travel tales for family and friends. . .

wild horses. . .Theodore Roosevelt NP - North Dakota

Friday, December 28, 2012

Our Big Learning Experience

 

Whoa. . . hoa. . .well. . .we had our first big learning curve,

with many more to come I am sure. . .

 

The motorhome had about half a tank of fuel when we parked it. . .

we wanted to use up all the old stuff before we added. . .

‘cause we didn’t know how long it had been sitting. . .

we figured since we would only be here a couple more weeks,

a half tank would be more than sufficient, even if we needed to run the generator.

 

what we DIDN’T realize is. . .the Aqua HOT water heating system ALSO

runs on diesel. . .a lot of diesel if you want really, really hot water. . .

a half gallon an hour. . .hmmm. . .when you get to 1/4 tank of diesel. . .

no more hot water. . .NOW WE KNOW! 

 

Soooo. . .we got to unhook everything. . .and make a trip for fuel. . .FUN!

Bet we fill up completely before we get to the next spot. . .and you can also

rest assured we’ll only click on those diesel jets when the need arises. . .

otherwise we’ll just run the Aqua Hot on electric. . .which is sufficient

as long as you don’t need too much hot water. . .

but is NOT sufficent for showers. . .AT ALL!

 

Nothing else exciting happening. . .as you can imagine,

with the high winds. . .limbs, branches and a few trees

down on the hiking paths. . .got those cleared. . .

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Blog and Beast 001 (8)Blog and Beast 001 (11)

That’s about it. . .saw the family for Christmas Eve. . .

Evans Family Christmas 2012

Evans Family Christmas 2012Evans Family Christmas 2012

I’m always thrilled if we can get them all at the same place, same time. . .

very difficult to accomplish with kid’s schedules. . .

 

Next week we move to Stephen F Austin State Park

where we will volunteer until May. . .

 

See you there!

Janice

Sunday, December 16, 2012

It’s all Coming Together. . .SLOWLY!

As anyone who’s ever moved knows. . .

it’s a slow excruciating process. . .especially in an RV.

 

There’s no. . .let’s just put these boxes in the garage,

and we’ll get to them later. . .nope. . .it’s all gotta be put away!

Monaco - Kitchen

Slowly, but surely. . .it’s beginning to come together. . .

 

As with all things used. . .there are probably going to be little issues. . .

so our issue seems to be something with the converter. . .

it works. . .then it doesn’t work. . .hmmmm. . .

one of those tricky troubleshooting things. . .

tech at the RV shop says it may be the battery disconnect switch. . .

hopefully, it will be that simple. . .just gotta find it. . .

 

In the meantime. . .what to do. . .what to do. . .

Louis and Kim came to visit

ahhhh. . .my Bub to the rescue. . .I swear. . .

EVERY SINGLE TIME he shows up for a visit. . .

WE have an issue for him to solve. . .

he probably thinks we plan these things. . .LOL!

 

Well. . .anyway, he bought us some time

‘til we get back to civilization by connecting us

directly to battery power. . .research says it’s

an okay temporary fix as long as the batteries

are staying charged. . .which they are!

 

Thanks again Bub. . .you’re the best!

 

Next post. . .before, during, and after pics. . .I hope!

 

Stay tuned! ! !

 

Janice

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Moving Day Has Turned Into Moving Week PLUS!

ugghhh. . .although the kitchen, bedroom, and personal items are pretty well organized. . .

and can be found. . .the rest of the motor home is a disaster. . .

typical moving scenario. . .started out so well. . . organized. . .

take things from one home, put it away in the other. . .until. . .

 

You know that UNTIL moment. . .

it’s happened with every move we’ve ever made. . .things are going along smoothly. . .

and then, BAM. . .time’s up. . .gotta get’r finished!  Yep. . .happened again!

 

Anyway. . .everything is “transferred” over. . .

IMGP2194

Thursday morning, we pulled the fifth wheel out,

and the motorhome in. . .and officially started

“living” in it. . .if that’s what you want to call

survival mode. . .but. . .the end is in sight!

 

I hafta admit. . .I’ve teared up a couple of times

over letting the Alfa go. . .we’ve lived in it since 2003. . .

longer than we lived in some of our houses. . .ha ha. . .

and have loved most every minute of it!

 

Yesterday, and today, we are cleaning

and making minor repairs to the Alfa. . .

tomorrow we have an appointment to take it to  the

PPL Consignment Lot in Houston, and drop it off.

They move a  lot of rigs. . .so I’m hoping it will sell quickly!

If you know of anyone looking for a great rig

at a fabulous price. . .have them check it out online!

 

I’ll post pics and updates on the new rig as soon as

we get a few more things stored away. . .stay tuned!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Huge, Huge Changes Going On

Last week was our grandson’s 18th birthday,
so we were supposed to drive to Houston and take him to dinner. . .
but due to his new retail job (whoo who). . .
and the Christmas season starting. . .
we just could not make the schedules mesh. . .

soooo. . .instead, we went to check out the motorhomes
at our favorite consignment lot. . .
and wouldn’t ‘cha know it. . .
showimagerv (14)
this Monaco Dynasty had our name on it. . .
so we bought it!

It sure would’a been cheaper to do the lunch date. . .LOL!

Picked it up Monday. . .
David Monaco
tough wind. . .but Dave handled it beautifully!
IMGP2184
this morning. . .Tuesday. . .all the Park Host ladies got together
and decorated for our Staff Christmas party. . .
IMGP2186
after that. . .moving day. . .
this is the fifth wheel with all the upper cabinets emptied. . .

We’re trying to move everything systematically
and put everything away as we go. . .
it’s working out pretty well. . .
so far we’ve found a place for everything. . .

Tomorrow . . .the kitchen. . .we’ll see how that goes!

Til next time,
Janice

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Our Rig is FOR SALE

Stuck at Daddy's in Spurger
You read it right. . .today we are officially putting our truck and fifth wheel up FOR SALE!

If you know anyone who is looking for a great deal. . .all the pics and information
can be found here:  BEAUTY AND THE BEAST ARE FOR SALE

WHY?  you ask. . .
showimagerv

well. . .here’s the reason. . .and of course you know they
never want to give you diddly on a trade in. . .
so we’re gonna try our hand at selling our rig ourselves. . .uggghhhh!

Wish us luck. . .oh, and a few prayers would not go amiss. . .

Til next time,
Janice

Monday, November 26, 2012

Leaves, Leaves and More Leaves

Dave raked leaves for the last two days. . .

never fear, I was busy doing other stuff. . .like cooking his dinner. . .ha ha

2012-11-26 009

scooping up the piles with the front end loader

2012-11-26 014

a little assistance

2012-11-26 036

completely filled the trailer and tied a tarp over it. . .

Ranger Dan will come and carry it away tomorrow. . .

 

All that exercise and fresh air. . .and a fabulous view. . .awesome!

Since there’s nothing exciting to tell you, I’ll share a few pics. . .

2012-11-22 002

an unusual spider web or something. . .

(have no idea what creature created this) that we saw

while picking up trash one day this week. . .

Pelicans at Lake Fort Parker, Fort Parker State Park

a pod of white pelicans. . .we are on their migratory route from Canada. . .

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a great blue heron. . .

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this little devil of a kingfisher. . .he is so fast,

I still haven’t gotten a good shot of him. . .

but I shall prevail. . .eventually!

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Mr Mischevious. . .I’m sure he can’t wait for me to put out my birdfeeders

the view from inside the rig Saturday Morning - Birds, Pelicans, Fort Parker State Park, Lake Fort Parker

our view from the rig early Saturday morning. . .

Blue Heron and White Egret

and of course. . .my current favorite. . .

 

Until next time,

Janice

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Busy Busy Holiday Weekend in the Volunteer World

Wow. . .it’s been busy around here. . .

The Thanksgiving Day group totaled about 75. . .as did the group on Saturday. . .

waiting for today’s crew to show.

They’ve all done a marvelous job of cleaning up. . .
so all we need to do afterwards is swab out the bathrooms. . .
clean little hand prints, and nose prints off the glass. . .

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Holiday Time

We are well into our second week in our volunteer position. . .
and all is well. . .we take care of the activities center.

Three big groups coming in for the holiday weekend. 
We’re all set for the group that will arrive tomorrow. . .
when they get done, we’ll set up for the next group
coming in on Saturday. . .and then a different group on Sunday. . .

All the folks have just been great. . .clean up, and pick up after themselves. . .absolutely wonderful. . .let’s hope that trend holds!

We wish you all a wonderful, thanks filled holiday with family and friends. . .
Happy Thanksgiving 

Thursday, November 15, 2012

This Is What My Life Has Come To

This is not a complaint at all. . .it’s just that it’s sort of fall/winter in Texas. . .you know ~ the leaves are kinda falling. . .but we don’t have the overwhelming, magnificent fall colors of other places.  It’s still pretty. . .but everything has slowed down. . .

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Dreary, Drippy Weather

Ughhh. . .I’m pretty sure the weather system we were expecting on Sunday pretty much caught up with us last night and today. . .a wee bit cool. . .but mostly just gray and dreary. . .a very good day to stay inside and do nothing. . .so after meeting with the Park Manager this morning for a list of assignments. . .that’s exactly what I did. . .
Dave left to teach a class. . .I cocooned. . .
Well. . .I did work on one little project. . .
2006-01-01 Fort Parker State Park 001
the bedroom TV has always been a complete nuisance sitting on top of this bureau. . .it always hung off the edges. . .it needed to be fastened and strapped down on travel days. . .and heaven forbid we should actually need to use that emergency exit window located beside it. . .
2006-01-01 Fort Parker State Park 003
so. . .a couple of weeks ago (when Dave was also gone to teach a class) I moved it.
Removing a drawer and doors from this chest made the perfect space for it to go. . .it’s all self contained. . .doesn’t need to have anything done to it on moving day. . .and is completely out of the way!  Yaa. . .my project for tomorrow is to paint the inside of this cabinet black, which will allow all of this to blend in. . .black paint is my friend!
Remodeling in the Bedroom
We added the drawer and cabinet to the top of the bureau. . .can’t have one inch of storage going to waste. . .so once I realign the drawer, add one more little piece of trim and stain the bottom doors to match, that project will be complete. . .
Fort Parker Lake - Mexia TX - a day on the lake
maybe the sun will be back out soon. . .and we can get back to the important stuff. . .like fishing!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Fort Parker State Park is ALL THAT. . .and more!

Ed and Debi Hurlburt - Thousand Trails - Lake Conroe
awwww. . .Debi and Ed had to pack up and go home yesterday. . .too bad! 
We sure did enjoy their visit. . .and all the great eats. . .Debi cooked us breakfast and dinner. . .
now that’s what I’m talkin’ about. . .
Fort Parker State Park
We packed up bright and early this morning. . .(read 8:30. . .hello!)
to try and beat a severe storm system predicted for Central Texas. . .
I guess our plan worked. . .we arrived and got all set up in this
beautiful volunteer spot at Fort Parker State Park – Mexia TX. . .
seriously. . .this is why we do it. . .
we could never afford this view for two months. . .

We will have lots, and lots more to show you. . .

Janice

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Full Time RV Travel–Texas Does So Have Fall Colors. . .

Fall Colors, Lake Conroe, Thousand Trails

even if it is just silly old chinaberry trees. . .it still counts. . .right?  LOL. . .I rode my bike about a mile down the road from the park, just to photograph this patch. . .gotta have proof!

 

Dave, Ed & Debi Hurlburt, Judy & Jerry McCurry

Our RV friends Ed and Debi brought their beautiful, new to them coach over to the Thousand Trails Park to spend a few days. . .everyone is sitting around having homemade pumpkin pie with praline topping, created by Judy  and Jerry. . .delicious. . .and coconut cream pie. . .created by Marie Callendar.  . . .the pie stuffing is going on after we’d already all had grilled burgers and fries. . .uggghhhhh. . .I need to go on another bike ride!

 

Dave and I have accepted a volunteer assignment at Fort Parker State Park. . .so we will be headed that direction soon. . .probably Sunday.  Looking forward to volunteering with fellow Workampers, Judy and Dick whom we met in Colorado. . .more about that later. . .see you down the road.

 

Janice

 

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Life Goes On

Moving right along. . .this week has already flown by.

Dave taught at A&M Fire School for two days. . .arrived home Thursday evening.

I worked on projects. . .I always have a project. . .always!

 

Friday afternoon we met RV friends, Debi and Ed Hurburt,

in Conroe at El Bosque Mexican Restaurant for a late lunch. . .

Ed said he doesn’t really like Mexican Food. . .

but he made the sacrifice for the three of us. . .thanks Ed. . .

 

By the time we made it back from lunch, Amazon Prime. . .via UPS had delivered Dave’s bike. . .

2012-11-02 Lake Conroe, Bicycle Ride 002

so he got it put together, and we rode down to the dock. . .the lake looks so much better!

2012-11-03 Emily, Softball 0302012-11-03 Emily, Softball 033

We made a quick drive over to College Station Saturday morning to see the

youngest grand, and her daddy. . .made me so happy!

2012-11-03 Emily, Softball 0052012-11-03 Emily, Softball 0072012-11-03 Emily, Softball 0082012-11-03 Emily, Softball 015

my baby girl in action. . .braces. . .mouthpiece and all. . .

a ball took a nasty hop, and popped her pretty good

right on the collarbone. . .

she’ll be happy she has that mouthpiece in

if it hops a little higher. . .

 

I appreciated the officials putting safety first, and getting the girls

off the field due to lightning in the area. . .

2012-11-01 001

and even more appreciative, when, about twenty minutes out of CS

we encountered this nasty thunderstorm. . .

 

Safely home. . .working on ANOTHER project today. . .

I’ll post before and after pics, as soon as I get it painted. . .

 

Later,

Janice

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

One Last Day of Living On the Water


We spent almost all of Monday on errands, leaving the rig before lunch, and not returning until almost dark. . .I felt like I had been around the world. . .and not in a good way! 

Picked up our favorite boudain at a meat market in Jasper that specializes in DJ’s Boudain. . .it is the best I have ever tasted. . .so if you ever see it available anywhere. . .be sure to try it. . .delicious!

Went for our annual physicals. . .which always seem to take FOREVER. . .what is up with that?  Spending three hours in the doctor’s office is not my idea of fun. . .at all! ! !

Needless to say, I didn’t get a bike ride in. . .or get to take any new pics. . .so I will leave you with a few of my very favorite views of the Cypress Swamp. . .
2012-10-30 Travel Day - Magnolia Ridge to Thousand Trails Conroe 006
taken from inside the RV looking out the back window
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Love that you hardly tell where the tree ends and the water begins. . .and the fog just adds to the overall ambience. . .
2012-10-30 Travel Day - Magnolia Ridge to Thousand Trails Conroe 027
Later in the day. . .from our campsite
2012-10-30 Travel Day - Magnolia Ridge to Thousand Trails Conroe 040
and it would be a swamp with spanish moss. . .now would it?
2012-10-30 Travel Day - Magnolia Ridge to Thousand Trails Conroe 005
these guys put in at the boat dock bright and early. . .Dave was doing the deliverance theme. . .although I’m almost certain the guys in Deliverance were in canoes. . .weren’t they?
I hope you’ve enjoyed our pictures of the swamp as much as we’ve enjoyed being there. . .bright and early this morning, we set off for the Thousand Trails Park in Conroe. . .Dave is teaching a class in College Station, so will be gone most of the week. . .it’s going to be very quiet around here. . .probably not much to report on!
We may volunteer at one of the State Parks in the area. . .waiting to hear back from them. . .other than that. . .just regular life in the RV. . .
Til next time,
Janice

For more great swamp stories, check out Travels with Emma


Sunday, October 28, 2012

An East Texas Cypress Swamp. . .So Pretty!

I love the water in any form. . .

even sitting by a swimming pool or fountain makes me happy. . .

chair

so sitting at the water’s edge at Lake Texana was just perfect. . .

how much more relaxing can you get?

 

Beautiful Butterflies

and of course you know I’m going to chase down

and photograph any butterfly that I see. . .

 

but, alas, all good things must end. . .

Day Trip - Lake Texana to Lake Steinhagen

so Friday morning, we loaded up, and headed out through Houston, which would supposedly cut an hour off of our travel time. . .what were we thinking?  Traffic. . . cars cutting in front of ya at 65 mph. . .changing lanes to make sure you stay on the right freeway. . .grrrrrr. 

 

We lived, and drove in Houston traffic for 30 years.  I didn’t think a thing about driving across town to take a class. . .but pulling  a rig is a whole different ballgame. . .but survive we did . . .

 

2012-10-28 Lake Steinhagen 009

 

and arrived at beautiful Magnolia Ridge,

a COE park on B.A. Steinhagen Lake. . .

 

2012-10-28 Lake Steinhagen 002

what a beautiful, beautiful place. . .

2012-10-28 Lake Steinhagen 017 

after a great lunch of ribs, potatoes, and baked beans. . .

Dad and Dave are standing outside discussing fishing. . .

2012-10-28 Lake Steinhagen 006

more gorgeous fall color in the Cypress Swamp. . .

2012-10-28 Lake Steinhagen 026

went alligator hunting again. . .still no luck!

2012-10-28 Lake Steinhagen 024

but this red headed woodpecker was putting on quite a show. . .

2012-10-28 Lake Steinhagen 037

and after a four mile bike ride. . .

the perfect end to the day. . .fishing!

 

Until next time,

Janice

 

 

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