Friday, September 18, 2015

The Good and the Not so Good(Lots of pics!)

We travelled to Maryland yesterday.  It was a 3 hour drive from Quakertown PA, but with stops it's always longer.  We also had the added bonus of Emma crying and Lily throwing a few hellacious fits that included screaming, throwing things and biting other people's fingers(technically it was a thumb). Ahhh-I love travel days so much.

But YAY!!!!!!!!  We have GOOD internet here!!  So I am going on a posting spree these next few days!

So, lets backtrack a little.  After Fort Niagara and staying at the Niagara County Campground for a week( good place-clean, good showers,quiet, nice people) we headed east toward Massachusetts. We stayed one night in Walworth NY in a lady's driveway.  Her name was Pat and she was on  We were able to hookup to her water and electric for free.  Pat was in her 80's and you never would have guessed it. She is an avid camper and civil war reenactor.  Couldn't help but think how her and my FIL would have some great conversations.

This was a picture that didn't get in the Fort Niagara post but I wanted to add it.  Snuggle Bug was too far forward in the pic and too short so he didn't get in it =(  We really need a selfie stick!!

Pat's driveway.  Such a nice lady.

The kids found a frog and Little Miss wasn't one bit afraid

Baby Girl snoozing away

Then we headed out the next day to Jamesville NY.  No hook ups here but it was on a gentleman's farm in his field.  The scenery was beautiful. This was another find through and was free.  The owner wasn't actually  home but he said his son,Buckey, was there so it would be fine to stay. Buckey's 7 year old daughter even brought us some goodies from their garden.

I put potato soup in the crockpot before we left so we could have a warm meal upon arriving( it was quite cold that day).  The crockpot would run off the battery while we traveled.  But something must have happened shortly after  we hit the road because the water in the pot was warm but the potatoes were not cooked through. We had a hodgepodge for supper that night.  Got to roll with it sometimes. 

Our view out the dining room window

scenery in Jamesville

Then it was on to Medusa NY thanks to boondockerswelcome again.
This was a homeschool family of 8 just like us.  We stayed behind Jason and April's general store and they took us to a nearby park and stream. The warm, fresh baked loaf of bread they gave us was devoured within minutes.  If memory serves me right I think we got some zucchini and/or cucumbers from them also.

Sissy with some of the other family

Bubba exploring

Parked behind the store.
We were able to hook up to their electrical but relied on a full fresh water tank to get us through the night.

The family closed their store in December and are wanting to sell it. They are renting their house and hoping to travel the country full time once the store sells.  You can see their RV to the right in the picture.  They were on the road from February till June, I believe, before heading back to the Medusa area.  They visited like 22 states during those few months! 

 The next day  found us sitting at a rest stop with the trailer, calling places to find where we were going to stay that night!!  We didn't have any service,even to call anywhere, while in Medusa.  After about 2 hours we finally found somewhere and were on the road.

We were able to take the interstate across the mountains without any issues.  We put more of the weight in our trailer towards the front on the tongue and also lowered the hitch.  This stopped our swaying problems.

Our plan was to stay at Travelers Woods in northern Massachusetts for a few days then head toward the coast to visit Plimoth Plantation, the Mayflower II and Plimoth Rock.  However, the night of our arrival I found out that the next day was FREE day at Plimoth!!  That was like a $180 savings for us!!!
So even though it was a 2 1/2 hour drive from our campground, we loaded up very early the next morning and visited Plymoth. We knew we would encounter more people being free day but couldn't pass up that kind of savings.  We all gave it 4 1/2 stars out of 5 and the crowds were the other 1/2 a star.  Very worth it!

The kids just watched Napoleon Dynamite for the first time so the tether ball was a big draw. Bubba ended up smacking his dad in the face wit the ball shortly after this picture. 
 I got it on video *classic*

This was posted in the bathrooms.  Yikes!!
 Needless to say none of us went out after dark if we could help it lol

Because we saved money there we went ahead and ate at the Plantation.  The food was great and huge portions too!  I  was even able to get a grilled veggie burger that was sooo yummy!
And because we didn't need to camp closer to the coast then(since we had already visited Plimoth), that saved us a ton of money on the VERY expensive(and way over budget) campgrounds in that area.

We would all love to go back to the Plymouth/Cape Cod area in the future.  There was so much more to see and explore.  I just love the history there. We actually went down the first street ever in America.  How cool is that??

The plantation has an area representing the life of Indians at the time of the pilgrims arrival. Did you know that before Pilgrims came there weren't any flies or bugs in this area?  An Indian lady told us that the settlers brought that with them when they brought their cattle to this land.  So interesting.  

Inside a wigwam(very spacious). 

Candle Dipping

Views from the plantation

The meeting house

the plantation had actors that portrayed real colonist and you could ask them questions as if it were around the year 1624 and they were answer according to the life they were portraying.

everything was done as it would have been in 1624.  Even their gardens grew the same produce. They are producing a strain of corn exactly like that which grew in 1620. The cobs then only had 6-8 rows of kernels on them.  It is important to the plantation to be as historically accurate as possible.

Inside a house

Little Miss kneading bread made of corn meal

Blurry, I know.  It says it was the 1st street in America.

Captain's quarters

The Mayflower II also had some method actors that portrayed passengers.  There was also regular employees aboard who answered questions from the present day. Did you know that kids back then were breastfed to the age of 4 or 5 and then put on beer??  They thought beer was more nutritious than water because of the yeast and calories in it. 

the kids got some shells from the shore while the tide was out

Little Miss was interested in these little berries near the shore

That's Little Miss running around

and Hubby chasing after her

All of us finally got in a picture!!

Baby Girl's hair is growing and the tuft on the top of her head has been sticking up lately

We were right by the New Hampshire/Vermont line so we one evening we headed north to get some Maple Syrup.  It was some of the best syrup we have ever had!

After several days at Travelers Woods we headed south to Connecticut to Wilderness Lake Campground for a one night stay.  We met a fellow RVer named Bob who was full timing it with his wife.  Nice guy who loved racing and gave us wood for our fire.

Right by our trailer was a steep hill.  You can't really tell by this picture though.  

That steep drop off ended up being a blast for the older kids though.

NW New Jersey was our next stop at Mahlon Dickerson Reservation which was a state park. Very pretty area with great bathrooms and showers.  Unfortunately NJ was undergoing a drought and they had just issued a ban on fires.  So we never got to use the neat council ring in the woods while there.

Mahlon Dickerson

Our side view(those are the bathrooms/showers)

Some pretty cool millipedes

view across from our site

waiting on the boys to set up the trailer

We did however meet a nice mechanic who helped us when we went to leave for Carlo's Bake Shop (Cake Boss) one day and our van made a horrible clanking sound every time we pushed down on the gas.

$350 later our van was fixed.  But the mechanic got it done that same day which was great because we had to leave the campground in 2 days and ind of need our van to haul the trailer around.
It ended up being a spark plug that popped out and they had to rethread it back in which is labor intensive.  So glad it happened when we weren't pulling the trailer though!

So the next day we all piled back in the van and went to Hoboken to see the Cake Boss-well his shop anyhow.  It took us 50 minutes to get there and AN HOUR AND A HALF to park. That experience also included trying to enter a parking garage that was too short for our 15 passenger van and we had  to back out of then.  Fun times, fun times...

We eventually found a space and walked down to the bakery all got a canoli(except me) and everyone else split 2 lobster tails.  They also got a peanut butter cupcake.  But not me. Boo.
I met a nice gentleman in line at the bakery though.  Baby Girl reminded him of his daughter so we started chatting. He was from Miami and spoke what I believe was Italian. He was currently portraying a pilot in a Russian movie being shot in NYC.  He loved our road trip and told me to get a youtube channel to vlog. He hasn't been the 1st person to ask if I had a youtube channel.
 So many interesting people out there and they all have their own unique story.

Nothing left but a ton of crumbs

Licking the wrapper

That brought us to Labor Day weekend and we could not find anywhere that had spots open.  We FINALLY found a place that was even reasonably priced in east jersey at Turkey Swamp Park( despite the name it was really nice!  Best playground of any campground yet. The showers were bad though).

There were lots of kids there and our kiddos had a blast making friends.  It was their favorite campground so far because of that.

We also went to Thomas Edison's home and his laboratory which I think was while we were at Mahlon Dickerson but may have been at Turkey Swamp.  I can't remember.

We got to do that field trip for free because we have the America the Beautiful Pass.  It was very interesting and the kids really enjoyed it. Did you know that Edison held  over a 1,000 patents? Me neither.

 I highly recommend visiting, even if you have to pay.

we couldn't take pictures inside the house so I just have some from the outside.  Edison and his wife, Mina, are also buried on the property but no one told us that till later.  You can also go to Edison's garage on the property and see his old Ford's(again, something we didn't know at the time).

The Chemistry lab.  It was just locked up one day and everything in there is left from that time. 
 It's like a time capsule.  

Edison tried to help find a new source of rubber during the war and made a hybrid plant that he could harvest latex(I believe) out of.  It wasn't durable enough to make a good tire though

Edison's desk exactly how he left it the last day of his life.

Edison's library

Edison would catch some zzz's here in the library when he was busy

A still picture of his first movie.  People screamed and left from their seats because they thought the train was going to run them over.

Edison invented the time clock.  This one at his factory has 2 additional hands on that his workers drew in black marker depicting the time that his body last left the building after his body laid in state in the library.

The phone

Edison's personal lab

work floor

the machines were records were made

Plain ole cuteness here

I will do another post or two  tomorrow and hopefully we'll get all caught up!!

Today is Sissy's 14th Bday so need to go spend some time with her and run to the store.

Many Blessings,
The Mama

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