Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Ameristar RV Park - Campground Review

While we were in Vicksburg, MS. for a few days, we stayed here.  Although it is part of the local casino, it is far enough away, that you can't even 'see' the gamblers or hear the cha-ching of their winnings! HA!

Price -$23/night for full hook ups

Amenities - they do have a small, but clean laundry and tv room.  Other than that, it is a safe, clean park to stay in the area.

If we can make it back to see Vicksburg National Park, this is where we would stay.


State #29!! Mississippi!

We intended on having a couple of days in Vicksburg, MS., enjoying Vicksburg National Park.  But, as life would have it, as it sometimes happens, we needed to slow down and have some serious family time.

Life lessons.  Hard lessons.  But, lessons we all need to learn at some point......sometimes more than once. ;)

Our recent lessons have been about diligence, laziness, thankfulness and respect.

Sometimes, you just have to put on the breaks of "your plans" and take the time to reevaluate what is right or wrong and FIX it! :)

So, just as any other family in America, whether you live in a house made of sticks and bricks or an rv, we have problems, stresses, issues, and what ever else you want to call them!

Our next adventure took us to a special place, with a special 'call.' ;)

Stay tuned!


Monday, April 29, 2013

Rainbow Plantation - Campground Review

While we stayed in Summerdale, Al., we enjoyed our time at this campground.  We are Escapee members, so any time we know that there is a campground in an area that we want to visit, we definitely take advantage of their wonderful facilities.

The location was perfect for visiting the USS Alabama in Mobile and Lambert's cafe, too. :)

Price -$16/night plus a couple of dollars electricity per night

Amenities - They have large sites, GREAT laundry for only $0.75/load!!!!, and a large dining/activity center.  The people, as usual, were so friendly and welcoming, too. :)

We LOVE Escapees campgrounds!  We would definitely return.


Sunday, April 28, 2013

Happy Birthday Parker!


I am freaking out.

My baby is FIVE YEARS OLD!

Thank you to all the family that gave him cards.  He was SOOOO excited!

He knew EXACTLY HOW he wanted to celebrate his day, too.  He wanted all of us to 'surprise' him in the morning, open his gifts and cards, FIRST thing, and then eat and go shopping.  HA!

He also knew that he wanted a movie, a Star Wars action figure and an Iron Man t-shirt.  :)

SO, after all the morning's excitement.....He went SHOPPING!  Yee Haw!

For his menu:

Breakfast - Cinnamon Rolls with orange icing, strawberries and orange juice

Lunch - Grilled cheese sandwiches, Cheese-puffs, strawberries and Rootbeer

Dinner - He wanted a date (with me, of course) to McDonald's :)  (the rest of the family ate a homemade chicken pot-pie)

Happy Birthday Parker!  We all love you very much!


Friday, April 26, 2013

Lambert's Cafe is AWESOME!

While we were in Summerdale, AL., near Foley, AL., we HAD to visit Lambert's.  I can not express to you, in words, how absolutely, amazingly awesome this place is!!!!!!  

Everything is family friendly.  

Everything is BIG.  

Just LOOK at that roll!  Oh!  And they THROW them at you in the restaurant... LOVE it!

Not only do they serve enormous portions, but they also have staff walking around, serving extra food!
FOR FREE!!!   

LOOK at the cup!  Yes.  That is what they serve the drinks inside!  It is bigger than his head!

We had fried chicken, BBQ, hamburgers, chicken-fried steak, mash potatoes, green beans, fried okra, corn, peaches, fries, fried shrimp and collard greens!  The strawberry shortcakes were free, along with fried potatoes, and much more!

We had so much fun here as a family.  I really want to encourage anyone who visits the Gulf Shores area of Alabama, to eat at Lambert's and make some fun, yummy food, family memories. :)


Thursday, April 25, 2013

State #28!! Alabama!! & The USS Alabama!!

There is just something so tough and so awesome about battleships.  I mean, just LOOK  at that!

The USS Alabama was used to defend our freedom from WWII to Iraq.

You can't help but marvel at all the big 'guns.'

Throughout the tour, we saw many, many missiles like this.  WOW!

You can't help but pretend, your 'one of the guys,' fighting the enemies, when your on this bad boy! ;)

Todd and I even had our 'Titanic moment.....so romantic.....

Uh, WHAT?!  Silly boys :)

Everything is massive on this ship, except for all the narrow passageways and stairs.

I think my kids lied down on every bed we passed!  EEeeewwww.....

There is a church on the ship, but unfortunately, it would not fit more than 20 soldiers at a time.

We also walked through the museum, holding combat aircraft.  Here is one of the Red Tail planes, flown by the Tuskegee men!!  Too cool!

The Black Bird.  Now, that is just 'Bad. To. The. Bone.'

We also ventured onto the USS Drum Submarine.

I have a new respect for all Navy soldiers.  How they can live and THRIVE in such a small space for a long amount of time is just dumbfounding!
I mean, I know that I am living in 400 square feet with 6 other people, but, at least I can go for a walk, or hike on LAND!  These guys were just stuck, out at sea, for months and months!

HUGE Mark 14 Torpedo!

The kids loved turning the wheels, pushing the knobs and trying to lock all the doors. ;)

It was a gorgeous day in Mobile, Alabama, with amazing sights to appreciate.  As we walked through these retired vessels, we kept recognizing how different our technology is today, and how far advanced our ships must be now.
Thank you to all the committed veterans who have served and are serving our great nation!  I am in awe of how blessed we are, to be protected by the BEST!


Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Bayou Segnette State Park, Westwego, LA. - Campground Review

We stayed at Bayou Segnette for 6 days, while visiting the New Orleans area.  I ABSOLUTELY recommend this park!  Although, there are no full hook-ups, it is THE PLACE to stay. ;)

Price -$26/night for electric and water and a dump station (in the winter, it is less $$)

Amenities - HUGE sites, trails, free laundry (although the machines were broke :( ), a water park, and only 20 minutes from the Algiers Ferry (which is free), that takes you to Canal Street in New Orleans.

We felt safe here, and it was a quiet, clean place to stay.  I would definitely stay here again, if we were in the area.


Audubon Acres RV Park, Abbeville, LA. - Campground Review

If you want to visit Avery Island in Louisiana, then you need to stay at Audubon Acres!  The owner is so helpful and kind, and just so genuine.  It is a very small rv park, but on private property, in the country.  We felt very safe and liked the simplicity of the park, compared to the busy, traffic-filled city parks.

Price - $10/ night for full hook-ups, using our Passport America discount!  Love it!

Amenities - none, except a huge field for the kids to play. ;)

We would definitely stay here again!  Tell Joe we sent you. :)


Eagles Landing RV Park, Holt, FL. - Campground Review

While we were visiting the Pensacola area, we stayed in Holt, FL., about 45 minutes away, at this nice campground.

The staff were very friendly and welcoming.  Although it was not our first choice, (the state park was full) :) we enjoyed our time here.

Price- $160 for a week with full hook ups

Amenities- A very small bath room, no shower house and a small laundry room.  It is a 'no frills' park, but that was ok with us.  I did use the laundry facility; which worked great.

If we were in the area, we would probably try to get into the state park again, but this park is a nice
 'Plan B." :)


Monday, April 15, 2013

New Orleans - Jazz Festival!

There are SOO many things I love about traveling full time.  One of the most fun parts of this lifestyle, are the 'coincidences.'   Here we are, traveling on the Algiers Ferry to New Orleans for the day, after we just found out that today is the 30th Anniversary of the Jazz Festival!

Who knew?!

All along Canal Street and the Riverwalk were vendors and booths galore!

New Orleans is NOT a family friendly city, however, it does possess a culture that I wanted my children to experience.

Everywhere you turn, there is Jazz music playing.

The history of the city is also celebrated.  Here is Master General Andrew Jackson's memorial.

St. Louis Cathedral is the oldest in America.

Established as a parish in 1720, it is just stunning.

So many people just sitting around, eating and listening to Jazz. :)

The French Quarter has so much style and character.

If you visit New Orleans, you also HAVE to eat their yummy, beignets!!

As we stood in line, we listened to more Jazz. ;)

Oh, so awesome!  We had powdered sugar EVERYWHERE!  It was lovely. :)

Then, off to the famous, Mother's Restaurant!  Yee Haw!

I wanted the kids to eat REAL, AUTHENTIC, Cajun, dishes.
So, we ordered Gumbo, Jambalaya, Crawfish Etouffee, Creole, and a couple of Poy-boy Sandwiches!  Our waitress was so great, she also brought out some free bread and desserts!

The etouffee was definitely the family favorite!

Another 'site' to see is the above ground cemeteries.  So different...so creepy....

I am glad that we ventured to New Orleans.  We had an enjoyable time; listening to music, eating yummy cajun food and soaking in the sunshine.


Wednesday, April 10, 2013

State #27!! - Louisiana!!

"On the Road Again......"

Our first stop in Louisiana is Abbeville.  This is a very small town, just a few miles from Avery Island, LA.  We ABSOLUTELY, positively, with out question, HAD to visit......

The Tabasco Factory!!  Yee Haw!

Every single bottle of Tabasco sauce, made in over 150 different countries all over the world, are made right here, in this very factory!  You could actually smell the sauce outside!

Mr. McIlhenny came up with the recipe on his own, in his own home and decided to start selling it in local stores, after his friends encouraged him.

Little did he know then, that today, he would produce over 700,000 bottles A DAY!  WOW!

This is just the beginning of the days batch. :)

Yep.  We're a spicy-food, kind of family.  ;)

After a short film and a walk through the bottling tour, we ventured to the Tabasco Country Store.

Would you believe that they have a counter full of FREE SAMPLES!!

Not only did we try all the sauces, hot sauces, dressings and spices......

But, we also tried their chili and ICE CREAM!  Whoo hoo!

Seriously.  Have YOU ever tried Raspberry-Chipotle or Jalapeno-Vanilla ice cream?!

Too funny!  It is cold and tastes like the yummy flavor, but then it leaves your throat on fire. ;)

Parker couldn't decide if he liked it or not.  HA!

We had a great time and are so thankful to be on the road, learning and growing together as a family.