We were scheduled to stay in The Villages through the end of the month, but Nicolas had a scheduled 4-day weekend, so we left a couple days early to meet him up in Jacksonville.
It was a short drive for us, just 140 miles, to Kelly’s Countryside RV Park in Callahan, FL. With the exception of about 15 miles on I-75 to avoid going through Ocala, we travelled US-301 the entire way. It was a pleasant drive, and we had arrived and were all set up by 1:30pm.
Now we just had to wait for Nicolas to arrive! He had to work all day, so it would be evening by the time he got there.
Sure enough, by the time he got out of work, picked up Casey at home and packed his car, and dealt with rush hour traffic in Charleston, it was after 9:30 by the time he finally rolled in to the campground.
We were happy to see him!
He’s in shopping mode for a truck and 5th wheel to live in at his new duty station, so we spent Friday looking around in Jacksonville. There weren’t too many trucks to look at, but we did stop at several RV dealers. He’s narrowing in on the size and amenities he wants, and has a few Manufacturers on his radar – still researching!
With our shopping for the day almost complete, we stopped at Jacksonville Beach for a look around.
The pier was damaged by Hurricane Matthew last fall, and it still remains closed. It looks deserted in this picture.
It was a beautiful day, but there weren’t too many people at the beach – just a few soaking in the sun, and some surfers out near the pier. They were brave – that water was a little chilly!
Since we had another RV dealership we wanted to stop at before going to dinner, we thought we’d get an ice cream or yogurt as a snack to tide us over. I searched on my phone, and found a place called the Flava Moose . . . it sounded interesting, so we walked in that direction.
The first thing we noticed when we walked in was a huge chalkboard full of flavors, and options for milk, and sweetener . . . we were very confused. There were some people ordering ahead of us, so we watched the process.
It turned out to be made-to-order ice cream. You picked a flavor (from a list of about 100 – including broccoli!), a milk (whole, 2%, coconut milk, and some others that I don’t remember), and a sweetener (sugar, stevia, brown sugar, honey). Then, the girl behind the counter mixed up your ingredients and poured them into a shallow stainless steel pan that was apparently very cold. As she mixed them with a flat spatula, it became ice cream before your eyes.
Once it was frozen, you could select 2 ingredients to mix into your ice cream, and then she would scoop it into a waffle bowl.
Tom had mexican chocolate, I had caramel, and Nicolas had hazelnut - they were all really good!
Definitely a novel idea – just don’t be in a hurry – it’s a labor-intensive process!
We finished our day with a stop at General RV and dinner at Olive Garden – where they were having their Eat One, Take One Deal – a good deal with all of our favorites on the menu, so we all left with a dinner to enjoy this week!
We got off to a slow start on Saturday – Nicolas made bacon on the grill and I made cinnamon french toast, and cut up some of the strawberries that Nicolas had picked last weekend and brought with him.
After breakfast, I made a strawberry pie from some more of the strawberries – YUM – that will make a nice dessert after a day at the beach!
With the pie in the fridge, we loaded up the Jeep, took the top down, and headed to Fernandina Beach on Amelia Island.
It was a beautiful day – temps in the mid-80s, and not a cloud in the sky – a perfect day to be at the beach!
We all soaked up some sun (maybe a little too much!) and enjoyed the afternoon.
I read my book while Nicolas and Tom walked along the beach, and later Tom and I took a walk along the water – still chilly!
We wondered if Casey could have come to the beach with us, and assumed she wouldn’t be allowed, but I guess were were wrong – there were quite a few dogs enjoying this day at the beach!
There was some evidence of beach erosion and repairs still on-going since the hurricane here also.
There were a lot of people at the beach, and we were sure glad not to be sitting next to this guy, who kept throwing food up in the air to the seagulls so his wife could take pictures of him! The people who were unlucky enough to be next to him looked really annoyed!
After 2-1/2 hours, we decided that we’d had enough sun,
and it was time to pack up and head home. What a great day – we are all a little redder than we started out (especially Nicolas, who’s still whining about his back hurting!), but it was worth it!
Back home, we grilled steaks for dinner, I helped Nicolas do his taxes, and we enjoyed our strawberry pie for dessert – YUM!!