We have been living in a whirlwind…. then throw in a holiday!

Oh. My. Goodness. So much to say since we last posted! December 1st was our last post….sorry for the huge gap without hearing from us. I had mentioned that we bought a house in Naples….little did we know all that was ahead of us when our offer was accepted! We closed on the house on December 27th, WITHOUT BEING THERE!! Craziness! We had so much documentation to pull together to submit for closing, PLUS traveling back to Illinois for Christmas for almost 3 weeks, PLUS gathering an unbelievable amount of paperwork just to get our Florida Driver’s Licenses and register the vehicles! BUT, I’m happy to say, the worst (almost) is behind us. The closing went very well, thanks to an excellent realtor and finance guru! I say “almost” because we still have 2 big storage units filled to the ceiling with our household belongings in Illinois. Our plan is to continue on our motorhome journey until Easter. Then we will be sorting through all that “stuff” to determine what to move to Florida, what to give away, what to try to sell and what to just plain throw away!! Does anyone want some treasures?? Just let us know!

So, since we last posted….we drove back to Illinois for Christmas, arriving on December 11th. On December 12, I had some minor surgery on my right index finger, removing a cyst by my nail. All went well!

Easy peazie….done under local!

Just 2 days later we celebrated Christmas with my two kids and families. Casey and Natalie did an awesome job hosting at their home in Gurnee. We stayed the night and went to church with them the next day. What a blessing!

Kailey loved her pajama pants but seemed thrilled with a “weighted” blanket! Who knew a 13 year old would be so happy with a blanket!?
Talk about the joy of Christmas on a kids face!! It was an electronic year for Garrett, age 7.
Gramps and I got the coolest gift from the grandkids. We love walking the beach looking for treasures – now we have the perfect place to display our finds!
Casey surprised us with megalodon teeth which he found while diving the Cooper River in South Carolina.

A week later, we got to celebrate another Christmas with Howie’s kids and families. Mark and Tracie hosted the gang again this year. It’s always a really fun time and so good to see everyone. I will (hopefully) post some pics in a bit

Yet another week later, we celebrated again with my sisters and families. This time we were at my niece’s new home in Naperville, IL. We had a terrific Italian meal and again a great time! My nephew Luke is about to graduate from the Chicago Fireman Academy, a life long dream. He’s been assigned to a fire station on Calumet in Chicago.

Luke gave Chicago Firefighter T-shirts to Kailey and Garrett So cool.

Immediately following our third Christmas celebration, Howie and I EACH drove cars to stay the night with Howie’s mom in Vienna, IL. We decided now was the time to get our second car to our home in Naples so following a long evening of driving, we drove tandem for 11 hours the next day, back to Gulf Shores, where Junebug awaited our arrival. We were certainly grateful for the safe trip back to Alabama.

The last day of the year, we drove to Pensacola (about 30 minutes from Gulf Shores) to register the vehicles and get our Florida Drivers license. The DMV is VERY organized but you have to practically give your first born to get your license. But, mission accomplished!

If you are ever in the Pensacola and/or the Destin area, we highly recommend eating at McGuire’s Irish Pub. What a very fun and interesting place…..the ceilings and walls are COVERED with dollar bills!! And, bonus, the food is wonderful and at a moderate price. Howie had the best ever Reuben Sandwich and I had Shepherd’s pie. We recommend eating there!

Here’s another recommendation for you if you’re in the area. We stopped at Joe Patti’s fresh seafood store. We stopped about 5:00 PM on New Year’s Eve and the place was packed!!! Howie picked up a pound of fresh shrimp, sautéed them in butter and said they were the best shrimp cocktail he ever had. Personally, I wouldn’t know….I don’t eat Shrimp!!

Have you every had a Florida avocado? Well, Howie has! It was huge and he reports that it tasted smooth and like butter!

Destin, is as you know, a vacation hot spot! But we unfortunately have not had the best weather while here. Not complaining, mind you, it’s way better than the cold and snow in Illinois, but it’s been pretty cool and overcast. We got to the beach only a couple of times and today, a severe storm was predicted. Fortunately, it wasn’t as bad as anticipated….but the Gulf was a bit “stirred up”. But still very beautiful…..I just love the sea!!

In four days, we’ll be heading for Disney World! Yes, we’re both just a couple of big kids. Disney is one of our favorite places. From there we’ll be going to Key West and will arrive in Naples around January 29th. We’ll be at our new home for almost a month getting “things in order” before continuing on, touring Florida. We will keep you posted on our journey but until then Happy Trails!

Published by Ramblin' Rosie

We are retired nurses with a desire to explore the United States, and beyond, in our Winnebago motor home. We are accompanied our three pups, Fanny May, Kaiser, and Rosie.

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