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Category: Summer 2011

HOW TO BECOME A MILLIONAIRE

September 29, 2011 by · 9 Comments 

HOW TO BECOME A MILLIONAIRE

The air smells magnificently crisp and clean.  There is no trace of the usual smog or exhaust fumes.  When I take a deep breath and fill my lungs full, I feel refreshed and stronger. The sky is dark blue.  Only a few cumulus clouds move across the horizon.  The temperature is a perfect 78 degrees and the sun gently warms my exposed skin. There is no noise – no cars, no trucks, no boom boxes, or sirens.  The only sounds I hear are the ocean waves breaking onto the sand in front of me.  No, wait – that was a seagull calling out as it flew overhead. Moments ago, I was kicking the light brown sand with my toes as I walked to my reclining chair next to a small tidal pool. I brought a cold drink with me.  It sits at my right so a smooth movement brings the cool amber liquid to my lips. My doggie, Oscar, is digging in the sand to my left – his leash in my lap. Nancy is further to my right enjoying a book downloaded to her Kindle. The book I have in front of me is thrilling. ... [Read more...]

VISITED BY AN UNWELCOME GUEST (This one will not be invited back!)

September 1, 2011 by · 3 Comments 

VISITED BY AN UNWELCOME GUEST (This one will not be invited back!)

We met on the Internet It was not in one of the usual chat rooms, or singles dating sites like eHarmony or Zoosk as one might expect.  She just popped up out of nowhere and introduced herself without hesitation. At first, I was shocked at how forward she was – her blatant introduction caused me to become suspicious and worried. She was young, wild, and a “fast mover”.  She didn’t seem to be the least bit bashful and announced her intent to visit the clear blue waters and white sandy beaches of the Bahamas – even if she was not welcome. There was some mention about coming to North Carolina and Virginia.  Maybe she would stop over for a night and we could spend a little time together. My sleep that night was restless.  I couldn’t get her off my mind.   I dreamed about our possible meeting.  I got out of bed and picked up my laptop computer, logging into her personal social network site.  I had to see what she was doing at the places she visited. Her most recent... [Read more...]

Our cottage on the road

August 30, 2011 by · 5 Comments 

Our cottage on the road

There are many advantages to have an RV.   The main one would be to have your home on the road with you when you travel.  It helps you save money because you don’t have to stay in hotel (which can be expensive for a family of six) and you don’t have to go to restaurants all the time. But today I want to highlight another advantage of owning an RV.    Recently, we attended a wedding with our four kids.  Our youngest, Jasmine, was the flower girl.   The wedding was being held on the Quebec side about 1 hour 45 minutes from our home.   We needed to be there on the Friday for the rehearsal and on Saturday for the wedding itself. We had permission to bring the RV with us and park it next to the house where the wedding was happening.   They had rented a farm and had access to it for a few days before the wedding.    So on Thursday my husband drove to our campsite and went to get the RV.   Let me specify to you that parking a 30 foot RV on our driveway is not an easy task... [Read more...]

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...]

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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