Pier 19

Good morning.  Good news. We are in for another nice warm day with a high of 83. Bad news. High wind advisory for the entire day with wind gusts up to 45 mph. I’m not sure we will be able to sit outside and that strong of wind gusts will even make going for a walk difficult. I guess we will just play it by ear.

Day 97.  I really enjoyed relaxing in the sun yesterday. The wind made it hard to keep my hat on my head, so I ended up taking it off. And yes, my cheeks got a little red. But it sure did feel good to have that sunshine on me. The breeze helped us not feel too warm while sitting outside, but it made it a little tricky to read or write. My papers kept trying to blow away.

With all the fresh air I was getting, I got so relaxed I didn’t feel like coming up with a meal for dinner. We also hadn’t eaten lunch yet. And, if you know my husband, he likes to eat. I on the other hand have been known to skip meals much to my family’s objection. I am doing better and I am trying to eat three squares a day.

Anyway, hubby suggested going out for a bite. We haven’t done it in a while and we wanted to try the restaurant very close to our campground, Pier 19.  We were told it not only had ambiance (right on the water) but good food and reasonable prices. How could we go wrong.

It was about 3pm when we arrived and the place was very busy. We were put on a wait list, but we only had to wait a few minutes for a table. Our booth overlooked the causeway connecting Port Isabel to South Padre Island. While we were sitting there I saw what I believe to be dolphins in the water. They jumped and dove back into the water so quickly. I got to see them do it a few times and then they were gone. That was such a nice surprise. 

The wait staff was very friendly and nice. They took very good care of us without being annoying. Our server went over the menu with us to point out the various selections and specials available. They have something for everyone on the menu; hamburgers, Mexican, seafood, steak and so on. It was hard for us to decide. Everything looked so good. We both decided to try one of the Friday lunch specials (11am – 4 pm). I had grilled grouper for the first time. It was served with rice and vegetables and was it delicious. It was cooked to perfection. I would definitely have it again. Clyde tried the seafood tampiquena. It was described as a seafood enchilada. His meal was just as good as mine was. We both had more than enough to eat and the prices were very reasonable. We left very satisfied. The restaurant and the food both get two thumbs up for sure. We highly recommend Pier 19.

Enjoying our lifestyle. Have a good day.

Until next time,

Kathryn

 

Time for Ice Cream

Good Morning. It looks like we are going to have another nice day with a high nearing 80 and partly sunny.  I’ll take that. I’m not sure what we are going to do today, but we will definitely get outside.

Day 89. It was such a nice day yesterday, I walked almost 2 miles. Don’t you just feel so much better when you are out in the fresh air and get some exercise. This beautiful view doesn’t hurt either. As we walked around by the water, we saw the birds sitting in the sand on the beach and others perched on top of posts. We watched other people enjoying the nice weather too. Some were walking the beach or fishing. Others were sitting in their lounge chairs reading or relaxing as they watched the waves hit the shore. And, there were a few people gathered together just enjoying the company of other campers. Everyone was doing the same thing we were, enjoying the beautiful day.

We took a short drive into Port Isabel to Walmart for a few supplies. On the way home Clyde suggested we stop for ice cream. He has been hankering for some since we started on our journey and I keep saying no, it’s not warm enough to enjoy it. Well, he finally wore me down and I said yes. It’s not that I don’t like ice cream, ice cream is a weakness of mine and he knows it.

We decided to stop at this fun looking tourist souvenir store that said ice cream instead of going to dairy queen, which we can get anywhere and isn’t really true ice cream. This store was huge. They had all kinds of souvenirs but mostly shells and items made from shells. The post cards were the cheapest we’ve seen anywhere and they had a large selection to choose from. He took that as a sign to get some more to send out. The ice cream was good and a nice treat. We may have to stop there again before we head north.

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Enjoying our lifestyle. Enjoy your day.

Until next time,

Kathryn

 

 

Harlingen

Good morning.  What a beautiful day we had yesterday and it looks like we are going to have a couple more gorgeous days.  I am definitely planning on getting out and walking.  The wind may not make sitting outside enjoyable, especially if I want to work on a project also. We will see.

Days 87 & 88. As you know, I am going to the beading group, held in our campground, where I am learning how to make bracelets out of seed beads. For those of you who are not familiar with the different types of beads, seed beads are itty bitty tiny beads that are hard to see and hold but, when combined with other types of beads, create beautiful bracelets, necklaces and earrings.

My problem is the pattern to the bracelet they were making that day was a more advanced pattern and I am a beginner. The written directions I was given were not complete, which makes it hard for me to figure it out on my own.  I had help from one of the ladies in the group, but I didn’t have the concept down pat in my head before group ended. I spent many hours at home trying to figure it out on my own, but I just couldn’t do it. I even looked online for a tutorial on that particular stitch and couldn’t find one. I ended up having to set that bracelet aside for now. Instead of working on the seed bead bracelet, I worked on beading bracelets I was familiar with and enjoy making.

Yesterday was a good day to take a drive to Harlingen, where the bead store is that the ladies in the group highly recommended. JoAnn’s, Michael’s, Hobby Lobby and Walmart all carry beads and beading supplies, but not every type of beads or all of the sizes of the beads I need to complete any of the bracelets I have found patterns for. We stopped at Hobby Lobby’s first where I found a few of the basic supplies I needed. Then we went to the bead store. I was overwhelmed with all of the beautiful beads and supplies available to me. I could have spent hours in there just drooling and staring. Maybe another time I will do that, but I knew I didn’t have time to dawdle. We had other places yet to go. I held back the temptation to buy more than what was on my supply list and bought only what I needed to complete the bracelet the group was making and one more bracelet I think I can manage to figure out how to make on my own.

I am disappointed I have not been able to find a book on beading that shows all of the basic and more advanced stitches, like I have for my other hobbies (knitting, crocheting, embroidery and quilting). I will just have to keep looking. I have not checked out any of the beading magazines yet. I will have to do that the next time we are shopping.

Our next stop was for lunch/dinner. We decided to try Pepe’s Mexican Restaurant. The food good. Not to die for, but ok. Next time we are hungry for Mexican cuisine we will try somewhere else. We left full, which was good.

We ended our day at our friend Steve’s home where we sat outside enjoying the beautiful weather as we relaxed on his patio. We were able to see his mom again after many years and met a few of his neighbors. The afternoon flew by too quickly, but we needed to get home before it got too dark. Neither of us do well driving at night anymore. It was a good thing we left when we did. The fog was thick as we came into Port Isabel. We could hardly see the road or the front of our car by the time we got to the campground. We are looking forward to getting together with him again while we are here.

Loving our lifestyle. Enjoy your day.

Until next time,

Kathryn

 

Good Pick

Good morning family and friends.  The fog is thick this morning.  I can barely see the 5th wheel next door to us.  It’s going to be a great day though with a high around 80.  I’m looking forward to a perfect day spent outdoors.

Day 83. Choosing a laundromat to go to wasn’t easy.  There are a few different ones in the area, both on the island and in Port Isabel. The problem was looking at the reviews on-line, none of them were very good.  I decided on Relax and Just Wash Laundromat. It had the least negative remarks.  We got there mid-morning.  It was very small, with only about half the number of machines that were in other laundromats we have been to.  It was also very busy, but we were able to find 3 machines in a row. We quickly claimed them and got our wash started.  While we were waiting for the wash to finish more people came in.  They had to wait for open machines as all the machines were in use.

As we sat waiting, we got to talking to another winter Texan who was staying in a condo on the island.  She told us this was the best laundromat around.  They had tried the one on the island and found it very expensive with many machines not in use and no attendant on duty. It’s nice to know I picked the right one. The attendant on duty was very nice.  We watched her as she firmly but nicely kept the children from running around and getting hurt. The prices were good too.  We spent about $6.50 for 3 loads. That’s best we’ve done yet. Next time we will just have to try to find a quieter time to get our laundry done.

We then stopped at Walmart for our groceries.  That is a bad idea when you are hungry.  We ended up buying more than was on our list. You would think we would know better by now.

Thinking about family in Michigan and Illinois who were getting lots of snow, I decided to make chili for dinner.  Chili one night, chili dogs another.  My chili turned out really good and I probably ate more than I should have.  I was feeling really full.  It was nice that the day got warmer as it went along.  The weather was perfect for taking a walk.  The fog was thick over the water and the waves crashed along the shore even though it didn’t seem that windy.

Until next time,

Kathryn

 

Technically Challenged

Good morning.  It looks like we might have a warmer day today than we had yesterday.  Our high for today is 73.  No sun.  In fact, I don’t see the sun forecasted to be out for the next week and a half.  How am I supposed to have fun in the sun without the sun?

Day 76.  Being the weather was cool, windy and dreary we decided to take a ride into Port Isabel.  Our site here, in Isla Blanca Park, not only has full hookups (water, electric and sewer), but we also have cable.  This is a first for us.  We have only used the antenna to get our basic channels up until now and that has worked just fine.  Unfortunately, the antenna does not seem to be powerful enough here.  We keep losing the signal.  We now understand why they include cable with the amenities package. Problem is we didn’t have a coax cable to connect to the motorhome.  We had more than we need when we owned our home. Never thinking that we might need to save one for the motorhome, all the extra coax cables we had were either given away or sold with everything else we no longer needed.  Thus, the reason to go to town.

We had passed a Walmart on our way into the park, so we had a good idea where we were going.  It’s a nice big clean Walmart with a good selection. We easily found the coax cable we needed and a few other items.

It was time to find a car wash.  You wouldn’t believe how filthy the car gets being towed behind the motorhome.  We found a car wash and normally I wouldn’t write about it, but this was another first.  It was an automatic car wash with no human attendant.  You paid with the exact amount or used a credit card and selected what type of wash you wanted.  You then were directed to pull in.  There were no tracks to pull you through. If you went too far the speaker told you to back up.  If you didn’t go far enough forward it told you to keep going.  At the end there was no blower to dry off your car or an attendant to give it a quick wipe down.  It wasn’t the best of washes, but it got the job done and she sure looks a whole lot better.

Back at the campsite we thought all we had to do was connect the coax cable and we would have TV.  Wrong.  Granted we aren’t the most savvy with technology, but how hard could it be to connect one cord and turn on the TV.  We tried everything.  I scanned for new channels.  That didn’t work.  I changed the setting from air to cable and then scanned for new channels again.  Nope.  Still didn’t work.  Clyde checked the coax connection.  Still no TV.  We weren’t giving up.  We looked in the cabinet to see if we were missing something there. Nope. If all else fails, push buttons and see what happens.  That helped somewhat.  Clyde found 3 buttons (for 3 TV’s) that say “sat, DVD & aux”.  Apparently when you are using the air antenna you don’t need worry about those buttons. He changed all 3 to “aux” and we scanned for channels one more time.  We got TV, but the picture was fuzzy.  So back outside he went to check the connections one more time.  Nope.  Now what?  Finally, we saw one more button that said Winegard.  It was on. For the heck of it we turned it off. OMG! We got a clear picture.  We have real cable TV.  We have no idea what that button is for, but for now we don’t care.  It may have taken us a couple of hours to figure it all out, but we didn’t give up or get upset.  We persevered and succeeded.  Just call us happy campers.

Until next time,

Kathryn

 

 

 

Final Leg South

Good morning.  We went to sleep last night with the bedroom window open listening to the waves hitting the shore.  How cool is that.  It is 61 already this morning, but it’s not supposed to get as warm today as it was yesterday.  The high is forecast to be only 64 with possible showers and high winds.  It doesn’t look like a beach day to me.  That’s ok, there is a lot to see here on the island.

Day 75.  We were up and ready to get on the road for our final leg of the journey to South Padre Island by 8:30 am.  A Murphy’s gas station was just across the Walmart parking lot, where we went to fill Winnie up.  Gas was $2.34 a gallon, which we thought was high until we went further south and found that the price had jumped to $2.49 a gallon.  It’s a good thing we won’t be needing to fill her up again for another month.

The drive was uneventful with moderate traffic and some construction along US 77.  We saw palm trees, cactus, cattle, a few wind turbines and even the boarder patrol along the long stretches of open land.  We stopped at the Harlingen Travel Information Center to stretch our legs and walk Patty Pepper.  This was an easy on and off the highway stop, with plenty of space for us to park.  While we were there we decided we should have lunch (pb&j sandwiches) so we weren’t starving when we got to the campground.

We passed through Port Isabel, crossed the 2-mile-long causeway which was named Queen Isabella Memorial Bridge and arrived on South Padre Island.  A total of 162 miles.

After checking into Isla Blanca Park and setting up we were ready to take a short walk down to the beach and check it out.  The temperature was perfect in the 70’s, but a bit windy.  The red flag warning was out.  We are hoping for some nice weather beach days while we are here this month.  I didn’t see any shells.  Perhaps this won’t be the beach for collecting any. I did read that if you wanted any shells you needed to walk the beach early in the morning.  We will see.

This park is the complete opposite from the Corp of Engineering campground in Waco, Texas we just left.  The sites here are so close together – “Reach out and touch somebody’s hand . . .” . Just sayin’.  This is a first for us.  We’ve stayed in campgrounds that we thought were a bit too close together, but none compared to this campground.  I’ll let you know how I feel after a few days.

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Our site #C443

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Our site #C443

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View from our couch window

What enticed us here to this area was the warmer weather, close to the ocean with sights to see and things to do. I’m looking forward to exploring the area.

Until next time,

Kathryn