Wow!  It’s been several weeks since I wrote anything, and now it’s time to catch up and get back on some sort of schedule.  After leaving my last volunteer position with Habitat for Humanity in Vero Beach, Florida, I headed north again to Titusville to visit my cousin and her family.  I chose to stay in a 55+ Mobile Home and RV Park and was so pleasantly surprised.  It was located two blocks from the water, was populated mostly by snowbirds, and the camaraderie could not have been better.  Having a small dog to walk certainly helps break the ice in many cases.  Already though, the ice is usually broken when neighbors witness my driving in alone and setting up or tearing down on my own.  Other women seem awed at times, yet it is becoming more routine and common place to me all the time.  Life on the road is good and filled with blessings galore – new people, new places, and new experiences.

The nine days spent in Titusville were a great time to really connect with my cousin and her family.  We spent a lot of time together, and because she is a veterinarian, she really enjoyed little Mojo.  I was invited to assist at the Easter Party for her youngest daughter’s first grade class, hiding more than a thousand colored eggs in the cafeteria as it was raining.  Another day we drove to Orlando to do some shopping at a Colombian grocery store.  I had not seen some of the products available in MANY years, and I felt like a kid in a candy shop picking up this and that with fond memories flowing rampantly from my very soul!  The taste buds were whirling!

Leaving Titusville, I drove over to the Ocala National Forest and camped at Silver Springs for four nights.  I joined a group of birders at Payne’s Prairie near Gainesville one morning for a three-mile hike across the Prairie, meeting up with several alligators, two snakes, and many birds.  It was a peaceful, beautiful morning.  When I finally reached the look-out platform, I met a very knowledgeable woman who was a glass bottom boat tour guide at the Silver Springs Park.  She encouraged me to come to the park and take a ride over the springs, and Mojo was welcome, too!  We did just that!  The springs are spectacularly clear, providing visibility for a hundred feet down, a whole new world of wonder and God’s marvelous creation.

On Easter Sunday there was a worship service right at the campground with music and an inspirational message that again reminded me how blessed I am.  One gentleman from Canada shared a couple of songs he had written and accompanied himself on the guitar.  Following the service, Mojo and I took off for a ride to see the forest and nearby lakes and rivers.  My disappointment was Mojo not being allowed out of the car in the park.  We will just have to be more diligent at finding places where he is welcome.  We did find a fantastic little shack along the road that served the best hamburgers I’ve had in quite a while!

On Tuesday, April 7, we drove to St. Augustine, Florida to meet up with a very dear friend from Junior High School in Bogota, Colombia.  We found many years had passed, but the bond remains strong.  It was delightful to sit and talk about our “growin’ up” years, and to walk for hours along the beach looking for fossil sharks’ teeth.  I am definitely an ocean person, and spending that time just strolling and beach combing filled me beyond measure.

Three days later, I was headed north again toward Knoxville, TN.  On Saturday, to celebrate my great niece’s twelfth birthday, we drove to downtown Knoxville for lunch, and happened upon a fabulous chalk art contest right in front of the restaurant.  The level of talent was amazing!

My sister, her husband, and I plan to drive to Shenandoah Park in Virginia, spending four nights touring the area, with a complimentary stay as long as we agreed to a two-hour presentation on the resort while there.  We leave on Sunday, taking the three dogs with us.  They’re all good travelers, so it should be a lot of fun.  We might be a tad crowded in Kwincy when all are present, but, what the heck, we’re all family!

Today is my youngest grandson’s fourth birthday.  It sounds very much like a cliche, but I truly do not know where the time goes.  I am looking forward to being with him the first weekend of May when we celebrate his birthday at the neighborhood park with lots of his friends.  I will make his Hot Wheels cake when I arrive on Friday.  Joakim is very excited that Mojo is coming to meet him and will be attending the party.

Moments of grace:  I am often overwhelmed by the blessings bestowed upon me, and it is difficult to single out one over another.  So, today, I am grateful that I am a daughter of God, and that He loves me unconditionally, that He has filled my world with wonder and excitement, family, and good friends.  God bless each of you!

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