Sunday, June 30, 2013
Saturday, June 29, 2013
Wednesday, June 26, 2013
This trip begins with a bus ride over the top of the cave to the New Entrance. Discovered in the 1920's it opened a whole new opportunity for visitors to see Mammoth Cave.
- Duration: 2 hr. 00 min.
- Distance: .75 miles
- Number of Steps: 500
- Accessible: No
- Effort: Moderate
Know Before You Go
This trip will have an elevation change of 250 feet and you will descend and climb a total of 500 steps.
The Frozen Niagara area at the end of this tour was spectacular. It was worth all the steps and walking to get there.
We parted company and went to lunch while they all headed back to the motel to swim. At 5:00 the kids were brought back to the park and we took them to see Monster U followed by a trip to McDonald's for them. Ted had a cone while they ate but I didn't order anything. Our lunch had been about 2:30 and I wasn't hungry.
While we had the kids Bill and Kara took his friends and their wives to dinner. I am sure they enjoyed their time out with just adults.
After we came back to the park, they came for the kids and took our laundry back with them. They have access at night to the commercial laundry at the motel and said they would do what I had. We have nine days worth plus the bedclothes so it will be a big help.
Not sure what is up for tomorrow. We have storm warnings for tonight and it has started raining. We will regroup in the morning
Tuesday, June 25, 2013
On Tuesday we headed south to Bowling Green where we are in a KOA because it is at the same exit as the motel that Bill's friend owns where he, Kara and the kids are staying. Two free rooms are hard to pass up. They came down Sunday and spent the day at Lost Cave yesterday. Ted and I visited it two years ago so they went before our arrival.
The whole bunch of them arrived at the KOA park and we took a ride to Bill's friends' house and visited an Aviation Park. You can sit in your car and listen to a description of the planes and the Kentuckians who flew them. Then we got out to look at them up close.
At 18 our convictions are hills from which we look; at 45 they are caves in which we hide.
Monday, June 24, 2013
Our arrival in Bardstown coincided with a few others arriving early so once we were set up we met up with Keith, Steve and Marge and walked into town to browse. We visited the Talbot Tavern where we decided to partake of the bourbon sauce over bread pudding. In this town, bourbon is king! Later on we ate dinner at Mammy's, the old five and dime turned into a restaurant. I had a Kentucky Hot Brown, indigenous to this area - first made at the Brown Hotel in Louisville - and it was the best one I have ever had. It is ham and turkey over toast, covered with a cheese sauce and topped off with a tomato and bacon slices then broiled. Yummy!
On Friday morning we returned to the hotel and helped Charles get the goody bags, shirts, name tags, etc. ready for everyone who would be arriving later in the day. We had a total of 96 participants this year, down from the 133 in 2011. We lost a whole family who had another gathering out west to attend.
Once finished, Ted returned to the trailer to wash the rig and windows. He also had to get our propane tanks filled. I chose to take the trolley ride through town and visit the Barton Distillery with Keith, Steve and Marge. They can keep their bourbon tastings and just go straight to the bourbon candy for me! But the science of making bourbon is very interesting. There are some new machines and things but the technique remains the same. I learned President Johnson had a law passed stating that bourbon 1) has to be made in the US; 2) it must be at least 51% and no more than 80% corn with the remaining ingredients being rye or wheat (never both) and barley. Others outside the US can make bourbon, they just can't call it bourbon. All bourbon is whiskey, not all whiskey is bourbon.
Bardstown was voted the most beautiful small town by Conde Nast this past year. Beautiful rolling hill, horses and constant employment distilling bourbon has made a wonderful life for the folks in the area. We ate lunch at Hurst Drug Store's original soda and lunch counter. We missed the crowd because on weekends it really gets packed.
By late afternoon everyone had arrived and we had a light dinner and "meet and greet" for everyone followed by an evening in the pool.
On Saturday everyone scattered in different directions. Ted and Brandon went to Brooks, KY to shoot. I spent the day with Kara, Bill, Morgan, Sam, Karen and Ron. I took another trolley ride with the kids and saw and learned a few more things about the area and making bourbon. Your tour guide makes a big difference and the route was different the second time.
We separated and had lunch again at Mammy's so Karen could have a Hot Brown, a favorite of hers too. Ronnie had a special dinner companion. The inside of the restaurant has changed little from its five and dime days and the old tin ceiling is original.
Saturday night we all gathered at the Carriage House and had our big dinner. Cousin Dave welcomed everyone and asked that people check the accuracy of their personal information on the Family Tree I had worked on. Charles did a terrific book of old photos (I was 2.5 years old and 10 years old in some of them) and he has a photo of my great-grandparents' wedding in January 1907. I still have no official documentation for this and the date is handwritten but I asked for a copy to put with the Census Reports that list their years married. I attended their 50th wedding anniversary in 1957 so I know the date is right but I would like to have it in a legal document.
We returned to the hotel and went swimming in an uncrowded, quiet pool. Later Ted and I treated the 10 of us still there to dinner at the Stephen Foster restaurant next door. Everyone had been buying us things all weekend and this gave us a chance to reciprocate.
I had purchased tickets for all of us to see The Stephen Foster Story, an outdoor production performed at My Old Kentucky Home state park amphitheater. It had been really hot but the temperature dropped about 10 degrees and the humidity is nothing like we are used to so it was quite comfortable.
The production was very well done and of course listening to Beautiful Dreamer, Jeannie with the Light Brown Hair, Camptown Races, Oh Suzanna, My Old Kentucky Home and many others was so enjoyable. How the play ends and what is written about Stephen Foster in the program has made me want to read his biography. Of course the play had a happy ending when Jeannie agrees to marry him but he died at age 37 after a fall "in his room in the Bowery." It sounds as if he was alone. Now I am curious what happened after they married. Stay tuned.
It was goodbye and hugs at the hotel when we got back to get our truck to come back to the campground. We will see Ron and Karen at the lake and Keith, Steve and Marge in February for the wedding. It will probably be two years before we see Lisa, Marshall and Brandon again.
Today we slept in and are just trying to get things caught up and back in order. We have been gone so much that we still haven't paid for our spot. The fact that there is no office or employees here hasn't helped. If they don't come by for their money before tomorrow morning, I will mail the check to this address. Not a great way to run a business!
Call it a clan, call it a network, call it a tribe, call it a family. Whatever you call it, whoever you are, everybody needs one. ~ Jane Howard.
Wednesday, June 19, 2013
Tuesday, June 18, 2013
Friday, June 14, 2013
I cleaned the house top to bottom last Thursday and Friday. I wore myself out but I certainly did sleep well those two nights. After church on Saturday we went to Terry and Carol's for dinner because their daughter and son-in-law were in for a visit. They have hosted three of their four kids the past month. Plus they were in Illinois last month for a First Communion and are going to New York for a graduation. It seems everyone is on the go.
Monday night I had them over for dinner and we played cards afterwards. We were teaching Shanghai to Sharon and Don so they could play Wednesday night with our group.
I put in four hours at the Thrift Shop on Tuesday so I have 8 of my 50 hours done so far. Considering that's all I will have until September, it isn't a very big number but with good planning and sign-up help from my friends I should be OK by next May when the year ends.
I went from there to the dentist and had planned to meet Gerre for dinner but such a terrible thunderstorm rolled through we decided not to meet. The next day she dropped off a beautiful pendant made of sea glass for me for watching Tucker. It wasn't necessary but certainly is appreciated.
Wednesday was our buffet dinner and card night at the golf course clubhouse. They do a nice job of dinner for a good price. I came in second at my table by one point and Ted lost second place by one point at his table! My dime purse was getting low so I was glad to get some back. Of course they will sit now until we return in September.
I attended my last neighborhood luncheon until the Fall. The one person I wanted to talk to had a funeral to attend so I didn't get to ask her about having her master bath redone. Her husband is also on the water board and I wanted to know if we are allowed to go to three days watering. Two days is OK now because we've had rain but the temperatures are going to increase and the rains come less so I will have to instruct Chris on how to add a day to the timer if they lift the restriction while we are gone. I don't want a $100 fine every week for watering one day too many. Big Brother is watching everywhere it seems!
I have turned our Mi-Fi back on for the summer. It is our Internet connection while we are gone. I love being able to use my computer and I-Pad in the car while traveling. We have two plugs also if the batteries wear down. Such advancement in technology.
We are packing and loading this weekend. Besides church tomorrow evening, we have no social plans. Ted will shoot on Sunday. I am playing bunco on Monday. Tuesday we head out with an expected arrival in Bardstown, KY on Thursday.
Next time you hear from me it should be from the Bourbon Trail. What an appropriate place for my family to meet. If you gave my kids a sniff of bourbon and asked them what it reminded them of they would say Uncle Ray and Uncle Bill. God rest their souls.
“Tough girls come from New York. Sweet girls, they're from Georgia. But us Kentucky girls, we have fire and ice in our blood. We can ride horses, be a debutante, throw left hooks, and drink with the boys, all the while making sweet tea, darlin'. And if we have an opinion, you know you're gonna hear it.”
~ Ashley Judd
Wednesday, June 5, 2013
Yesterday I worked at the thrift store. After three hours of hauling bags, bending and sorting, I chose to sit down and cut off buttons. No one seems to like to do that but I was able to empty the basket. Who knew there was such a big market for buttons?
Today I am going to look for a dress for the wedding. If it takes 3-4 months to come in as I have been advised it may, I will have time in the fall to get it altered (I know it will need to be hemmed since God built me so close to the ground). Wish me luck!
Another niece and her husband are coming in from Alabama this weekend so we may have more family time visiting with them. My sister-in-law Carol is not getting a lot of breathing room between house guests.
Tucker went home yesterday after spending the week. We both missed him immediately. It takes a day or two to stop looking around for him. He is such a good dog, no trouble at all and is welcome back anytime.
I did reserve our Eastern European Riverboat cruise for August of 2014. These ships are small and rooms fill up fast. There are 70 cabins on this ship so it is the same size as the one we took to do western Europe. Our France trip only had 39 passengers. Keith, Steve and Marge are onboard (pun intended) and will make their reservations today. They were waiting for me to get a group name and number. If anyone is interested in joining us, let me know. This will be our fourth trip with Grand Circle Tours and we have loved them all. After our 12 day cruise we are going to Prague for four days.
Notable Quotations from George Santayana:
'Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.'
Life of Reason, Reason in Common Sense, Scribner's, 1905, page 284
Monday, June 3, 2013
First they came for the communists,
and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a communist.
Then they came for the socialists,
and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a socialist.
Then they came for the trade unionists,
and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a trade unionist.
Then they came for the Jews,
and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a Jew.
Then they came for the Catholics,
and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a Catholic.
Then they came for me,
and there was no one left to speak for me.