Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Can You Hear Us Now?

We feel the need to explain our lack of posting lately.  Our link to the Internet is usually through Verizon.  Verizon’s coverage in Duluth is fine, as it is in the Iron Range of northern Minnesota.  Our cabin on the Whiteface Reservoir is halfway between these areas, about 15 miles from one cell tower and 20 miles from another, so Verizon is practically non-existent there.  We keep another cell phone with ATT for phone calls but that doesn’t work for blogging and internet activities.  We put up this limited connectivity because of views like this

We have kept busy, however.  Through the middle of August, we had 3 granddaughters with us for a week.  Paige had scheduled a couple of activities in Duluth, but the girls really enjoyed just hanging out in the lake and picnicking.

We have been slipping into Duluth once in awhile to help Paige’s mother and her return to normal activities at her house.  There we can get on-line to check emails, do banking, and usual 21st century stuff, but then we go back off-line at the lake.  As we resume our travels soon, we will return to posting messages here on the blog more often.

Here is a rough schedule for the rest of our year:
-         early this week in Twin Cities for Dr/Dentist/family/MN State Fair activities
-         remainder of the week and Labor Day weekend will be back to the lake
-         after Labor Day we will have a week in Wisconsin with friends
-         2 slow weeks traveling across UP and Lower peninsulas of Michigan
-         a week with the Nomads at the Annual Meeting
-         4 weeks of wandering NY, PA, WVa
-         3 weeks working a project in eastern TN
-         a week for traveling (coastal SC and GA) into eastern Florida (Thanksgiving)
-         another 3 week project, leading a small group at a church near the coast
-         2 weeks off before the end of the year

Our holiday plans are up in the air right now but we will have lots of time to define them.

Until we get back on the road, think of us soaking up the views like the photo above.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Taking Time to Catch Up

After our project at Camp Kingswood finished, about 10 days ago, we retuned to the cabin on Whiteface Reservoir to complete some personal projects with the wood trim on the porch and the millwork around last year’s new windows.  We mentioned some other cleanup we knew was needed after a wind storm that blew through when we were gone.  We only lost one complete tree and numerous branches, but nothing fell where any damage was done.  At the end of the penninsula and on the western side, it was a different story.  Many trees were down and blocking the road right after the storm.  The road was soon cleared so our neighbors could get in and out once again.  There is one area on the western side where the land has been in trust and managed by the state DNR.  They felt that the big winds and resulting blowdown meant that now was the time to harvest some of this timber.  Here is what the area looks like now:

We also got caught up with our neighbors to the south.  The cabin next door has been in the same family for over 50 years, and 5 siblings, their spouses, and children share in its maintenance and use.  One of the daughters, Nancy, and her husband, Russ, usually come up here this time of year, and last week was their week.  It’s always fun to catch up with them on what’s going on.
Bob’s family had a quick get-together on Sunday; all of his siblings and cousins, 14 of the 16 anyway, plus 2 Aunts and one Uncle, and a few of the next 2 generations as well.  Quite a turnout.  Thanks to Marion and Deb for planning and scheduling this gathering.  It was all too short, and infrequent.  We will have to do it again sometime.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Time’s Up

Our third week at Camp Kingswood has been completed and our group has scattered, to meet again sometime/someplace.  Becky returned to Iowa earlier this week, Kitty and John left Friday to see family in Illinois for awhile (after doing their 60th project!), we left for the cabin Saturday morning, Cindy was planning to leave for Pennsylvania later in the day, while Dan and Joy have a service appointment for Monday so they are staying for the weekend (enjoying the lake and the quiet).  One of the bright spots of doing Nomads projects is meeting many new people and this project, again, succeeded.  We had worked with John and Kitty in Buckeye, AZ last January, but the others were all new to us.

Our social activities this past week included a lunch cruise of Lake Minnetonka, a group dinner at Pizza Ranch, and an evening of theater at “Church Basement Ladies”. Thursday afternoon our Nomads group left the camp to join a group from the local church to put in a shift at Feed My Starving Children. We packed almost 2,000 meals that afternoon.

Brett and Jen have their 12th anniversary this weekend, so we brought their girls home with us for an overnighter on Friday night. David and Valentina came out to have dinner with us as well. The girls enjoyed swimming in the lake. We had a barbecue supper and a campfire. 
We brought the girls home Saturday afternoon (after a stop at Home Depot to make small bulletin boards), and returned to the cabin north of Duluth. 

We have a lot of storm cleanup and lawn mowing to do, as well as finishing some trim that we had started a month ago.