We met Dan and Amanda at the warehouse about 9:00 am so that they could check the place out and meet Alyssa and Preston. We planned to be there a couple of hours but ended up being there until about 1:45 pm when we pulled out and hit the road to Sallisaw, Oklahoma.
Ben road with Nana and Papaw but fell asleep before we ever hit the interstate. He ended up sleeping about an hour. We made one stop for a potty break for everyone and ended up pulling into the Sallisaw KOA about 4:30 pm.
While Michael and I set up Amanda and the kids walked over to the playground to burn off some pent-up energy. I made a simple dinner of hot ham sandwiches and we ended up calling it a night about 8:30 or so. Alex slept with us in our bed while Zoe slept in a recliner and Ben shared the couch bed with his mom & dad.
It started raining during the night and kept on until nearly noon. We pulled out of the KOA about 9:30 and made fairly decent time despite the rain. We stopped in Mt. Ida, Arkansas for lunch while our auxiliary tank filled the truck fuel tank.
After lunch we parted ways…Dan and family headed on to Glenwood and the home of Michael’s mom while Michael and I headed to Pearcy to his brothers home where we planned to park the coach for the next 10 days or so.
We arrived about 2:00 pm but unfortunately, things did not go as planned for us. To make a VERY long story short we had a lot of trouble getting the coach backed in and then when we finally did get it in place the ground was so unlevel that the level up system didn’t want to do its job. By that time the battery was running low so Michael plugged into the 50 amp outlet that his brother had installed for us but that fell short as well…it was only putting out 8 amps!
We tried putting a couple of blocks under one of the jacks and in the process dropped the coach (thank goodness for our ‘Bed Saver’!). Since the level up wasn’t working properly one of the back jacks never retracted…which we didn’t notice since all of the other ones had. In the whole process of trying to get blocks under the front jack…we ended up bending the back jack!
Michael wanted to try to take the back (bent) jack off so that he would be able to at least level out the coach but the bottle jack he had refused to work. However, between he and his brother they were able to remove all of the bolts so it was ready to be removed as soon as they could jack the coach up high enough to remove it.
By this time we decided we’d had enough and planned to leave the coach as it was and go to a hotel for the night (extremely unlevel and with no power we weren’t able to bring out the slides).
Wednesday – Another very rainy day which didn’t allow us to do anything with the coach as it was just to messy outside. We did, however, stop at Walmart and buy a new bottle jack so that when it did stop raining Michael could use it to raise the coach.
We spent the day at Michael’s mom’s house visiting with her and Michael’s oldest brother. Dan, Amanda and the kids stopped by for a short visit in the morning and then went to Murfreesboro to hunt diamonds. They didn’t come back rich but the kids had a good time digging in the mud.
When they got back to the house we piled into two cars and went out to dinner at the Rocky Mountain Grill in Pearcy. Most of us got some sort of steak, while Alice went with shrimp. We had a nice family dinner and enjoyed visiting as it’s not something we get to do often enough.
Michael and I spent the night at Alice’s in what I call the ‘Princess and the Pea’ bed…her mattress is so tall that you really could use a step stool to get up on it or at least take a running leap.
Thursday – It finally stopped raining!
Dan, Amanda, Alice and I (along with the kids) went to the cemetery to visit Papa Tom (Michael’s dad) while Michael was at his brother, Ron’s, house removing the damaged hydraulic jack leg.
After our visit at the cemetery we headed into Hot Springs, picking Michael up on the way, to go to Oaklawn Horse Race Track. While I lived in Hot Springs for several years, I’d never been to the track and Michael hadn’t been since well before we were married. Dan and Amanda had been to several races at Belmont when they lived in New York and really enjoyed it so they were excited to go again.
We stayed for all nine races. Michael and I didn’t do any betting, Alice bet on one race and Dan and Amanda placed bets on most of the races, I believe. Unfortunately, there were no winners in our group. But we had fun nonetheless.
After the races we made our way back to our vehicles only to find that Alice’s car wouldn’t start! (bad luck was all around us this week!) We called Michael’s brother who was meeting us for dinner and he came and picked Michael, Alice and I up and also called a friend of his, who is a mechanic, to take a look at the car. (still no diagnosis on the car)
We went to dinner at Osaka Japanese Steakhouse as it was my birthday dinner choice. Alice, Ron & Linda hadn’t been to a Japanese hibachi restaurant before so it was all new to them. They enjoyed the show and their meals and I think they might even go back on their own at some point.
Unfortunately, we had to give goodbye hugs to Dan, Amanda, Alex, Ben and Zoe as they were heading for home in the morning. I still hate parting way with the boys and their families but it has gotten a bit easier as we’re able to see them a bit more often than we used to. Let’s put it this way…I don’t cry each and every time they leave now.
We spent the night, once again, in the ‘Princess and the Pea’ bed and slept much better than we did the previous two nights.
Friday – My birthday! First thing in the morning, Michael contacted Lippert and ordered the new hydraulic jack leg…it’s due to arrive about Thursday of next week. Then we did quite a bit of work in the morning as things had been put on hold while our lives were in turmoil.
Early afternoon we headed into Hot Springs to Lowes to pick up some brass fittings so that Michael could use them to cap the hydraulic lines for the jack leg so that when we turned on the level up system it didn’t spew hydraulic oil all over the place.
Then we head back to Ron’s house and while Michael and Ron got the lines capped I visited with Linda a little bit. Once the lines were capped and checked to make sure that no fluid was going to flow we hitched up the coach to the truck and headed to Glenwood.
We’d been told about the new RV park that opened up at the stockyards and had driven by it on Wednesday night to check it out. Caddo River Access RV Park just opened (I’m not sure they’ve had any guests before) and is only about 20 minutes from Alice’s home which is ideal! We normally end up having to drive 45 minutes to an hour to get to her home so this will be perfect.
We got settled into our home for the next week or so and then headed just down the road to the Fish Nest for dinner. Since it was Good Friday (and my birthday) we both had the buffet which is filled with catfish, shrimp, crab cakes, clam strips and a bunch of other items. We had our fill and were home and in bed before 8:00 pm. I think the events of the week had taken their toll and we were both exhausted.
Saturday – Obviously we were exhausted as we slept nearly 12 hours! However, nothing was keeping us back from a breakfast date we had with our good friends, Brock and Tammy! We met them just across the street from the RV Park at the Caddo Cafe.
We really enjoyed our breakfast – they serve both Mexican and American fare…but Michael and I both went with American this time. Breakfast was very good but what we really enjoyed was our visit with Brock and Tammy (and Cheyenna & Blake too!). Our visits always go much too quickly but that makes us appreciate them that much more. We’re hoping to squeeze in another visit with them before we have to leave.
The rest of the day was spent working. We had a lot of make up to do. Dan had given us a goal to hit this month and today (last day of the month!) we hit it! Woohoo! We’ll get a bonus…but that’s not nearly as exciting as actually hitting that goal!
Sunday – Easter.
Rain, rain, rain…another rain-filled day. We’re parked right next to the Caddo River….lets hope it doesn’t rain so much that we float away!
We started our morning off with a couple of kolaches that we had picked up the day before at the Donut Palace, which is right across the road from our coach. It had been a long time since we’ve enjoyed some Donut Palace kolaches so it was a nice treat.
We made impromptu plans with Michael’s mom to have dinner at her home so we picked up some groceries at Wright’s in Glenwood on Saturday and took them to Alice’s and made dinner there. A very cheater-easy meal. Ham, pre-made broccoli rice casserole, pre-made sweet potato casserole, mashed potatoes, green beans, dinner rolls and banana cream pie for dessert. We had a nice visit with just the four of us for dinner.
We visited until about 7:00 pm before packing up and heading home. We spent the rest of the evening relaxing in front of the TV which turned out to be a nice way to round out our hectic week.