Saturday, May 30, 2009

Our Loss...

This is supposed to be a fun weekend! It started out that way, however, today we have heavy hearts. When we got home from the racetrack last night our 14 year old German Shorthair Wyatt was not himself. He couldn't get up or walk. DH had to carry him outside and then he just layed in the grass. His abdomen was swollen and so we put him back in the cage until this morning, and made the dreaded trip to a vet clinic. The diagnosis was cancer, which I thought he's had for sometime and the decision, although a terribly hard one, was to give him a permanent nap! He's been a wonderful dog and we couldn't let him suffer and be in pain. He wouldn't want to live like that. We are having him cremated at a pet funeral home and will pick up his ashes on Monday morning before we leave. Our 4 year old also got checked out. She has a big swollen bruise between her shoulder blades and they had to aspirate that with a needle! It will heal....however she's really gonna miss Wyatt too so we all are feeling the pain of our loss today. We're down to one, and I don't want any more!!!!!It hurts too much when we lose them. Christy ran twice yesterday and they have good times so hope today is good as well. She said she is ready to put some cars on trailers today...... but not hers! So the killer instinct is in place. Now the down the heat! It was well over 90 yesterday and is already there today. They don't run til about 4 oclock. We sat in the stands for Funny Cars yesterday and got enough sun. It's a long way from the trailer to the stands....we had a golf cart to run back n forth yesterday, but that is 95 dollars a day, so probably won't do that again today. We'll see. Lots there to see and do. It will be broadcast this evening and tomorrow on ESPN2, they always have a few hours through the weekend. There's tons of people here, and lots of racers. More than Phoenix and Las Vegas.....I was shocked yesterday!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Ready for Race Weekend

Another Memorial Weekend has come and gone. Our thoughts and thanks were with the troops, the veterans and those at home celebrating with their high school reunions and Memorial Services. This is the first year in a long time that we have been away from Nebraska at this time. We had a relaxing weekend. Drag Race Girl and crew got here on Sunday. They got to park right next door with their 48' trailer and we had quite a few folks stop by and look at the car and visit with Christy. They had just finished up several showings of the Race Car at Ft. Sill Oklahoma and the Lawton area. She has family in Afghanistan and is a military widow herself so service and support of the troops is formost with her. They had the racecar rewrapped in a red white and blue/camo motif and when it moves it looks like the flag is waving. (They just stopped by, and she downloaded a picture of the new wrap! It's Awesome1) I can't wait to see it go down the track! They say once ya get a taste of this nitro in the morning and the power of burning the tires you get addicted, and I'm definitely addicted! I'm getting excited to watch the National events again....and see some of the people we've met. Glenn has a cousin that farms west of here, and we went out to his place and went fishing, and had a BBQ at their place. Christy has been sick for 3 weeks, so we spent some time at the E Room of a Topeka Hospital yesterday to get some Antibiotics...I told her there was no excuses --- I wanted some wins and she couldn't do that feeling now she can breathe! They left this morning to go get the trailer in line to park inside the track and we'll meet up later. DH's sister is stopping by to visit tomorrow so we're anything but bored. We're headed out to breakfast, so will sign off for now and add pics later! It has rained here all morning. I wanted to go to Lake Shawnee, which is just a few blocks south of here, but it's not a very nice day for that. I think it may be a good day to just curl up with a book! Stay tuned......................

Saturday, May 23, 2009

All about Cleaning!

Yesterday we went out and about and tried to get familiarized with the town of Topeka after we gave Betsy Bus a spit bath. We found the racetrack, even the shortest, easiest route that eliminates all traffic! While we were there we went ahead and got our tickets, so that is out of the way. DH got the fishin poles rigged up. We have a nice lake just a few blocks from here. Now we need to get licenses and we'll be set! Today has been a day for cleaning up and cleaning out! We could have been fishin! Darn, but now I have all the dreaded stuff done. We started at a local Laundry facility and did every bit of laundry I had! Even blankets, quilts, sheets and dog bedding. We continued on from there...up the street to a drive through car wash/do it yourself dog wash.....unloaded dogs and I drove through and washed the car. Both furkids got baths and brushin and rub downs! They are pretty and smell good now! After that project, we went to Lowes, as I have been looking for a certain type of Carpet Cleaner, and I found some that will work. Picked up some mosquito fogger yard spray and some Off skin spray just incase we set outside here. I think the mosquitos here have been feeding on some of the corn fed beef because they're huge! We brought everything home and by that time, lunch was the only thing on my mind! The dogs had a nap and we snuck of to a diner that we had seen.....Spangles Diner....for Hamburgers and Shakes! Yummy.....then for a ride out to check out a Casino that has a Full Service RV park about 15 miles north of here. We went ahead and went in for a bit and got signed up for players cards since those will allow us to have $5.00 discount per day at the RV Park! We are coming back down here after seeing our new Grand Babies so maybe we'll stay there the next time. It looks nice also, but not nearly as nice as this place! It's so quiet and clean here. This definitely isn't camping! The pool is nearly done, it's full but still some little things they are finishing, so it's not to open until Tuesday. Tonight I sat down and did most of my bookwork for May, so when I get the mail in a couple of days, it won't take so long to finish up. Tomorrow will definitely be a day of rest. Think we will have a cookout and kick back and relax! Hopefully we'll get some more pictures!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

6 Days - 6 States!

OMG! - No more of that! Way too much travel for six days, but we got here in one piece and are all set up. Dan finished the windshield and put the sun screen up, all the dumping and hooking up complete, and he went for the shower. This is a brand new, very nice park. All nice cement, large sites and grass. The pool isn't even done yet. They are supposed to open it Saturday, so we will christen it I'm sure. I'm going to play and rest up for a few days. I talked to a man here who will have his daughter come and let the dogs out next week when we are at the races so I did get a little accomplished today. Tomorrow we will get out and give Betsy Bus a sponge bath. The little ten minute shower that we drove through in Wyoming didn't do her a bit of good, and I'm embarrassed to let her sit here dirty. Think we'll invite some people over sometime this weekend and cook out. We will get out this evening and survey the area for some places to eat and shop. When we get all set I'll take some pics. They have an awesome dog park here, KayCee and Wyatt really got to run and play today and they are ready for naps, even they don't like to get up at 6 a.m.!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Over the mountains and through the hills

We left Grants Pass Oregon on Friday after finally receiving our mail Thursday afternoon. We headed south on I 5..back into California. I have planned this trip in 300 mile segments per day. That's in a perfect world - (60 mph, no stops, mountain passes or trouble) So far we are pretty much on schedule. Friday night we stayed at Dunnigan CA in a nice park. Very safe and clean. It was an easy descent and enjoyed the trip back through the San Juaquin valley, where a variety of crops are grown, from rice & wheat to mandarin oranges and olives. We headed east on I 80 at Sacremento and headed up the mountain where we crossed over at the Donner Pass. This by far was the worst road we have ever traveled and had lots of dangerous places due to road construction. Some of the shoulders were cut away and non existant! I found out that the brakes don't work on my sideof the coach! Coming back down, we stopped at Winnemucca Nevada and had a real nice stay in a park with very clean facilities, lots of staff and they went out of their way to welcome us. We were also able to use our Passport Discount so the total bill was only $16.00! A very welcome change. Unfortunately when you travel like this, at the end of the day's journey, there's always chores to be down when the coach is set, like washing the bugs off the whole front, and then the every day stuff, laundry and food prep. I have to save a little time for mail and business and also planning for the following day!
Sunday we had smaller mountains and the roads were better going through Reno and through Nevada. We had a really easy short 232 miles to West Wendover Nevada. We stayed at the only campground in town, a very high priced KOA. $46.00 We never use all their facilities and they are over $40 a night for a 50 amp Full Hook Up!You'd think they were a 5 star hotel and they don't accept any discounts but a KOA card, which I don't have....we don't like to stay in them unless we have to. I had to find a grocery store and pick up a couple of things as I planned to cook on Monday. That night, however, we decided to go to a Casino for the Buffet Supper and we went to the Rainbow Casino right across the street, and had dinner in their Rain Forest! Was good food and after the meal we thought we'd find some fun penny machines and try our luck. Well, I turned a $20 into a $50 and DH turned $40 into 100. I had the good sense of saying "I'm tired and lets go!!!" So the campground, supper and part of the groceries were paid for! Thank you West Wendover! We have been getting up at 6 a.m and getting on the road by 8. Today, (Monday)we traveled 307 miles and arrived here in Rock Springs WY. about 2:30. We really haven't been messing around like usual, and only stopping when the fur kids need a walk or we need a little break. We drove clear through Utah today, and ofcourse the worst traffic being in Salt Lake City. One incident with a semi coming into our lane. You never can let your guard down for a minute on these freeways with all the trucks. They are all in such a hurry, it's a wonder there's not more fatal wrecks. It's pretty crazy. I only had to threaten DH once today for nodding off...while I was reading the map. He was punished for a half hour by pounding loud Hellanova music and mskay drumming with the flyswatter! That'll wake him up every time! haha We did stop at Little America this afternoon by Green River WY. and topped off Betsy's tank. They have famous 50 cent swirl ice cream cones and we had to get one of those too ofcourse! Today the mileage was about 10 mpg. Not bad with this big rig! It has been worse, but DH has finally decided that 55 - 60 mph gets the best mileage. Upon arrival today, I grabbed up all of the throw rugs in here and headed to the laundry. I tipped over my coffee this morning reaching for the map, so had to work on cleaning that up too. Took a long hot shower and traded a couple of books at the book exchange. I made a hash brown casserole, california blend veggies and BBQ Chicken Sammies for supper. Tomorrow will be an easy day once again. Lots better traveling, light traffic and easy hills. Only about 257 miles tomorrow into Cheyenne. Should be a cake walk. Hopefully will be an uneventful day and I'll have some "free" time tomorrow!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

The end of the North Trek for this year

The end has come for the adventure northbound for this year. We are in Grant's Pass Oregon. We got here on Mother's Day and Monday we made a drive back down into California, on hwy 199 through the mountain's and the Redwood Forest. On the way down, we stopped several times and took pictures of the huge trees and foliage. We went to Crescent City California, a quaint little town on hwy 101 by the ocean. I pulled off the highway and put my water shoes on. My last trek out to the water. It was a grey gloomy drizzly cool day. None the less, to satisfy my love affair with the ocean for now, I took a stroll to the waters edge. The tide was out, and I didn't judge a wave very good and got my jeans wet almost to my knees, but that was o.k. , they dried! The dogs and Danny got a walk on the beach, and we visited the boat launch at the pier, where a whole lot of seals lounged lazily about a floating dock. There were quite a lot of old crab rigs in Harbor and lots of crab pots stacked around. I had packed us a lunch, but after seeing all the crab remnants on the beach and around the harbor I decided I would like seafood for lunch instead. After inquiring several places, was disappointed to find out that they really don't crab around there anymore and the seafood is frozen. Not even those places open at noon! So....we went to an overlook and had a picnic looking out over the ocean and back to a lighthouse by Crescent City. I definitely could spend some more time there. Laid back and no crazy traffic. Not many people yet, as it is not warm enough! We decided to head back through the mountains and not journey any farther south then. We had spotted a Big Cat Compound on the trip down, so we stopped in there to see what that was all about. They had quite a lot of Foreign endangered species of smaller cats, a white tiger, a couple of Bengals, a cougar and two lions. We got an up close and personal tour of these and learned that before he died, Steve Irwin had been working with this place and doing documentaries with the cats. Terri Irwin is from up here somewhere and had a cougar cub that she placed here in Grants Pass somewhere. Got back to town before dark. Had mexican food next door to this park and was sick all night! Learned a lesson there.....never again! We spent the day yesterday at Henderson's Line Up --a suspension and RV Repair shop here. We went to one of their seminars this winter at a Rally, and they convinced us to come up for their service. Had two new tires put on the front of Miss Betsy and a weight and suspension diagnosis done. Found out that we need 6 out of 10 new shocks, and 4 are leaking. This rig weighs 38,500 pounds and is pretty well balanced! So now at least 2 out of 8 tires are new. We just have to keep plugging away at that til we get them all changed out. The shocks will be replaced in Arizona next winter. That process took up most of the day, but I trust their work and was more than pleased with the service. Left a really good chunk of change for that...Ouch...I just keep repeating, "Spread the Wealth, Share the Refund." We got up this morning ready to go down the road, but our mail didn't arrive, so here we are. In limbo waiting. I went and paid for one more night. There mail doesn't get delivered until around noon, so our first day on the road will be a short one, unless we stay here another night and leave early the next morning. I got a couple of loads of laundry and washed some windows and bird poop off the car. Went to an awesome grocery store (almost forgot to come home) These people here are so lucky! Stocked up on some things, keeping in mind that we will be on the road non stop for the next week or so..... they had buffalo on sale, so I picked up a package and made a meatloaf tonight. Will play the same waiting game tomorrow. This town has been interesting. We looked at an English Toffee Factory and picked up some seconds...and other good stuff. They have a lot of shopping here. It is a nice clean town with everything you could want. Too bad its so far up here, I'm going to miss this wonderland that we've been in for the past month. Now we just retrace our tracks and head back down the 5....will try to keep this up! Only 1805 miles to go! For more pictures of our California adventures go to .....

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Shasta Cascade Area

It's raining here in Shasta Lake CA! I thought we were in Redding, but actually we are in Shasta Lake CA. north of Redding. Really close to a very large Reservoir and Dam. It's been raining off and on all morning. Feels really good. This park is a very pretty, quiet little site. Not really set for 43' pushers, but we got in a site. Had to move once to get where the satellite will work, but all is good. They even have coffee and continental Breakfast in the mornings. The sites are on a terraced hill and it might be a real deal getting out! We have a couple days to think about it. Weather said it was supposed to clear up this afternoon, so will wait to go to the lake and out and about til then. The trip up the 5 yesterday was pretty cool. The whole valley is ag related. Lots of orchards, mandarin oranges, lemons, pistacios, almonds, rice pattys, sugar beets along with some wheat and grapes. We traveled through the capital of California....Sacremento.....where on seeing a black limo heading to the airport, DH exclaimed, "It's Arnold! Hi Arnold!" I doubt it, but it was funny at the time. We have information on 101 things to do and see here in the Shasta Cascade area. We will probably just hit the high points in driving tours. A friend of ours back home was in a very serious car accident a couple of days ago and is in the hospital. We need to get a get well card off to him and pick up some other incidentals. I saw a sign for Sonic Drive In coming through Redding yesterday. We'll do that for lunch one day. DH needs his Strawberry limeade fix. We had lunch at a local diner and was good! Most of the time if ya patronize the local small businesses you will not be disappointed, because they try so hard and need the return business and good reputation to make it. The clouds didn't go away, but I got some good pictures of Lake Shasta and the surrounding area. We did our shopping and came home. We're gonna do some more looking around tomorrow so stay tuned!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Our last week in Paradise.......for now!

I don't quite know how to describe the past week except to say that I am a very lucky person to have such great friends. It was a really fun week. We started out by going to the San Diego Zoo and stopped at Old Town San Diego for ice cream on the way home. It was a long day, but we covered a lot of ground and had a good time looking at the animals on display. Glen took Danny and another friend on an overnight all day fishing expedition around Catalina Island. They left on Thursday morning, fished over to the island, got a room at a hotel on the island, had dinner, spent the night and fished all the way back the next day. Christy and I had dinner at a place, A Restaurant, that she had never been. We had a blast! The lunch was kinda fancy, in the dark and we sat by a fireplace. We had French Dips and Wedge salad and most everything was served in silver! I did a lot of driving back and forth and I only missed a couple of exits on my way back and forth to the beach! When the guys got back Friday night, we had fish for supper and it was excellent! At least they brought home enough to feed us! I am going to miss sitting in Christy's living room and watching the dolphins play, the yachts go in and out of Newport Beach Harbor and the eclectic mix of folks walking past on the sidewalk below. I'm gonna miss her Aussie pup Brodie. He will fetch balls and play nonstop! I'm gonna miss zipping around in the Hooptie Car - her Scion....but most of all, I'm gonna miss them!!! Thanks Glen and Christy, you are the best!!! Friday morning was May Day and about 5:30 a.m. I got a call from our Son In Law and we are the proud Grandparents of Twins! A little boy and A little girl. They were taken prematurely as a precaution from complications, so they are a little small and will remain in the hospital for a while, but we're excited and after we finish our business at Grants Pass, we will turn the nose to the east and head for Nebraska. They came out to the park yesterday and helped us change the gas springs on the engine compartment door. We couldn't have done it by ourselves! We really had a great two weeks and I'll never forget this trip. We spent most of the day scrubbing and cleaning on the coach, getting ready to leave. Today, we got on the road about 9:30 and made it up to Santa Nella California, On Interstate 5 just south and east of San Jose....we're still a long way from Grants Pass Oregon, but headed North. Onward and Upward is the phrase of the week!!!