Saturday, August 20, 2016

Hartland

After hanging out with our cousins at Allegany for a couple of (really fun!) days, we packed up and hit the road pretty early in the morning heading for Hartland.
Hitting the road

We drove through Cleveland, and added that to the list of big cities that we've taken the trailer through. (including NYC, Boston, Charleston, Sacramento, Reno, and Salt Lake City) We even went right past the Quicken Loans Arena, where they had the RNC!


It took us most of the day, but late in the afternoon we pulled into our driveway and set up for a few days. We didn't really take any pictures while we were here, because we didn't do anything really interesting. (Alice saw some friends, my dad checked back in with his boss, we all had eye exams, etc) I had some tests to take for school, which went OK, and it seems like I'll be on track to re-enter the system and be all caught up this fall.

We still have almost two weeks before we need to be back to stay for work and school, so after two days, we packed up and went up to hang out with our friends (that we haven't seen in a year!) up on Saginaw Bay.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Kanakadea County Park

We had a couple of days between hanging out with family, and so we ended up at Kanakadea County Park, outside of Hornell, NY.

The park is on a little lake, so my dad did a bunch of windsurfing while we were here.


My mom wanted to see her parents one last time before we left the area, so we drove over there and had brunch, then we hiked around Grime's Glen. The Glen is a little park in Naples with a trail that goes along a creek with a bunch of waterfalls. (There are some ropes to help you climb up beside the waterfalls, which is pretty fun, but we didn't do that this time.)





We didn't go out at all on the second day, we just hung out and did school stuff, projects, windsurfing, etc.


After three nights at Kanakadea, we packed up and headed west to hang out with cousins for the weekend!

Monday, August 8, 2016

Back at Home - Past and the Present


We've been spending time with all our family after a year away. This week we've been at my parents house relaxing and finding things to do,  ...  or daydreaming

Being at home I was remembering the past a little; finding out how things have changed over time (not so much), where people have gone (many far and wide, some happily close to home, and some candles in the wind), and how fortunate we have been all along.

My parents have always kept this pot of cacti, it has had some close calls I'm sure, but it's kept on growing for maybe 50 years. (not me, that cacti) And this is the first time I've seen them bloom. We got to see them for just the one day they were open. That's fortunate, lucky or whatever to be there at the same time, and that the cacti made it this long in upstate NY. 


The chickens in the picture are fortunate too with the run of the yard, and having hatched three batches of eggs this summer, and entertaining for my parents. The half dozen budding roosters are going to have a day of reckoning in the soup pot before long though, Unfortunately….      

 What does a pot of cacti have to do with anything?   good question, maybe it's some sort of red headed Bob Dylan allegory?
Is this Bob Dylan?
Projects at home are always fun. We boys had fun fixing my dad's spare lawn mower.  In case it was somehow the muffler plugged up, and just for fun, let's run it without the muffler.  Turned out to be the intake pushrod was bent, and the exhaust rocker arm stud had loosened up.

We put a new electric tongue jack on the trailer. Apparently one year of daily use is the limit until the gears strip out.
 
So that's the present Elliot, working on projects. Here's the past, working on projects in the basement, clipping wires! 




In town, we stopped at one of my parents buildings to check on things. I found my initials in corner of the sidewalk, my dad & I did way back in 1989, summer after my freshman year of college.


That summer I took English 101 & 201 at the local community college, (only 3 weeks for each class, can't beat that for getting it done!), worked with my dad on the apartments, and delivered pizzas.

We did some nice bike rides around the area. After driving across the country and back, I realize the Finger Lakes area is prettier than I remember. One day we rode down and along the Keuka east lake road, all downhill or flat until the last 2 miles back up the hill to home.
Another day down across Chubb Hollow, down Sprout Hill near Himrod, and back down Moon Hill Road. Where would you have names like those except back home where you grew up? And each one able to stir up some old memory.



My brother also came to visit for a couple days, so my parents had everyone all together. One day we took a bike ride, where you load up all the bikes and drive them to the ride. We rode the outlet trail from Keuka to Seneca Lake, it's pretty and easy ride, with several historic mill sites along the way. At one point there was a canal with locks to go the whole way and later a railroad.


Seneca Lake at Dresden

Another day we spent at Indian Pines park on the lake, playing all day. Alice and her cousin look like Doublemint twins now, but they have no idea what Doublemint is (or was).
Elliot & cousin, about 2 1/2 years

Elliot's hair is making up now for a slow start, and he may never grow out of swings.
let's EAT !


Indian Pines park at the end of the day.

In summers during gradeschool, we would catch a schoolbus to swimming lessons here. I remember we hung out with a local bad influence kid then (or any number of times later), and the various trouble that we almost (or did) get into, somehow we turned out well enough. 

Congrats Mom & Dad, you did a good job!  (on the cacti and us)  Hope we do as well with your grandkids.


Wednesday, August 3, 2016

It's The Month of Reunions

It's the month of reunions, quite literally. Although this does include some of July. First we got to see the New York Kleins, (My Aunt Kristine, Uncle Glen, and cousins Madeline and Nathan.) At the time, Madeline was in Germany for an exchange program, but it was still really great to see everyone. We got to go disc golfing, most of us are rather bad at it... It was still really fun though. One of the nice things about staying in the camper while visiting people is you have to pack absolutely nothing. And, if things get to loud, or it's getting late, you can go home. Anyway, after seeing the New York Kleins, we headed over to my Yeaple Grandparents.

This is where things get a little crazy. I'm not going to introduce everyone, as that would make a very long blogpost on its own. This year for the reunion, we came in waves. First the Johnstons on Wednesday, us Kleins on Thursday, and the Gunthers on Friday. Including all official Yeaple Clan members, there are twenty of us. So yeah, things are a bit hectic. For the first night, we stayed at the Grandparents, (I was able to sleep inside and get a break from my family, no offence.)  Night Two was the rental cabin, everyone came over for dinner that night. The Gunthers arrived around nine thirty p.m. I have no idea how late I was up, until after 10:30 at least. Some people went to bed after two. Just a typical Yeaple night.

Okay, Day Three. Around noon or so, we all headed over to Aunt Debbie and Uncle Davids house for lunch. Honestly, I'm not sure exactly what we did all day, I went for a swim, spent a lot of time on the trampoline with Gracie, and played a whole of this rather odd dice game. Oh yes, and all the Aunts, my cousin Katherine and I all went to Wegmans. Once again, it was dinner at the cabin. Okay, this time I stayed up late, at least by my standards. A lot of us were up until almost one playing the dice game, I think it's called Liar's Dice?

Day Four. Elliot, my Dad, all the Gunther boys and I went down to the lake to attempt windsurfing. I didn't end up trying, I have really bad balance... Oh well. So yeah, windsurfing, swimming, and a few of them tried paddle-boarding. After that, it was back to the Yeaples for real food. (Deep fried oreos do not count. Those things are terrifying.) We spent some time there, then it was back to the Yeaple Grandparents for dinner.

Allright, so you get the idea. We spent a lot of time just sitting around talking, eating or playing games. Mostly eating. I'm sorry, but there aren't really any pictures for this... But like I said you get the idea.

Monday, August 1, 2016

Back in Paradise

We're back in upstate New York visiting family for a few weeks.  Seems like we never left, or haven't been gone that long at least. 

We stopped at my brother's house first, hung out and had a relaxing time;  Glenn and I banged out that stabilizer jack all straight good as new again, I checked trailer alignment again and rotated the tires,  we all went for a round of frisbee golf down the road, took bike rides in the morning, sat around the fire after dark watching the bats eating bugs.



Next we're spending time with Annie's family for the yearly big reunion. 
  Some of us took the two windsurfers out at Kershaw Park in Canandaigua (we found a second windsurfer for free a couple weeks ago passing by Georgian Bay).
Elliot trying to get into the middle of the picture...
Annie, Elliot and I rode our bikes around Canandaigua Lake again.

 Annie's bike has had some use on it over this year.  I had noticed her back wheel wobbling recently, and halfway around the lake we had a closer look.  It will be needing a new rim, from the brake pads wearing through it.  We replaced the brake pads a few months ago, not soon enough, as the old pads had worn down to the metal, and were cutting into the rim.  Made it around the lake though.


Folding !  Adirondack chairs



Monday, July 25, 2016

Hamilton

We left Killbear and headed south.  We stopped for Internet, and then we picked up another windsufer (for free) off of Kijiji, the Canadian craigslist.  We hung out at a beach in Waubaushene for a bit, then moved over to spend the night at a boondocker outside of Barrie, Ontario.
Sunset at the beach
The next morning, we picked up MORE windsurfer stuff (I think it was a wetsuit) and drove all the way to a boondocker in Hamilton, Ontario.  We ended up going through a bit of the city, which took a while, but was kinda neat to see.

My parents and I took a little bike ride the next morning.  Our hosts mentioned that there was a bike trail a little ways up the road, so we set off to find that.  It's called the "Lafarge 2000 Trail" and it goes up over some really steep drumlins!  It had rained pretty recently, so it was a little buggy, but it was still pretty awesome!  That part of the trail wasn't very long (about 1.5 miles) so we ended up on a road again pretty quickly, but it was fun!



Our previous hosts said that Hamilton has a bunch of waterfalls that you can go see (I think they said 200!) so later that day we set out to go see some.  I don't remember the names of any of the ones we saw, but they were pretty cool, and the hiking was nice.  It sorta reminded me of the hikes we did in Salt Lake City.

The view was pretty awesome here!

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Killbear Provincial Park

We spent our first night in Ontario at a boondocker along the Trans-Canada Highway.  In the morning, we took a bike ride, and then hit the road!  We stopped at the Sudbury Public Library for Internet and lunch, and kept driving.  Eventually, we ended up at Killbear Provincial Park, right on the Georgian Bay.


My parents had stayed here many years ago, and my dad had gone windsurfing, so he was pretty excited.  We got settled in at the campground, and some of us went exploring!  There was a really nice trail along the main road, which was great for hiking and biking.



The campground was pretty near the water, and there was a beach where you could go swimming.  It did get kinda hot some of the days, and the water felt really good.  (It was really cold!)  There are lots of rocks along the shore that you can climb around on, that was fun.  My dad brought the windsurfer down and went out a few times.




The park is on a peninsula, and out on the end there's a little lighthouse that you can walk out to.  It's really pretty around here!




Killbear was really nice, and very pretty, but after a couple of days we were ready to move on, (and get some Internet!) so we packed up and headed south!