Monday, March 31, 2014


Our intention was to leave Quartzsite, Arizona Tuesday after we checked for mail at the post office.  Medical supplies were to arrive from Roche that had been ordered the previous week.  

The postal employee checked the general delivery and there was no mail for John.  We returned to the motorhome and John called Roche to see when the supplies were mailed. Just like last year, Roche did not mail them.

Now, going to their website, you find this motto: "Doing now what patients need next"  I don't think so!  

Wednesday, after consulting with John's physician and 
new making arrangements, leaving Roche out of the equation, 
we left Quartzsite for another year and headed to Anza Borrego
State Park and Borrego Springs.  

There were predictions of high wind gusts and John drove with 
much caution.  We had just two mighty gusts as we ventured 
Coachella and Walgreen's to pick up John's medicine. 

After another quick stop at Walmart for a few veggies and fruit, 
we programmed our Verizon Navigator for Anza Borrego State 
Park where we planned to spend a night or two.

I had much laundry to do and wanted to make use of their 
never ending supply of water.
Friday evening, we met with Blogger friends Merikay and 
Craig McKenna at Carmelita's for a Mexican dinner.
What a nice couple.  They are very excited about beginning their full time life. Florida is their destination for next winter.  

I awoke up early  Saturday morning and took Oliver and Olivia for a hike.  

I was very aware of all the rattlesnake sightings that bloggers have had and was very aware of our surroundings and what the dogs were doing each time they stopped to sniff the pee mail or scent trail.  

A huge Jackrabbit scurried off to our right.  Thank goodness the "kids" did not see it.  I was a bit entertained by it's running pattern.  Starting off slowly and gathering speed. By the time he was out of site he was really racing through the desert.

A bit further on our hike, to my left, I spot something different and of course we are off to explore!  What is this???
It seems that there is an entrance.  I'm too short to see if there is a roof, but I do see a metal cylindrical tube of some sort sticking up at the edge of this stacked rock wall.    Any ideas?  

Yesterday, after shopping at the Farmer's Market on Christmas Circle in Borrego Springs, we moved to our current location at Clark Dry Lake withing the Anza Borrego State Park.  This is a boondocking area called the "badlands."   

After the stop at the Farmer's Market, we are stocked with spring vegetables to last the week. I did not find my absolute favorite honey.  I purchased some last year and proceeded to run out by November.  This year I am going to double my purchase. 

Wind was in the forecast for today and the weatherman did not lie.  This is a photo of the mountains this morning.  What a lovely sight.  
The photo also shows our closest neighbors.  

A bit later, the wind began to blow.  And blow, it did!                                                   The wind and dust came roaring down the valley between the two mountain ranges.  

It did not get better for a long, long time.                                 The dust continued to blow and swirl up and into a backward spiral.                                                         Needless to day, we brought the slides in to protect the slide awnings.  

Here, inside the coach, I have prepared split pea, sweet potato curry in the crock pot.  We are just waiting for it to finish cooking.  

Thanks for stopping by.  And again, thank you for shopping through our Amazon link.  

God Bless!  

Sunday, March 30, 2014


                                                          Brian Boone came Monday morning to install our new solar system.  He did a magnificent job.  John and I will recommend him any time!  

 Quickly, he was up his ladder with the solar panels.  

After both panels we on the roof of the coach, he invited me to come to the roof and decide where I wanted them located.  

We wanted to make sure that the space was used carefully in order to provide room for the panels that will be added next year.  Of course, I deferred my decision to Brian since he is the expert.  
So here I am in my sunbonnet pretending I know where to put the solar panels.  

It was not long until Brian had the roof portion of the installation completed.  Now, for the wiring.  

Thank goodness he did not ask me to choose colors for the placement of the wires.  

Note the thickness of these wires. The thicker the wire gauge, the less power you loose while traveling from the solar panels to the coach 

In the basement, our Tiffin Allegro Bus came equipped with a metal lined compartment that contained a gas grill.  We removed grill shortly after purchasing our new to us Bus.

The Blue Sky solar boost 3024i charge controller was installed in that compartment. The perfect place for the controller.

Next to be installed was the Blue Sky energy panel that provides readings of the volts and amps available.  

The wiring was the biggest challenge due to needing to remove our Splendide washer/dryer and drilling through the ceramic flooring and sub-floor.  Those wires were to travel from the charge controller underneath to the display panel in our bedroom. 

It was a messy job, but one would not know it afterward. Brian comes equipped with a vacuum to remove all traces of wood and ceramic dust and chips.

By two o'clock, we were running on solar power.

There is plenty of room on the roof for five or six more panels that we will add a few at a time.

Right now, we are doing great on what we have - using forethought about when we want to operate our crock pot, bread machine, vacuum, and rice cooker.

We are thrilled with our power situation! Now, we are able to boondock and hardly give any thought to our energy consumption.

We are thinking that the solar will also help us when staying at RV resorts that charge for electricity.  Now, we do not need to plug into their power source.  How cool is that?

Thank you Brian Boone for doing a super job installing our solar system.  We look forward to working with you next January.

After Brian left, John went to work installing a shelf in the bottom of our closet.

We have placed our shoes under the shelf and will be deciding what goes on the shelf soon.  Can you believe we now have more storage than we know what to fill it with?

Sunday, March 23, 2014


John was fixing us a lunchtime snack and suddenly says he feels dizzy and needs to lie down.  

He feels better, so he stands and feels dizzy, once more.  

Product DetailsHummm, I test his oxygen level.  It is ninety five percent, that is great. His pulse is fifty four. It is usually fifty seven, so that is acceptable. 
Product DetailsThen I check his blood pressure.  This is not acceptable. We are talking fifty-three over seventy-four.  I check it about twenty minutes later and it is worse.  Skin tugor, tent-like. Not good.
I called his physician in Indianapolis.  "How much water is he drinking?"  I ask John and get a very sheepish look.  

Now, this is at two in the afternoon.  He has been out in the sun working on the motorhome.  He has had nothing but two cups of coffee at breakfast.

"Dehydration, get him to a hospital and tell them I want him to have fluids by IV.  A hospital?  None in Quartzsite.  Yuma is an hour away, but there is a hospital in Parker, half the distance of Yuma.  So, off we go to Parker and the La Paz Regional Hospital.  

All the way, I have him drinking water all thirty two ounces!   Having him drinking water was better than making him listen to my ranting a raving about fluid intake!   

After an EKG, a brain cat-scan and a complete blood count (CBC), he was given the IV.  The drip was set fast so we were out of there fairly quickly.  And we were on our way home, where I, again, checked his vitals....just to be sure.  

So, how does one stay hydrated in the desert?

1.  drink water!  Not energy drinks  and water needs to be room / air temperature.  Cold water intake requires time to warm to body's temperature to be absorbed.2.  eat foods with a high water content.

2.  eat foods with a high water content. 

Everyone needs from eight to twelve cups of water each day. A better way to determine how much water YOU need is to note your weight, divide those pound in half.  Change the pounds to ounces.  (150 pounds divided by 2 = 75 pounds therefore you would need 75 ounces a day.) 

We are looking into purchasing these from Amazon. It just makes good sense to have one of these rather than carrying water bottles.                                                  These are reusable and just think about how many plastic bottles you would not be throwing in the landfills to take forever to break down.   

Symptoms of dehydration but not limited to:
1. thirst 
2. chills
3. headache
4. loss of appetite
5. muscle pain/cramps
6. feeling fatigued

If these signs and symptoms are ignored the condition can worsen to heat exhaustion or even worse yet, heat stroke.  

We are talking life and death here, so please do not take any chances while out in the hot sun.

Thanks for visiting the blog today and for shopping Amazon through my link.  

God Bless ..... and drink water!  

Friday, March 21, 2014


It has been a lazy day here in Quartzsite. Again, John worked on the inverter, fixed our lunch and hard boiled some eggs.                                                                      I used The Solution to remove the bugs from the front of our Tiffin Allegro Bus and walked the dogs.                                                                                           That is the extent of our day. 

This morning, we called the Tiffin service department in Red Bay, Alabama.  John talked to our go-to service advisor, Stanley, and received some helpful advice.  

First, Stanley suggested old batteries.  Our response was that the batteries were new when we purchased our Allegro Bus almost two years ago.  

Second, he had two more things for John to check out.  Nada, zip, nuttin Honey.  Now what?  

Susan Thompson, a snowbird from Minnesota suggested we get in touch with Brian Boone and that is just what we did.  He came out to our part of the desert and voila...."your batteries are the problem!"  

"What? Those batteries were new when we purchased our new to us Tiffin Allegro Bus!"  At lease we assumed they were new since they were so clean when we looked in the battery bay.  And someone tested them as we were sitting in Red Bay awaiting completion of work on the coach.  The someone was not a representative of Tiffin Service.  His gauge must be wrong.  

Lesson?  .....  Never assume anything when purchasing a previously owned motorhome, car, boat...anything.  We looked at the dates on the tires.  Why didn't we think to look at the date on the batteries?  

The batteries were about ten years old!  Brian could not believe that they had lasted this long!  Off to Discount Solar here in Quartzsite.  

Ahhh, four new Interstate Batteries.  Now we will be in tip top shape.  And here we thought it was the inverter.  

Wait, there's more!  The batteries were not the only problem. After Brian installed the new batteries, the solution was not there.  Brian declared the inverter was dead, very dead.  

So now, we have a new inverter in our home on wheels. NOW, everything is working as it should. 

But, there is still more!  We have made the decision to have Brian fit us with solar power.  We have spent days researching and gathering prices and Monday, we will have our first installment of of two solar panels with two more in the plan for next year.  

We are pleased with our decision.  The solar panels make up for the disappointment of not having our booth dining area removed and replaced with table and chair.  This too will happen, just not this year.  

If you are in Quartzsite in winter months and need work performed on your trailer, 5th wheel, class C, B, or A motorhome, Brian is the man to call.  His fees are extremely reasonable.  

Brian is a very  honest young man that has for the last eleven years migrated in the winter from Montana to Quartzsite to work on our rigs.  Previously, he worked for another solar dealership, but has now started his own business.  We wish Brian God speed in his new business.  

Thank you for coming to our blog today and a double thanks for clicking on our Amazon link at the top right of this page.  I know, it's not the end of the year, but I am having a difficult time changing the link.  Can anyone help?  

Tonight, I close with sunset photos.                                                                                                                                                                                                There is nothing like an Arizona desert sunset!  

 Until next time, God Bless!  


Sunday, March 9, 2014


After four days of non-stop travel, John finally decided he had had enough.  We stopped at the RV park directly behind the Shell station at the I-10 and I-8 junction near Gila Bend, Arizona.  

John's legs were swelling, a danger sign for one who was in the hospital just over a year ago with congestive heart failure. This is how he spent most of our time there. He also walked in order to increase circulation in his legs.  It worked and he is better today.  

This RV park is an Escapees fifty percent off park, so we stayed for just over $13.00.  To put it mildly, we thought this was not going to be a pleasant experience.  But we were mildly surprised.  We had full hook-up, WIFI and very little noise from the interstate.  We slept very soundly, but John had maxed out his energy and I decided that a second night was needed.  

I did laundry, fixed some good vegan meals, walked dogs and just chilled.  It was a good rest.  

We had a visitor this morning.   He was running around just trying my patience.                                             I needed to use the telephoto setting to get these pictures.        But get them, I did!                                      He was on his way to  visit another unique  RV.    At least I think one could call it an RV.  It actually was a fifty-six foot trailer pulled by a huge tractor!  

This trailer has a fold down "deck".  They climb a set of stairs to get to the deck and enter from a double sliding glass patio door!  There is also a garage door in the back for their un-toad. Even with the car in the rear, just think of the room and storage they have inside!  I keep wondering if it had a split level inside since the trailer is so tall.  

The paint was stealth black.  It had no decorative "swooshes" on the sides.  What I would have given to been able to see inside. The license plates indicated North Dakota. Have any of you seen it? 

This morning, we  made the short run from Gila Bend to Quartzsite and all is well.  Well, kind of.  

OK you master-mechanics, we have a problem.  The inverter is not working properly.  There seems to be a loose wire someplace in the inverter.  John wiggles the wires and sometimes the it starts working, sometimes not.  

Tomorrow, Monday, we head into Quartzsite to find someone (any suggestions?) to look at the wiring and fix it.  This puts a damper on boondocking since we need electricity for the refrigerator.  

That is all of our exciting day of full time travel.  Some days are great, some......well......are a challenge.  

Thank you for joining us today and again, thank you so much for shopping Amazon through the link at the top, right of the page.  

God bless you in your travels...

Friday, March 7, 2014


I absolutely have no idea what has overtaken John and I.   But our travels have changed quite rapidly.  We left San Antonio on Monday.  And each day, we have done nothing but drive. Right now, we are zipping right through Tuscon.

We are zipping along so much that this is the photo I managed to get of the "Welcome to Arizona" sign.  The continental divide sign flew right by too.  

This does not seem to be a PDD though as we do not crank out the miles each day, But we don't stop along our short route each day.  I believe this is a new disorder.  Not sure of it's name.  

I believe it might have something to do with these things in the distance. 

It's like once we sighted these mountains and the desert, something just took over our brains and it is full, slow speed ahead.  

Even with this semi and road construction, the view keeps drawing us closer and closer.  

                                      What is a full timer to do? Good grief!  Now we are going to need to travel this route once least. 

We are having one new experience though.  With the rain that this area had about ten days ago, we see flowers along the road.  Yellow brittlebush, red and purple flowers.  The Palo Verde is turning green!  All new experiences.  (from the coach, that is)

I have been in touch with a couple of RV friends to see if it is convenient to meet, so we will see if the foot is released from the accelerator.  What do you think?  

If we are fortunate, I will have more to blog about tomorrow.  Wish me luck!  

God bless........

Tuesday, March 4, 2014


After a short stay in Houston, Texas, we move on to the San Antonio area.  But, prior to our departure, John walks over to the Wal Mart, our home for the night, and  returns with two treats.  One is ice cream for this nice warm, day and the other...............drum roll please ! ! !  ............ is ...................
I am not a huge chip fan, but these Lays, Limon chips are melt in your mouth good with a slight tang of salty lime.  Now what would that remind you of?   

About forty-five minutes north of San Antonio, is our home of choice; Potters Creek Campground at Canyon Lake.  
                                                           Our view from site 44, our home for almost a week, is out of this world -drop-dead gorgeous in any weather picture.                                                                                                                 We experience fog,sun, clouds and every scene is a special gift from God. If we were looking for a place to plant our roots, this would be on the list of finalists.                                                                                                        Canyon Lake is fed by the Guadalupe River. When the sun is shining, it looks at if diamonds are dancing over the surface of the cerulean blue water.   Kayaks, sail boats, fishermen in their boats dot the water.  

All is well at the end of each day.  Some sunsets are stunning, full of fire.                                                         Some are full of light as the sun is working it's way to the horizon.  
                                      Each evening, we give thanks for all our blessings that are as numerous as the beautiful scenes before our eyes.  
Thursday found us traveling north on Interstate 35.  We were to visit with my cousin, Dwight in Austin.  We had many years to catch up on and talk we did.  We saw Dwight's antique Pontiac GTO collection.  Some were restored and some are works in progress. 

Then he showed John his antique and not so antique gun collection.                                                                         Dwight is quite a hunter of deer, elk, duck and whatever else is in season.    

We then went to Z'Tejas, a southwestern grill for happy hour and had some wonderful appetizers as well as a couple of great Margaritas. 
Thanks Dwight for a great afternoon.  
                                                Saturday, the weather was wonderful and we headed into San Antonio.  We enjoyed the Riverwalk, an walk we did-from one end to the other. I was surprised by the waterfall features that were disbursed along the walk.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                                                                      Often, John needed to stop and catch his breath  but was determined to see it all.                                                                                                                      We stopped to have a Mexican lunch, to rest and watch the Mardi Gras boat parade.  I have the purple, green and gold beads to prove it.  

Later in the afternoon, we left the river walk, and headed to the Alamo.                                                      What a sobering site.  For a long time I just sat on a wall and thought about how men fought and still fight for our land.  

From the Alamo, we walked back along the Riverwalk and on to our car that was three blocks from there.  Whew!  We were both really tired, but not finished with our day.  First, we were off to Fresh Market and then Trader Joe's.  We had lists, immediately made our purchases and were back on 281 and headed toward home.  

At home, we were greeted with a minor problem.  We left the awning out and weighted.  A gust of wind proved more powerful than our weights and the front brace separated and was hanging, limp and looking sad.  Fortunately, the arms were reattached and the awning rolled gently into place. Another lesson learned.

Wow, this was a long post, but I am now caught up.  Thanks for stopping in.  I love your comments and recommendations.   We are now on I 10 heading to Fort Stockton.  I wonder what today will bring.  

God bless you all.  


Monday, March 3, 2014


Who you travel with...
And those you see on the way. 

Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge and Judy, Bird Lady of Blogland is on our target after leaving Palmetto Island State Park in Abbeville, Louisiana.  

                                      We travel an obscure Route 82 through marsh, rice fields, oil fields and swamps that border the Gulf of Mexico.
The day is foggy.   It is hard to have the photos not look like every subject is in a cloud.  But it is .... it is in a cloud of dense fog.  Often we cannot see more than the span of two telephone posts along the highway.  

    We strain to hear the warning bells of the Oregon coastline that peal in the fog.   We hear none.  Of course, there are no rocks to collide with here.  

Suddenly, we come to the end of the road where a ferry is coming from the shore on the other side of this waterway for boats to leave the inland ports and enter the Gulf.  I guess free ferries are less expensive to run than to build a large bridge. 

We are second in line behind a pick up truck that suddenly drives out of line, leaving us at the head of the line.   

Being directed into position on the ferry. 

How nice!  An unobstructed view!    

This is our destination.  Even though it is mid-day, lights are on everywhere due to the fog.   

 Approaching the other side of the waterway.

               Our ferry slips under the flange of the road on the west side.

                                                                                                                            Now that the ferry and the road are at the same level, the crew member signals for the gate to lift so we can drive onto the road and eastbound traffic can enter the ferry once it is empty of the westbound traffic.   

Now we head to Port Arthur and on to Winnie, Texas and Anahuac National Wildlife Reserve to meet our friend, the Birdlady of Blogland, Judy.  

We stop at a Wal Mart with the intention of spending the night in the parking lot. I let Judy know where we are and she most graciously invites us to park next to her at the Reserve maintenance area.  We settle in and make plans for our tour that is the next day.  

Saturday, with our lunch packed, our water in hand, we pile into Judy's vehicle and take the grand tour.  What a great tour guide she is.                          

I cannot take many good photos with my Motorola Droid smart phone, but am fortunate to get a few.  It just does not pay to have your camera disappear.  Then of all things, Santa forgot to bring me another.  All I got was lumps of coal. 

I did get a shot of the critter below.  Judy said this alligator is about a year old and that mama was lurking somewhere in the area keeping an eye on this one and another that Judy got a great shot of with her camera that I wanted to swipe.  

We saw Rosegate Spoonbills.....from about fifty yards away, but still, we saw them!  

The Reserve is a wonderful place and I can see why Judy enjoys volunteering here.  We missed many birds as they had passed through in their migration north, but just being there was a treat.  

Judy also was able to take a photo of a Tri-Color Heron....her first !

                                                                We visited both the Vis and the Visitor's Center.  The Vis is in the process of being rebuilt after being demolished by the hurricane.  It is to open this week, I believe.                                                                                                                     We returned to our motorhomes and I am able to take a few photos of Judy and Emma.                                                                                                             We had dinner together and said our thank you and goodnight as we were to be on the road again Sunday. 

A special thanks to Judy for taking her day off to show us the Reserve.  

Thanks so much for stopping by.  I am so encouraged by your comments, suggestions and admonitions.  AND thank you for using the Amazon link at the top right portion of the blog.  

Stay warm to those of us who are seeking warmth and sun. For you in Florida's sunshine, put on your sunscreen and wide brimmed hats.

Please stay safe out there and may God bless you with all his riches!