With all of the work complete on the motorhome, we made a quick call to our next campground to confirm that we could arrive a couple days early, which we could, and then we hit the road.
We only had about a 2 hour drive, which was nice since we didn’t leave until about noon, which is late for us. The drive was pretty easy, and we arrived at Alice Springs Campground in Ionia, MI, without incident.
Our friends, Bill & Linda, spend the summer at this park, and we were able to get the site right next to them for the 5 days. We got set up and gave Bryce a call to let him know we had arrived.
Bryce had the weekend off so that we could take him shopping for “apartment essentials”, but he also ended up with Wednesday off because he had a final exam for his summer class that morning. Once we were settled, we headed into East Lansing to meet him at his apartment.
It’s a nice apartment complex – basically looks like a dorm – but newer than the dorms, and with some nice amenities in the main building. They have a rec room, a fitness center, and a nice covered patio area with a gas grill and several picnic tables and couches. Looks like a good place for dinner on Saturday after shopping.
Bryce’s apartment is nice – they have a good sized living room and kitchen with an eating island,
along with a laundry room and 4 individual bedrooms and bathrooms.
We did a quick survey, and came up with a shopping list for Saturday, and then it was time to meet Hannah and her Mom for dinner. Hannah had her final exam that day too, so they were in town. The five of us had a nice dinner and a great time catching up. We dropped Bryce off at home after dinner, and made plans to pick him up early on Saturday.
He had to work on Thursday and Friday, so we were on our own. We spent those days visiting with Bill & Linda and checking out the campground. There are some walking trails in the back, so we took Casey on a nice long walk.
It was a nice day for walking – overcast and not too hot or muggy.
Even Casey enjoyed the new landscape!
On Saturday, we met Bryce at the apartment and headed out to search for the items on our list. The only big items we needed were a vacuum cleaner and a small refrigerator for his room – other than that it was mostly pots & pans, dishes and silverware, cleaning supplies, towels, and miscellaneous stuff. The list didn’t seem that long, but we were at it all day!
It was a successful shopping day, though, and we got everything he needed. I had brought steaks and corn to cook on their grill, and we invited one of Bryce’s friends to join us, but then Bryce couldn’t get the key to the grill because the office was already closed! This happens every time Bryce tries to grill! I think they need a better system!
We went out to eat instead, and took the steaks and corn back home for dinner on Sunday. Since we had gotten all the shopping done, Bryce was just going to come out to the campground for the afternoon on Sunday.
He did, and we had a nice dinner . . . after he went back home, we joined Bill and Linda over at the pool for a nice relaxing evening.
Bryce is all settled in his home now, the rest of the guys have moved in, and they are ready for the new school year. I’m sure it’s going to be a good one!
On Monday, we drove the last 80 miles to our old stomping grounds. We’re trying out a new campground this year – Totem Pole Park.
It’s a very nice park in a quiet little community about 20 minutes south of Ann Arbor. It’s actually a little closer to my Mom than the other campground we’ve stayed at in the past, the same or slightly closer to Tom’s family, and a little further from work for me, but an easier drive, so that’s OK!
Our first week at “home” was busy – dinner with my Mom, dinner with Tom’s Dad, financial, dental and hair appointments, and one day in the office for me. Talking to my Mom on Friday morning, she told me that she had a little incident with her car, ripping her driver side mirror off. She needed to go grocery shopping, and so did I, so we went down and picked her up to go to Kroger and out to lunch.
Tom and I assessed the car, and determined that the mirror needed to be replaced. We went to a local salvage yard on Saturday to see if we could find one. Her car is a Mercury Grand Marquis, which are pretty common, so we were hopeful that we’d find one.
Walking into the salvage yard office, the walls were lined with these painted hoods.
We made our way into the yard,
and got started on our hunt.
There were a good selection of Grand Marquis and Crown Victoria's (basically the same vehicle), but the mirrors on the silver ones (my Mom’s color) were not useable. We ended up finding a black one that was powered and heated (same as my Mom’s), so we took that one. Along the way, we figured out that we could probably, if we were really careful, change the back of the mirror to the silver one from her mirror.
We bought the mirror, and back at the campground we took the parts off her mirror that we needed. Success! For $25 and several hours of our time, she had a new, working mirror! (I should have taken a picture!)
The rest of the weekend was taken up with family dinners – Saturday with Tom’s family at Olive Garden, and Sunday, on what would have been my Dad’s 90th birthday, at my Mom’s house with most of our family.
We even had my Dad’s favorite birthday cake!
Happy Birthday, Dad!