March 31

We are at the Keowee-Toxaway State Park near Sunset, SC tonight. It was a chilly, dreary day, but our campsite (there are only 10 and 2 others are occupied) is very pretty high in the Appalachian Mountains. We saw our first forsythia and daffodils today! Carolina beauty
We've been traveling the rural roads and avoiding big cities and interstates. Today we passed thru Elberton, Georgia which is called the "Granite Capital of the World" producing more granite than anywhere else in the world! We certainly saw a lot just driving thru this very pretty town.
Big range in gas prices today - $1.60 in Georgia and $2.20 in North Carolina.
After settling Daisy, we drove to Lake Toxaway (very exclusive area with gorgeous homes/condos) - had lunch at The Country Cupboard. Started a bonfire back at the campsite. Had a little rain this evening!

March 30

These are some pictures taken yesterday along the way and in George L. Smith II State Park Lilacs are everywhere
Gorgeous colors of azaleas
Vibrant color is everywhere!
The Old Mill Bald Cypress Trees all over the 425 acre lake
A bright orange RV in the park
TALL (60') Georgia pine tree
Spectacular blooms

Hello from Evans, GA (near Augusta)... we are currently hanging out at Panera (Mark had a yummy chocolate concoction while I did some damage at Target.) We had a good trip to the Winfield Campground where we're staying tonight - this is near Appling, GA. More beauty to enjoy along the way with temps in the mid 60's, lots of sunshine and light breeze - perfect spring day!

March 29

Hello from the George L. Smith II State Park near Twin City, Georgia. It was a gorgeous drive today from Yulee, FL and I took bunches of pictures along the way....however, we have very SLOW internet service here in the park, so not able to download the pictures - maybe tomorrow?

Had heavy rain, thunder and lightening our last night in Florida and as we traveled thru Georgia, saw water standing everywhere. Everything was so fresh and GREEN and the azaleas and other flowering trees and bushes were truly spectacular - SPRING has arrived in Georgia!

We stopped in Folkston for breakfast and then had late lunch in Metter (14 miles from this park). "Metter is Better" is the town slogan and today the young folks were out and about tying purple ribbons around trees and all over town promoting cancer awareness. "Paint the Town Purple" is Metter's current campaign. Back at the park, we walked around and enjoyed the tall Georgia pine trees, the many bald cypress trees in the water and the Old Mill House, plus learned the history of the park and that George L. Smith II was a former legislator in Emanuel County who died in office in 1973.

March 28

It's a rainy, stormy night in Yulee, FL where we stayed over another day. Drove to Kingsland , GA and had breakfast at The Waffle House, (Mark needed a waffle fix) then checked out St. Mary's (very historic town with lots of charm). St. Mary's is the gateway to Cumberland Island, a national seashore park with beautiful private beach and lush wilderness (largest and southernmost of Georgia's barrier islands, it is 18 miles long and 3 miles wide). It is intensely private and accessible only by ferry, private boat, or helicopter. This was the site of John F. Kennedy Jr.'s 1996 wedding nuptials. Hope we can visit this another time and spend the day exploring - sounds WONDERFUL!!!!

We did check out the marina and met the local State Farm agent, Kevin and his wife, Janice. And then back to Daisy and cleaned out closets and drawers, transferring things to the car (and getting Toad cleaned out and organized, too). Went to 6:00 Mass at Our Lady Star of the Sea in St. Mary's and the had a wonderful dinner at "Lang's Marina Restaurant" - can't beat GOOD rock shrimp (tastes like lobster), crab, sweet potato fries and hush puppies and that delightful Georgia accent!

March 27

Had a low-key day on Daisy...rained in the afternoon and then we spent a delightful evening with our nephew, Tim and his girlfriend, Nicole. Enjoyed a delicious Thai dinner at Green Papaya in Jacksonville then "experienced" Jacksonville Landing (we and MANY other young people out having a good time on a Friday night listening to a country band concert). This place is full of restaurants and shops on The St. Johns River. Tim and Nicole at The American Cafe where we enjoyed coffee and dessert
This is the huge open area where concert was held - soooo many people!
After strolling along the River on a great brick pathway, we stopped in front of the pretty fountains for this photo....

Because nasty storms are predicted today for Georgia, we are going to stay put another day and will move on tomorrow!

March 26

Started our day with breakfast at the DooWop's Diner and then headed to Amelia Island - good shopping at The Plantation, and then Fernandina Beach. Mark did computer stuff and read. Had lunch at Brett's Waterway Cafe (excellent shrimp salad and Mexican tortilla soup). A famous landmark in the historic district of Fernandina Beach

March 25

We are in Yulee, FL just 1.5 miles from the Florida/Georgia border and 12 miles from Amelia Island and Fernandina Beach. We checked out these areas this afternoon - great shopping and restaurants in a charming setting....going back tomorrow! Had late lunch at the Marina Seafood Restaurant - shrimp/crab burgers (Delish)!

March 24

Happy 3rd Birthday Brady.....our little sweetheart from North Carolina. Grandpa and I enjoyed watching him open his presents this afternoon on the webcam and and then trying (along with his brothers) to assemble his new Thomas the Train bicycle. Brady
We rode our bikes to breakfast this morning with Gary and Linda at Steve's Diner. We are in the same RV park here in Port Orange. Gary and Mark's Dad are coffee shop buddies back home!
Good breakfast spot in Port Orange, Florida.

We did 2 loads of laundry, got a few groceries, walked around the park and just enjoyed the pretty day. Tomorrow....we are "back on the road again"!!!

March 23

We drove to New Smyrna Beach this morning in the rain (a welcome sight)!!! Spent the day with Lou and Mary Ann from back home and enjoyed lunch, driving tour, walk on the beach, and bridge plus lots of chatter! Mary Ann and Lou at the Riverview Grill
The Riverview Hotel and Gift Shop - charming!
This gravesite of Charles Dummett age 16 has been here on Canova Drive since 1860. Charles was hunting with a friend when he tripped and his gun discharged. What makes this unique is that developers chose to leave the gravesite where it was and so Canova Street is split, leaving the grave in the middle of the street.
Canova Drive (split street) with grave in the middle
Mark and Lou walking the beach
Mary Ann with the beautiful hibiscus. The sun came out in the afternoon - it was a delightful day on New Smyrna Beach with these good friends!

March 22

It's a cool, windy day - we drove to Daytona Beach and spent the afternoon with my Aunt Dee. She prepared a shrimp boil with all the trimmings - delicious!!!! We had a great visit and always enjoy the phenomenal view from her 21st floor condo.

Not many spring breakers on the beach!
Pat and Aunt Dee

March 21

We said our good byes to Tom and Deb and certainly appreciate their warm hospitality to Daisy and us these past 2 days. Tom and Deb in front of their home with Daisy parked in her spot!
This is the Craig Cat (out of the water) that we so enjoyed yesterday!

We traveled to Port Orange today stopping in Mount Dora for delicious lunch at The Goblin Market. Got Daisy settled in at the Daytona Beach RV Resort till Wednesday. Walked to 4:00 Mass at Our Lady of Hope (just 4/10 of a mile down the road). It's really cooled off and even rained just a bit this evening - these parts are in dire need of moisture!!!

March 20

Happy First Day of Spring!!! What a busy, sun & fun-filled day here in Crystal River. After breakfast, Tom and Mark launched Tom's "Craig Cat Boat" (had never seen one of these) and Mark and I took off on a 2-hour trip on the Crystal River meandering down the canals checking out the beautiful homes and also the Three Sisters Spring - one of many springs in the area - crystal clear water. Here we come back from our excursion - great fun driving/riding in this Craig Cat Boat. Catrina's new home on her stern
Enjoyed a 5-mile ride on a great bike path along the Cross Florida Greenways - here we are with the Gulf in thebackground (1/2 way mark of our 10-mile round trip.) After a short rest, we are at the Marguerita Grill in Homosassa which is a very patriotic place with American flags and other memorbilia and specializing in margaritas (BIG ones)

Here I am with the resident "Elephant" outside Marguerita Grill
And my delicious margarita (you can see how it compares in size to the mustard)! It was very good and I was not able to finish it all (small, medium, large - this was the medium for $5)

March 19

Today is the big 7th birthday for Davis, our grandson in North Carolina - my how the years fly by!!!! Happy Birthday to our favorite, sweet little red head!!!! Mark and I enjoyed watching Davis open his presents over the webcam. Love this modern technology... Davis We arrived in Crystal River this afternoon. After lunch and a manicure, we settled Daisy on the nice pad on Tom and Deb's (Catrina's owners) driveway. We have full hook-ups for electricity, water and sewer! Here's Deb, Mark and Tom enjoying margaritas on their deck

View of Catrina from Tom and Deb's deck - just feet away from Daisy - what a great location and lovely home.

Tom and Deb at El Ranchito where we all enjoyed some great Mexican fare.

March 18

On a beautiful Wednesday morning, Carolyn and I set out for a girls shopping day in Mount Dora. Before leaving Leesburg, though, we stopped at the Yalaha Bakery.....very quaint with oh-so-many yummy treats! The Yalaha Bakery in Leesburg, FL
Beautiful "bottle-brush" flower outside the bakery
Carolyn admiring a darling rooster teacup and saucer
Carolyn and Pat at the Garden Gate Tea Room in Mount Dora enjoying wonderful lunch.
Mount Dora is a charming little town with cute shops, tea rooms, inns, B & B's, etc.
John and Mark did their "Guy Thing" today???? Checking out the area, boats, our RV park, lunch on the water, etc.
Had some of the best pizza and Greek salad ever at Takis in Leesburg with Carolyn and John. After lots of chatter, we said our good-byes to these dear friends - what a FUN 3 days we've had here in Leesburg. Thanks for a grand time, Carolyn and John!

March 17

Happy St. Patty's Day to all....Mark and I had a fun day with John and Carolyn. We took a boat ride to Hickory Point County Park. There was a flotilla of boats and friends gathering for Irish Stew/Biscuits/Pistachio Cake (all delish).
Captain John at the helm, Milt and Mark
Carolyn, pretty in "GREEN"
Milt, a member of their boat club rode along with usMet some really neat folks - friends of John and Carolyn's and fellow boaters.
Hal, Joyce, Paula, Guerdon, Dick and June Mark and John heading back to the boatMark at the helm on our way back.Carolyn is on the Dragon Boat Race Team and here she is off to practice.

Mark and I went back to Daisy for a short nap and then long bike ride thru the park.
We spent the evening at John and Carolyn's starting with delicious burgers and all the fixings, followed by lots of yakkin' .
This is ship that John built - what a masterpiece!

March 16

A very nice sunny, warm day in Leesburg. I enjoyed some pampering with a haircut and pedicure. We rode bikes around the park (this place is huge and has a nice restaurant, too, operated by 4 women who live here) - good home-cookin' and very reasonable! We had breakfast and lunch at "The Poolside Restaurant"
Tonight we went to a concert presented by the Hawthorne Community Concert Orchestra - it was fabulous and our friend, John all decked out in his tux, played the trombone!!!
John and Carolyn, long-time boating friends
After the concert, several friends of John and Carolyn stopped by their home for delicious strawberry shortcake and lots of chatter.
Bill, Carolyn, Mike, Bob, Betty, Helen, Virginia and John

March 15

Sunday morning rolled around and we are off to 9:00 Mass at "The Catholic Community of St. Paul" in Leesburg. And then to The Villages for another fun day with Patty and Doug. We all had yummy lunch by the pool at the Nancy Lopez Country Club and then Patty and I enjoyed the refreshing water and sunshine
And then it's dinner time and more good eating and visiting at The Bonefish Grill with Tom and Janet, friends who used to live back home...
Doug, Patty, Mark, Pat, Janet, Tom
Patty and Pat enjoying our new Apple iPod Shuffles.
And this very enjoyable day ended with the awesome viewing of the Discovery Space Shuttle seen from Patty and Doug's backyard! Absolutely incredible on a very clear beautiful evening.

We're back on Daisy tonight with happy memories of a great weekend with very special friends!