Come along for the Ride!

I am so glad you are here. Stay with us as we travel everywhere. I hope you will enjoy the ride.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Well Not Quite Normal

Pops did drive out his time and he did fine. It seems like we are going to be ok now. We made our delivery and it went well and then we drove a few miles to a rest area to wait for our next load.
Pops tried to lay down and get some sleep. I worked on addressing and writing some post cards that I needed to get caught up on.
We waited for a load opportunity and one or two came but they weren't what we were looking for. Finally an offer came that was going to Texas. I accepted the load and we got it. It wasn't picking up until tomorrow in Carlisle, PA so we drove closer to pickup and stayed at a truckstop.
While we were there I got all of our laundry caught up. We relaxed the evening in the truck and it was calm and peaceful. I have our Christmas lights up so it had a nice, warm glow. I was loving the peacefulness.
The next morning we drove over to our pickup and we were a few minutes early and another truck was in the dock where we were supossed to be. Eventually the guard came out and asked that truck to move so we could get in and then we were loaded.
It was a very high security load so after we were loaded we pulled up to the guard and he put a seal on our truck. Now we were ready to go except that the truck didn't want to go into gear. We tried and tried and it would not go into gear.
We called our owner and he suggested unhooking all the batteries and letting the computer reset. We did that and started the truck and then it went right into gear.
Now since this load was such high security we weren't allowed to stop until we had driven over 200 miles away from the shipper. So after about 4 hours of driving I was ready to stop for a restroom.
I pulled into a rest area near Roanoke, VA and went in the bathroom and took the dogs out and we got a bite to eat. But when I tried to go again it would not go into gear again.
I woke Pops up and told him that it was doing it again. So he got up and dressed and went outside to unhook the batteries again. This time it didn't work. We tried it several times.
Our owner called the repair service and when they came and looked it over they informed us that our truck would have to be towed in for repair.
Well the tow truck couldn't come until the next morning. Our company was very anxious about this load and they kept calling us . We really did not and could not afford to lose this load but it looked like we were going to.
Then Fedex decided that we were going to transfer the load to another truck. The tow truck came and hooked us up and then towed us to a Fedex Freight facility. We were unloaded and then watched as the other truck drove away with our good Texas load. Then we were towed to a repair place in Roanoke.
We waited around there all day waiting for someone to come look at our truck. We were told to take the dogs and go to the drivers lounge to wait. When we went in there it was packed with other drivers also waiting.
The dogs were nervous and too excited and would not settle down so I took them outside and saw that no one had done anything yet with our trick so I went and got in it. I figured I would stay there until they pulled it intoo the garage. I called  Pops and told him what I was doing.
After an hour or so he came out too. We were there clear until late evening and no one had come to get our truck.
Our owner told us to go to a hotel because we weren't allowed to stay on that property all night. So a hotel shuttle came and picked us up and took us to Days Inn.
As soon as we got to the front desk and was checking in Chucky peed on the floor. I guess he had enough excitement for a while. He just could not make sense of everything that was going on. Well, neither could I. So I cleaned up his mess and we were given a pet friendly room.
The pet friendly room smelled like dog.
Oh well, it was warm and had a big, big bed and a tv and a shower.
So we got showered ordered a pizza and settled in. Well, we did, but the dogs didn't settle. They paced and paced and just would not calm down. Life had been upsetting for them too for the past several weeks.
Around 10:30 I took them outside one more time and then when we came back in and Pops and I got into bed the dogs seemed to sense that it was ok and they settled. Everyone slept pretty well that night.
The next morning was Friday and when we turned the tv on we heard the awful news about the children of Sandy Hook Elementary being shot. Although at first they weren't reporting just how awful it really was. But as the day went on and on we saw just how bad it was.
There are just no words for something like this.
We found out that our truck still hadn't been looked at. But the manager promised that he would "try to have it in this afternoon." What? Are we supposed to go over there and sit in the crowded drivers lounge and hope that they get to our truck?
Pops talked to our owner and we decided to stay in the hotel for another night. We would just wait in the hotel room until our truck was finished.
We got a call around 3 o'clock that it was done. It turned out to be a fairly quick, not too expensive fix. So Pops had the hotel shuttle take him over to get the truck. He brought the truck over to the hotel and parked it near our room.
Around 10 o'clock I went out and started the truck and made some good coffee. The dogs wondered around te grass while I left the truck run for awhile.
Then we went back to the room.
The next morning we had hotel breakfast, showered and checked out. When we got into the truck, it wouldn't start. It seemed the batteries were run down. We have never had this kind of problem before so something must have run down the batteries.
We were having some issues with our refrigerator not working right so maybe it was that. And sure enough the refrigerator wasn't working at all. All of our food was warm. So I threw it away. This was the second time I threw away all our food.
Once we had the truck going again (a repair service had to be called), we then drove over a truckstop to stay. We spent the night there and the next morning we went shopping for a refrigerator.
We shopped and shopped and could not find one that was the right size for the hole that it needed to fit into. I never dreamed that it would take all day to find one. We finally settled on a smaller one just to get by with.
I'll tell you it was getting easy to give in to frustration and defeat. Pops and I and the dogs too were ready to go home. We just need some things to go right for a change.
A good friend of ours sent me a real encouraging email and a sermon outline. It was just the right medicine. Pops and I used that outline as our Sunday lesson and it helped inflate our spirits.
I sure wish that we could have heard him preach this sermon, but it helped us anyway. Thanks, you know who you are.
On Monday we got a load that was picking up in Richmond, VA and going to Minneapolis. We accepted and got the load. Once we accepted that load we were bombarded with load offers that were either going to California or Las Vegas. Our company really needed these loads to go badly. But Christmas Eve is only 1 week away and that is when my family is getting together. I would have liked to take some of those loads but we know better than anyone that there are no guarantees that everything is going to work out right. And if one thing fell out of place we wouldn't get home on time. So we kept declining those loads.
We made our delivery in Minneapolis. We were right at the Mall of America in Minneapolis. We didn't go in though because it looked really crowded and really to me a mall is a mall. They all have the same stores and we didn't really feel like all that walking.
So we drove over to a favorite truckstop and now we are waiting on a load.
I sure hope that we get lined up to get home on time. I really am discouraged. I know Pops just wants to try and feel "normal" again.
I want to get home, spend some time with my family, get him to the doctor, then get back on the road and back to whatever kind of "normal" we will have.
I need normal!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Back to Normal

I drove us back to the Pilot Truckstop that we were at on Thursday before we went to the hospital. We found a good parking spot. It was pouring down rain.
We got Pops as comfortable as we could and then I swept the floors and tried to clean up a little bit.
I got him something to eat later and then we just relaxed for the evening. I wanted to go wash some more clothes, but because of the rain I thought I should probably wait and do them later.
But as the evening went on, I began to feel really antsy and nervous. And before too long it was turning into full fledged anxiety. I started to get really worried.
I realized that I was really wondering what normal was going to belike now. I was worried about Pops and what he might not be able to do now with the catheter attached. I told him my fears and I think that I even had some tears. We sat down and had a good long talk. We decided that it was going to be ok. And whatever we had to face we would face it together.
Pops also told me that he had been on the internet and had been doing a lot of research. So my worries and fears went away.
I guess over the last few days I  had to face up to what I might have to do if something worse were to happen. I am not ready for our job to end. I am not ready for anything to end.And I for sure do not want to face life without Pops. I don't even want to think how sick he was. We were told that if he had waited any longer he could have gone into Cardiac Arrest. Well, thank Goodness he didn't.
We got a good nights sleep and then this morning after breakfast I did go in and get another load of laundry done.
We waited and waited for load opportunities to come but when they did, they weren't any good. And then finally one came that we were interested in. So I accepted it and we got the load. Now was the test to see how normal our normal would be.
I go all the paperwork done and then I began the drive toward Scottsburg, IN.Pops laid and on the bed and slept a little while I was driving. When we got to thhe pickup, I took Chucky and Lucy outside while Pops went in to find out which dock we were to use. So far, so good. It wasn't going so bad. I fixed us a salad while Pops was helping to load the truck and get it secured.
When he came out he told me that he was almost ready to startdriving.
I drove back up to the interstate and then we pulled in to fuel the truck. Pops told me that when he went in to get the fuel slip he automatically went in the restroom. I guess that is a habit.
So now it is his turn to drive and he said that he feels pretty good. We have over 600 miles left to reach our destination of West Hazelton, PA. I think things are going to be fine. We all just adapt, adjust and keep on rolling. Life doesn't stop. Try to keep up.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Pops in the Hospital

This is Atrium Medical Center in Middletown, OH

Pops still not feeling well

This is Matt. He's a great guy. We are glad we met him and want to take him to dinner. (Get in touch with us, Matt.) Pops is being discharged.

Atrium Medical Center

Here it is Sunday. We have been here several days. Pops is ready to leave. I am ready to get going. I have been living in the parking lot, going out to start and warm up the truck every 5 or 6 hours. No one has said nything about me staying here.
The wonderful nursing staff has trained Pops in how he is going to have to live for. While with the catheter.he is looking much better and seems to feel a lot better too.
The staff here is fantastic. Pops has had some really great nurses and patient care technicians. He really liked Matt, Nicole, and Melissa, but everyone was great. The urologist, Dr. Miller came in and said he was the plumber and I wanted to make jokes bout his pants being pulled up too far among some others that came to mind. He referred us to someone he knows that is closer to our home.
I can't say that it has been fun, but I'm glad Pops is better.
We got a nice visit from Bob Stacy. He is a friend of ours on Facebook and is a Minister in the Middletown CC right here near the hospital. It was good of him to come and nice talking about all the people we knew in common.
We are waiting now for his IV to finish and then we are discharged.
I am so thankful for everyone who has called Pops and for everyone who sent him messages and words of encouragement.
A few days ago on Facebook I asked, "What is normal?" No one really could give me an answer. I wasn't surprized though because it seems that normal is a destination that we are forever chasing. Everyone wants to be there, but it it always one step away.
Well, we are ready to be chasing our normal again.

Friday, December 7, 2012


Pops started out feeling a little better but it was short lived. His pain seemed to go away but he still was not able to urinate the way that you are supposed to. He did go a little at a time though so he wouldn't go back for more treatment. He didn't eat hardly anything and drank very little.
I was outside the truck with the dogs when a load opportunity came. He accepted the load. So we had to leave now. So I quickly got all the paperwork done and away I drove. Pops stayed laying down and didn't get up until we reached our pickup.
He did get up then and got the piece loaded.
Then I drove again. I drove out of New England and into Pennsylvania. Then it was his turn. I could tell that he was really sick but he did drive and I went right to sleep so that I could drive early if I needed to.
He did stop to rest a few times but basically kept moving. Then when I woke up the next morning, we were in Ohio so I finished out the drive to Cincinnati. We made our delivery and then went to a truckstop. He was really sick now. He had been sleeping really a lot and was very weak and dehydrated. So I talked to Shirley and then I drove him to the hospital.
It took awhile for them to get him into a room in the ER. But once they did things seemed to by quickly. A catheter was inserted and it drained him right away. Blood work was done and a urine sample collected.
The doctor came in then and told us that his kidneys weren't working like they should be. They were hoping that it was because of the backup of urine but they are not sure. They also think that it is actually a prostate problem too.
So they admitted him to a room and said they are keeping him at least over night and maybe 2-3 days.
I am so worried about him. I knew that he should have gone right back on Tuesday. I wish he wouldn't have waited but I guess his pain threshold is high.
So he is in Atrium Medical Center in Middletown, OH.
I am in the truck in the parking lot of the hospital right now. I hope they let me stay here. I want to go back in right away in the morning.
I am very concerned about our insurance. We have never had to use it. We got it right away when we took this job and paid a small fortune every month since. I sure hope it helps us. And I feel awful for even thinking about that right now.
Please pray for Bill. Please pray.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

My Big Fear

Every since we started this job I have always wondered what would happen if one of us got really sick. Well, last night I had to deal with that exact thing.
I woke up and we were parked at a rest area only about 9 miles from our delivery destination. Pops had driven all night long again. That is 2 nights in a row with well over 600 miles for him. And he was tired and worn out.
I got up and made some coffee and then took the dogs outside. When I got back into the truck we drank our coffee and got caught up with all the happenings on Facebook. Then I did my morning devotions.
Pops decided to make some phone calls before he laid down. So he called a few people. After a little while he told me that he was going to go inside to the bathroom and just then his phone rang. It was someone returning his call. So he took the call. The phone call lasted about an hour.
When he got off the phone he tried to go to the bathroom and then told me that he couldn't go and that his abdomin hurt.
We drank another cup of coffee and he decided to go try again. I saw him walking and walking all around the sidewalks of the rest area.
When he got back into the truck he looked worried. He told me that he still could not go even though it felt like he had to and that the pain was getting pretty bad.
He drank a whole bottle of water and waited, then he went for another walk. Now he was in a lot of pain and the pain was in his back now as well.
He tried to lay down and rest but the pain kept him from getting comfortable. So he sat up in the front seat. Every so often he would go for another walk and another attempt at going to the bathroom. And nothing was happening.
I tried to talk him into going to a walk in clinic or to an emergency room but he didn't want to. So we waited it out.
I talked to all of our kids and everyone was concerned and wanted him to go.
He finally made a bargain with me that if he did not go to the bathroom by 7pm he would go to the emergency room.
When 7 oclock came he made one more attempt to go to the bathroom. I called all the kids and told them that we were going to the hospital. He was in the bathroom for more than 20 minutes and I was getting worried. I was about to get the attendant to go in after him, but then I saw him coming.
We drove 10 miles to the closest hospital. It was St. Joseph's hospital in Bangor, ME. We slowly walked into the ER. We were checked in right away and then told to go sit and wait.
We didn't have to wait long though. Then we went into another room to get an initial exam. His temp was good. His blood pressure was a little high, but always is when he gets a check up. Then we went from there to the financial desk to sign all the financial paperwork.
We have insurance but have never had to use it, so this is the test to see how good it is. I hope it is good. It is very pricey.
Anyway, from there we sat in the waiting room again. We were mildly amused watching an obnoxious family trying to get attention. It seems that no matter where you go, there is always one of those families. I try to be kind and patient, but I am forever amazed by way some people act in public.
After about 7 or 8 minutes which seems more like 30, we were taken back to a room. A nurse came in immediately and gave him a gown to wear. Then they rechecked all his vitals.
A few minutes later they did an ultrasound on his bladder. Soon a nurse came in and said that his bladder was holding about 900ccs of fluid. And that they would need to drain it.
They explained that his blockage was causing some of that urine to back up into his kidneys and that is why he was having so much back pain. The abdominal pain was because of the bladder being stretched so much. The ultrasound did not reveal what was causing the blockage.
Shortly after the ultrasound a catheter was inserted and immediately it filled up. Pops said he felt better right away. The pain in his back was gone and so was the abdominal pain.
The doctor was glad to hear that because he said that meant that the pain was just pressure and not something more serious.
Soon we found out from the lab that he did indeed have a bad infection. Antibiotics were prescribed and he was given 2 other options. #1, he could have the catheter removed and we could leave and hope the problem was solved. Or #2, he could leave the catheter in for 3 days, spend the night in the hospital and then come back in 3 days to have the catheter removed. Option 2 was the doctors preferred treatment. Pops chose #1. He wanted out.
I think he was worried about our delivery in the morning. I am sure that he did not want me to have to do it alone.
So the catheter was removed and we slowly walked out of the ER. He did look much better and was walking much better too.
When we got to the parking lot we noticed that someone was trying to get into our truck. It was the security guard. He said he thought we were in there sleeping. We explained that we were in the ER and he left us alone.
We drove from there to a nearby Walmart. It was closer than going back to the rest area and it was closer to our delivery too.
Once we got parked, I called everyone and left them know how Pops was doing and then I took the dogs out and we prepared for sleep. Pops had now been awake for about 30 hours.
He took his antibiotic and then he got ready for bed. But guess what? He couldn't pee. He tried to convince me and himself that it was because they had drained him completely at the hospital. I didn't buy it. So he drank some more fluids and tried to go again, no use. Oh no.
The hospital told him to return if he didn't go within 8-10 hours so instead of going right back he said he was going to wait until in the morning.
He could not lay down again because the pain in his back had returned. So he wanted pillows and the blanket and said he would sleep sitting up.
I did go to bed around midnight. I didn't wake up until 6am and he was awake. He looked in pain. He told me that he still couldn't go.
He wanted to make our delivery and then would decide what to do.
So we made the delivery which went very quickly and very well. Then we were given layover options of Boston or Manchester, NH. Pops wanted to go to Manchester and then decide what to do. So I drove us to Portsmouth, NH about 40 miles from Manchester and stopped at a Walmart that we shop at a lot when we are here.
I got his prescription filled and picked up a few groceries.
Pops had now started to urinate a little at a time. So he was hopeful but still in pain.
And little by little all day long he did gradually go. He is still uncomfortable though.
Our truck owner, Shirley has been calling me all along. She called us as soon as we got here and told me to take our truck out of service and let him rest a little. So that is what I did.
We are now sitting at our favorite New Hampshire rest area. We are out of service until 6am. Pops is resting and is dozing off once in a while.
I am very thankful for all the kinds words, phone calls, encouragement and prayers. We have so many people that care about us and that is truely a blessing.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Random Pictures

Back at it

Starla was the only one at home when we left there. We hugged her goodbye and took off. We had to drive to Washington, WV to pickup our load. I began the drive. It was in the late part of the afternoon but I figured I would drive until we got to our pickup. We had to stop in Grantsville for fuel.
By the time we got fueled up Bill was home with Starla.
Pops tried to sleep a little while I drove but it is always hard to get back to a routine. He did manage to get a little though.
We got to our pickup and the dogs were just now settling down their nerves.
They had really enjoyed their time at home this time. Chucky is feeling much better. Both of them has lost weight and they were gettting a lot of exercise. I really need to try to do better with them. I have to stop giving them people food and try to get them moving more. I am not ready to say goodbye to Chucky just yet.
So after we got loaded Pops began to drive. I called home and talked to Bill and Starla for a bit then I went to bed.
I woke up as we were coming into Nashville. Pops drove us through there while I made myself some coffee. He stopped at a rest area on the other side of Nashville and I began to drive. He stayed awake for awhile and then laid down to sleep.
The day was pretty uneventful and I know the roads well. Traffic was very light and none of the weigh stations were open because of it being Thanksgiving Day. So I just cruised along. I drove us through Dallas and stopped on the other side at a rest area. Pops started driving at that point and he drove us to a rest area about an hour or so away from Laredo. We stayed there for the night and then the next morning early he drove us to our drop off.
It was really busy at our destination and that surprized me. There was a lot of stuff being picked up and delivered. We had to wait in a line of trucks until it was our turn.
Then we drove back up toward San Antonio but stopped for a short time at a rest area for Pops to take a nap. Then we drove to SA to a truckstop and got showered.
Tate and Shirley said that they were picking us up and then we were picking up another one of their driver teams and we were all going out to dinner. I am always nervous meeting new people. I guess that goes back to my younger days when I was so shy and backward. But once they got into the car, I was fine and we all chatted as if we'd known each other forever.
Tate took us to a Catfish place called Clearwater Fish House. I think all of us ordered the catfish and it was so good. Tate and Shirley had taken us there once before. It is an old cotton mill turned into a restuarant and they have all kinds of interesting and unusual antiques hanging on the walls and on shelves. The tables are wooden and rustic and so are the walls and floors. It is really a neat place.
After that Tate and Shirley dropped Jeff and Sandra back to their truck and us back to ours. We will see them again tomorrow.
Pops was going to Tate's ranch in the morning. He was going to hunt deer.
As we drove up their driveway in the morning Pops saw a big turkey gobbler and then when we parked in the driveway we saw a deer run across the field.
So Pops hunted, Shirley and I went to town and Tate hung out at the ranch tinkering with his trucks.
Shirley and I had bought some stuff for supper and a big cake too. So we had a good supper. After supper we visited for awhile and then we went out to the truck.
The next morning Pops and I used Shirley's car to go to church. We had gone to this church once before and we liked it here. Everyone is so friendly and we made new friends this time as well. It is called Life Bridge Christian church.
The evangelist there is Robin Thompson. He speaks in such a way that is so easy to follow. He is in the middle of a sermon series.
After services we went back to the ranch.
Shortly after we got back Shirley and I took off. We wanted to go to the flea market. We had talked about doing it so many times but it never seemed to work out, this time though we were going. And we had a really good day just wondering around looking at everything.
When we got back to the house, Shirley used the leftover chicken from yesterday and we had chicken salad and ham salad and of course the cake too. And then Pops spent the evening taking his gun for a walk.
It is always so nice to be here. I just love visiting with them and I am loving Texas more and more. Lucy was having a good visit too, but Chucky got a sand burr in his foot as soon as we got here so now he didn't want to even get out of the truck. Oh well, not everyone loves Texas I guess.
We hadn't had any load offers and figured that it was because of the holiday. But Monday came and we still weren't getting any. Pops hunted again a little bit and Shirley and I went into town again to check her mail and pick up some things.
When we got back I found out that Pops was negotiating a load to California. Our company wanted to pay us to drive clear out there with no load and then pickup an explosive load, drive it 200 miles and deliver it. Then they were giving us a return trip picking up in Las Vegas and going clear to Bangor, Maine.
Once I looked it all over and figured it all out, it really was paying pretty good and there was a lot of spare time built in so we wouldn't have to rush. So we accepted the load but that meant we had to leave right away. So we said our goodbyes to Tate and Shirley and off we went.
Pops drove all night. I drove all the next day. Then Pops drove some more and then we slept. We got up early Wednesday morning and went to pick up our load.
Hauling explosives in the state of California is a whole lot more tedious than anywhere else. CA has so many regulations and inspection stations. We were both so worked up and nervous, but we met a really nice Fedex couple that specializes in hauling these explosive loads and they helped us out so much. We were very fortunate to meet them.
Once loaded we drove away from Los Angeles and headed toward Baja, CA. We figured it would take us about 3 hours but we weren't taking into account the CA freeway traffic. So it took a lot longer.
It was a really nice drive though. And once we got off the freeway it was even better. I drove while Pops tried to get some sleep. I passed by what looked like water. I knew that we were in the desert area so I didn't know if it was a mirage or not. The water just went on and on. I finally spotted signs stating that it was the Salton Sea. Hmmmm, imagine a sea in the desert.
We got a little confused with our directions and after making some wrong turns and then getting corrected we found our destination. It was at a hidden place on a military base. As a matter of fact our gate looked like a school bus shed on the edge of an airport runway. But we got escorted to a building and got unloaded.
Now we were deadheading to Las Vegas for our Friday morning pickup. That means that tomorrow is a day off for us and we can take our time and enjoy the ride. We decided to drive back to the interstate and then sleep and then have the whole next day to drive up through the mountains and enjoy the scenery. But I sure wish we would have slept there because I think we missed seeing some great stuff as we drove by in the dark.
We drove by a place called Imperial Sand Dunes. Many businesses were selling passes for Glamis. I looked it up on the internet and found out that it was a large recreational area where many people bring their atvs to ride.
It was a full moon and we could see some of these sand dunes. They were huge. Some of them were bigger than houses. And they seemed to go on for miles and miles. It sure was something.
When we got up the next day. I was driving. We were on a smaller road. It was a good road but not an interstate. The scenery was very pretty and it was a nice, slow enjoyable drive. We got up to Las Vegas in the late afternoon. We found a good parking place at the TA truckstop right in Las Vegas. I thought it would get loud but it never did.
We got up the next morning and made our pickup. It is Friday morning and we have 3335 miles to our destination on Tuesday. It is a long, long way but we don't have to hurry. And our route is taking us across RT 40 instead of Rt 70 so it would/should be much easier of a drive too.
After only about 15 minutes into the drive I realized that we were going to be crossing the Pat Tillman Memorial Bridge right at the Hoover Dam. This made me so excited that I could hardly stand it. I had wanted to go there so badly but found out that commercial vehicles weren't permitted there unless they were traveling through. Now we were traveling through.
But it was a bridge, a really big bridge and it was windy. The kind of wind that they actually had warning signs telling high profile vehicles to avoid the area. So, ok, I am excited to be here but scared that I might die here. haha
It really was exciting to cross. We didn't get to see it as well as I would've liked but I was kind of busy holding the truck onto the roadway.
Pops slept while I drove and then I slept while he drove and we made our way across the whole United States. It got colder and colder the further we traveled. But finally after a long couple of days and many many miles here we sit at a rest area near Bangor, Maine. We had the whole day off so we are resting up. I am trying to get caught up on some things and Pops isn't feeling well. I think he has a bladder infection. I hope that's all it is. Please pray for him.
Also we got some sad news that a good friend, Gyneth Bennett passed away today. Her husband Ray is a traveling Evangleist and together they spent many mailes all over the US spreading the word of God. Keep Ray in your prayers as he is feeling the loss of his life partner.

Vacation pt. 3

Ugh!, I could not sleep last night at all. I don't know what the deal was but sleep would not come to me. So I sat awake downstairs and watched TV for most of the night.
After awhile I did dose and then when I woke up I made some more fudge. Starla has been taking orders and selling it again and she needed a couple more pounds to fill some orders.
We just kind of dwindled the day away for the most part.
In the late afternoon, we drove over and picked up Allison and Hunter. We were driving them to Ohio to meet up with Pops and Bill. Ohio was having their Youth Hunt this weekend and those two wanted to go. Kailey wanted to go too but she made the basketball team and they were having practice so she couldn't go.
It was a long 3 hour drive but we passed the time by chatting with kids and getting caught up on all their school and sporting adventures.
We met Pops and Bill at a Pilot truckstop and unloaded my car of hunting equipment into Pops' truck and said hello and goodbye to everyone and soon Starla and I were making the long drive back home. After about an hour we got a phone call from Bill. We had forgotten to give them shells for the guns. We pulled over along the road and sure enough they were still in my trunk, so we had to turn around and go back. Oh boy, everybody was grouchy about this. But whatever, that's the way it is. So we met back up with Bill who came alone and gave him the shells and once again Starla and I were headed for a long drive home.
We got home about 2am.
Needless to say not too much took place on Saturday.
On Sunday, when I got up I saw a note that Starla had left for me that she was driving seperately because she needed to meet someone for a fudge delivery. I heard her go out the door and then I heard her try and try to start her car but it wasn't starting. So I got ready quickly and decided I would drive her to her fudge meeting.
I hurried out to start my car while I finished getting ready. There was a heavy frost so I cranked up the defroster too. As I put my things on the backseat and shut the door, I heard a click. Oh no, I had locked my keys inside my running car.
So, I ran over to our truck because I was sure I had an extra key there, but I couldn't find one. I ran up to my bedroom and looked all around there, but no key. I looked everywhere I could think to look but could not find my spare key. So the only thing I could do was call a locksmith. I called every one of them from the Cumberland phone book and none of them could come. I called one in the Somerset County book and he said he would come right away. So 1/2 hour and $100 later we were on our way to church. Oh well, better late than never. We made it in time for the worship service.
We left right after church though because my niece, Kacey and nephew Levi were coming to visit and my son, Tom was coming too.
We had a really nice day visiting with all of them and watching the Steelers play the Ravens on TV. We are a family of mixed fans. Some Steelers and the rest Ravens fans. It is always interesting to watch them play. Our son, Drew and his girlfriend, Shelbie were in Pittsburgh at the game today.
And today the Ravens won.
In all the franchise history of these two teams every game but one has been decided by 4 points or fewer. It is always a good rivalry and good game to watch.
The game did go into overtime so it was late when everyone went home.
I loved getting to see Levi and Kacey. It is so hard to get to see people since I started this job and even harder to see everyone in the short period of time that I am home. So I like it when they come to the house to see me.
Even later that night, the guys came home from Ohio and carried all there stuff into the house.
Tomorrow is going to be our Thanksgiving day. Because that is the only day that all of us can be here at once.
Pops and I got up early on Monday morning and I got the turkey going in the oven. Then we had to take off to Cumberland to get some stuff done to Pops' new truck. Bill P. had to go to work and the boys were coming up this evening for our meal.
We dropped the truck off at the garage and then we took my car up to get Pops' new phone. He had decided to go with the Iphone like mine but neither of the places at the mall at the Iphone 5. So we asked questions and he decided to go with the Iphone 4. It is a little smaller and heavier but that is about the only differences, at least that is what we were told.
So we got him activated and bought him a rugged case and then back to the garage because the truck was done.
I finished cooking our meal and then everyone showed up. Shelbie was sporting a Ravens jersey! What?!? I know that she is a dedicated Steeler fan. But she and Drew had made a bet that if the Ravens won she would wear a Ravens jersey to our Thanksgiving dinner and if the Steelers had won Drew would have had to wear a Steeler jersey to their Thanksgiving dinner at her home. Well we couldn't let her get away without a few pictures posted directly to Facebook. Sorry, Shelbs.
I love my family and as the evening got later, we had to tell them goodbye. Now I wouldn't see them again until Christmas.
Tuesday morning Pops and I got up early because we were now in service with our job. And so we waited and waited for load opportunities to come. And when they did they were ridiculous. They weren't paying more than $1 per mile and we don't run for that.
We figured if we were having to go out on a holiday week and work we better get offered better than that. So we kept waiting and couldn't leave the house to go anywhere because of being on call.
It was a long frustrating day.
Finally on Wednesday a load came that we were interested in. It was picking up in Washington, WV and going to Laredo, TX.

Vacation pt.2

Tuesday morning Starla and I got up early and drove to Berlin. We were meeting my sister, Amy there. After picking her up we were driving to Strasburg, PA to a big theater there called, Sight and Sound.
Sight and Sound does about 3 shows a year in big theater fashion. The shows always have a biblical story. The first time I was ever there was a bus trip I took with my mom many years ago. We went to see the production of Noah. It was fabulous. We had such a good time and its a memory I will always have.
I have seen most of all the shows that they have done there with the exception of In the Beginning and Joseph. I want to see both of those yet and hope someday I will.
But this day the three of us were going to see Jonah.
We stopped in Bedford for gas and to grab a quick bite to eat in the car. Then we got moving. It is about a 3 hour drive to Strasburg.
We did get there a little early so we stopped at an outlet mall and shopped for a while.
Then we went to the show. Oh my, we had great seats, right in the center and only 4 rows back. It was awesome. The production was grand as always and we really enjoyed the show.
Afterwards we stopped and got some supper and then we were back on the road. I love getting to spend time with my sister. We used to get together at least once a week and spend the whole day together, but then we both got jobs and couldn't do that anymore and then our lives just got busier and busier and we didn't get to see each other much at all. And now with me in this job, our times together are rare but are always special. I love my sister so much.
It seems like I never get to see my brother either. I love him and his family just as much but it seems like we can't ever seem to line up our schedules.
It was late in the evening when we got back to Amys car. I gave her a big squeeze and hug because I didn't know if I would see her again before we left. It is so hard to say goodbye.
Then Starla and I drove back to the house.
The dogs have been neglected. I felt badly for them. They have been spending long hours lately at home with no human contact. So I was sure to allow them all to come and sit with me on the loveseat for the evening.
I was really tired after 2 very long days but I had made arrangements to meet my son, Tom for coffee in Cumberland when he got off work at 11. I was looking forward to one on one time with him.
We drank way too much coffee and talked for several hours. Finally I was just too tired so I had to go home. I really miss my kids so much. I miss this kind of thing with them, just the "hanging out" and stuff.
Wednesday morning was non existant for me. I didn't wake up until afternoon. Then I went with Starla to a couple of her doctor appointments. When I sleep like that, it really messes with my sense of reality and things and times seem strange and unfocused.
After going to the Dr appointments I went to the AT&T place and updated my phone. I really like my Blackberry phone and it takes awesome pictures, but it was time to renew our contract which allows us to upgrade our phone so I got an Iphone 5. Well I actually owned 2 brand new Iphones that day. The first one I got was activated and tried out. It didn't work. So they had to deactivate it and then Activate the only other Iphone they had in the store. It worked fine.
I was content with the Iphone because I have an Ipod and an Ipad and I am very familiar with how these products work. So I didn't feel like I had to "learn" a new phone.
Pops was planning on getting his upgraded phone as soon as he gets back. He is still undecided as to what he is getting.
After we left the store Starla and I went over to the Chinese restuarant for supper. And then we went home. Yay, I am so tired and worn out.
Thursday was going to be kind of a quiet day. I spent the morning making fudge. I made 4 or 5 batches. And then I got busy cleaning our truck and making the bed and restocking our winter clothes and supplies.
Later in the afternoon we drove over to St. Paul to visit with a good friend, Elizabeth Housel. She has really been a good friend to Starla lately and a huge encouragement to me. I love getting her messages of inspiration and good words. She has such a kind and gentle spirit.
She invited us over for tea. She showed us around her lovely home and we took some pictures. Then she served us tea, Pears that she had canned herself and homemade cinnamon rolls.
We really enjoyed our visit with her.
After that we went back home and had a quiet evening.