop awake yet?

Monta and Gabby visit Nanny and PopPop.

Out for our first Hike, at Dukes Creek Falls, located on Richard Russell Scenic Highway.

Jennette, Ray, Monta and Gabby at Dukes Creek Falls


Hiking Dukes Creek Falls with Jennette, Ray, Monta and Gabby.


Hiking Dukes Creek Falls, with Jennette, Ray, Monta and Gabby


PopPop has hiking buddies. Hiking Dukes Creek Falls, with Jennette, Ray, Monta and Gabby


Hiking Dukes Creek Falls, with Jennette, Ray, Monta and Gabby

There is never a dull moment with this guy!

Nanny, I stacked the shoes by the door like you asked.


Extra shoes make Nanny’s heart happy.

Time for bed! Deep sigh, Nanny is tired!

Sleeping in Nanny and PopPops camper with Thomas is the best.

Day two, more hiking, at Smithgall Woods State Park, with fun in the creek!

Hiking Smithgall Woods State Park with Jennette, Ray, Monta and Gabby.


Having fun in the creek, under the covered bridge at Smithgall Woods State Park, with Jennette, Ray, Monta and Gabby.

We made the best of a couple of rainy days. Babyland was a big hit, with an afternoon trip to Dahlonega. The Cleveland library had lots of games that were PhD approved by Dr. Daddy! I’m not sure I ever truly appreciated an inside playground this much! Thank you Chick-fil-A.

A rainy day was meant to be spent at Babyland and holding newborn Cabbage Patch Dolls.


Babyland, taking care of the Cabbage Patch Babies. I think she will fit, I can make her fit!

An afternoon trip to Dahlonega, with a stop at the Cottage Vineyard and Winery.

Lunch at Zaxby’s ana an afternoon in Dahlonega. PopPop, stick to the story line!


Rainy days and Libraries with PhD approved games, and Chick-fil-A! Thanks for the indoor playground!


Then just like that it was time for them to leave!


Time for Nanny to cry!

PopPop says don’t worry, I won’t let her cry for long!

No crying aloud!

We loved our Georgia Mountain spring visit. Of course we have moved along and there are more adventures to come.

Thanks for following along with us.

Georgia 2017_04_01 to 2017_05_31: The Fun Stuff

 

We are worse than glampers (glamorous campers,) we tend to take everything, including the kitchen sink with us. It’s how we roll. We made reservations for the the months of April and May at an RV park in the Georgia Mountains. We didn’t really know what we would do while we were there, so we brought plenty…just so we didn’t run out of things to do!

When all was said and done…the kayaks were the only toys we brought and didn’t use. Not bad for a two month stay. (But, in our defense…the water is very cold in April and May…Florida people just didn’t know!)

I’m busting this up into two blogs because there are a lot of pictures of all the fun things we did and all the fun people we did them with. This is the fun stuff Blog.

We made a two day trip on our way to Cleveland, Georgia. We stayed one night at O’leno State Park, in High Springs, Florida (just Northwest of Gainesville.) I love this park. It is full of CCC (Civilian Conservation Corps) hard workmanship that is still in place since the 1930’s. It was one of the first nine parks in the Florida State Park system. The trails along the Santa Fe River are quiet and relaxing. We only had a night, but my evening hike was filled with birds, fish, squirrels and a snake! It was a great way to stretch my legs after a long day of driving.

We took the long way…Yeah the turnpike was shorter…Do you know how much that many axles cost???

CCC Workmanship from the 1930’s is still awesome to look at.

O’Leno State Park. CCC built the suspension bridge. Beautiful hiking along the Santa Fe River, and (bottom right) the view from our campsite.

We did one night at Casa Walmart, so we could get on our site in Paradise Valley RV Resort, first thing in the morning. Our creek side lot was beautiful. The Park itself is very friendly, quiet, and offered a variety of activities.

Our arrival the first of April allowed us to watch spring happen in full force, something these Florida people don’t see at home. Cleveland is located only 15 minutes from Helen,  offers stunning rides across the mountain (on 129 or the Richard Russell Scenic Highway,) to Blairsville and Blue Ridge, and is about 45 minutes to Hiawassee and the North Carolina State line. It was just the right home-base for our two month stay.

Everything and the kitchen sink. Glamping, at Paradise RV Resort, Cleveland, Georgia

Our first week was full of rain and cool, well actually, down-right cold for us Florida people! But we survived and took the time to have some much needed rest.

April showers bring May Flowers! Might as well take a nap Pepe!

Time lapse of our back window view. April 1st through May 28th.

We were excited when the rain stopped and we could get out and explore. After a little off-road exploring…we decided to work on my mountain skills on paved roads for a while!

Riding the Enduros to Blairsville. I’m not sure I can do these curvy mountain roads!!!

Just another riding day! Out on the Harley and a picnic lunch overlooking the waterfall at Vogel State Park.

These are some of the views on a ride to Helen, and a loop around to 129, back to Cleveland.

Roads and Rivers…along the way to Helen, Georgia.

We definitely used the Jeep on this adventure…the truck would have done fine, but…it’s a Jeep!

Dick’s Creek Falls while we were out for some off-road jeep riding.

Another Jeep adventure through Raven’s Cliff Forest Road. There was a beautiful meadow right beyond the road closed sign.

Smithgall Woods State Park was just around the corner from us. We had many great hikes and on this trip we decided to ride our bicycles. Do you want a leg work-out…yeah…forget the spin class! We even saw a bear, making his way through the woods.

Smithgall Woods State Park. We made it to the other side of the park!

Actually, the video is hilarious…I’m almost convinced to go with a paid WordPress site just so I can show you Russ getting his feet wet. He said it wasn’t deep…he was wrong!

What’s the last thing you hear a red-neck say…”Watch this!” Smithgall Woods State Park.

We parked the bicycles and headed out on the Cathy Ellis trail. It was a fairly easy hike back to the Chunanee waterfall. The problem with Smithgall Woods, is getting from the parking area to the great hiking areas. We still have several trails, like the gold mine trail, to go back and visit.

Cathy Ellis Trail to Chunanee Falls. Smithgall Woods State Park.

Russ decided we needed to check out some property for sale near Clayton…and we hadn’t checked the area out…so off we went for another day of fantastic riding and views!

Harley ride to Clayton, Georgia.

I was blessed with a new camera for Mother’s Day. I will have to change my name from Nanny Click Click to Nanny Click Click Click Click…..

Mother’s day 2017. New Camera (from Russ) and professional strap (from Josiah and Jennette.)

One thing this area of Georgia is not short on is fantastic waterfalls. We saw as many as we could and still have many more to see.

Amicalola Falls, Dawsonville, Georgia.

Amicalola Falls, Dawsonville, Georgia.

Back out of the Enduros to check out Unicoi State Park. Looks like a great place to camp, with three different areas, and just a short ride to Anna Ruby Falls.

A quick ride on the enduros, up to Unicoi State Park, just outside of Helen.

Dahlonega is a cute little town, with something happening all the time. We drove over several times to stroll through the antique shops and we had a grand time at the Art, Wine, and Jazz Festival.

Dahlonega Art, Wine and Jazz Festival.

Helton Creek Falls are located between 129 and the Richard Russell Scenic Highway. We actually found out about the other access point from a young couple in a little car, who asked if there was another way out, without having to ford two creeks! Yep…Jeep time! Creeks are on the Richard Russell entrance side. And so are the geese!

Helton Creek Falls, between 129 and Richard Russell Scenic Highway.

Our weekly trip to Jim’s. Mmmm!

Jim’s Smokin Que. Blairsville, Georgia.

The ladies at Paradise get together on Thursday mornings and do a little quilting. I was blessed with great instruction from our leader, Anne Raptis. This is my little table runner, not bad for my first quilting project.

My little quilt project at Paradise.

Also sewed a nice vest for Pepe Le Pew.

Mom made me wear this ridiculous contraptions. She said she could contain me.

She was wrong!

Early April view, before the leaves filled in.

Things you see in North Georgia.

Where’s the House?

We had so much fun on our trip to North Georgia. There is so much to do, the scenery is absolutely fabulous, and we will be back!

Creek-side, Fire-pit and a table for your drink. What else do you need?

As always, thanks for following along with our adventure. I’ll post all the picks with all the wonderful people we met and hung out with on our trip to North Georgia next!