33 Day Truck Camper Adventure

We had an itch to take another truck camper adventure. We discussed different places we could go. Since I had tickets to a Kenny Chesney concert (ok, I had tickets to see him twice that weekend) in Las Vegas. Instead of me flying down there, we decided to make a trip to see our family and friends out of it. We planned a big loop, going through Idaho, Nevada, and as far south as Yuma, AZ and ElCentro, CA, then making our way over to and up the coast to see our son before coming home.

 Paul had a cargo rack made for the back of the camper. It adds much needed storage space, since we are in a smaller camper.

Paul had a cargo rack made for the back of the camper. It adds much needed storage space, since we are in a smaller camper.

 You're Doing It Wrong, one of Dustin's tag lines for his products.

You're Doing It Wrong, one of Dustin's tag lines for his products.

We prefer to take roads less traveled, and to see new things, so this time we drove down the eastern side of Washington and crossed into Idaho at Lewiston. There’s a nice State Park there called Hells Gate, along the Snake River. Because of dams and their locks along the Columbia and Snake Rivers, Lewiston is reachable by some ocean-going vessels. The Port of Lewiston is the farthest inland port east of the West coast of the US.  It’s not a bad place to visit if you don’t mind the smell. I had to google it, and found that there is a pulp and paper mill there.

 At Hells Gate SP, there is an archery course. I found a wild boar to ride.

At Hells Gate SP, there is an archery course. I found a wild boar to ride.

 The drive through Idaho was beautiful. We even saw a cow scratching her tummy on a big boulder. I wish I could have gotten a photo! Our second stop was Emmett, ID, small town not far from Boise. Thanks to Apple Maps, and the truck’s GPS we ended up driving down a 50 mile stretch of dirt road that took us two and a half hours to traverse. I did say we liked the roads less traveled, but sheesh! So, if you ever find yourself on Hwy 95 heading south, don’t take the Indian Valley Road “shortcut”! 

 At this point we had hope that the dirt would turn to asphalt soon.

At this point we had hope that the dirt would turn to asphalt soon.

 Still a little hope!

Still a little hope!

 It's been a long dusty road! We gave up hope, and are pushing through with dirt "road sodas"!

It's been a long dusty road! We gave up hope, and are pushing through with dirt "road sodas"!

 A client from San Diego, Melissa and her family now live in Emmett so I had to stop to say hi.

A client from San Diego, Melissa and her family now live in Emmett so I had to stop to say hi.

 We dropped into Eastern Nevada below Twin Falls, ID and took what was labeled as “The Loneliest Road in America”. True to its name, there was little traffic, and the few towns we passed were really small. We made three stops in Nevada before we got to Las Vegas. 

 There are animal crossing bridges over the highway. I'm not shitting you!

There are animal crossing bridges over the highway. I'm not shitting you!

 There was still snow covered mountains in Northern Nevada in March.

There was still snow covered mountains in Northern Nevada in March.

 At Ward Charcoal Ovens State Park. The beehive looking structures were used to make charcoal for the nearby silver smelters. 

At Ward Charcoal Ovens State Park. The beehive looking structures were used to make charcoal for the nearby silver smelters. 

 A little info on the ovens.

A little info on the ovens.

 Thats a lot of wood!

Thats a lot of wood!

 Inside an oven.

Inside an oven.

 We were the only ones in the whole campground!

We were the only ones in the whole campground!

 I told you!

I told you!

 Our next stop was Cathedral Gorge State Park. 

Our next stop was Cathedral Gorge State Park. 

 It reminds me of old cowboy movies. 

It reminds me of old cowboy movies. 

 Inside one of the "caves".

Inside one of the "caves".

 Beam me up!

Beam me up!

 I see sky!

I see sky!

 Originally we were going to park the camper and stay in a hotel for the weekend in Vegas, but parking the camper without electric hook-ups wasn’t going to work. The refrigerator wouldn’t stay lit on propane. We got an RV site at Circus Circus. Paul stayed in the camper and I was able to share a hotel room with some friends that were also going to the concert. (Thanks, Emily and Emily!)  Paul discovered a broken fuse to the fridge and got it running for the rest of the trip. (Maybe the 50 miles of dirt roads were to blame?) 

 First stop in Vegas! That was his first In and Out burger since we left So Cal. 3 1/2 years ago!

First stop in Vegas! That was his first In and Out burger since we left So Cal. 3 1/2 years ago!

 I had friends from all over the country come to Vegas to see Kenny. I'm not the only crazy Kenny fan! Just a little piece of No Shoes Nation.

I had friends from all over the country come to Vegas to see Kenny. I'm not the only crazy Kenny fan! Just a little piece of No Shoes Nation.

 My #FriendyKen, Sally from home flew down for the concert!

My #FriendyKen, Sally from home flew down for the concert!

 We stayed a couple of nights with Paul’s folks, a couple with my Mama, a couple with Mark and Jane, and one with my sister and brother in law, Penny and Tony before we got to the coast. 

 Paul and Paul.

Paul and Paul.

 Paul's mom, Rita. I can't believe I didn't get any photos of all three of them together!

Paul's mom, Rita. I can't believe I didn't get any photos of all three of them together!

 The desert has it's beauty, but I'll take a place with trees!

The desert has it's beauty, but I'll take a place with trees!

 Where we grew up. 

Where we grew up. 

 I never pass up an opportunity to see my dear friends, Alice and Don Clark. Always a good time!

I never pass up an opportunity to see my dear friends, Alice and Don Clark. Always a good time!

 I got to see my cousin, Denver. How did she get so old in three years and yet, I haven't aged a day? ;)

I got to see my cousin, Denver. How did she get so old in three years and yet, I haven't aged a day? ;)

 My sissy, Penny, nieces, Sarah and Jennifer, and me.

My sissy, Penny, nieces, Sarah and Jennifer, and me.

 Silliness runs in the family! My great niece and nephews. Braeden, Addison, Harrison, and William, who I made into a bear for the day.

Silliness runs in the family! My great niece and nephews. Braeden, Addison, Harrison, and William, who I made into a bear for the day.

 One thing we don’t miss about California is the traffic! We decided this was our last trip driving to SoCal. 

 Going over the Golden Gate Bridge. San Francisco traffic was crazy, as usual. No thank you!

Going over the Golden Gate Bridge. San Francisco traffic was crazy, as usual. No thank you!

 We spent almost two weeks, stopping at 8 campgrounds along the California and Oregon coast before heading east to Bend, OR to see our friends Wanda and Mike. I can't believe we failed to take any photos in Bend! Although, I think we did a few Snap Chats.

 The truck camper nestled into the trees at Samuel P. Taylor State Park.

The truck camper nestled into the trees at Samuel P. Taylor State Park.

 Driving through the redwoods.

Driving through the redwoods.

 Back at the Pacific Ocean. Near Albion, CA.

Back at the Pacific Ocean. Near Albion, CA.

 At Albion campground, where the Albion River flows into the ocean. Where we paid for ice cold showers!

At Albion campground, where the Albion River flows into the ocean. Where we paid for ice cold showers!

 If you've never seen the redwoods in Northern CA, I highly recommend the trip. This was at Humbolt Redwoods State Park. 

If you've never seen the redwoods in Northern CA, I highly recommend the trip. This was at Humbolt Redwoods State Park. 

 This old tree needed a hug!

This old tree needed a hug!

 Sandy loves stumps!

Sandy loves stumps!

 Harris Beach State Park, Brookings, OR. 

Harris Beach State Park, Brookings, OR. 

 Gotta do an ocean selfie! Brookings, OR.

Gotta do an ocean selfie! Brookings, OR.

 Brookings, OR

Brookings, OR

 While shopping, I spotted the Uno logo that Dustin designed. He's done a lot of great designs but for some reason, him doing the Uno logo is my favorite! We played this game a lot while he was growing up!

While shopping, I spotted the Uno logo that Dustin designed. He's done a lot of great designs but for some reason, him doing the Uno logo is my favorite! We played this game a lot while he was growing up!

 Found this little salamander covered in sea foam. Tillicum Beach Campground, OR.  

Found this little salamander covered in sea foam. Tillicum Beach Campground, OR.  

 April 8th and we encountered snow in Oregon.

April 8th and we encountered snow in Oregon.

 From Bend, we went to Portland to see our son, Dustin. 

 Paul and Dustin. We are always so happy to see his face!

Paul and Dustin. We are always so happy to see his face!

 Our last stop was only a couple hours drive from home, at the Northern Quest Casino in Spokane. The trip took us 33 days, and we were both ready to be home, but this stop gave us the chance to hit the grocery store before going home.

 Where have you been Mama?

Where have you been Mama?

 Finley, the cat, was very talkative when we got home, as if to say, “Where the heck have you been?” Our house/cat sitter, Patti sent me photos of him throughout the month, but it was sure nice to see his little face in person!

Missing a homelessbear

In my last blog I introduced a fourth member of our Homelessbear family; Finley the cat.

 Fiona was just starting to trust him enough to sleep on the chair with him.

Fiona was just starting to trust him enough to sleep on the chair with him.

Well, we are back to a pack of three. Fiona is no longer with us, at least not physically. I feel her with me all of the time. I’ve been putting off writing this blog because I knew I would bawl my eyes out. I was right, here I sit with tears streaming down my face. 

 We got rid of the sofa that came with the house. The love seat hadn't been delivered yet, so the recliners were the only comfy seats in the house. Well, besides the three dog beds!

We got rid of the sofa that came with the house. The love seat hadn't been delivered yet, so the recliners were the only comfy seats in the house. Well, besides the three dog beds!

 Of course there's room for you on my chair, Fi!

Of course there's room for you on my chair, Fi!

 In the fall, we found a couple of girls that I trusted to watch Fiona. A high school girl for short trips, and a friend that just started a house and pet sitting business. Paul and I could actually fly somewhere together and not worry about Fiona. Anyone that knows me, knows that I always worried about Fiona. Fiona loved both of the girls. On our first real trip in years, we flew to Las Vegas to hang out with our friends.

 Me, Paul, Craig, Brent, Lori, and Michele playing oversized games in Vegas.

Me, Paul, Craig, Brent, Lori, and Michele playing oversized games in Vegas.

I came home with a bad cold. A week later Fiona was coughing too. I thought she might have caught it form me and took her to the vet right away.

 At the vet when they thought she might have kennel cough. She didn't even act sick. She had lost weight unexplainably. Now we know why. Cancer sucks!

At the vet when they thought she might have kennel cough. She didn't even act sick. She had lost weight unexplainably. Now we know why. Cancer sucks!

A week later she was coughing up blood. I took her to have tests done at a teaching veterinary hospital a few hours away from home. They were 99% sure it was lung cancer, but treated her for a fungal infection just in case. The only other way to know was to remove her lung. I was not going to put her through that kind of pain.They weren't even sure she would survive the surgery. If she did, it would have only given her another year of life. If it was fungal, she would respond to the medication and start to show signs of improvement right away. When we got home, she only got sicker and sicker. We had to do the hardest thing in a pet owners life and made the decision to have her euthanized. It’s been four months and I cry almost every day. 

 At the hotel in Pullman, in between hospital visits. She got all of the human food she would eat, which wasn't much.

At the hotel in Pullman, in between hospital visits. She got all of the human food she would eat, which wasn't much.

 Laying on Mama on the floor of the hospital waiting room in between tests. I love that freckle face!

Laying on Mama on the floor of the hospital waiting room in between tests. I love that freckle face!

 We slept on the floor together the last night. She had to sit up most of the night to breathe.

We slept on the floor together the last night. She had to sit up most of the night to breathe.

 You know how they say things happen for a reason? Well, we never thought we would have an indoor cat! But, I think the reason he came into our lives was to help us with the loss of Fiona. He has been comic relief, and filled a small part of the big hole in my heart. He’s no Fiona, but I’ll keep him! I try to not get too attached because where we live, cats get eaten by predators all the time. I may take up the sport of coyote hunting, just to be safe!

 My friend, Kathy had this blanket made for me. Memories of happy times!

My friend, Kathy had this blanket made for me. Memories of happy times!

 I always told her she was my angel.

I always told her she was my angel.

 Another friend named Kathy left this surprise on my porch on Christmas. 

Another friend named Kathy left this surprise on my porch on Christmas. 

While we were going through this I got countless messages and comments on my posts updating my friends and family on Fiona's condition. I couldn't reply to all of them at the time. I want to say thank you to everyone for your support. I read every comment and appreciate the outpouring of love for Fiona. She was a special girl. 

 Paul and Finley playing catch. Yes, a cat that plays catch!

Paul and Finley playing catch. Yes, a cat that plays catch!

 He looks fat, but he really isn't. He follows us everywhere. Kind of needy, for a cat!

He looks fat, but he really isn't. He follows us everywhere. Kind of needy, for a cat!

 He's a big help in the kitchen, not!

He's a big help in the kitchen, not!

 After Fiona died, I did my best to keep busy. The cool thing about where we live is even though its a really small community, there is always something to do. 

 At "A Small Town Christmas" event in Ione. You're not the real Santa! You smell like beef and cheese!

At "A Small Town Christmas" event in Ione. You're not the real Santa! You smell like beef and cheese!

 At a Christmas party, I pressed my face in the snow and used a light to make this 3D looking imprint of my face. All the cool kids were doing it!

At a Christmas party, I pressed my face in the snow and used a light to make this 3D looking imprint of my face. All the cool kids were doing it!

 I got to feed an orphaned baby goat at my friends, Shannon's homemade wine tasting party.

I got to feed an orphaned baby goat at my friends, Shannon's homemade wine tasting party.

 We went up to the local ski resort for lunch on Christmas day.

We went up to the local ski resort for lunch on Christmas day.

 Patrizia, Alexa, and me having drinks before the Miranda Lambert concert.

Patrizia, Alexa, and me having drinks before the Miranda Lambert concert.

 Sporting the latest trend in rainy day fashion. I couldn't see Miranda Lambert looking like a drowned rat!

Sporting the latest trend in rainy day fashion. I couldn't see Miranda Lambert looking like a drowned rat!

 I took a trip to Southern California to spend a few days with Jane and Mark, and a week with my mama. Unfortunately, Mama got the flu just before I got there. If I had access to a hazmat suit, I would have worn one! The flu was no joke this winter. I donned gloves and a mask and decontaminated her house. I can’t believe I didn’t catch it, but I was determined! 

 Germs everywhere!

Germs everywhere!

  At the end of fall we bought a smaller used camper. It was exactly what we were looking for. We have a couple adventures planned, so stay tuned!

 A much smaller camper, but it fits our needs.

A much smaller camper, but it fits our needs.

I want to close with some happy Fiona memories. 

 When we first got her. <3

When we first got her. <3

 Playing with her first friends, Joey, FloJo, and Cali at Nancy's house.

Playing with her first friends, Joey, FloJo, and Cali at Nancy's house.

 Playing in the sand, and maybe eating a little.

Playing in the sand, and maybe eating a little.

 This is an Aussie thing. Laying around a corner.

This is an Aussie thing. Laying around a corner.

 Does this tutu make my butt look big?

Does this tutu make my butt look big?

 She always had to find the biggest stickys!

She always had to find the biggest stickys!

 She loved to go bye bye!

She loved to go bye bye!

 Fiona and Millie were like cousins that had to get along. They had a few spats, but some really fun times too!

Fiona and Millie were like cousins that had to get along. They had a few spats, but some really fun times too!

 Fiona always got to sleep with Auntie April!

Fiona always got to sleep with Auntie April!

 Such a happy girl!

Such a happy girl!

 She didn't like me pouring her food out of the bag into containers. I think she thought it was being thrown away. If Paul walked by, she'd nip his butt.

She didn't like me pouring her food out of the bag into containers. I think she thought it was being thrown away. If Paul walked by, she'd nip his butt.

 Her favorite job, getting the socks! She was so proud of herself!

Her favorite job, getting the socks! She was so proud of herself!

 I can feel her love, looking at this photo.

I can feel her love, looking at this photo.

 Fiona and Puppy. Nancy Fairfield got it for her when she was four weeks old and still with her litter. He was her special toy. She went from chewing him open and destuffing him to having me hold him while she humped him. Which is why he spent a lot of time put away. She would cry at the cupboard for some Puppy time.

Fiona and Puppy. Nancy Fairfield got it for her when she was four weeks old and still with her litter. He was her special toy. She went from chewing him open and destuffing him to having me hold him while she humped him. Which is why he spent a lot of time put away. She would cry at the cupboard for some Puppy time.

 Here she is with Puppy at four weeks old. Puppy didn't know what he was in for!

Here she is with Puppy at four weeks old. Puppy didn't know what he was in for!

I blinked and it's fall again!

When we got home from our adventure to the coast, we sold the camper. *GASP! Don’t worry, we aren’t done taking adventures just yet. We plan on buying a smaller one without slide outs. Since we no longer live full-time in it, there is no reason to have one that big. After the control panel malfunctioned and we were stuck in Minnesota, the no slide option sounded a lot more appealing. 
 After so much snow and rain last winter we had a full pond and a secondary pond where the water seeped through and filled up a shallow meadow area. What happens when you have standing water and warm temperatures? You guessed it, mosquitos! The previous year we didn’t have many, but this year made up for it! We had a lot of projects that we wanted to get done outside, but they got put on hold until the little bastards died off. So far, that’s the one  negative part of living here. 

 When you've showered off the Deet for the day and the dog needs to go out, my solution to battle mosquitos, wear rain gear!&nbsp;

When you've showered off the Deet for the day and the dog needs to go out, my solution to battle mosquitos, wear rain gear! 


 As I was looking through the photos we took since we got home, I realize how busy we were this spring and summer! 
  

 We went on an annual off road ride with the Trail Blazers. Our friends, Lance and Stacey are behind us.

We went on an annual off road ride with the Trail Blazers. Our friends, Lance and Stacey are behind us.

 He's smiling on the inside.

He's smiling on the inside.

We have had problems with rodents digging up the yard, and mice trying to move in with us, so we got a couple of cats from a friend of mine. One was a year old (Forrest), and the other was only 10 weeks old (Finley). Forrest was not happy with the move and ran away the first day. Well, I couldn't leave a tiny kitten outside alone on the first night he was away from his mama and litter mates. So I setup a tent on the porch and Fiona and I camped out there with him. The next night I slept on an air mattress inside of the door with him on the other side of the screen. It took me a few nights to be comfortable enough to leave him alone. One might ask "why didn't you just bring him inside?" and the answer is, we don't want a cat in the house. We got him to do a job, and that involves living outside. He has a heated, insulated cat house for the cold months.  

 Fiona greeting the new cats.

Fiona greeting the new cats.

 In the tent. Fiona loves cats but was a bit nervous to share a bed with one.

In the tent. Fiona loves cats but was a bit nervous to share a bed with one.

 Little Finley.

Little Finley.

Paul's parents Rita and Paul took a side trip to see us on their way to Colorado for the summer. We showed them around a bit and had a nice visit. 

 Rita, Paul, and Paul.

Rita, Paul, and Paul.

Since the water around the dock is so shallow and filed with milfoil, I decided to buy a little boat to fish from. I had a hard time getting it to restart the first couple of times I took it out, so I was leery of taking it out, so I didn't go out as much as I should have this summer. The last time I went was better, so I plan on doing a lot more fishing next summer! 

 Bonus, it fits in the back of the truck! No trailer needed!

Bonus, it fits in the back of the truck! No trailer needed!

 Trying to pull start the motor. I think this is the day that I gave up and paddled in. That's one reason I've only taken it up river from the house.&nbsp;

Trying to pull start the motor. I think this is the day that I gave up and paddled in. That's one reason I've only taken it up river from the house. 

 I rarely see another boat when I'm out.

I rarely see another boat when I'm out.

We've planned on having this huge ponderosa pine cut down since we moved in. The top was forked and there was insect damage at the base. Since it was right next to the house it could destroy the cabin and kill us, it had to go. I gave it one final hug before it was cut down. 

 The photo doesn't do it justice. It was a good 100 feet tall and the base was about 48 inches across.&nbsp;

The photo doesn't do it justice. It was a good 100 feet tall and the base was about 48 inches across. 

 Paul cutting the tree into rounds small enough to move over to the woodshed.&nbsp;

Paul cutting the tree into rounds small enough to move over to the woodshed. 

My step dad, Frank had been ill with cancer for a while and this July I felt the need to be there with him and my mama. He and my mom had been together for 45 years. I decided to go down to help my mom take care of him during his last days. I didn't know how long I'd be gone. I drove so I could take Fiona with me. She and I are a little attached to each other. :) I had planned on driving the 1500 miles in two days, but after the first day, I decided to add a day to the drive. I made it there just in time to see him before he passed. I was so glad I was there to be with my mom during such a difficult time. I spent a couple weeks with her before I drove home. 

 Frank's first selfie at 81 years old. Taken last November on my moms birthday.

Frank's first selfie at 81 years old. Taken last November on my moms birthday.

 My mama, brother Doug, sister Penny, and me.&nbsp;

My mama, brother Doug, sister Penny, and me. 

 The little one's in the family always make sad times a lot better! Teaching my great nephew and niece how to play marbles.

The little one's in the family always make sad times a lot better! Teaching my great nephew and niece how to play marbles.

 We did each others makeup. She was too scared to get the eyeliner close to my eye. She looks like a pageant princess. I named her Honey Poo Poo. &nbsp;

We did each others makeup. She was too scared to get the eyeliner close to my eye. She looks like a pageant princess. I named her Honey Poo Poo.  

 Fiona was tired of all the action, and spent a lot of time in her crate.&nbsp;

Fiona was tired of all the action, and spent a lot of time in her crate. 

 Fiona: are we there yet? She's a great traveler!

Fiona: are we there yet? She's a great traveler!

 The plus side of driving through Utah. My friend, Penney came to the hotel with Blue Chair Bay rum for us! Just what I needed after a stressful 14 hour drive.

The plus side of driving through Utah. My friend, Penney came to the hotel with Blue Chair Bay rum for us! Just what I needed after a stressful 14 hour drive.

I got back home in time for the big event of the year, Down River Days. 

 Crazy lady softball at Down River Days. I definitely need to practice before next years game! If you made it to second base, you had to do a shot before taking third. These are my kind of ladies!

Crazy lady softball at Down River Days. I definitely need to practice before next years game! If you made it to second base, you had to do a shot before taking third. These are my kind of ladies!

 Crazy lady softball has crazy rules. This time at bat, you had to have a drink on you. This is my friend, Roxanne trying to drink from the beer stashed in her cleavage.&nbsp;

Crazy lady softball has crazy rules. This time at bat, you had to have a drink on you. This is my friend, Roxanne trying to drink from the beer stashed in her cleavage. 

 My friend Cindy hosted an all girls camping weekend. Since we sold the camper, I had to kick it old school with a tent. My friend Patrizia shared it with me. It was her first time camping. We had so many laughs!&nbsp;   

My friend Cindy hosted an all girls camping weekend. Since we sold the camper, I had to kick it old school with a tent. My friend Patrizia shared it with me. It was her first time camping. We had so many laughs! 

 

 Camping gives you dirty feet!

Camping gives you dirty feet!

 While we were taking the feet photo, I turned the camera around and surprised the girls.&nbsp;This is Stacey, Nicki, Sharron, Georgie and me. We might have been intoxicated?

While we were taking the feet photo, I turned the camera around and surprised the girls. This is Stacey, Nicki, Sharron, Georgie and me. We might have been intoxicated?

 During the solar eclipse all of the light shining through the trees were sickle shaped.&nbsp;

During the solar eclipse all of the light shining through the trees were sickle shaped. 

What's a summer without a Kenny Chesney concert? I was lucky to find a friend locally that loves him as much as I do. This is Sally. We flew to Boston to see him two nights in a row. It was such a fun trip! I see many more concert trips in our future! #FriendyKens 

 The shirts our friends at Special Tees made for us were inspired by Kenny's song 'Bucket List'.

The shirts our friends at Special Tees made for us were inspired by Kenny's song 'Bucket List'.

 Cheers to great friends! Greg &amp; Shari from Tampa, FL, Noelle from Eagan, Minnesotta, Sally, and me. Having a little rum before the concert.

Cheers to great friends! Greg & Shari from Tampa, FL, Noelle from Eagan, Minnesotta, Sally, and me. Having a little rum before the concert.

 Sally and me showing some love to Old Dominion.

Sally and me showing some love to Old Dominion.

 We celebrated our wedding anniversary in Nelson, BC. It's just 70 miles from us.&nbsp;

We celebrated our wedding anniversary in Nelson, BC. It's just 70 miles from us. 

The off road club we belong to hosted the annual dirty diva ride. A group of about thirty ladies drove our off road vehicles over the mountain to Idaho for lunch. One of the rigs broke down, so we were stuck on the trail for a while on the way home. The girl's husband came and trailered it home. We didn't get home until almost 10 PM! No diva left behind!

 Some dirty divas, Kathy, Sharron , and me.&nbsp;

Some dirty divas, Kathy, Sharron , and me. 

The following weekend, Paul and I did a similar ride with a group of friends. 

IMG_2308.JPG
 Toasting to good friends! Cheers, Stacy P!

Toasting to good friends! Cheers, Stacy P!

 We stayed the night at a little hotel in Idaho.&nbsp;

We stayed the night at a little hotel in Idaho. 

 We stopped for a short hike on the way home from Idaho.&nbsp;

We stopped for a short hike on the way home from Idaho. 

There has been evidence of a coyote on the property. Finley was up a tree a couple times. I couldn't stand to leave him up there until he decided to come down on his own. So, I got the ladder and Paul got him down. That was until one morning he was so high up a tree, no ladder could reach him. I'd say it was a good 100 feet! He was up there for two nights. He wanted to come down, but was too scared. On the second day, big birds started attacking him. I was ready to have the tree chopped down to get him out of it! Paul was going to climb it, but the tree was too skinny to support the ladder to get him high enough to rope off. Finally, when I took Fiona outside and he saw her, he started to make his way down. I've never been a cat person and said I'd never have one in the house, but he is now sleeping inside. 

 He was even higher at one point!

He was even higher at one point!

 The fall season is upon us. The trees are starting to change color. This is my favorite time of year!

The fall season is upon us. The trees are starting to change color. This is my favorite time of year!

 We had the first snow of the season on October 12th! It didn't last long, but it was beautiful! I can't wait for more!

We had the first snow of the season on October 12th! It didn't last long, but it was beautiful! I can't wait for more!

We are so blessed to live in such a beautiful place with a great community. 

 

Off on another adventure!

With work on the cabin scheduled for spring that would take a month, we planned a trip in the camper to the coast. Neither of us had been to the Pacific northwest coast. The spring thaw was late coming. We thought work would start around the first week of March, but it was almost the end of March before the snow had melted enough. If you know me, you know it was killing me not knowing exactly when we would leave. Not having a plan doesn’t sit well with me. When the log repair company said they were coming, we had a day to load up and take off. And we did! As soon as they arrived, we handed them a key and hit the open road! Ok, the open road all the way to Kettle Falls, about an hour west of home. We found a little campground on the Columbia River and had the whole place to ourselves for the night. 

 The Columbia River, just west of Kettle Falls, WA

The Columbia River, just west of Kettle Falls, WA

 The next morning we headed across the upper portion of Washington. It was a beautiful drive over a pass where there was still five feet of snow on the ground and it was snowing, yet again. 

 Going over the Sherman Pass, Hwy 20 NE Washington.

Going over the Sherman Pass, Hwy 20 NE Washington.

 Our goal was to get to the coast, so we didn’t spend more than one night at each place we stayed until then. As usual, we tried to find campgrounds on some sort of body of water, without having to drive more than three or four hours a day. Thats not too hard to do in these parts. 

 Camped on the Columbia again, this time in central WA. Ginkgo Petrified Forest, Wanapum Campground.

Camped on the Columbia again, this time in central WA. Ginkgo Petrified Forest, Wanapum Campground.

 At the Ike Kinswa State Park Campground, we just had a little walk to the lake. The campground was mossy!

At the Ike Kinswa State Park Campground, we just had a little walk to the lake. The campground was mossy!

 We steered clear of Seattle’s busy traffic and went up the Olympic Peninsula along the Hood Canal. Once we got to the top at the Strait Of Juan deFuca, near Port Angeles we stayed a few nights at a nice campground overlooking the strait. That’s when we realized that we left the peace and quiet of our home to be parked feet from people with kids and dogs running wild. That seems a little backward. Usually people go camping to get peace and quiet. Fiona loved seeing all the action!

 Backed up to the Dosewallips River at the Dosewallips State Park. Where the river flows into the Hood Canal.

Backed up to the Dosewallips River at the Dosewallips State Park. Where the river flows into the Hood Canal.

 Walking out to where people dig for clams on the Hood River.

Walking out to where people dig for clams on the Hood River.

 One morning we woke up to a about 100 elk in the Dosewallips Campground.

One morning we woke up to a about 100 elk in the Dosewallips Campground.

 Except for the temporary orange fence, we had a nice view on the Strait of Juan deFuca. West of Port Angeles at the Salt Creek and Tounge Point Recreation Area Campground.

Except for the temporary orange fence, we had a nice view on the Strait of Juan deFuca. West of Port Angeles at the Salt Creek and Tounge Point Recreation Area Campground.

 A beautiful view of the Strait.

A beautiful view of the Strait.

 This little island makes me think of Peter Pan. Crescent Bay, on the Strait.&nbsp;

This little island makes me think of Peter Pan. Crescent Bay, on the Strait. 

 We found the beaches of Washington are covered in beautiful drift wood and Oregon has a lot of coastal dunes. We enjoyed the east coast beaches when we were traveling, but I have to say they aren’t as beautiful as the west coast. And as much as I love the sandy beaches of Southern California, there’s something mesmerizing about watching the waves crash on a rocky shore. 

 We finally made it to the Pacific Ocean. Kalaloch Campground in The Olympia National Forest.&nbsp;

We finally made it to the Pacific Ocean. Kalaloch Campground in The Olympia National Forest. 

 A nice driftwood covered beach.

A nice driftwood covered beach.

 Lots of driftwood! The plaque at the campground said it washes down from river.

Lots of driftwood! The plaque at the campground said it washes down from river.

 Can you say windswept?

Can you say windswept?

 At Grayland Beach State Park, we had to walk over grassy dunes to the ocean.

At Grayland Beach State Park, we had to walk over grassy dunes to the ocean.

 It was a little chilly and windy for the beach anyway!

It was a little chilly and windy for the beach anyway!

 We drove out onto the beach in Long Beach, WA. It is the longest beach in the US at 28 miles.

We drove out onto the beach in Long Beach, WA. It is the longest beach in the US at 28 miles.

 The Discovery Trail through the dunes along Long Beach, traces a coastal route taken by explorers Lewis and Clark. Fiona discovered a stick.

The Discovery Trail through the dunes along Long Beach, traces a coastal route taken by explorers Lewis and Clark. Fiona discovered a stick.

 There were lots of cargo ships at the mouth of the Columbia River. Here's where we crossed over into Oregon.&nbsp;

There were lots of cargo ships at the mouth of the Columbia River. Here's where we crossed over into Oregon. 

 Beach selfie at Shipwreck Beach, Fort Stevens State Park.

Beach selfie at Shipwreck Beach, Fort Stevens State Park.

 The shipwreck, hence the name Shipwreck Beach.

The shipwreck, hence the name Shipwreck Beach.

 Fort Stevens was built during the Civil War to protect the mouth of the Columbia River from Confederate gun boats and the British Navy.

Fort Stevens was built during the Civil War to protect the mouth of the Columbia River from Confederate gun boats and the British Navy.

 They let just about anyone man the cannons at the fort! And here I am a grandaughter of many &nbsp;confederate soldiers!

They let just about anyone man the cannons at the fort! And here I am a grandaughter of many  confederate soldiers!

 Beautiful views at every turn along the Oregon coast.

Beautiful views at every turn along the Oregon coast.

 At the recommendation of a fellow truck camper we met on the trip, we stayed at this great place. Tillicum Beach campground. They recently added full hookups for a bonus!

At the recommendation of a fellow truck camper we met on the trip, we stayed at this great place. Tillicum Beach campground. They recently added full hookups for a bonus!

 We had the beach to ourselves on one of the first sunny days in a while.

We had the beach to ourselves on one of the first sunny days in a while.

 Looking back towards the campground from the waters edge.

Looking back towards the campground from the waters edge.

We went as far south along the coast as Coos Bay, Oregon. I found a cousin doing genealogy research a few years ago and she recently moved there. She spent her birthday showing me around Coos Bay and Cape Arago. It's funny that I'm the first relative she's met from my side of the family and yet she acts just like the rest of us. It was like I knew her my whole life. 

 Meeting my cousin Glenda for the first time. We are like two peas in a pod!

Meeting my cousin Glenda for the first time. We are like two peas in a pod!

 Glenda showed me around Cape Arago by Coos Bay, OR. Such a beautiful place!

Glenda showed me around Cape Arago by Coos Bay, OR. Such a beautiful place!

 The perfect picnic spot on Cape Arago, unless the fact that theres no safety barrier bothers you.

The perfect picnic spot on Cape Arago, unless the fact that theres no safety barrier bothers you.

 Cape Arago. Can you spot the huge sea lions?

Cape Arago. Can you spot the huge sea lions?

We stopped a couple of times along the coast on our way to see our son, Dustin, in Portland, OR. We had lunch with him and got back on the road towards home . After being away for a month we were both looking forward to being home . 

 Since it was raining, this is the only photo i got of Dustin.

Since it was raining, this is the only photo i got of Dustin.

 One last waterfront camp site on the way home. Where the Deshutes River meets the Columbia River.&nbsp;

One last waterfront camp site on the way home. Where the Deshutes River meets the Columbia River. 

For more photos click on snapshots 6 Spring 2017 Adventure!

Now that was Winter!

Last year winter came and went so fast and without a lot of snow. When it was over I was like, wait, that was it? This winter did not dissapoint! It started a bit late, a week before Thanksgiving. The snow didn’t really start sticking and piling up until well into December. That’s when Paul decided the second hand snow thrower wasn’t going to cut it this year. We discussed the different things we could buy to keep the driveway plowed and decided to buy a plow for the RZR. After the learning curve, Paul could make quick work of the new snowfall and I think had a little fun while doing it!

 11/19 First snow of the season. It didn't stick at the house.&nbsp;

11/19 First snow of the season. It didn't stick at the house. 

 Fun in the snow!

Fun in the snow!

 First plow of many!

First plow of many!

 When Dustin was here for Christmas, Paul took him out for a ride on some trails in the snow. They came back soaking wet, but had a great time. 

 The Noden boys.

The Noden boys.

 Dust in snow.

Dust in snow.

 Christmas!

Christmas!

 On New Years Eve, we had a cougar visit the house. I found tracks going under both the front and back porches. I had heard from a local friend that there was a cougar seen a little to the north of us. I called him and he brought some hounds that he uses to hunt with, they tracked and treed it a couple miles to the south. Since it isn’t cougar hunting season, they could just scare it off. We haven’t seen any signs of it around since, but I always keep my eyes open. 

 Dirty cougar prints. It picked up the dirt from under the porch.

Dirty cougar prints. It picked up the dirt from under the porch.

 The river froze over for quite a while this year. One day I spotted 7 coyotes walking along the middle. They were all heading south, there must have been some kind of coyote convention going on down there. 

 Coyote on the frozen river.

Coyote on the frozen river.

 He saw us taking his photo.

He saw us taking his photo.

 The winter backdrop makes for great wildlife viewing. There were a bunch of otters and a couple beavers that frequented our little bay on the river. The bald eagles are easier to spot year round.

 A couple of otters.

A couple of otters.

 Big beaver!

Big beaver!

 Tundra swans.

Tundra swans.

 Seeing eagles never gets old.

Seeing eagles never gets old.

 There was still snow on the ground at the end of March. There was even a few days where it snowed into April. Some of my friends were so sick of it and blamed me for doing a snow dance, because they know I love it! Sorry girls, falling snow makes me happy! I’m already looking forward to next winter.

 

Fall fun!

We have had a busy Fall season. We dusted off the truck camper and went on a little adventure to Oregon. We met my sister Penny, brother in law, Tony, and our friends Wanda and Mike in Sisters, Oregon. We also stopped in Portland on our way home to see Dustin.  It had been over a year since we stopped traveling, and we were ready to hit the open road again. We spent the first night parked at a casino in Spokane, WA and saw Dierks Bentley in concert. The next morning as we were set to hit the road, Paul noticed a flat on one of the inside dual tires. Luckily, there was a tire store just up the road that fixed it right away, and we were back on the road in an hour or less. 

 Let the adventure begin!

Let the adventure begin!

 Dierks is drunk on a plane. We had great seats!

Dierks is drunk on a plane. We had great seats!

 I had never driven through Washington and was a little surprised how desert like it is. I always thought the whole state was covered in large pine trees. 

As you can see, no big trees to be found, in middle Washington.

 The campground where we stayed in Sisters was right in town. We walked and rode bikes everywhere we went. We didn't take many photos, we were too busy playing cards and drinking beer to bother with the camera. 

 Paul, Penny, and me heading to lunch. Tony was the camera man.

Paul, Penny, and me heading to lunch. Tony was the camera man.

 We had a nice visit with Dustin. He was leaving Portland in a couple days to work in Hong Kong for the month. It's always great to spend time with our boy.

 In Portland with Dustin.

In Portland with Dustin.

 After we left Portland we headed to Mount Rainier. The campground in the National Park is beautiful. A creek and the Ohanapecosh River run right through the park. We backed up the camper right up to the river bank. The view and sound of the river were beautiful. It's definitely a place we will visit again. 

 The camper nestled in the woods, above the Ohanapecosh River. Check out the clear water!

The camper nestled in the woods, above the Ohanapecosh River. Check out the clear water!

 After we left Mount Rainier, we planned on making our way northeast and camp in a few more spots on our way home. When we got to a junction that would take us a shorter way home, we made a quick decision to just beeline home. As much as I like to travel, you can't beat where we live. 

 Who would want to leave here?

Who would want to leave here?

 The off road group we belong to had an all girls ride called the Dirty Diva's ride. I made a new friend by inviting a lady I didn't know to ride with me in the side by side. We had a great time! It rained the entire day, and almost everyone was soaked to the bone by the second beer stop. I wore rain gear, and was pretty comfortable. Some of the men in the group went up ahead of us and fixed hamburgers for our lunch. Except for the rain, it was a great day.

 Me and my buddy, Stacey on the ride.

Me and my buddy, Stacey on the ride.

 My friends Jane and Debi came up from San Diego and stayed a couple nights with us. I took them on the Lions Club train ride up to Metaline Falls. Then we drove up to Beaver Lodge for lunch, overlooking Thomas Lake. Then, we drove to Debi's cabin in Salmon, Idaho. Jane's sister Ann met us there for a girls retreat. We hiked, played cards and dominoes, and had a great time. Jane came back to our house for a couple extra days before she flew home. 

 Debi, Jane, and me, riding the rails.

Debi, Jane, and me, riding the rails.

 Me, Ann, Janet, Jane, Debi, and Bella.

Me, Ann, Janet, Jane, Debi, and Bella.

 A couple weeks later I flew down to Southern California to celebrate my mama's 75 birthday. We had a really good visit. Just like always, we danced in the kitchen a few times. It was the first time in ten years that all of her kids were together. As much fun as it was, it was great to get back home to Paul and Fiona. I'm so glad I didn't miss the first snow of the season. I hope it comes soon. I can't wait!

 My family. Jennifer, Christen, me, Mama, Doug, Sarah, Gaybe, Sean, Matt, Gloria, Stephanie, Tony, Tony, Penny, Ann, William, Sarah, and Harrison.&nbsp;

My family. Jennifer, Christen, me, Mama, Doug, Sarah, Gaybe, Sean, Matt, Gloria, Stephanie, Tony, Tony, Penny, Ann, William, Sarah, and Harrison. 

 April, shredding chicken against her will. What a trooper!

April, shredding chicken against her will. What a trooper!

 A welcome home sunset.&nbsp;

A welcome home sunset. 

To see the rest of the photos, click on Snapshots 4 Fall 2016!

Sweet Summertime!

Summer on the Pend Oreille River goes by fast! It seems like I just wrote the blog about spring ending, and here I am wearing a sweatshirt in the middle of the day! I guess, it's as the saying goes, time flies when you're having fun!

 This is down river (North) of us. I was on my way to yoga and had to stop for a photo.&nbsp;

This is down river (North) of us. I was on my way to yoga and had to stop for a photo. 

 Living up here, having snowmobiles or off road toys are a must. We decided on a side by side. It's small enough to fit in the bed of the truck. Barely! Watching Paul drive it up and down the ramps is nail biting! We discovered that you can ride your off road vehicles on all of the county roads, so we can take off from the house and go for rides. We will only have to load it in the truck if we are riding somewhere farther away from the house. We joined a local off road club, so we will learn all of the fun places to ride. Our friends took us up to a grove of huge cedar trees. It's like stepping into Narnia. I'm not sure if that's my favorite place to ride, or the one where we stop and have cheeseburgers for lunch. 

 It looks small in the truck bed.

It looks small in the truck bed.

 We ordered a windshield so I wont have to wear a helmet. I feel like a bobble head wearing one, but I don't want a rock to the face.&nbsp;

We ordered a windshield so I wont have to wear a helmet. I feel like a bobble head wearing one, but I don't want a rock to the face. 

 Big hug for a big tree!

Big hug for a big tree!

 Paul in Narnia.

Paul in Narnia.

 Beer stop #1. The only time I drink beer at 10 AM.

Beer stop #1. The only time I drink beer at 10 AM.

 A beautiful place to ride to and have a cheeseburger and beer!

A beautiful place to ride to and have a cheeseburger and beer!

 We took a drive over to the other area we considered when looking for property. It's only about an hour west, where the Columbia and Kettle Rivers meet at Lake Roosevelt. While it's beautiful, we are still happy we chose where we did. 

 Lake Roosevelt, on the Columbia River.

Lake Roosevelt, on the Columbia River.

 Our dock doesn't go far enough out into the river to reach the deeper water, so in the summertime, the weeds make it impossible to fish from the dock. I bought a little fishing kayak. So far I've caught some large mouth bass and a couple perch. Nothing big enough to keep. I showed my friends kids how to cast, and their son keeps catching bigger fish than me! I don't know if it's beginners luck, or he is just more patient than I am. I hope he didn't learn any colorful language, since I tend to cuss at the fish!

 Here fishy, somebitching fishy!

Here fishy, somebitching fishy!

 What would a summer be without meeting Jane at a Kenny Chesney concert? This time we met in Seattle. We opted for floor seats instead of sandbar so we could come and go in between acts. We spent a few days seeing what (bars) downtown Seattle was like. The weekend went by way to fast. The party didn't stop there. April was in Seattle visiting friends, and met me at the airport to come home with me for a few days. We tried to cram as much fun and cheeseburgers we could into the short visit. 

 Jane and me in the VIP lounge before the show.

Jane and me in the VIP lounge before the show.

 A bloody mary toast to our friendship.&nbsp;

A bloody mary toast to our friendship. 

 Look who found us at the airport! April, Jane, and Sandy together again!

Look who found us at the airport! April, Jane, and Sandy together again!

 Hiking with April.

Hiking with April.

 Sweet Creek Falls. I've passed by it so many times and never stopped. It's now my new zen place.&nbsp;

Sweet Creek Falls. I've passed by it so many times and never stopped. It's now my new zen place. 

 We went up to Nelson, BC for the day. Sara, Me, Stacy, and April. Unfortunately, the wind caught Stacy's blouse.&nbsp;

We went up to Nelson, BC for the day. Sara, Me, Stacy, and April. Unfortunately, the wind caught Stacy's blouse. 

 Down River Days is the big summer event in town. There are all kinds of things to do and see. From crazy lady softball, where you run the bases backward, and take a shot if you make it to second, a team lawnmower race, where the driver is blindfolded, downhill Barbie Jeep races, racing snowmobiles across the river, row boat tug-o-war, and of course a parade. 

 Our friend holding the flag in the parade, representing the border patrol.&nbsp;

Our friend holding the flag in the parade, representing the border patrol. 

 The nicest car in the parade. Our friends Stan and Sara.

The nicest car in the parade. Our friends Stan and Sara.

 One of my friends invited me to join a secret club. The only rules are, you couldn't talk about it with anyone not in the club, and two members had to agree to invite new members in. No charitywork, just getting together to have a few drinks every once in a while. I was honored to be accepted into the group, but it sounded a little strange. The meeting was two days before my birthday, and I thought just maybe, it was a surprise party, but didn't want to say anything in case it was just a meeting. I'd have felt like a total loser if I was wrong. Turns out, I'm not a loser, and I have the best friends in the world! There is no secret society of drinkers. I was so happy that they all came down to the local bar and had a few drinks for my birthday. It was so much fun, that I think we need to start a real club, just not secret, that gets together once in a while to catch up. The Not So Secret Society Of Drinkers! 

 I love my friends! Alexa, Stacey, Belinda, Sara, Nicki behind the green balloon, and Sue.&nbsp;

I love my friends! Alexa, Stacey, Belinda, Sara, Nicki behind the green balloon, and Sue. 

 More Society members. Alexa, Stacey, who gets all the credit for setting the whole thing up, Belinda, Stacy, Sara, Nicki, and my No Shoes Nation sister, Sally.&nbsp;

More Society members. Alexa, Stacey, who gets all the credit for setting the whole thing up, Belinda, Stacy, Sara, Nicki, and my No Shoes Nation sister, Sally. 

 The property is looking better all the time. I have to give 99% of the credit to Paul, he has been working hard on it. 

 The cabin, with the property all cleaned up.&nbsp;

The cabin, with the property all cleaned up. 

 It's been a year since we stopped traveling, and we are getting the itch to put the camper on the truck and head out. Stay tuned for some camping adventures coming up! 

 

Spring has sprung!

We are coming up on one year since we bought the cabin. It's gone by so fast! We are constantly in awe of the beauty right outside our window. We are so glad to have found this place to retire. We started dreaming about it over twenty years ago, when we were living in the desert. We started out thinking we wanted a little bit of land, somewhere with tall trees, some kind of water feature, and cool weather. We even had it down to, not right in town, but close to a small town; an hour from a little larger town, and a couple hours from an even larger town with an airport and hospital. We toyed around with other ideas, like moving to a coast, or an island. After living in Mission Beach, the coast didn't seem as appealing. The noise and amount of people get tiresome after a while. I'm glad we stuck with our first choice and made it happen. I spent a couple of years researching small towns in the Pacific Northwest, and this area kept popping up. It's crazy that it met all the criteria.

 If you look closely, you can see the fish in his talons.

If you look closely, you can see the fish in his talons.

 A young buck. See his fuzzy antler stubs?

A young buck. See his fuzzy antler stubs?

 When we told our friends and family that we were going to live in an RV, a lot of them thought we were crazy. Then when we bought the cabin, I think some of them thought the same thing. I've had a few people express their concern about me moving to a place where I didn't know anyone, because I'm so social. The funny thing is, I'm not as social as I seem. I enjoy going out and doing things more than Paul does, but I have no problem being on my own. I have made some friends, and can be as social as I want to be. Mostly, I like to be home with him and Fiona. People never believe me when I say I'm an introvert. The first personality profile test I took was one that Paul took at a training seminar, to help you understand your coworkers. Paul is definitely an introvert, and I am just one click towards the introverted side. I can let my extrovert side come out, but I always need time to decompress after being social. It's a bit of work for me to do too much socializing. And anyone that knows Paul, knows that he hates socializing. :) As I write this, I think back on the times I've moved, since I met Paul. I moved to Cathedral City with him, without knowing anyone. We moved to Mission Beach, where I didn't know anyone. We moved into the camper, where I wouldn't know anyone. Then lastly, to Washington, where I didn't know anyone. I see a pattern! I love that we have lived in so many different types of places. The adventure started almost 26 years ago, and it's still going! 

 Paul and Rick, a fellow retired Fire Captain, from LA County. He lives right across the river from us. He's one exception to Paul's no socializing rule, they can always find something to talk about.

Paul and Rick, a fellow retired Fire Captain, from LA County. He lives right across the river from us. He's one exception to Paul's no socializing rule, they can always find something to talk about.

 A few of my new friends, Stacy, Stacey, and Sara. Sara is my awesome yoga instructor.&nbsp;

A few of my new friends, Stacy, Stacey, and Sara. Sara is my awesome yoga instructor. 

 Some of my friends at painting class. Sharon, Connie, Alexa, Michelle, and Stacey. I even met another crazy Kenny fan, Sally!&nbsp;

Some of my friends at painting class. Sharon, Connie, Alexa, Michelle, and Stacey. I even met another crazy Kenny fan, Sally! 

 The first friend I made, Liz and her daughter M. They live a couple hours away, and come camping on the property next to us. They came over to see the turtles and frogs in the pond.

The first friend I made, Liz and her daughter M. They live a couple hours away, and come camping on the property next to us. They came over to see the turtles and frogs in the pond.

 We have stayed busy working on projects around the property. Paul is able to mow more areas, since we have cleared downed trees and branches. There is still a few large sections that are pretty rough. It will take a long time to get it all cleared. 

 I try to get him to mow around the wildflowers.

I try to get him to mow around the wildflowers.

 We poured a cement pad in front of the house, so we don't have to park in the mud. At the same time, our friend, Bill added trim to the bottom of the house. I still have to paint it. 

 After the first truck load of cement we had to put in the second section of rebar and tie it, before the second truck arrived. Another skill I can add to my resume!

After the first truck load of cement we had to put in the second section of rebar and tie it, before the second truck arrived. Another skill I can add to my resume!

 All hands on deck to smooth the cement.

All hands on deck to smooth the cement.

 I finally got the new wall painted. It was a little tricky using the ladder on the stairs. 

 This ladder is made for stairs, still looks sketchy! Painting the new wall.

This ladder is made for stairs, still looks sketchy! Painting the new wall.

 I left Paul and Fiona at home and flew to Arkansas to see my aunts, uncles, and cousins. The plan was to meet my cousin, Annie there to work on her '52 Chevy truck and visit with the family. I found out Kenny Chesney was going to be playing close by the day before we were going, so I went a day early and met my friends Connie and Michelle from Florida, there. We met another friend, Alex at the concert, and made a few more friends in the sandbar, which is the pit in front of the stage. It never fails to amaze me how we can walk in total strangers and end up singing and dancing all night, and walk out as friends. 

 Connie, Michelle, and me with Kenny on stage behind us. www.Welcometothesandbar.com is there website.

Connie, Michelle, and me with Kenny on stage behind us. www.Welcometothesandbar.com is there website.

 Back row, Terra, Michelle, Alex, and Genelle. Front row, me, Connie, and Chandler. We just met Terra and Genelle that night. We had a blast with them!

Back row, Terra, Michelle, Alex, and Genelle. Front row, me, Connie, and Chandler. We just met Terra and Genelle that night. We had a blast with them!

My friend, Sandy moved from San Diego to Arkansas. While I was there, we went to breakfast and I got to see her beautiful home.

 Sandy and Sandy!

Sandy and Sandy!

 The week I spent at my Aunt Linda's went by way too fast! I always have a great time with them. 

 Uncle Chuck and Aunt Millie.&nbsp;(Chuck is my mom's brother.)

Uncle Chuck and Aunt Millie. (Chuck is my mom's brother.)

 Aunt Linda and me. She's my mom's sister, and is a second mother to me.&nbsp;

Aunt Linda and me. She's my mom's sister, and is a second mother to me. 

 Lovin'&nbsp;me some Uncle Melvo! (Melvin)

Lovin' me some Uncle Melvo! (Melvin)

 We decided we needed additional space for wood, so we expanded our woodshed to put fresh cut wood to dry. Paul has been working hard, cutting and splitting wood, and cleaning up the area we had it all stacked. Next project is to build a cat house. We are getting some feral cats to help keep down the rodent population. 

 Second wood shed during construction.

Second wood shed during construction.

 Two mice fell in this hole and died. Fiona has checked the hole every time she's gone outside since then.

Two mice fell in this hole and died. Fiona has checked the hole every time she's gone outside since then.

 Since it can't be all work and no play, we built a horseshoe pit!

 It was a ringer!

It was a ringer!

 Even a ledge to sit your beverage, and a nail to hang the shoes on.

Even a ledge to sit your beverage, and a nail to hang the shoes on.

On the first day of summer, we had our first visitors by boat. Sara, Stan, and their friend Jerry, picked us up for a little ride. We stopped up river and picked up Stacy, Rennie, and little Rennie, and went up to the dam. It was cool to see the views from the river.

 Our first docking.&nbsp;

Our first docking. 

 A beautiful day for a boat ride!

A beautiful day for a boat ride!

Now that we have the big things we wanted to do on the property done, we are in the early planning stages for a couple of camper trips. We are both excited to do some more traveling. 

There are lots more photos in Snapshots 3, Spring 2016. Click on that!