Tuesday, July 8, 2014


July 4, 2014 through July 8
to construct these memories.
Greenwood, IN

This morning, back in Indiana and only five miles from where we began, John and I celebrated the beginning of our third year of full time motorhome living and traveling North America. 

He go from this 
to this....release from hospital

to this....physical therapy and recovery

Further to this....The house is sold and almost empty
....let's get going!
our first stop, Brown County State Park, IN

Our first new friend on the road....a cancer survivor

It is time to plan the rest our travels

Our first home - a Winnebago Adventurer.  It is too small and old.  Too many upgrades needed and it is impossible to add slides.  John also wanted diesel and I wanted a washing machine and dryer.  

Our new to us Tiffin Allegro Bus with only 27,000 miles.   It had everything on our wish list.   Purchasing this Tiffin offered us quality and allowed us to invest in our daughter's business expansion and move.

Transferring the license plate.  A temporary move until we arrive in South Dakota.                                                                               It was a cold, rainy and exhausting move for John.  Afterward, he went into congestive heart failure and was in the hospital, postponing our departure for a while.   

Finally, we hit the road.  It is South Dakota here we come!

 Ahhh, Sioux Falls, South Dakota.....our new "home" - at least for less than twenty-four hours. 

Karen at Alternative Resources helps us establish our residency, obtain driver's license and register our motorhome in South Dakota.

We begin our trek to the southwest.  Drilling for gas happens everywhere.

Texas dust storms plague us for miles

 Space Aliens in Roswell, New Mexico?

 They are everywhere!

 White Sands New Mexico makes us feel we are driving through a snow scene.

White sand three hundred sixty degrees.

 The fur kids first opportunity to run without leash

The perfect ending to another perfect day.

 Not many photos between New Mexico and California.  Why?  Totally in awe of all we see and I am too busy watching the scenery as we travel. 

We meet the Border Patrol looking for illegals

 We arrive just in time for Christmas with our daughter, Nancy Jo / Jojo for the first time in twenty years! 

                                                                                      Silly Christmas night games with the gang and the birthday girl.                                                                                                                                 

Our Arizona adventures follows Christmas in California. We await the Quartzsite activities in tranquility before the storm.  John patrols for rocks.  I work really hard at full time travel and Oliver helps. 

At Crystal Mountain near Quartzsite, Arizona, John hunts for the elusive crystals.  Did he find any?  

We take a drive and a hike near La Posa South in Quartzsite, Arizona.  Hummm, we find a cave on our climb.  

Wild burros come to visit us 
In Bouse, Arizona we find an assay office for the gold miners in the area.

 Bouse also has many armored vehicles from WW II.  General Patton trained thousand of soldiers who protected  our freedom.

The mock-up of a turret that a soldier had to sit in and shoot at the enemy.

We come across Quinn Pass....did 
Thomas P. Quinn find gold?  

Jojo comes to camp with us at Clark Dry Lake in the Anza Borrego State Park

Hummm, anyone have a shovel?  We are kind of stuck in the sand!

There were times to relax boondocking in the 
Anza Borrego State Park, California.  Obviously, we dug ourselves out of the deep sand.

Next, we were off to explore the Salton Sea National Wildlife Refuge.  This area is thanks to Sonny Bono....Who would have thought that the Sonny who sung "I've got you babe" would do some much good for southern California.

We are greeted by this owl in the palm tree located in front  of the visitor's center.

Later, in the Anza Borrego State Park at Clark Dry Lake, near Borrego Springs, we are invaded by Airstreams.

 But the occupants become sweet friends.

Later, we are off  to Blair Valley and are greeted by a rattlesnake.  I stand in the driver's seat of my Miata and take photos.  

 John is STILL looking for the perfect rock in Blair Valley.  

I am still climbing the mountains in Blair Valley. Here is one of my views.  I fall and find my head stuck in the rocks.  

But I get a great shot of the motorhome and the alley on my way down.

We are then off to Temecula and Menifee, California.  The leaping horses greet us on the highway to Temecula.

But we end up in Oceanside at the Oceanside State Beach State Park.  Can't beat this view from our site.

Then off to Minifee to help our sweet daughter (#2) retrofit her Koi pond for a waterfall and skimmer.  Oh, what work it was.  Jojo digging hole for the skimmer.

John plumbing the skimmer....and my thumb on the right side.
 A test run of the pond water from the skimmer to the bio fall / waterfall box at the other to dig the hole for the bio fall to go into the ground.

OH, but that is not all.  Jojo also wants help building a pergola behind the Koi pond.  

So we are off to Home Depot to purchase lumber and supplies.

Everything must be plumb and level. I think they were having a planning session.

It takes teamwork. It takes love.

 It also takes taking time off to relax and have fun together.  So we head to March AFB museum to see the airplanes that  insured our freedom.

We also celebrate our first full time living and traveling in our motorhome anniversary.  And I forget to blog about it.

Then they go back to work.....until.......

The first Father's day they could spend together in twenty years.

But the fun did not last too long.  The Mountain Fire threatened Nancy Jo's cabin in Idylwild, CA.  John could not go because since the smoke would not be good for his COPD. The rest of us went to try to clear brush growth from around Jojo's mountain cabin.  

As we approached, the smoke over the mountain was ominous.  We were so concerned.  

The ash that fell from the sky was frightening.....knowing that if this ash were live embers, the land around the cabin would quickly become part of the Idylwild fire.
Tankers dropped water and fire retardant on the mountains.

Cal Fire brought their trucks up the mountain and past Jojo's cabin.

One extremely tired daughter coming down from the roof of her cabin.  All efforts to save her safe haven.

All is safe.  Later we visit the Mission San Luis Rey De Francia.

Later we say good-by to Jojo, her pond, and gardens to begin our trek north highway 101.

Artichoke flower

Water lily in the Koi pond


Sequoia forest

Trinidad, California

Eureka, CA



Humbug Mountain State Park, OR
For Spacious Skies
The trail to the Pacific, yep!  it was an uphill trek.

Oliver and Olivia finally can be off leash and play on the beach!

This lovely stream flows from the Humbug Mountain top into the Pacific.  

Port Orford and Cape Blanco Lighthouse

Bandon Lighthouse

Coos Bay, Oregon

Abundant trails to the Pacific

 Oregon wild blueberries are abundant

Trails with ferns that were taller than John and I.  All leading to the Mighty, ever changing Pacific Ocean.

There's more than one way to off-load your catch from the Pacific.  Surely keeps the bottom of the colorful fishing boats clean.

Closed on Monday.....and we were there on.....Monday.

I love the colors of the Pacific
From Sea to Shining Sea

And the diverse animal life.

Soon, we turn East heading toward Eugene, Oregon where we visit an organic farmer that grew us next door to us in Indiana.  Gabe Cox and his wife Sophie own Groundworks Organics.  They sell at their own market and farmers 

Next stop - Sister's
remnants of the Sister's fire a few years ago.  It will take years for the mountains to regrow to their original beauty.

Sisters turned out to be a tourist trap.  We left after only one day there.  Our destination was Prineville, a small town known as the rockhound capitol of the United States.  

I was mesmerized by the rock and mountain formations.  
"Purple Mountains Majesties
Above the Fruited Plain"

Cattle have the right of way in the desert farmland outside Prineville.  They are in no hurry. 

Gorgeous end to a perfect day
"Oh Beautiful for Spacious Skies"

Craters of the Moon National Monument

"O beautiful for pilgrim feet 
Whose stern impassioned stress
A thoroughfare of freedom beat 
Across the wilderness!" 

"God mend thine every flaw, 
Confirm thy soul in self-control, 
Thy liberty in law!"

Dormant Volcano, just marking time

Not enough snow to ski in Sun Valley

Jackson Hole Wyoming
Mountain's Majesty

"Home on the Range....Where the Buffalo Roam"

Yellowstone National Park

The threat of a coming snow storm cuts short our visit to Yellowstone.  We will be back.

Casper, WY

The storm with rain and fog keeps chasing us east. 


It was gray in Nebraska, but we had escaped the rain and snow.

Back at our friends farm near Colon, Michigan
no snow here!  The grass is nice and green and the trees have yet to show their fall colors. 

Back home again in Indiana!  ...............  Priceless!  Daughter, Holly and grandchildren, Lucy and Ross.... ahhhhhh                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     Granddaughter, Megan, husband Adam and our great granddaughter, Harper!
Thanksgiving was great and we are looking forward to Christmas with our non-California family.  

I'll be home for Christmas, you can count on me......NOT!   Nope, not us!  Listening to the news and weather reports we have chills running down our spines.  As huge snow storm, the first of many for Indiana, was due to hit the Indianapolis area in two days.  Christmas is cancelled and we run for the south.  

The nasty weather chases us all the way to Red Bay Alabama where are having repairs and upgrades made to our Tiffin Allegro Bus


Gunter Hill, Montgomery, Alabama
The south's ice storm of the century!
The leaves are surrounded and covered with ice.

We visit potter, Tom Jones, in Fairhope,Alabama

On to New Orleans

I miss these two!

Palmetto Island State Park, Louisiana
AAvery Island,

National Wildlife Reserve and Birdlady, Judy and Emma..........

and the baby alligator.  No birds...too cold and in between migrations.

San Antonio, Texas for Mardi Gras on the River Walk

Austin, Texas to visit my cousin.  It's been almost fifty years!

Arizona!  Now, it is finally warm!

Solar is Installed by Brian Boone at an extremely reasonable price.

We discover Lay's Limon chips! 

Desert sunsets....what can I say?

Anza Borrego State Park never fails to provide places to explore. 

Of course there are dust storms.

Galletta Meadows artwork
a serpent in the desert?

We visit the artist's studio
We met Merikay and Craig McKenna at Carmelitas Restaurant, the best Mexican food in Borrego Springs.

Off we go to SKP Jojoba Hills RV Resort to spend a week.

Nothing like construction on an extremely windy road.

Our "yard" at Jojoba Hills .....Huge site!

John's cardiologist calls us back to Indianapolis.  John must have a pacemaker as soon as possible.  

OH, oh, a bold came out of a recently installed shackle and this is the result. We are just hours away from Indianapolis. 

Pacemaker in and we head to friends in Michigan to wash and wax motorhome.  I "let" John wash the roof!  

He tried to help with the three step wax job, but too much for him.

We return to Indianapolis and are greeted by granddaughter Megan and great-grand Emerson (Emi)!  Whoot! whoot!

A trip to the park followed by ice cream with Harper, Meg and Emi..............PRICELESS!

Two years wrapped up.  We are looking forward to seeing what God has in store for our third.  It is going to be so hard to leave family again.  

Thanks for bearing with me as I write about our two years.  It has been a mighty long post and if you have stayed with me through this, you deserve a medal!

And thanks for shopping Amazon through our blog.  Your purchases, large and small are appreciated.  

God Bless...


  1. Nan, Very interesting and informative recap with beautiful pictures. Mary

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  3. Wow, I was out of breath just reading all you've done in two years. Even after following along as you lived them. Summarizing your first two years on the road was a great idea. I'm so happy that you and John are back at it, again. Looking forward to where I'll see you next.

    1. YOU are looking forward to where you will see us are we! What a life this is and we STILL love every minute of it.

  4. What a great post. Thanks for telling your story!

    1. I have been so concerned about it's length....This was one mighty long post.....

  5. Wow, isn't it crazy to look back and see how much happened...wouldn't be like that in a bricks and sticks!! I'm working on our one year for next week...anxious for more fun in the second. You've had hard times, sad times, but so so many grand times...may those be your calling for year 3!! I must see those white sands!!!

  6. What a fantastic two years you have had on the road. It was fun seeing all the stops. They brought back many memories of places we have been, also. Isn't this just the best way to see this beautiful country! We began year five mid June and we don't see an end any time soon. There are soooo many places we still have to see. Someday maybe we will be in the same area:)

  7. When you were in Prineville and sisters, you were less than three hours from us. Hope we can meet up this winter.

  8. You visited a lot of places during the last two years. What a great recap!

  9. HAPPY ANNIVERSARY and hopefully many more to come. I'm not sure why this didn't pop up in my reader. Maybe it has a hitch in it's getalong too.

  10. How did I miss this? Great pictorial wrap up of a busy two years. I didn't know there was an artist's studio near Galeta Meadows. We loved seeing the sculptures in the desert and will have to check out the studio this winter :-)))))).

  11. Happy Anniversary! you have covered lots of miles and done and see lots in that time. So glad you are enjoying the full time RVing life.


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