Tuesday, November 3, 2015


Tue, Nov 03 - Back in October I posted an article that on October 09 I had seen Neurosurgeon Dr. Peter Alexander who showed me that I had a large Facet Cyst on my spine and would need to have it removed.  He said they would schedule the surgery as quickly as possible, however, that turned out to be a whole month later.  Finally, my Spinal Surgery is scheduled for Monday, November 09, 2015 at St. Mary's Hospital in Richmond, VA.  Dr. Alexander said the surgery would take about four hours.  He would have to remove a part of my vertebrae to get to the Cyst; remove the Cyst; and rebuild the vertebrae.  Following the surgery I will be in the hospital for five days and require about five additional days of rehab.  He did not mention anything about Physical Therapy yet.

I have been popping pain pills for weeks, trying to alleviate some of the pain.  When they don't work, I just lay down with my feet above my head for awhile.  I had been struggling to walk with a cane but recently Carol, a Pickleball player here at TT Chesapeake Bay, loaned me her crutches.  Wow have they made a difference in my mobility.

Things have gotten really busy recently.  I have had pre-admission testing by the hospital; gotten pre-op clearance from my Cardiologist and my PCP.  I have also been fitted for a back brace to wear after the surgery.  It is quite a contraption!!  Tomorrow I'm getting a steroid shot in my left shoulder that had been scheduled for replacement,  I hope that will keep me from having too much pain in that shoulder at the time of spinal surgery.

Thanks to all of you for your concern and good wishes,  Will keep you posted!!


Sep 3 & 4 -  I was thrilled when my daughter Stasia and son Barry came up from North Carolina to stay a couple of days with us at TT Chesapeake Bay!!  We had so much fun together even though I could not do very much having had hip replacement in July and am suffering with the newly diagnosed Spinal Cyst!!

The Kids making after-breakfast Mimosas!  UUUMMM

We had fun with the golf cart.  They insisted that I go to the pool to exercise after having had my right hip replaced.  I must walk!!!  After which we'd spend a little time at the hot tub!

Their time with us ended all too soon.  Here we are telling Stasia good bye.  Barry stayed for an extra day to help Ken and me with some projects around the RV.

Thank you Kids for your visit!!  I love you!!!


Summer 2015 - Last year during the Annual Ken and Faye Ewbank Pickleball Tournament, Mike Roberts who heads the Pickleball program at TT Chesapeake Bay, dedicated the four new Pickleball courts in our name!  We were so surprised.  Mike presented us with this plaque and hung it in a prominent position at the courts!

There were a lot of people playing Pickleball during the summer.  Since I was not able to get on the courts to take pictures, I had the brilliant idea to take pictures as players came off the courts.  (In front of our plaque!!)  Maybe you will recognize some of the players.

The Handicapped Bracket!!  (Bob and Faye)

And these two friends who stayed in the cabin across the road from our RV.  Although we did not see them on the courts, we had to include a picture of Harry and Karen.

Good friend Julie not only plays Pickleball, she is a very popular Ranger at TT Chesapeake Bay this season!

It was so great seeing everyone enjoying their summer here at TT Chesapeake Bay.  Just wish we were more physically able to join them!!


Sun, Sep 6 - This is the day of the 6th Annual Virginia Pickleball Ken & Faye Ewbank Pickleball Tournament at Thousand Trails Chesapeake Bay, Gloucester, VA.  The tournament is run by Mike Roberts who heads the Pickleball program at TT Chesapeake Bay.  Back in 2010 as we were leaving the East coast for several years, Mike asked us if they could name the Labor Day Tournament in our honor!!  Of course!!  That would be wonderful!!!   It is now time for the Sixth Annual Tournament!  We were thrilled that we were at the campground this weekend and could participate in all the fun.

The Application!

Of course the tournament was played on the Ken and Faye Ewbank Pickleball Courts!!

Group picture of the 2015 participants!

Some of the action on the courts!

Mike Roberts, Tournament Director, records the scores on the tournament Ladder.

Some of the spectators enjoying the competition.  Lunch of hot dogs with trimmings was provided for the participants and spectators.

Some of the paraphernalia sold at the tournament.

Medals awarded to winners of the various brackets:  Championship, A, B, and C.  Runners up in each bracket received a jar or pickles (shown on the table above)!

C Bracket.

B Bracket.

A Bracket.  Winners Wayne and Mel.  Wayne insisted that I be in the picture with them.  He said this was payback for all the times I've taken his picture!  HA HA  (Could not find the picture of A Bracket runners up.)

Championship Winners and Runners Up.

And then, later in the afternoon there was a Singles Tournament.  Sorry, did not get pictures for that competition.

It was a wonderful tournament! Congratulations to all of the winners as well as all of the participants.


06/29 – 08/06/2015 - It's not all Pickleball!!  At the end of June, our 15 year old Sharp Microwave/Convection Oven went out!  We were in big trouble because we use it every day.  We went to Kaeser's RV Service in Ashland that we have been using for service for years.  They said they do not handle microwave ovens but when we got one, they would install if for us.  They did contact Sharp and got the replacement part number R1875.  Sharp indicated that the oven was carried by Home Depot, Lowes, Wal-Mart, etc, etc.  We also called Lazy Days in Florida thinking we might get them to replace the oven when we got to Florida later in the year.  They indicated they replaced our style oven with Sharp R1875-T for a cost of  something over $700.

I went on line to find out the difference between Sharp R1875 and R1875-T used by Lazy Days.  I thought that was important!  I discovered the difference was R1875 was made in the USA and cost about $350.  R1875-T is made in Thailand and cost over $550.

We spent the next couple of days going to the above-mentioned stores.  Surprisingly, none of the stores had the oven in stock or at their warehouse.  We would have to order the item (R1875-T) for about $550 and pay about $200 shipping.  That's crazy!!  The salesman at Wal-Mart suggested that we buy one on Amazon.  In fact, he went on Amazon.com and found several Sharp Microwave/Convection Ovens for sale.

We were not familiar with ordering items on Amazon so we took the item numbers to Ken's son Mike and had him place the order for us:  Item R1875-T  Cost $528.55  FREE Shipping  Shipping address:  Kaeser's RV Service

When the package arrived at Kaeser's, we took our RV to their service center to have it installed.  When the men opened the package, this is what they saw.  A big hole in the front vent panel!!


And further damage on the side.

I was scared to death!!  I had never ordered anything from Amazon, much less returned an item!!  What to do??   Fortunately, one of the men at Kaeser's found a tag on the package indicating the item was shipped from O, J. Commerce in Philadelphia.  And, there was a phone number!  We called O. J. Commerce and told them of the damage.  They were the nicest people to work with.  Immediately offered to replace the item, and we did not have to bother to return the damaged product.

A few days later, Kaeser's RV Service received our second oven from O. J. Commerce.  When we opened the packaage, this is what they saw:  A crack in the front ventilation panel!!

And more damage on the back.

I called O. J. Commerce again and told them of the damage.  Although they were very nice to work with, this time we decided to cancel the order and they refunded our payment!

To add to the confusion, since Mike had placed the original order for us, all Amazon.com email correspondence was addressed to him.  In the meantime, Mike had to go to the hospital for surgery, so he was not even at home to receive their emails.  And there were numerous emails!!  We had to wait for Diane to get home from the hospital to pull up Mike's emails so we could know what was going on with Amazon.com!!

I decided to order the Sharp oven from Tiffin Motorhomes, but they only had the item in stainless steel.  We did not want a stainless steel oven.  So vetoed that idea!!  What to do??!!

I, myself, went on line and ordered a Sharp Microwave/Convection Oven from guess who??  Amazon.com!!  Item R1875-T  Cost $528.49  FREE Shipping  Shipping address:  Kaeser's RV Service

A few days later, Kaeser's RV let us know that the new microwave had arrived.  This time, when the men opened the package, this is what they saw:  The entire front glass window was crushed!

There was no further damage to the Microwave.

Again I called O. J. Commerce and talked with the same gentleman as before.  Again, they would replace the item.  A few days later Kaeser's RV called to say:  "Your Microwave is here but it is a Humidifier intended for someone in Wisconsin!!!"  The tracking number matched the number for our item; can't imagine what happened!!

O. J. Commerce said they would try to track down our item, but a few days later we received an email from O. J. Commerce saying they were refunding our payment of $528.49.  August 3rd the refund was received.

Since O. J. Commerce had not requested the return of any of the items, we decided we could create a new Microwave with the three damaged Microwaves we had on hand.

Ken took the front ventilation panel from the M/W with the crushed glass window and put it on the M/W with the least amount of damage to the frame.

An almost-perfect Microwave/Convection Oven for FREE!

On August 6, Kaeser's RV Service was glad to install the M/W for us and get rid of this problem once and for all!!!

Thank you guys for working with us on the Saga of the Sharp Microwave/Convection Oven!!!