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Category: Special Theme Weeks

What do Earthquakes and Hurricanes have in common?

August 25, 2011 by · 2 Comments 

What do Earthquakes and Hurricanes have in common?

Some folks on the west coast have been laughing about our recent earthquake on Twitter – but for a community that is not used to the ground shaking it is no laughing matter. The “Big ‘Un” for us east coasters hit Tuesday a little after 1 p.m.  Buildings shook, chimneys toppled, foundations cracked, and groceries flew off the shelves of area stores.  The reading was 5.9 – the most significant quake in our area in the past 114 years.  Since the main quake Tuesday, we have recorded seven after-shocks, the most recent this morning around 1:30 a.m. with a 4.6 reading.  I slept right through it.  I guess those zero gravity sleep number beds don’t shake during earthquakes. Groceries flew off the shelves in Louisa during the earthquake While the epicenter of the quake was only about 50 miles west of our home, we escaped any damage on our property.  Some of our neighbors within hollering distance have huge cracks in their home’s foundation. What I consider scary is the North... [Read more...]

APPS THAT NEED TO BE WRITTEN (or, What if you don’t own an iPhone?)

August 5, 2011 by · 4 Comments 

APPS THAT NEED TO BE WRITTEN (or, What if you don’t own an iPhone?)

This week, our editors have decreed that we should write about our favorite smart-phone apps. This is, of course, dovetailing in with the release of the new, free, iPhone app by Woodall’s that gives you instant access to RV Park and campground information without the need to carry around a laptop computer or big, thick directory. I think this is absolutely great – except I don’t own an iPhone.  So, all these new apps like the one from Woodall’s don’t do a thing for me – that is, unless I decide to lay down a hunk of cash for a new iPhone or agree to a 20 year provider contract that also demands the life of our first born child and the deed to our home. OK – it isn’t really that bad.  It is just that I prefer NOT to get into contracts for things like phones, TV service, and such.  So, I usually end up buying my equipment from the bottom of the display shelf or off of e-Bay. That is how my “smart phone” ended up being a Palm Pre rather than an iPhone or Android.... [Read more...]

I.C.E. – In Case of Emergency Information & Apps for your Smartphone

August 3, 2011 by · 9 Comments 

This week I chose to write about a serious issue; having enough emergency information available on your person, if your are ill or injured and unable to speak, to give police and emergency caregivers the kind of information they need that might save your life or meet your wishes. Especially if you have a chronic illness, but even if you’re healthy, you might find yourself unconscious in an emergency room following a vehicular accident. If so, seconds count. While caregivers rush about, trying to stabilize you, one of them will be looking for pertinent information about you that might help them save critical time and avoid doing anything that might make your condition even worse. Their knowing what your current medical condition is, what medications you might be taking and who to contact on your behalf could save your life. There are a number of ways to do this; writing the important information down on a small slip of paper or a card, to be carried in your wallet, is one way. Immediate... [Read more...]

Red Laser: My Favorite Smart Phone App!

August 3, 2011 by · 5 Comments 

Red Laser: My Favorite Smart Phone App!

I am excited to write this post as I am really excited about this application that I downloaded around the beginning of the year for my HTC Desire Android Smart Phone. There was no charge for it and it has already received several updates and saved me over $30! It is the Red Laser app, offered by EBay. Phone w/Red Laser app in upper left corner I was first made aware of this application by my son-in-law Nate Lyman (actually he just became my son in law June 24, 2011, but has felt like family for a long time). Nate is a Senior Software Engineer with EBay and, while Red Laser was initially developed by someone else, EBay bought it last year. Nate “wrote the code” for the app and basically created it for Android phones like mine. He also added a lot of new features for both the Android and IPhone versions.  I think he’s a genius! But, back to my love of this app. Shortly after I downloaded it, my husband and I were out shopping for a mount for a new flat screen TV we had received for... [Read more...]

A potpourri of useful apps when you are camping

August 1, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

This week our theme is all about apps you could use while camping.   I was debating on which app I could concentrate my time on but it dawned on me that there are many good apps out there for various things.   So I thought I could present you with some of the apps I consider essential for your camping trips whether you have an RV or a regular tent. The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines the word potpourri as a miscellaneous collection : medley So I thought this word would perfectly illustrate exactly what I am trying to do in this post – presenting a variety of apps that could be useful for RVers and campers everywhere! *************************************** SAS Survival For over 20 years, the SAS Survival Guide has been the definitive guide to surviving any situation, anywhere in the world.  Written by former SAS soldier and instructor, John “Lofty” Wiseman, this application brings you the elite training techniques of Britain’s toughest fighting force in the most... [Read more...]

Patti’s Saga of an RV Rookie: Whitefish, Montana: Come Now!

July 11, 2011 by · 3 Comments 

Patti’s Saga of an RV Rookie: Whitefish, Montana: Come Now!

Whitefish, Montana.  Even Hollywood stars love it, “discovering” it in the early ‘90’s, with most eventually  moving on to wilder pastures. Tom Cruise came to our front door at the family’s Whitefish lake house,  looking for Emilio Estevez’ place near by. Ask me how thrilled we were and how very cool we acted, like we didn’t know who he was or anything. I was the Queen of Casual.  Oh…that grin…I’m sure Tom was equally impressed with us. Whitefish, where Julia Roberts dumped Kiefer Sutherland three days before they were to marry, while Sutherland was building their home-to-be  in Whitefish. We sat next to Kevin Bacon and Kyra Sedgwick more than once at a local Whitefish café. Again, we exhausted ourselves projecting disdainful cool. Tons more famous people called Whitefish their second (or third, for fourth, or fifth) home back then, but I can’t remember the names…oh yea, something about Steve McQueen getting kicked out of town on his motorcycle a long,... [Read more...]

Patti’s Saga of an RV Rookie: Important Correction RE: RV Limit at Fish Creek Campground, Glacier National Park

May 30, 2011 by · 2 Comments 

Photo of Patti looking for mud to put on her face... Thank you to Woodall’s reader, Robert, who pointed out I had written the RV limit incorrectly for Fish Creek Campground, in Glacier National Park, Montana, in my recent blog. Robert has reservations there, and I think I caused him acute distress. And I’m really sorry. In fact, Fish Creek Campground, Glacier National Park has  18 sites with 35 foot limits, in addition to several other sites with lower limits. http://www.nps.gov/glac/planyourvisit/camping.htm Thank you, Robert, and I hope this sets things straight. Have a wonderful, wonderful time in Glacier National Park this summer. Happy Tales, Patti

Conserving Fridge Space while Dry Camping…

May 30, 2011 by · 5 Comments 

Conserving Fridge Space while Dry Camping…

For us, summer always means a few camping trips.  Dry camping, camping trips.  You know, no KOA store, no electrical plug in, no unlimited water…   Now, unlike some, our family LOVES to dry camp – and over the years we have learned a few tips that make it easier to last a week in a remote location without having to leave camp to restock supplies.   For our family, we don’t want to give up the healthier foods that have to be stored in the fridge or freezer in exchange for boxed foods that are often not good for you.  With 13 people in one rv, we have learned a few tricks to conserving space in the refrigerator and I thought that I would share 2 of my favs here;   ~Repackage foods – often times there is a lot of wasted space in the packaging of everything from sandwich meat to shredded cheese.  Ziploc bags are our friend – they are great for repackaging foodstuffs, and they can be formed to fit anywhere in the fridge.  They are also great for storing... [Read more...]

Patti’s Saga of an RV Rookie: The Glacier Institute, or “How to Really Experience Glacier Park.”

May 29, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Patti’s Saga of an RV Rookie: The Glacier Institute, or “How to Really Experience Glacier Park.”

Mountain Lion photo by Jim Peaco, NPS I had been gone a long time. Too long. Southern California has its charms, but Montana it’s not.  After my stint on the So Cal wild side (can’t share; wouldn’t be prudent), I returned to Montana longing to know Glacier National Park even better. Sure, I had gone on several hikes, taken visitors on Going-to-the-Sun road about a thousand times, and had day (and night) camped a few times over the years. I had read a lot, as well.  But I wanted to know more. I wanted to learn about the Park from experts. Then someone mentioned, “The Glacier Institute.”  Perfect for me, and I hope for you. I love the Glacier Institute’s motto, “Learning Gone Wild.” And it’s true. Photo by Bryan Harry, NPS I could go on forever about the “courses” I’ve taken in Glacier Park on Mountain Lions of Glacier Park, Grizzlies and Black Bears, and Wildflowers of Glacier. Suffice it to say, they were outstanding. The classes may have different names  now,... [Read more...]

Patti’s Saga of an RV Rookie: Glacier Park’s Fish Creek Campground; Summer 2011. Just Do It!

May 29, 2011 by · 5 Comments 

Patti’s Saga of an RV Rookie: Glacier Park’s Fish Creek Campground; Summer 2011. Just Do It!

Photo by Ansel Adams "Evening, McDonald Lake, Glacier National Park," Montana I just called and reservations are available. Pack up the babies and grab the old ladies…wait… Neil Diamond already said that.  Yes, you can still get summer reservations for the coolest camping place in Glacier National Park (in my opinion), Fish Creek Campground. www.nps.gov/glac/planyourvisit/reservations.htm You’ve read and heard all about how great Glacier Park is. It’s all true. I ought to know. It’s been my backyard for 25 years. Well…30 minutes from my backyard in Whitefish, Montana, and I think that qualifies. I’ve “done the Park.” I know and have hiked many great places, have stayed in lodges and camped at awesome spots, and one of my favorite go-to-places is Fish Creek Campground. Here’s why: 1. Call me dull, but I like reservations. Fish Creek Campground is one of only two campgrounds in the Park that takes them. 2. I like beauty. Fish Creek Campground’s “Loops”... [Read more...]

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