Friday, October 4, 2013

End of Summer! Back to where we started

It has been a very different summer for us, in that we have been on the move more than ever before! Lots of changes in plans...the jello that are plans are made of got stirred and stirred again.
We travelled many miles this summer, with both vehicles and then a side trip with just the car. I haven't added up the miles and the fuel gallons yet. Save that heart attack for later this winter when I don't have anything else to do. I knew that this summer and next summer were going to be the heaviest travel years yet, however I didn't realize how physically taxing it is to be a non stop tourist! :} When we started the summer we spent the month of April in the Texas Hill Country. The first stop was at Kerrville, and we attended the United States and Britain Sporting Clay Championships at San Antonio. Then it was on to


 Fredricksburg, where we toured the LBJ Ranch and Stayed next to the Fredricksburg Airport at the Lady Bird Johnson RV Park. I learned a lot about him as President and the Power of the President on a working ranch. Pictured here is his Ranch house and Air Force 1/2...right outside in the Driveway! Who knew he had a full airstrip right out in the pasture!

We Spent some time in Thackerville Oklahoma where they have a beautiful new RV Park and the 2nd largest Casino in the world. DH enjoyed having the area Fire Department right across the street from our site, where we had front row seats to their training. While there we got tickets to a Doobie Brothers Concert. It was great!

In the latter part of June and July we wandered about in Michigan, up the coast of lake Michigan and had a stop at the Little Sable Lighthouse point, the destination where our Oldest son got married.


With the price of Diesel being up this summer and  the large amount of miles that I planned for us to go...once we landed up in the Upper Penninsula of Michigan on the Whiskey Bay of Lake Superior, we left our Coach and headed out back south and around to the west into New York, with stops to see Niagara Falls, and beautiful destinations clear across the rest of the country through New Hampshire, Vermont and Maine to the town of Bar Harbor where we had Lobster Rolls for lunch and
 sat and listened to the roar of the sea at Thunder Hole. A spot that roars at certain times according to the tides.

 From there we ventured on up into New Brunswick where things are a whole lot different. Signs for Wildlife are lots bigger and all the speed limits are in Kilometers!
 We drove across Quebec, Montreal and Ontario in Canada and Stayed in Several cities. We stayed on the border of New Brunswick and Quebec, and then drove to the outskirts of Montreal.
 Passing through Toronto, we re entered the USA at Sault Ste Marie Ontario, two very weary travelers and one very weary dog!
 On leaving the Upper Penninsula we meandered back down to Grand Rapids and spent a couple days looking around. Visited President Gerald R Fords museum, Library and Burial site.

 The Blue Ox facility was a stop over in Pender Nebraska on the way to Indiana this spring. The return trip this fall was capped by a stop over in our home state where the faces of the Presidents are majestic. We had several majestic visits while there. Our RV Park around Rapid City South Dakota is the Happy Holiday RV Resort.
 It is right across the street from Reptile Gardens...and along with the beautiful flowers we attended some of the Reptile Shows too.... he's pretty majestic!
 When we stayed up at Brimley in the U.P. the city that we did most of our shopping at was Sault Ste. Marie Michigan. We found the Sault Locks where all the Commercial Ships pass through the Straits from lake Erie and Huron to Lake Superior and back. It is very interesting and we spent several afternoons watching the boat traffic.
 The views in the Upper Peninsula are awesome and I would definitely return. The weather was fantastic and we met many really nice people. Our park in Brimley was across the street from a nice casino, next door to a great golf resort and our neighbor had a boat at the bay and Dan went fishing with him quite a bit. They played golf three times a week.
After we left Michigan we retraced the route to Indiana and drove across the bottom of Minnesota to South Dakota.
With the summer winding down, we made our way across South Dakota with a few stops, Mitchell to see the Corn Palace, The Wall Drug for free ice water! The old 1880 town west of Murdo....where lots of memorabilia from the movie Dances With Wolves is located. We travelled through Wyoming to I 25...stopping at Buffalo and KayCee to visit Chris LeDoux's Memorial Park and stopped in Casper to visit with some friends who are tonight sitting in 20 inches of snow! We headed on South to Cheyenne in the rain right after the great floods in Colorado. It was a waiting game and a guessing game as to whether we would try to go around Colorado to the East or Right down through the Center of it all.... by the time we got ready to go, it was decided to take our chances with the big highway and the evidence of the severity of the Colorado situation presented it's self when we got down around Ft. Collins and Loveland.

This RV Dealer has major problems and those rigs were mighty wet. Our heartfelt good thoughts and prayers go out to all of those affected after that terrible crisis. My jello got stirred once more because I had full intentions of taking a drive up through the Colorado Mountains, visiting Estes Park and the Elk on the Golf Course. The closest I would get to an Elk this year is this highway sign!
Two weeks were spent in Fountain Colorado...where I caught up on some laundry and rest and the other half went and played golf at Castle Rock and Country Club Colorado. I'm always reminded of the sacrifice that our Service Men and Women make to keep our country safe when I am right across the road from Fort Carson. The Army Post that my son called home when he was in the service. A couple of the rigs in our Resort was the home away from home to some of these soldiers. They, to my delight had some 4 legged friends that they tended and kept them company. It warms my heart that they train to kill and train to survive and they have the hearts to care enough to own a pet during an unsure time.

We began the trek south on Monday... we have made a stop in Raton and we are currently in Deming New Mexico. We have a Maintenance Appointment at Tucson to get the Coach ready for winter. We will spend a week there and move on to Yuma to put things away from the summer and fall and move on into winter...... Stay tuned!


Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Tucson in the Spring

Making it into Tucson on Sunday was a great relief and smart idea, since Mother Nature decided to cut loose with an angry plan, unleashing horrible wind and cool temps on Monday. The wind and dust was for about 24 hours. Sleeping has been wonderful with the cooler temps.
We stayed inside and only had two slides out because it blew so hard I thought it would blow the toppers off. Today it was a lot better and we took a ride in the Sanoran Desert, up in the Saguaro National Park to see how the desert is waking up after a long winter. DH is now of the age to get a Lifetime National Park Pass for $10, so we stopped in the Visitors Center where he signed up and we spent a few minutes watching a story about the desert orated by some Native American people, explaining what the desert means to their people.
Most of the flowers and Cacti are just beginning to bloom here and I think it will be next week before everything will be in complete full bloom, but we got some pretty good pictures today anyway. It was a very cool day for a ride so we continued on down to Green Valley South of Tucson to check out a couple of Golf Courses and then returned to Lazy Days Campground.

We took hamburgers up to the pool and used their gas grill to grill our supper.

Hope you enjoy the Cacti and Flora from today.

Tomorrow will be another ride to the East and North to see some other desert territory that we haven't visited before.

Friday, April 5, 2013

The End of the Season at the Palms

Well, let me see if I can remember how to do this! Oh yeah, I think it's like a bike and most of the time they can't shut me up, so I'll apologize in advance for the ramblings of a crazy lady!

Once more, I'm cleaning, organizing and packing up the coach. I turned my mail box key in today, and very proudly too, since I thought I had lost it and would be a $25 charge. The winter has drawn to a close here in Yuma and  all of our friends on Antigua Street, and just about every where else here in the Palms RV Resort has headed for home. Basically all of the friends from Canada have started the trek to the north to cross the border by their 183 day deadline. Us the are staying here in the south have not quite been convinced to make the trek into the unstable weather that plagues the middle of the country. We have had a great time with our group.
Now the weather is fantastic. Warm and sunny and not too windy. Great Pool weather.

As the rigs have pulled out and the group gets smaller, we have shared lots of hugs and smiles and yes, tears eyes have done their share of leaking. The darn sun is just too bright in the mornings! haha.... We have turned new friends into old friends and I have no doubt in my mind that we will meet up again.

Today we had the coach and car washed and waxed. It's so nice to have all the desert dust and dirt washed away. They are calling for plenty of wind next week so I imagine my clean will only last until then. But for a few days, it'll sparkle! Thanks Dave's!
 I've been scrubbing on the inside and getting things packed for summer travel. DH has been stowing the outside things underneath and we will be ready to pull out on Sunday the 7th.

Everything has it's place when you live in a small space like we do. Not room for clutter or hoarding of anything...however I have a case of coffee creamer and DH has our fridge full of bargain Easter Chocolate and Liquor Flavor Chocolates. Not much room for food....we have been on a Taco Stand mission, trying several local taco stands and restaurants in town. Then we also have to visit our favorite burger places and fish locations.

No matter if it is a simple taco stand in a parking lot, or a fancy sit down steak house, we always enjoy the fare and the company is excellent.
KayCee knows something is up. She can always sense when we get ready to move and then when we are ready to pull out she really gets nervous and excited. Everyone has told me that I better get ready to climb in her kennel, as she has taken over my chair. We'll just see when it comes time to turn this chair around and point the nose east! She usually wants her kennel then. In the meantime, I have to cover my seat!
Tomorrow will be the last day that we will take time and lounge by the pool. I will truly miss that. Now the focus will be to add a bunch more states to our list, traveling to the U.P in Michigan and beyond, have a visit at the Thor Factory for some fixes to the coach and maybe see some eastern fall colors. We are much more settled and satisfied with our home on wheels, it's just time for maintenance and care. Much easier done at the factory service center than at dealerships that are focused on their own customers.

I hope you all will bear with me. We have basically been hanging out here playing and shopping and that makes for a boring story. Hopefully in the coming summer months I will be able to provide some better pictures and stories!  Blast off is in about 34 hours!
Next Stop..... Tucson and blooming desert!!! :}