Sunday, October 29, 2017

Muskogee, Oklahoma! Our Visit With the Chapman's!

We left Irving Saturday morning and headed to Oklahoma!
Muskogee, Oklahoma!
The home of Merle Haggard!
We had so much fun!

I thought things were big in Texas!
You should have seen me trying to get up in that chair! 
Louis Dean finally cupped his hands and made a stirrup for me.
A mother and daughter were getting into their car right in front of us and saw the whole thing.
She called to me, "That was awesome! My daughter is laughing so hard!"

Louis Dean is on the Indian rolls - a card carrying Native American.
He loves Oklahoma, went to college in Edmond and has such good memories of his years here.
But this was his first visit to Muskogee.
I've been here before when Summer and I took Amber and Ben on a camping trip long years ago.
We camped in far southeastern Oklahoma but we stopped in Muskogee to buy all the things we forgot before we drove on to our campground.

I was the designated driver for this trip.
Louis Dean drives the truck and I usually drive the car.

We pulled off as we got to Lake Eufaula to take some pictures.

It is beautiful here.

We ended up in the Crowder Point Family Campground and explained that we were just taking photos and checking out places on our way to see relatives in Muskogee. I'm telling you - these were the nicest people there at the Guard Shack. The guy that first came up to the car was wearing brown overalls - just like the ones Louis Dean had on! LD said, "We must have the same tailor!"
The guy laughed and called his buddy up. HE had on brown overalls! Then a third guy walked up to the car and HE had on brown overalls!  It was like old home week. We all laughed and talked and they gave us a tour of the campground. It would be great to camp here sometime. However, our camper is permanently attached to the ranch for the rest of its life and I simply don't see us tent camping at this 'age of maturity' for us. It was fun visiting with them, though!

I used Google Maps and Waze for directions and we made it to Muskogee just fine.
After we got there, though, trying to find our motel was an ordeal. I did not realize Hwy 69 IS 32nd Street - and our motel was on 32nd Street. Instead, Google Maps sent us first to a trailer park and Waze sent us to a really fancy house on a narrow country road. We pulled into a QT and Louis Dean went in and asked directions. Muskogee Inn and Suites was

We dropped off our bags and called Louis Dean's nephew, Ray, and he gave us directions to his house. While we meant to be there so much earlier, we at least made it before dark anyway!

Oh, what a wonderful visit we had!!
From right to left......
Jacki, Ray, and their sons, Zach and Dustin.
Daughter Bailee was at work last night but we met her this afternoon.

Four Fun Guys!!!
We had the best time!
Louis Dean had never met the boys and it had been years and years since he had seen Ray.
We will not be letting time slip by before we visit again.

The Chapman's have the most beautiful labs.
We loved everything about our visit!

Including dinner!
Jackie made both white chili and red chili and set a beautiful table!
We went back to our hotel so full and happy to be in Oklahoma!

The reason we got a late start leaving Irving on Saturday morning was that Louis Dean didn't sleep well the night before. Last night he slept like a baby!!! He didn't even wake up until after 10:00 this morning.

I love a man that loves his music.
He was playing and singing while I was fixing my face and hair.
We went right across the street to IHOP for coffee and I told him to smile and show me his pearly teeth!


We drove back to the Chapman's to finish out our visit.

They have a beautiful home and gorgeous property!!

Jackie is beautiful inside and out and made us feel so welcome.
Bailee is their youngest and such a sweet young lady.

Zach is the first born son and is a fine young man.
He's in the U.S. Coast Guard and was home for s short visit.

Dustin is in college and a very impressive young man.

They love their life and they are admire their parents and openly express love for them and for each other.  They are truly a remarkable family.

It was exciting to see all the critters!

Yesterday was cold but this afternoon gave us perfect weather to be out looking at everything.

Their property goes far into those woods at the back.
They have coyotes here, as Dean does in Texas. Another predator is the hawk. In addition to the two labs, Bailee has a small dog and a hawk could easily take off with her. Owls also pose a threat to Bella - that's the name of Bailee's dog. I told her that's one of MY names, too!

Ray is the son of Louis Dean's brother, Alton Ray.
Alton was killed in a hunting accident when Ray was just 5 years old and his brother Mike was 3.
Louis Dean brought copies of old photos we had and he told Ray stories of his father.
It was fun to listen to them talk and reconnect.

Ray built this arbor for Jackie using the wood from a tree he had to take down on the property.
She had grapes growing here this past season.

Finally some fall color!
I had to come all the way up here to find it!

All of Jackie's chickens are the feathered feet kind. 
I know there's a real name for them but I don't remember what it is.

This is Jackie's happy place. Outside with her chickens and ducks.
They eat right out of her hand!

Her ducks are call ducks.
This one in the front is totally blind.

Jackie gets the ideas and Ray makes them happen.
He built this chicken house to store the feed and supplies and he added a porch for them to have a place to sit and enjoy their land.

Such pretty chickens!

Ducks and chickens live together in the same large pen.

I loved seeing Louis Dean with his family.

I am so proud of him.
He's a pretty amazing guy.

Ray is much like his Uncle Dean - in so many ways!

This will not be our last visit to the Chapman's in Oklahoma!
Next time I will take more pictures of their home's interior.
Every room is unique and full of charm and personality.

Take this corner of Zach's room.....he has a man's room with horse tack and manly things.

Dustin's room features a deer - his deer from a hunting trip.....
Cowboy hats and lanterns......Books and things he loves.

I loved their house!!

I love these people!
The Chapman Family is a treasure.
A treasure in ANY day and age but even more so now.
I tell you the truth - I have never seen a family like this one.
The parents love and genuinely like their children and their children love and like their parents.
The kids were present during our visit. 
They engaged and contributed to our conversations and are knowledgeable of current events and share their opinions and experiences in an articulate manner.
They willingly gave me permission to use the pictures I took of them in my journal entry tonight.

Yes, this family blessed me personally and encouraged my heart.
Louis Dean got his 'bucket filled' as well as his heart.
There were hugs all around as we were leaving.
As I hugged Bailee, I said, "I hope y'all know how blessed you are."
She whispered, "Yes, we DO!"
 Thank you, Chapman's, for a lovely visit!!
We will treasure the memories we made this weekend and will be back next spring to make some more!


Ginny Hartzler said...

How wonderful! I always love to see your family, and now I get to see Louis Dean's! They are such beautiful and smiling people. With all the animals around it looks like you are back at the ranch!

Kathy said...

This is a wonderful and special time you had with family. I know you and LD will cherish it. There is no one like family.

Deanna Rabe - Creekside Cottage Blog said...


Carole said...

Lovely. Even I* have heard of Muskogee - through the song. Cheers

BeachGypsy said...

that looks like a wonderful visit and so nice to re-connect with family members! Love seeing all the fun animals too, and the pretty scenery.

Joy@aVintageGreen said...

What a wonderful visit - and you got to visit with the horses and chickens and ducks too - such a lovely family.

Bluebird49 said...

I'm so happy you got to visit with Chapman family! They look so nice and it seems Louis's nephew is a builder, Too. How nice is that?!

Hoping you and Louis get a rest soon!

Carol said...

The Chapman family really seems to be blessed. It is generally hard for older children and parents to live together and not fight. However, it is encouraging to see a family like theirs. So many times families are broken and missing out on so much love.
Thankful that you had such a great visit with family. God bless you and safe travels

Susie said...

Linda, I Love the picture of you and LD in the big chair. You both look so good and happy. I think you had a wonderful Chapman family visit. In this day and age, tight knit and loving families that show respect is almost rare. Family is the important part of our lives.
Glad you got there and back safely. Blessings to all, xoxo,love you, Susie

Arlene @Nanaland said...

Marvin has lots of family in Minnesota that we do not know very well but when we went there several years ago, we just connected. Blood is thicker than water. I got tickled because I noticed all the Grimm men stand just alike. I was taking their pictures and it made me pause. Alton is my brother in law, Bruce's last name. I had never heard it before him! Now I know LD has a brother with that name. I am sure the nephews were glad to hear stories of their father since they were so young when he died. It is important to keep those family ties intact. Loved seeing all those smiling faces!!

Estelle's said...

What a wonderful visit of family who are new to you and also to LD....I think it's marvelous to just make things happen like this....they probably loved your visit! Family bonds....woven like a lovely quilt!

Sandra said...

you are the cutest designated driver EVER... and woo hoo on LD being native American. you have the best relatives and they all have wonderful critters. I was jealous of your ranch home, and now jealous of your OKIE trip to

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

I never once thought about the fact that some families do no like being together until one of my DIL's said how nice it was for her to be a member of a family that actually liked being together. It is a blessing indeed! So nice you go to visit. Family is wonderful!

Bev said...

So happy you had this trip with L D's family!!! You are truly blessed

Vee said...

What a nice time! I think I see a family resemblance between Dean and his cousin Ray.

Aloha Acres said...

What a wonderful experience for you all. You remind me that we need to take time to visit our family. Life is too short and look at what blessings you would have missed if something had stopped you from going. This really touched me.

UplayOnline said...

Family bonds....woven like a lovely quilt!