Not All Who Wander Are Lost

Not All Who Wander Are Lost
January 17, 2017 - Florida Keys

Monday, May 26, 2014

Beautiful Weekend

The weather this spring has been cold and rainy. Finally, this past week things began to improve. And, we couldn’t have asked for better weather this Memorial Day weekend. It was sunny and in the high 70s each day. Today was actually in the 80s. As I write this post, it is thunder storming outside. That’s a good thing for the garden I planted last week.

Due to the cold spring, flowering of plants was delayed. Lilacs and flowering crabapples usually bloom a few weeks earlier. As you can see from this photo, the crabapples are just in full bloom now. They sure are pretty.

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If you look carefully, you can see the tractor in the background. They were planting today; also later than usual. Another latecomer this spring was the lake flies. Normally, they have come and gone by Memorial Day weekend. This year they came out just a few days before the big weekend. They don’t bite, but there are LOTS of them. Keep your mouth closed, or you may be getting some extra protein. Such an annoyance for us humans, but yummy for the birds traveling through!

The last few weeks have been pretty uneventful. I’ve started a new quilting project, planted my garden, took walks and just lived our life. Kevin has been busy with his 24 hour a week job as caretaker of the park and golfing a few times. We did take in a Milwaukee Brewers baseball game with Eric a few weeks ago. We had a great time, and the team won.

All 24 sites in our park were booked for the weekend. There were four groups, and everyone behaved very well. We don’t sell as much firewood when there are groups like that, but that’s okay :)

Two of the sites were occupied by our friends Jim and Wendy and Ralph and Ann. It was so nice to have our friends camping with us. Our son Eric came up Sunday afternoon and stayed overnight. So, lots of good company, great weather, yummy food and delicious beverages. What more can you ask for??

We did have a few odd questions. Two young boys came over with a baby squirrel in their hands. They had found it on the ground, and their parents told them to ask us what to do with it. I told them to put it back where they found it in case the mom squirrel was looking for it.

It amazes me the questions we get. Apparently, we are park rangers, DNR representatives, fishing experts, Chamber of Commerce employees, naturalists, and anything else someone wants to know.

A gentleman who looked to be about in his 60s drove into the park and stopped to talk to us. He will be biking across the state in a few weeks and wanted to know if he could hammock camp for free in the park for a night in some trees in the common area.

I wasn’t sure what to say. I told him to call the park office. I’m guessing anyone who stays overnight in the park has to pay whether they are on a camp site or not.

I asked him what hammock camping was. He explained that it was far more comfortable than sleeping in a tent on the ground and it was covered in case of bad weather. So, I did a little search. Sure enough, there are all kinds of hammocks for camping. Pictures are from the web.

You can get one with a canopy.

Or, you can get one with netting and sleep totally enclosed.

Who knew. In my quick search I found them ranging in price from $150 to $300. If I was biking that far at that age, I think I’d spend that money on a couple of hotel rooms and have some comforts of home. But, that’s me. I’ve never been a fan of roughing it type camping.

So, that’s about it. Not much else to report.

Don’t wish upon a star – Reach for one!

Monday, May 12, 2014

Happy Mother’s Day

I hope all the mothers out there in blog land had a wonderful Mother’s Day. I sure did!

We had a very busy weekend. Luckily, we only had six sites occupied in the park for the weekend, so we were able to be away for much of the time. The weather was beautiful both Saturday and Sunday with highs in the upper 70s.

On Friday night we went out for a good old Wisconsin fish fry with a group of friends. It was great to see everyone again!

On Saturday we attended a memorial wake for Kevin’s cousin who passed away at the young age of 60 a few weeks ago. Although it was for a sad reason, it was good to see many of his extended family members. Saturday night Kevin played cards with his card buddies while I headed back to the campground. I only had to sell two bundles of wood, so no problems.

On Sunday I had a nice phone chat with Korey in Nebraska. Then we went out to dinner with my mom, our son Eric, and my brother and his wife. After dinner we went back to my mom’s new condo for dessert. She is making progress getting things organized, and is loving her new home.

Kevin and I have continued to tweak our new home. He borrowed a hole drill from Eric and drilled a few holes in the cabinets by the TVs so the cords weren’t so visible. Looks much better.

Last week we had one hot day, so I had turned on the air conditioning unit in the bedroom to see if it would cool the entire fifth wheel. It worked fine, but when Kevin came in late in the afternoon after mowing all day, he wanted it cooler. He turned on the main air unit in the living area, and it didn’t work.

What’s up with that??? The heat pump has been working fine, so we knew the compressor was good. He fiddled around with it, and called our son Eric who is an HVAC service technician. They figured it had to be the thermostat.

The next day Kevin took the thermostat off the wall and found four wires were not attached to anything. He found the wiring diagram online and was able to figure out that two of the wires were for the high fan speed and the other two were for the air. He hooked it all up, and now everything works great. I’m so glad we didn’t have to take it into the dealer. That is such a pain!

Other than that and a few other minor adjustments, this new RV is great. We are very pleased with the workmanship and quality of all the components.

A few days ago several orioles appeared at the tree on our site. I didn’t have my birdfeeders out yet. I wonder if they remembered there was food here last year. I quickly got out the feeders. Of course, since then I’ve only had a few orioles show up. I was surprised to see this hummingbird.

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We’ve also had plenty of finches, sparrows and chick-a-dees visiting the feeder. I sure enjoy watching their antics.

Tomorrow night we’re going to a Milwaukee Brewers baseball game with Eric. The rest of the week should be less busy. We sure have had a lot going on lately. Time to slow down again :)

Don’t wish upon a star – Reach for one!

Monday, May 5, 2014

Hawk’s Nest

First, I’d like to say thank you to those of you who sent us congratulations and well wishes for our fourth anniversary of fulltime RVing. I was especially touched by this comment from Merikay.

“Yes, it is hard to believe that it has been four years since you wrote the post "Dreams do come true." I printed it and had it on my wall for most of that time.”

Thanks for the kind words, Merikay. One of the reasons I write this blog is to share our fulltime RVing stories. When Kevin first told me he wanted to be a fulltimer, I did a lot of research and read many blogs. All of that information helped ease my mind as to what it was that Kevin wanted me to do. It feels great to hear that some of what I’ve shared has impacted someone else in a positive way!

The weather has improved ever so slightly over the past few days. We were actually able to get out and walk our three mile route on both Saturday and Sunday. The sun managed to come out once in a while, although it was rather windy.

All but one of our campsites were occupied for the weekend. People sure do knock on our door for some odd reasons. We got the typical people wanting to buy firewood or asking questions about paying or registering. Then we got the guy who wanted us to identify some tree pods and nuts. Another guy wanted to talk about our truck. Someone wanted to know where to buy propane (understandable in this cold weather). Someone else wanted to let us know the water in the bathroom was running. (It does that for a bit and then shuts off automatically.)

But, the most annoying person was a guy who lives across the road from the park. He knocked quite hard on our door. When Kevin answered, he started yelling at Kevin about someone from this park knocking over his mailbox and how it happens all the time. Turns out this was only the second time in many years. Kevin saw a motorhome that is in the park turning around in the guy’s driveway after missing the entrance to the park, but did not see it hit the mailbox.

The guy had already gone around and knocked on the door of all the campers in the park and accused everyone of hitting his mailbox. Kevin got him to calm down and told him to stop harassing our customers and to call the sheriff if he was that upset. In fact, if he didn’t calm down, we would call the sheriff for him! Well, he did calm down and finally left. The next day we saw him repairing his mailbox.

Yesterday Kevin spotted a large nest in one of the hickory trees in the park. It’s probably about 50 or 60 feet off the ground. I think it might be a Red Tailed Hawk because I can see some red feathers on the bird sitting on the nest. It must be pretty cold sitting up that high when the wind is howling. Glad I’m not a bird!

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Don’t wish upon a star – Reach for one!

Friday, May 2, 2014

Four Fabulous Years

It’s so hard to believe, but yesterday was the four year anniversary of our fulltime RV life. And, what a wonderful four years it has been!

When we began our journey, we were about ten years younger than the conventional retirement age. Most people were very excited for us, but there were those who expressed the what ifs. What if we got sick, ran out of money, didn’t like it, etc. etc. Our answer was what if we have an extra ten years to enjoy life the way we wanted to.

I’m happy to say we’ve thoroughly enjoyed the first four years of our new and unconventional lifestyle. If something bad would happen, we will deal with it. However, we’re looking forward to many more enjoyable years.

I’ve been reflecting on what my favorite memories are of the past four years, and I can’t narrow it down. We’ve very much enjoyed the time we’ve spent with our family, the additional time we have to spend with each other, and the many new sites we’ve seen. We’ve balanced working to earn enough money for our living expenses with a relaxed pace of seeing more of the beauty this country has to offer. What more could we ask for?!

The last six days have been rainy and below average temperatures. We’ve been getting lots of use of the fireplace and heat pump in our new home. The only good thing about this weather is that its too cold to have any severe storms. My heart certainly goes out to those people affected by the tornadoes this past week.

Yesterday we helped my mom move the rest of her things to her new home. She had movers do the majority of it, but needed some help finishing up. She is moving from an 80 acre farm to a condo. You can imagine how much stuff she had. She did a good job getting rid of much of it, but has realized she still has too much. So, she will continue to downsize some of the stuff out of her new home. She has realized that too much stuff is not a blessing and vows to live a simpler life. It’s worked for us; I hope she can follow our lead!

We have a camping club staying in the park this weekend, so are almost completely full. I’m happy to say, the weather is supposed to be a bit better, but still cool. I’m thinking we’ll be selling quite a bit of firewood.

Don’t wish upon a star – Reach for one!