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ImDownWithDisney

Quick trip to FL (Hwy 30A) area

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We left Thursday morning for a quick kidless trip to the gulf coast. Since we didn't plan this too far in advance I had to settle for whatever CG that had an opening. We ended up in Live Oak Landing in Freeport. This was a pretty nice little campground. The rate was $71 plus taxes and fees. All together 3 nights cost us $230. The sites there are extremely nice with concrete pads and patio area. It is also a very calm and quiet CG. There were a lot of families with their fishing boats since there is a boat ramp on site. The pool is a little small, but it was never crowded.

Friday morning we drove 7 miles to Grayton Beach SP for some beach time. I like going to the state parks because it is generally not too crowded, and they will stop letting people in when the lot fills up. It was a nice day in the mid 80's and a constant breeze. I am not a beach guy, but my wife loves it. So I just sat under the canopy and relaxed. We left there after about 5 hours and headed into Destin to eat at The Back Porch. It did not disappoint. The blackened mahi there is always good. Traffic through Destin was terrible. I think everybody in the south made a last summer trip that weekend.

On Sat we got on the road at 9am and made our way to Ponce de Leon SP. This is a nice little park with an awesome fresh water spring. They have plenty of picnic tables and shade if you get there early. We arrived about 930 and the lot was about half full. When we left at noon cars were lined up waiting for a car to leave. There were a ton of families (probably mainly locals) cooking, kids playing, and swimming. This place had a very laid back friendly vibe. We really enjoyed it, and we will go back.

We left the springs, stopped by the camper to refill our cooler, and then headed back to Grayton that afternoon. I was afraid Grayton would be full at 2pm on a Sat and it was. We decided to drive on down 30A through Seaside to Deer Lake SP. Deer Lake doesn't have facilities so it doesn't seem to get as crowded. We got set up there and stayed on the beach for another 4 hrs or so. The sand there seemed even softer than Grayton. We stayed until our stomachs started to protest.

While on the beach I scanned google maps looking for a place to eat and noticed that the Old Florida Fish House was close by. We stopped in there and had some drinks and food at the tables on the porch bar. It was very very good. The $15 mahi tacos were the best I have had in a long time. They also have a nice outdoor area with tables, games, and seating. This is another place that we will definitely visit again.

We were spent after a long day. On Sunday we packed up and made the 5 hr drive back home. I backed the camper into the shop and plugged it up to keep the fridge cold. We are headed to Townsend TN on Friday. This will be our last trip for a while. My wife is having a back fusion soon. So our camping will be put on hold.

 

Here are the links if anyone is interested

https://liveoaklandingrvresort.com/

https://www.floridastateparks.org/parks-and-trails/ponce-de-leon-springs-state-park

http://oldfloridafishhouse.com/

 

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Great report. We were up that way for a week in June. I couldn't get over the traffic and crowds. The local business owners told us that the whole area is so much busier because of the storm damage to Panama City and east from last year. We had long waits at all the restaurants we visited- even on week nights.  Never encountered that before.

Sorry to hear you won't be camping for a while. Hopefully that surgery will go well and here's to a fast recovery. 

TCD

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2 hours ago, Tri-Circle-D said:

Great report. We were up that way for a week in June. I couldn't get over the traffic and crowds. The local business owners told us that the whole area is so much busier because of the storm damage to Panama City and east from last year. We had long waits at all the restaurants we visited- even on week nights.  Never encountered that before.

Sorry to hear you won't be camping for a while. Hopefully that surgery will go well and here's to a fast recovery. 

TCD

It was definitely very crowded. Seaside was absolutely gridlocked. The area is definitely popular judging by all of the out of state tags from far off states. 

Hopefully we will back at the Fort for spring break. She will have to build some vacation time back up. In the meantime we will be taking short trips once she feels better. 

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7 hours ago, Tri-Circle-D said:

Great report. We were up that way for a week in June. I couldn't get over the traffic and crowds. The local business owners told us that the whole area is so much busier because of the storm damage to Panama City and east from last year. We had long waits at all the restaurants we visited- even on week nights.  Never encountered that before.

Sorry to hear you won't be camping for a while. Hopefully that surgery will go well and here's to a fast recovery. 

TCD

We were there last summer and it was packed then there was a wait for everything night or day. There were so many people it wasn't that much fun. So we stayed at top sail most of the time.

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5 hours ago, ImDownWithDisney said:

It was definitely very crowded. Seaside was absolutely gridlocked. The area is definitely popular judging by all of the out of state tags from far off states. 

Hopefully we will back at the Fort for spring break. She will have to build some vacation time back up. In the meantime we will be taking short trips once she feels better. 

Nice report, sorry that your wife is having to go through that. The only thing I see you forgot to do is eat at the Donut Hole. That place is great.

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6 hours ago, LONE-STAR said:

Nice report, sorry that your wife is having to go through that. The only thing I see you forgot to do is eat at the Donut Hole. That place is great.

Thanks...she should be better than new in 4 months or so.

 

We've been before. It is good.

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7 hours ago, LONE-STAR said:

Nice report, sorry that your wife is having to go through that. The only thing I see you forgot to do is eat at the Donut Hole. That place is great.

Good grief...that place is good.  Expensive (for what it is, we think), but it is good.  I'm addicted to their twist donuts.  LOL

16 hours ago, ImDownWithDisney said:

 and made the 5 hr drive back home. I backed the camper into the shop and plugged it up to keep the fridge cold. We are headed to Townsend TN on Friday. This will be our last trip for  while. My wife is having a back fusion soon. So our camping will be put on hold.

 

Glad you guys got some beach time (although you two sound like us:  I like it. Him..not-so much.  LOL).   I have a spot reserved for Thanksgiving at Topsail, but it's up in the air (with Tom's work), if we'll get to use it.  

Did I know that your wife was having back surgery?  I'm sorry to hear that.  Tom's had three procedures on his back, the last one was a major fusion in the lower back.  

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2 hours ago, twiceblessed....nacole said:

  

Did I know that your wife was having back surgery?  I'm sorry to hear that.  Tom's had three procedures on his back, the last one was a major fusion in the lower back.  

She had part of a disc removed last year, but it has gotten progressively worse. The pain blocks don't work anymore. She's having a L4/L5 and L5/S1 fusion.

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Just now, twiceblessed....nacole said:

That was Tom’s path, EXACTLY.  

How is he doing now?

We've been going to Andrews Sports Medicine in BHM. They do a lot of famous athletes and such. The dr is considering going in from the side to fix L4/L5 and through the back for the other. She wasn't a candidate for an ALIF from the front.

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He wasn’t a candidate for the front, either.

Lifelong pain.  He will always have his back to contend with; some days are better than others, of course.  Most days his pain level is at a 3.  I do 95% the work around our home (inside and out) because if he does work, that pain level will increase to a 6-8 for several days.

 If I could say one thing, it would be this:  encourage your wife to sign up for PT.  Therapy (IF you get a good therapist) is critical.  Once PT is over:  daily yoga/stretching.  Tom has never been flexible, so he would not listen to me.  He now understands that had he done the stretches daily, that his current condition probably would be improved.

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19 minutes ago, twiceblessed....nacole said:

He wasn’t a candidate for the front, either.

Lifelong pain.  He will always have his back to contend with; some days are better than others, of course.  Most days his pain level is at a 3.  I do 95% the work around our home (inside and out) because if he does work, that pain level will increase to a 6-8 for several days.

 If I could say one thing, it would be this:  encourage your wife to sign up for PT.  Therapy (IF you get a good therapist) is critical.  Once PT is over:  daily yoga/stretching.  Tom has never been flexible, so he would not listen to me.  He now understands that had he done the stretches daily, that his current condition probably would be improved.

She tried therapy after the first surgery. It didn't help. Looking at the mri her vertebrae are really shifted. The Dr said in 4-6 months she will never know she had a back problem. I sure hope he is right. Her pain level stays high....especially after a bit of walking.

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1 hour ago, ImDownWithDisney said:

She tried therapy after the first surgery. It didn't help. Looking at the mri her vertebrae are really shifted. The Dr said in 4-6 months she will never know she had a back problem. I sure hope he is right. Her pain level stays high....especially after a bit of walking.

Fusion is a whole different ballgame.  I understand PT not working in the past (that was Tom's argument), but it is something that I would encourage you/her to reconsider.  If not a formal PT visit,  yoga/stretching at home daily for a good 15-30 minutes (with doctor approval...recovery time after the surgery is needed, obviously ;) ).  It's important that she loosens things up/keeps them loose.  Walking hurts Tom is it's up hills, not too bad if it's flat or super long.  Standing still kills him.

Foolish of that surgeon to tell her that she'll be "better than before".  I'm hoping he did not present that as a guarantee.  That should never be the case with any surgery, but especially when cutting into the back/spine.  I pushed Tom's surgeon on this and he finally gave the following answer (which I think is more accurate):  "there is a 40% chance that you'll see little to no improvement, a 40% chance that you'll see good to great improvement and a 20% that you'll be worse".

Praying that she falls under the 40% chance of good to great improvement.  Tom was 39 when he went through his fusion, overall strong and healthy (except for the back of course), never smoked and drinks maybe 1-2 beers per month (so not a heavy drinker); he was primed for a great result and while we do feel that he falls in that positive 40%, he most definitely knows that he not only had a back problem... but that he (still) has a back problem.

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17 hours ago, twiceblessed....nacole said:

Fusion is a whole different ballgame.  I understand PT not working in the past (that was Tom's argument), but it is something that I would encourage you/her to reconsider.  If not a formal PT visit,  yoga/stretching at home daily for a good 15-30 minutes (with doctor approval...recovery time after the surgery is needed, obviously ;) ).  It's important that she loosens things up/keeps them loose.  Walking hurts Tom is it's up hills, not too bad if it's flat or super long.  Standing still kills him.

Foolish of that surgeon to tell her that she'll be "better than before".  I'm hoping he did not present that as a guarantee.  That should never be the case with any surgery, but especially when cutting into the back/spine.  I pushed Tom's surgeon on this and he finally gave the following answer (which I think is more accurate):  "there is a 40% chance that you'll see little to no improvement, a 40% chance that you'll see good to great improvement and a 20% that you'll be worse".

Praying that she falls under the 40% chance of good to great improvement.  Tom was 39 when he went through his fusion, overall strong and healthy (except for the back of course), never smoked and drinks maybe 1-2 beers per month (so not a heavy drinker); he was primed for a great result and while we do feel that he falls in that positive 40%, he most definitely knows that he not only had a back problem... but that he (still) has a back problem.

Sorry to hear he still has pain. I hope she does fall into the little to no pain category. We've talked to several people who have had the procedure and have had good results. I work with 2 guys that have fusions. Both have no pain or complications. I know it is possible, I just hope the surgeon has no problems. He supposedly one of the best anywhere. He only does spine procedures and joint replacements.

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47 minutes ago, ImDownWithDisney said:

Sorry to hear he still has pain. I hope she does fall into the little to no pain category. We've talked to several people who have had the procedure and have had good results. I work with 2 guys that have fusions. Both have no pain or complications. I know it is possible, I just hope the surgeon has no problems. He supposedly one of the best anywhere. He only does spine procedures and joint replacements.

Fantastic.  Sounds like she's in excellent hands :)   Keep us posted!    

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