August 28, 2020-First Official Arkansas State Park

(click here for today's pictures)

I had just finished the blog last night, while Robby was chatting with Grannymom on the phone. Two cars had pulled up and soon a lady knocked on the window. She told me that we were under a tornado warning. I had been watching the map and knew what county we were in, but we hadn’t received the warning yet. Soon though the kids’ ipads starting going off.

We waited until the ranger came to unlock the building, then we followed the other folks. They had already checked that the campsite bathrooms weren’t a storm shelter and had called the ranger for advice.

We entered the visitor’s center-not the main part, but what seemed like a meeting room. She turned on some lights for us and then went to check for fallen trees. So we sat on the floor while the kids played on their devices. There were about 6 other folks at the visitor’s center with us-they are actually staying in the motor home a few sites down. (Not many folks are here tonight-just two others sites are full.)

We hung out there for about an hour and a half. The tornado warning was extended so it was nearly 7 when we left. For a good while the wind was pretty crazy outside-not exactly crazy enough for us to move out of the room with all of the windows that we were sitting in.

By 7, when the warning expired the winds had calmed, and we left the visitor’s center. We kind of wished that we could have done our waiting in the main part of the visitor’s center so we don’t have to go back tomorrow.

I will say that I thoroughly enjoyed the tornado adventure. We will always remember our first state park to visit in Arkansas (yes, we have been to some but the count starts over now). This will definitely be a trip to remember, but hopefully the adventure stops with the hurricane!

On our drive back to the site, we did notice a few limbs down along with at least one tree down. The tree was down across the same road that we had just driven across right before we turned back towards the visitors’ center.

Our site was a pull through site. It didn’t take Robby long at all to hook everything up. It would have taken a shorter amount of time, but he was having to climb over puddles of water. Soon, I was heating up our spaghetti.

Everyone ate supper which was delicious even though we did forget the crackers. Then we changed into pajamas before settling in to watch a movie. Along with the movie there was also ice cream. Now, during all of this Reagan was diligently working on her biology homework.

We finished off the tub of ice cream and finished the movie (it was a classic, but classics seem to have plenty of foul language!) Afterwards, it was time for bed for the crew after 11! Everyone slept well last night. Robby and I did wake up a few times, but always went back to sleep quickly.

I know that it rained at least twice during the night, but they were brief, and it was cloudy but dry this morning when we woke up. Soon Robby had bacon frying, eggs cooking and biscuits baking. This bacon was the best yet-thanks to new bacon presses-all 2 pounds of it.

The spot was pretty perfect-overlooking the water. The water was all pretty low, but still the kids were happy to get out and explore for a little bit before and after breakfast. We had breakfast cleaned up and Robby had just finished unhooking when the rain came.

We drove on to the visitor’s center and explored the other side of it today. There wasn’t much but it was all done well-we even bought a Christmas ornament! Then it was on the road to Marianna. Our phones didn’t quite have service yet so we did have to turn around once.

But we did see that we drove right past the famous Jones BBQ. We had to turn this rig around and go down some backroads to get there, but we made it...only to find out that they were out of BBQ for the day. We will now have to find a way to get back here earlier in the morning. We could have this morning, but we hadn’t really thought about it!

Our next stop this morning was the Bass Pro in the Pyramid in Memphis. Quite coincidentally, we just read in our history book about Egypt, the city of Memphis and the pyramids. I thought that was pretty cool, but I guarantee you that I was the only one who remembers this!

We walked around there for a good while. Surprisingly, we didn’t find anything to buy at all. Though we would have probably bought some fudge if they would have been handing out samples.

When we left, we heated up some bbq in the camper for our lunch. Then we headed on towards Ikea. I do love Ikea! I think that my kids do too-Whitman would have really have loved it if he could have gone to the play place like he wanted to (silly Corona!)

We did lots of shopping-except we didn’t find what we were looking for. We weren’t really surprised by that since we knew that they didn’t have any desks at the stores. We did overhear a worker saying that they only had 2 desks-one was the most expensive and the other wasn’t really an option. Hopefully, we can get some soon though from somewhere or at least drive back through Memphis and stop back at Ikea...or maybe even visit a different Ikea.

Now, we didn’t leave empty handed-we did buy kitchen scrub brushes, scissors, a blanket, a fake plant, a drying rack, sand toys, a bag or two and of course some chocolate bars and even cinnamon rolls. The restaurant was closed or we would have figured out how to eat some sweedish meatballs too!

We then fought the rain as we went to two different Michael’s stores looking for boogie boards. Our search didn’t pan out, but we had thought that we better try. Then it was on to Les and Shelley’s house. They had pizza ready for us. The kids gobbled it down like they hadn’t eaten in a day or two. I am a bbq pizza fan, and it was delicious.

After visiting for a bit, the kids went out to swim. By the time they put on their suits, the clear weather had started to sprinkle, rain and then pour. They played football in the pool for a good bit-well, until the weather cleared. That is when Reagan put on her suit and got in-which is when lightening started happening.

The kids did have to get out. They put on their pjs, and we went back in to visit a little bit more before bedtime. We pulled out the beds and everyone had some downtime before it was finally time for bed tonight.

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