After all the work around the house a day of rest and fun was in order. Finding a day free of threats of thunderstorms, we headed to the Air Base Marina and rented a pontoon boat for a cruise on the inland waters from Fort Walton Beach to Destin with a planned stop at the locally famous island (sand bar) called Crab Island. This place can be quite crazy on weekends, but was relatively quiet on this Tuesday.
It was a bright and warm day with a light breeze. There was plenty to look at along the way including empty barrier islands where you could land and enjoy the quiet, gawking at the multimillion dollar homes on the shoreline and the excitement of the entertainment district of Destin. Also evident was the destruction from several hurricanes in the last few years, with a good number of small vessels still resting where the storm deposited them.
We made it to Crab Island without incident and anchored and enjoyed a pleasant lunch admiring the clear green waters. We even managed to flag down the ice cream boat for a refreshing desert. There were rays, fish and nettles to watch while eating. Heather ventured in the water briefly, but the steady stream of nettles (jelly fish) drifting by made this a short lived adventure.
On the return, Heather handled the controls and navigation and we cranked the engine up to see what it would do. This is a lot different than sailing, but still fun.
Our visit to our daughter Heather and Ryan’s home has been filled with plenty of activity, mainly work and more work on the house and yard. The house was repainted over the course of three days under hot and humid conditions. But before the work could be completed, Anneke and Heather had to decide and more importantly agree on the color. I did the prudent thing and stayed out of the discussion. After two days of discussion, trips to numerous paint stores and test runs a color was finally decided and the work could begin.
Since the house is only one level on a slap foundation, the painting was not that difficult except for the oppressive weather conditions. With some teamwork and regular supervision from Anneke the job was completed without major problems and, I think, in a timely fashion.
Once I recovered from that effort, we tackled some of the larger issues in the yard, including major tree trimming and removal of what turned out to be half a ton of old rotting firewood.
I have decided that I am ready for some R & R before anymore projects.
We spent four nights and the better part of five days in Resaca, GA to visit our daughter –Gretchen and family. Of course, I think we can say without offending anyone that the star of the visit was Aleister, who turned one just a few months ago. He has changed a lot since we seen him last, he was a whole new and even more interesting person. On our last visit, he learned to roll over. Now he is on the verge of walking. I suspect it will be any day now. He moves with agility in the crawl mode and can move around upright with the support of objects as he moves along. He is a happy and bright child, who will no doubt amuse and torment his parents in the coming months and years. That seems only fair. :)
We stayed at the same Bed and Breakfast as we did on or last visit- The Little River country inn and petting farm. This is a very nice place owned by friendly and helpful folks. We again made use of the golf cart provided to guests to tour the farm and enjoy the animals and river views. This time Aleister was old enough to take part in visiting the petting farm. It might be a stretch to say that he enjoyed the visit. Perhaps next time.
It was a great visit and we wish we could spend more time watching his young antics, but we certainly plan to be back. It is a busy time here, with Aleister learning new tricks every day, working parents and the current project of expanding the homestead with a large add on to the house. This project will give them needed room and more spaces for Aleister to explore. If only the contractors will show up once in awhile. They all must take a special course on scheduling and reasons not to show on the agreed dates.
We are off next to visit Heather and Ryan in FL. We miss the motorhome but not the diesel bills.
One of the main reasons that we have spent so much time in Ohio this summer is our unsold house. One of the items that needed to be addressed before the next northern winter is the roof. Ours has nearly reached the end of its useful life and we have spent a considerable amount of time looking for the right contractor and deciding exactly what we wanted. If you count the whole time we have been thinking about this, it has been about five years. Now the time has come. We have found the contractor that we think we can rely on and made the final decision on a possible face lift, as well.
So this past Monday, it began. We decided on streamlining the appearance of the roof and remove the false dormers in the attic. This proved to be more of a task than I expected, as they were very well mounted on the roof. The roof is very steep and the contracting crew had to definitely use the old sailing adage one hand for the ship and one for yourself to stay firmly on the roof. It was very interesting to watch as they proceeded to change the appearance of the house. They completed the work in a timely fashion, in the way we expected and with a pleasing result. What more can you ask.
There were several thoughts that lessened my joy on the completion of this long thought about project. First, how much diesel this project cost could have purchased and the second-well -that old timeline thing-the roof has a longer life expectancy than I do.
With this project complete, we are off on our delayed trip to visit our grandson and family and then head further south to our daughter there.