10.03.17 National Route 66 & Transportation Museum in Elk City, Oklahoma

Tuesday, October 3, 2017 – I wrote this really long, very informative full of pictures blog post about our time last Friday at the National Route 66 & Transportation Museum in Elk City, Oklahoma.  It was our last Route 66 place to visit.

I went after writing all that  outside to find some candy corn shaped rocks to paint and when I came back in there was not much left on the screen and I hadn’t saved.  Oh my!  Well I’ve reconstructed it as best I could.

This was all only one block from our RV Park.  This is where the tour begins:

After we paid our $4 (Senior) entry fee and looked around a gift shop, I see Roy climbing into a pink 1955 Cadillac!  For the last month we’ve seen lots of old cars and they all said “Do not touch or climb in.”  I thought Roy had lost his mind and tried to get him to get out!  Then I realize there is a sign that says “Step on the gas and watch a video of going down Route 66 in this Cadillac.”  Something like that.

There were a couple of French lady tourist in the back seat of a classic red Chevy Impala at a mock drive-in theater.

There was a room of Popeye and his gang memorabilia that just captured my heart.  This bench was really a cute addition!

Several other old vehicles were on exhibit and we saw those before going on to the actual museum in a second building.

In this not really large but very well done ride along Route 66 a lot was packed into it

When we walked around one corner and there sat the same year and color Corvette that we owned before we had kids, my eyes got so big!  Very cool experience for us! Our trip along Route 66 started in Williams, Arizona and all the major stops we made going east to Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.  Route 66 continues on to Chicago, Illinois but we’ve visited that area before so we headed to eastern Oklahoma.

I know, I know I said I wasn’t going to reconstruct it but here’s some of them!

The Old Town Museum is another museum in the complex. Early Oklahoma pioneer life is depicted as visitors wander through this grand two story Victorian house.

 Then there is the Farm and Ranch museum and the Blacksmith Shop

We owned a house in Hammond with a very tall windmill so they have a special place in our heart.  We saw several (none as tall as ours) in and outside of the Farm and Ranch Museum.

I caught Roy calling one of his girlfriends on this old time rotary dial public phone booth!

Blacksmith Shop

The last museum part was an old town with replicas of a schoolhouse, opera house, doctor’s office and chapel, a bank, physicians office, railroad office, and more.  Look at the straight jacket in this old physicians office!

Look at the bank’s safe, it looks like a big truck tire!

    

There were way more photos taken but I lost a lot of them the day after we went.  There was A LOT to see this day and most days recently.  We’ve mostly been very selective about what we go to on this trip.  My stamina and balance aren’t really great so doing things like the Grand Canyon I just settled for getting to see a little of it this time.  God’s world is so amazing that it does get overwhelming seeing so much out west.  I am thankful that we have been blessed to see so much of this country and recommend RVing state to state to all of you!

In between all of this fun and amazingly cool things to see and do I’ve begun having more odd brain issues way too often.  We are wrapping up this journey and should be home latter part of October.  This week we are in Checotah, Oklahoma where we stayed two years ago when the adjoining lake was flooding into the park.  This is a link to that blog post about all the flooding.  I’m going to take some pictures of how really nice it is here when it’s not flooding!

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Next week we will be back in good old Shirley, Arkansas.  That’s where Roy met the great remote flying guys, I found all the rocks my little heart could ever handle and we got to eat the most amazing BBQ three times.   We will do all three of those things again this visit!  John and Barbara Tate, if you would like to come us or meet us halfway for another visit we’d love it!

From there we’ll make our way back to Amite, Louisiana and give Dora and Boots a rest for a good long time!

Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!

05.28.15 Part Two – Oklahoma City’s Myriad Botanical Gardens and Observatory

1239871_424507554319814_426618956_nThursday, May 28, 2015 – The second half of our visit to Oklahoma City was spent enjoying the beauty of their Myriad Gardens and Observatory. Click here to read the post about the first half of our day.

This amazing place is smack dab in the middle of downtown Oklahoma City.  I thought how nice it would be for New Orleans to have the raunchy part of the French Quarter plucked out and this type of beauty put in its place.   Right behind much of the beauty were skyscrapers where people were working.  How wonderful this must be to work in this beautiful and clean city and get to spend time in the gardens.

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Aerial view of the gardens and conservatory I found on the internet!

20150528_143429 20150528_143520 20150528_143547   20150528_143829 20150528_143839 20150528_143855 20150528_144032 20150528_144252 20150528_144534    20150528_144706 20150528_144735 20150528_144941The pictures below are from within the The Crystal Bridge Tropical Observatory, the round building below.

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From their website: The Crystal Bridge Tropical Conservatory’s unique design has earned attention and praise in the architectural community. It is 224 feet long, 70 feet in diameter, and is covered by 3,028 sections of translucent, double-layered acrylic panels. The Conservatory includes 13,000 square feet of plant display area in two distinct climates: the Tropical Wet Zone, which is at the south end and is watered daily; and the Tropical Dry Zone at the north end which receives water from April through September, followed by drought from November through March. Some 2,000 varieties of plants and a 35-foot waterfall round out the spectacular features of the Conservatory.
 20150528_145253 20150528_145309 20150528_145354 20150528_145816   20150528_15013520150528_145318 20150528_145445 20150528_145531 20150528_145914 As I press the PUBLISH key to get this out to ya’ll we are on the road north headed to Wichita, Kansas for a week. The route we are taking is more scenic than interstate so it will take us a little longer than usual to get there.  It should be a four hour trip but as usually happens with us since we stop a lot it could take 6-8 hours!  The weather is already drying up as we get out of the rainy area we were in.  Hope this continues!
Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!

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05.28.15 Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building Outdoor Symbolic Memorial in Oklahoma City

alfred p murrah buildingThursday, May 28, 2015 –  The first stop on today’s adventure was at the Outdoor Symbolic Memorial in Oklahoma City where the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building was bombed on April 19, 1995.  I’ve copied information from their website about the various areas at the memorial and added my pictures to each section.

I personally was overwhelmed at the emotions I felt walking through the area, seeing each of the individual memorials and the hundreds of remembrances left on the fence.  The reflection pool being where the building originally was and the symbolism of the two gates – one 9:01 and the other 9:03.  I hope the descriptions below will help you get some tiny idea of what an important and well done memorial this is. It was a very reverent place.  No one was yelling or running around and it shows the true respect visitors here have for those who lost their lives in this horrible terrorist attack.

The stones we walked on around the reflection pool were recovered from the building.

20150528_140843Gates of Time
These monumental twin gates frame the moment of destruction – 9:02 a.m. – and mark the formal entrances to the Memorial. The East Gate represents 9:01 a.m. on April 19, and the innocence of the city before the attack. The West Gate represents 9:03 a.m., the moment we were changed forever, and the hope that came from the horror in the moments and days following the bombing.

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East gate represents 9:01 one minute before the attack at 9:02
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West gate represents 9:03 – you may not be able to see the 9:03 in the picture

Reflecting Pool
The pool occupies what was once N.W. Fifth Street. Here, a shallow depth of gently flowing water helps soothe wounds, with calming sounds providing a peaceful setting for quiet thoughts. The placid surface shows the reflection of someone changed forever by their visit to the Memorial.

20150528_140700 20150528_141816Field of Empty Chairs
The 168 chairs represent the lives taken on April 19, 1995. They stand in nine rows to represent each floor of the building, and each chair bears the name of someone killed on that floor. Nineteen smaller chairs stand for the children. The field is located on the footprint of the Murrah Building.

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The smaller chairs represent the 19 children killed in the bombing. Visits leave flowers on the little one’s memorials.

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Survivor Wall
On the east end of the Memorial stand the only remaining walls from the Murrah Building. These walls remind us of those who survived the terrorist attack, many with serious injuries. Today, more than 600 names are inscribed on salvaged pieces of granite from the Murrah Building lobby.

20150528_140901The Survivor Tree
The Survivor Tree, an American Elm, bore witness to the violence of April 19, 1995, and withstood the full force of the attack. Years later, it continues to stand as a living symbol of resilience. The circular promontory surrounding the tree offers a place for gathering and viewing the Memorial.

20150528_140146 20150528_140156Rescuers’ Orchard
Like the people who rushed in to help, this army of nut- and flower-bearing trees surrounds and protects the Survivor Tree. An inscription encircling the Survivor Tree facing the orchard reads: To the courageous and caring who responded from near and far, we offer our eternal gratitude, as a thank you to the thousands of rescuers and volunteers who helped.

20150528_135908Children’s Area
In the aftermath of the blast, children from around the country and the world sent in their own expressions of encouragement and love. That care is represented today by a wall of tiles painted by children and sent to Oklahoma City in 1995. In addition, buckets of chalk and chalkboards built into the ground of the Children’s Area give children a place where they can continue to share their feelings — an important component of the healing process.

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We left our mark! Love this idea of leaving chalk out so people can write their thoughts.

20150528_134811 20150528_134834 20150528_134859 The Fence
The first Fence was installed to protect the site of the Murrah Building. Almost immediately, people began to leave tokens of love and hope on the Fence. Those items now total more than 60,000 and are collected and preserved in our archives. Today, more than 200 feet of the original Fence gives people the opportunity to leave tokens of remembrance and hope.

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We did not go to the Memorial Museum which is an interactive learning experience that takes you on a chronological self-guided tour through the story of April 19, 1995, and the days, weeks and years that followed the bombing of Oklahoma City’s Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building. The story tracks the remarkable journey of loss, resilience, justice and hope.

After taking so many pictures today and wanting to share so many of them with ya’ll I decided to break up what we saw today into two posts.  Tomorrow I will share with you the amazing Myriad Gardens and Observatory that are just a few blocks from the memorial in downtown Oklahoma City.

We’ll leave here early in the morning headed to Halstead, Kansas (outside of Wichita) in the morning for more adventure and fun.

Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!

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05.27.15 On our way to Oklahoma City with a stop along the way!

1774c1e604817d12570703aa7b78b4b2Wednesday, May 27, 2015 – We pulled out of Terra Starr RV Park in Checotah, Oklahoma at 9am this morning headed west to Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.  We’re making a stop along the way to have lunch with my long time friend from church Susan Randels Ward in Shawnee, OK about 90 minutes west of Tulsa.  We have not seen each other in at least 30 years, probably more.

Here’s Susan and I today!   20150527_125026 Susan took us into the old downtown part of Shawnee for lunch at an old local restaurant, Hamburger King.   You order on the phone that is in your booth.  I got to experience ordering that way and it was cool!  The burgers were quite delicious and it was really neat to enjoy some of their local charm.  We both really appreciate Susan taking us there!

20150527_12441320150527_12493820150527_125012On our way there we drove through Oklahoma Baptist University where Susan graduated from.  Her dad, my childhood pastor, and her mom (Bro. and Mrs. Randels as I knew them) went there also!  Beautiful old campus that has grown considerably since Susan graduated.

20150527_123013churchWe had a wonderful visit, catching up on everyone in each other’s lives.  We have so many common childhood and youth memories and couldn’t possibly touch on each of them during a short visit, but we tried hard too!

On Tuesday (yesterday) we went into Tulsa, OK and looked around.  It’s a spread out beautiful city.  We made a 262086_10151243592759706_1637841295_nstop at Sam’s Club and ate for the first time ever at a Whataburger.  Very good food!  We wanted to see a movie but of the 10 showing there wasn’t one we wanted to see.

On our way back to the RV Park we stopped at Matt and Alanna’s again.  Matt was outside working hard cutting the grass and we sat inside in the cool with Alanna and the girls.  We played and visited.  When we were here on Saturday none of the pictures we took were of Alanna or I so we corrected that and got a couple today!

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Hope, Alanna and Karstyn
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Rosalyn and Alanna

Until I knew exactly when we were leaving the Tulsa area, I couldn’t make reservations for travels past the park we were in.  That’s usually not a problem.  However yesterday afternoon and evening when I called multiple parks in and around Oklahoma City they were all full.  Seems the flooding and tornadoes have misplaced a lot of people into parks and brought insurance adjusters into the area. I tried RV parks, state parks, city parks, casinos and nothing.  If it was available it was well out of what we heartwant to pay. Because of that, we’ll be staying a couple of nights in a Walmart parking lot in Shawnee and one in Oklahoma City.  We don’t mind the Walmart set up, but we’ve never done it two nights in a row.

expomapTo show you how quickly RV life changes, we now have reservations for two nights at the Shawnee Exposition Center in Shawnee.  A friend (fellow RVer) who is from Oklahoma mentioned it, we called and they have plenty of openings!  We are now here parked under some nice shade trees enjoying the Oklahoma sunshine.  It’s rained so many days that I want to acknowledge the goodness of God’s beautiful sunshine!!!  We are about 35 miles from Oklahoma City and will spend all day tomorrow in the city trying to see and do all we can fit into one day!

Our recent plans were to stay in the OKC area a week and then head west to Amarillo, TX, Albuquerque, NM and up to Colorado.  Seems most of those places are having weather issues also, so we’re changing course again and going to head up toward Wichita, KS after leaving Shawnee and stay for a week at a Coast to Coast park there.  From there we’ll go west to Colorado and hope to stay at least a month in that state!

That about sums up all that’s going on and is planned.

Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!

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05.25.15 Happy Memorial Day, Oklahoma Renaissance Festival

memorial day 2Monday, May 25, 2015 – Happy Memorial Day!  My friend M’Lou Thompson put the following statement on Facebook this morning.  She said it so eloquently that I want to share here:

On this Memorial Day, as I enjoy and appreciate seeing the pictures of husbands, fathers, uncles, etc., posted of handsome young men in uniforms, it occurs to me that we always see these soldiers smiling and looking directly into cameras, and we forget for the moment, or even dismiss, that those cameras show us nothing of their actual sacrifice–the physical and emotional pain, the scars that never heal, and of course for some, the loss of a precious life. We owe them so much!

renaissance2We spent our Memorial Day enjoying the Oklahoma Renaissance Festival at Muskogee, Oklahoma about 40 minutes north of our RV park.  Since 1996, the festival features over 90 artisans and merchants, you can dine on renaissance fare, and interact with scores of dashing nobles, peasants, and regal knights. From the village to the king’s royal castle to the magical depths of the Enchanted Forest, there are dozens of locations throughout the Castle’s Kingdom for visitors to explore and enjoy. The festival is held on weekends in May and Memorial Day.

castle mapA very well constructed and planned event.  Around every corner were small structures with all manner of craft demonstrated and sold, resting places, entertainment from olden times, and renaissance related food.  Since it rained continually for the last few days the walking areas were damp but the sun shone the whole time we were there (an amazing thing right there) and the thousands of people attending the festival all seemed to have a great time.

It’s surprising to see the large percentage of visitors wearing renaissance period clothing.  Several of the small structures sold men’s and women’s clothing, corsets (!!), hats, chains and anything you’d need to dress like they did.   This was their 20th annual event and it clearly has grown into a well oiled production.  They even had people just sitting throughout talking in the old way of talking and visiting with whomever would talk to them.  One man had Roy and I individually sit with him while he made up a song using our name!

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When we stopped for lunch I ordered a Rat on a Stick and Roy got a sandwich with an odd name.  The Rat on a Stick was polish sausage hand wrapped in garlic fry bread.  Yum!  I saw folks walking around with fried turkey legs and lots of old time beer steins all around!

20150525_133944I’d highly recommend this festival to anyone in the area in the month of May each year.  It’s on N Fern Mountain Road in Muskogee, OK.  Here’s several pictures of what all we saw today.  A wonderful family event for families of all ages.

20150525_125814 20150525_130535    20150525_140508 20150525_140546 20150525_141509   20150525_144419 20150525_150517 20150525_150604  20150525_150801 20150525_151728Well that was our Memorial Day adventure!  We are hoping for a good weather day tomorrow as we are going into Tulsa to see what’s there!!! Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!!

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05.18.15 – Our Oklahoma Plans!

 

 

.rv graphic from rvillageMonday, May 18, 2015 – Today my mom, Josie Mae Blum Traylor would have been 95 years old.  If you’ve been reading our blog for a while you know how very much we loved her.  She’s with God in Heaven and I know is looking down on us with love.  Happy Birthday mama!curley dividersNow that I know for sure (or as sure as RVing goes) where we’ll be going in Oklahoma and when, I want to share so you’ll know what will be coming up in our adventures in just a bit. We have two more full days of Arkansas exploring and then we’ll be taking on Oklahoma later this week!

We have to be out of our Coast to Coast resort system for a week before we stay at another one for free, so the two1497562_10152224551210337_2033273789_n  parks we’re staying at in Oklahoma are Passport America Parks.

Terra Starr Park in Checota, OK – near Tulsa, OK

Broken Arrow, Oklahoma to see Matt and Alanna Traylor and their girls!  Alanna was my student worker at Southeastern and her husband Matt grew up with our boys at our home church.

Oklahoma Renaissance Festival  in Muskogee, OK near Tulsa

1503328_10151987866081704_458978760_nWoolaroc Museum and Wildlife Refuge in Bartlesville, OK north of Tulsa

Blue Bell was on the list and hopefully they will re-open by the time we get there.

Braum’s Family Farms – Ice Cream tours of dairy processing plant in Tuttle OK near Tulsa.

curley dividersOn to AAA Adult RV Park in New Castle, OK near Oklahoma City

Visit with Susan Randels, my childhood pastor’s daughter, who was my dear friend throughout my childhood and my youth!

Myriad Gardens OK City–One of Oklahoma City’s  public spaces, offering its visitors a 15 acre natural escape in the 1508080_259556820881303_4045262253006040313_nvery heart of the metro known as downtown Oklahoma City. May also go to the Crystal Bridge Tropical Conservatory within the Gardens grounds.

Oklahoma City Memorial Museum and outside symbolic Memorial – Museum and memorial dedicated to the victims of the bombing in Oklahoma City of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building.

10450134_1105820779444195_2351487549162570804_nThese were all recommended by friends so thanks you guys!  The recommended places in Boise, OK are too far away from our travel route but you never know when our route may take us there in the future!

I have a couple of back up things to do in case some of these don’t work out.  Then again this might be too much for us so we’ll cut back or add as needed.

As always, our RV life is constantly changing so any or all of the above could get changed at a moment’s notice!

I hope you guys will continue following our adventures as Dora and the Explorers take on Oklahoma!!!!

Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!!

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