Our very first RV adventure blogging post!

091316-visited-states-map
As of September, 2016 we have finally visited all of the 48 connected states in the US!

The blog below was the first blog that started documenting our travels and the experiences we’ve had.  A lot has happened since this first blog.  We were such newbies in the RV world and over the past 3+ years have gained so much experience not only with RV life but in our own lives.  God has been so good to us leading us through this journey.  Hope you will read through the various posts to learn about RV life and about the silly couple that are the Chauvins!


Hello world! Welcome to my first blog about Roy, Rosalyn, Dora and Boots’ adventures exploring the United States. We won’t start exploring for a while, other than an occasional trip to locations around Louisiana and a Christmas trip to Disneyworld! At least, not until our sticks and bricks house is sold! Please someone buy it!

This lovely 2 story Acadian style home on one acre is for sale!!!
This lovely 2 story Acadian style home on one acre is for sale!!!

If you’re wondering who Dora and Boots are, no they’re not our new grandchildren! They are TV characters our granddaughter Madisyn loves and consequently we’ve seen many episodes of Dora. In her show, Dora is an explorer and we learn all sorts of things through her exploring. Since our RV adventures will take us exploring throughout the United States, we thought it fitting to name our RV “Dora”. Our truck we are towing behind the RV is now named Boots, Dora’s trusty side kick who follows her everywhere! Our Dodge Dakota truck that we will tow is called our “toad”, in RV lingo. That means Boots is our toad!

I am married to my best friend, Roy Chauvin! Roy and I are a regular every day Southern Baptist Christian couple living in Hammond, Louisiana. I am a young 58 years old, born and raised in New Orleans Louisiana. Roy is a slightly older 63 year old who just turned the Social Security retirement age in January, 2013 and was born and raised in Metairie, Louisiana right outside of New Orleans. We met in 1971 and were married in 1972. Our first son Chad was born in 1979 followed by his brother Chip in 1981. They are both grown men now with wives and children of their own. All that’s a story for another day but we wanted you to know a little about the folks going on this journey. We moved to Hammond, Louisiana 25+ years ago and have lived here since. It’s a small college town between New Orleans and Baton Rouge. We both currently work at Southeastern Louisiana University. Roy is the Computer Fix It Guru (of course not his official title) and I am the Telephone Billing/Work Order Coordinator which is my official title. We are die-hard New Orleans Saints fans. We’ve loved them since they became a team in our teen age years and have supported them faithfully ever since.

Our adventure began back in August of 2012. I started keeping notes as we began the journey, making the decision to undertake this total lifestyle change. Instead of a daily blog, at first it will be a monthly blog for the months August, September, October, November and December 2012. From here on out I’ll post as I have the opportunity to or when enough experiences have occurred to be interesting.

We hope anyone considering the full time RV lifestyle will learn a little from our experiences as we have learned so much from others experiences. Ask us questions if you want, if we’ve experienced it we’ll let you know what happened with us! If you’re experienced full timing RVers and you see we’re making mistakes please, please shout out to us and share your sage advice with us newbies! We’ve been so happy since we made this decision that we are hoping some of our family and friends will get the itch and come join Roy, Rosalyn, Dora and Boots on our great adventure!

The blogs below are in newest blog first order. If you’d like to read about our experiences in order start at the last one in the list from August and read up to the current date. You may have to click on OLDER POSTS to get to the August one. Please click the FOLLOW link on the right if you’d like to receive an email whenever a new blog is posted!

07.18.17 College of the Ozarks – Hard Work U – What’s it about?

Tuesday, July 18, 2017 – We usually get out the day after arriving in an area to see what there is to do and see! Monday we drove around Branson, Missouri with a short list of places to check out. We usually discover before we arrive in an area the attractions we want to check out. College of the Ozarks was not anywhere on our radar, but we both loved it (especially the homemade ice cream) and would recommend it as a must see place on your itinerary when in Branson, Missouri!

We started out at Branson Hobby Center where Roy picked up a couple of things he needed for his remote control plane. We left a painted rock there when we arrived! The hobby center is not in Branson but is in neighboring Hollister, MO.

I found the perfect place to leave one of my painted rocks! Sure hope it makes someone SMILE!!

Also in Hollister, MO is an amazing college called College of the Ozarks which I want to share with you all. It is also known as Hard Work U. This is a most unusual college. Their description from their website says it all:

Christian values and character, hard work, and financial responsibility comprise the fundamental building blocks of the “Hard Work U” experience. At a time when there is much talk about what is wrong with the nation, College of the Ozarks exemplifies what is right with America.

C of O is committed to its founding mission of providing a quality, Christian education to those who are found worthy, but who are without sufficient means to obtain such an education. Instead of paying tuition, all full-time students work campus jobs to defray the cost of education. Upon complete participation in the Work Education Program, the College guarantees to meet the entire cost of education for students, allowing them the opportunity to graduate debt-free. The College openly discourages debt by not participating in any federal, state, or private loan programs and leads by example through having no institutional debt of any kind.

In case you read through that quickly and didn’t catch the main point, it is: Students do not pay tuition. They all work on campus to help defray their expenses.

These students make things to sell and provide services. Making things like: fruit cakes that looked delicious, jellies and jams, daily making homemade ice cream which we enjoyed and was delicious. They grow huge amounts of vegetables and raise cattle and hogs for milk and meat. All of this is served in the on campus restaurant which is prepared and served by students learning cooking. Students do all of the landscaping and maintenance. The College of the Ozarks has developed a series of unique attractions that not only draw in visitors and revenue, but also provide plenty of positions that students are able to fill, many of which embrace a back-to-the-land, farm-to-table, or historical aesthetic. There are also students serving art gallery assistant or a variety of positions in construction (from electricity to heating and air to painting).

As we drove through the campus we saw students working all over the place. The landscaping was meticulously perfect and students were seen planting flowers, pulling weeds, irrigating, and watering in groups. We went into two buildings and all we saw were students working. We have student workers at Southeastern but it is no way like a student worker at College of the Ozarks.

I do not know the guidelines they use for determining which students can go there and which cannot. To learn more about this absolutely awesome academic opportunity check out their website: https://www.cofo.edu/

I’ve found so much information about this unusual college that I couldn’t possibly share it all here. I did find two articles that cover most of it and here are the two links.

Hard Work U: College of the Ozarks, Part One

Hard Work U: College of the Ozarks, Part Two

Visitors are invited to visit this campus and the many public attractions there. The two buildings we went through were the Ralph Museum and the Keeter Center.

I’ll write next about what we saw there, I just wanted to introduce you to this quite unusual and beautiful College we discovered!

Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!!

 

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07.16.17 The good and the bad of our travels so far – by Roy Chauvin

Sunday, July 16, 2017 – Today’s blog is written by Roy Chauvin

We always seem to write about all the good things that we see and that happen while living and traveling around in our motor home. Well today I am going to tell you about some of the problems we have encountered in the last few week. And a really fun opportunity I’ve had while here!

We are members of Coast to Coast Resorts, a system of RV resorts throughout America. We joined this great organization years back when we first purchased our motor home. As members we can stay virtually free at Coast to Coast parks across the US for up to two weeks at a time. To keep within our budget, we take full advantage of this organization. Generally when we head out on a new adventure one of our first stops is in Mountain View, AR where we can venture out to enjoy some very talented music picking and singing in the Town Square where local musicians come and form groups to play and entertain the crowds. This along with perusing the local shops makes for a very interesting outing. There are also many beautiful sights to see and clear water streams running throughout the Mountain View area. So here is where it starts. The usual Coast to Coast RV Park we have stayed at in the past was having a special event. During special events Coast to Coast members cannot make reservations so this forced us to look elsewhere. We found another Coast to Coast park located in Shirley, AR which is located about 40 minutes outside of Mountain View so we booked our reservations. Don’t get me wrong as this is a very nice park. It was taken over by a new owner about 3 years ago and they have worked very hard to make it really a nice place to stay. But being 40 minutes away with very winding and steep roads has limited our trips and the amount of time we were able to visit Mountain View.

Those that know me also know that I like to fly radio controlled airplanes. On the plus side, the Lake Area Fun Flyers Squadron’s RC field is less than 5 miles away and they graciously allowed me to use their beautiful air field. (More on that later.)

Hitch Pin

While getting settled into the park, I noticed that the hitch pin that holds our TOAD (the truck we tow behind the Motor Home) was missing the lock that holds it in place. I’m not for sure how that happened but the pin on one side should have fallen out and may have cause big problems. The Lord must have been looking out for us as the pin was still in place with no lock to hold it in. I had to purchase new hitch pins so that when we leave the truck will be safe behind us.

Air Conditioner Blowing Motor

The next night I started hearing a squealing noise coming from the rear air conditioner. I tried to ignore it but as you know that was not going to fix the problem. Later that evening as the air conditioner cycled on and off, the blower motor refused to work and I was forced to turn the rear unit off. The next morning I climbed up on the roof and took the cover off of the AC unit and sure enough the blower motor was locked up. I managed to get it free enough to run but only if I turned it by hand after the power was on. I set the rear AC to High Fan cool so that the motor would run constantly without cycling off. I know that if it turned off that it would not start again without some persuasion. I ordered a new blower motor that day and had it shipped to me at the RV Park. It arrived here very quickly in about 4 days. Now I am out in the direct sun and heat changing the blower motor. It took a couple of hours but once again both AC units are up and running.

I went to the RC flying field and met several of the members all of which were very friendly and welcomed me as one of their own. I got to fly my plane several times and on many different days. (More on that later.)

Rosalyn and I decided to do a little exploring so we headed out in “Boots” our truck to visit the nearby towns of Clinton, Shirley and Fairfield Bay. We had an enjoyable time but somewhere along the way I manage to get a 4 inch nail in the tire. As luck would have it the nail did not penetrate the bottom of the tire but it went through the sidewall which meant that it was not repairable. I put the spare on and a tire shopping we will go.

Back in January, I purchased 2 new tires for the front of my truck. Thank goodness that the punctured tire was in the rear. As members of the Family Motor Coach Association I get a very good discount on Michelin tires but it require me to purchase them at a Michelin Advantage Dealer. I decided that it would be best to replace both the rears tire that match the front tires. I found a dealer in Batesville, AR about an hour drive from the RV Park. I gave them a call and of course they did not have the tires I needed in stock but were able to get them in the next day. That worked out good for us as we planned to visit family members who live in Cherokee Village. Batesville is in the direction of Cherokee Village about half way. We headed out the next day to Batesville and had the tires replaced at the Ozark Tire Center. They were very nice and professional. They got the tires installed very quickly and we were soon on our way to Cherokee Village to spend some time with family members that we haven’t seen in quite awhile.

Now back to the Lake Area Fun Flyers Squadron (LAFFS) flying field. I mentioned that I met several of their members and that they all were very nice and friendly. What I did not mention is their beautiful planes they brought to the field and how fantastic they were able to fly those planes.

I am very thankful to have met them and how they all welcomed me. Most of the time we flew starting about 1:00 in the afternoon. I decided to go to the park around 4:00 pm this past Wednesday when the temperature had a chance to cool down some. I suffer from essential tremors which causes my hands and fingers to shake making it very difficult at times to have full control of my RC plane. Normally I fly my using my thumbs on the radio to control the plane. Today I wanted to try something different by using my thumb and finger in a pinching fashion to control the plane in an effort to cut down on the shaking. This turned out to be a big mistake and I wound up losing the plane in the top of the trees.

I went home to get Rosalyn so she could help me. With a lot of persistence and a fishing pole with a weight on the end, I was able to shake the branch it was in and got the plane to fall a few feet but not all the way. The fishing line I was using was not strong enough and keep breaking on me. Then finally the fishing rod popped in half and cut my arm in the process. I temporally fixed the pole and tried many more times until it turned dark and I could not see anymore and was forced to leave it in the tree overnight.

When I got back to the RV I changed clothes and headed out to Walmart in Clinton, AR. I purchased more weights as all the ones I had were lost when the line keep breaking. I also bought a spool of 50lb SpiderWire. When I got home I fixed the pole with epoxy and replaced the old line with the new SpiderWire line.

The next day was the day that we planned to get Boots some new tires and visit family in Cherokee Village, AR. We planned on leaving at 10:30 am. I woke up very early and left about 6:30 am to attempt again to get my plane out of the tree. After about 8 more casts, I finally managed to get the line over the correct branch and the new SpiderWire line allowed me to shake the branch pretty hard without breaking. My plane FINALLY fell out of the tree and I was able to be underneath it to break the fall. I retrieve my plane virtually unscathed. However, the main landing gear which just snaps into place had pulled out and is still in the tree somewhere. I will have to order a $7.00 landing gear before I can fly my plane again. I made it back to our motor home about 8:30 am with plenty of time to get ready for a fun filled day of long driving.

We both very much enjoyed our visit with Barbie and Johnny Tate at their home in Cherokee Village, Arkansas.  We’ve known them for almost 30 years meeting them when we first moved to Pumpkin Center.  Maybe even when we were still living in Metairie.  Sally and Eddie use to live down the road from us on Hinson Road and John is Sally’s son. Barbie’s mom Shirley lived quite near us in Pumpkin Center and all the families just made us part of their family when we moved there.  Her step dad at the time helped us city folks take a stab at growing vegetables.  I think that lasted one year but we appreciated them helping us!  We love them dearly and they are as family to us as family can be without being blood related.   Barbie and Johnny (who are known outside of the family as Barbara and John)  have a beautiful home on a lake which we really enjoyed getting to see.  We’ve been friends on Facebook through all the time they’ve lived in Arkansas and us in Louisiana.  We’ve seen lots of upgrades John has done to their home and it was fun getting to see it all in person.  We wound up staying longer than we had planned since we were having such a good time. It was great to see them again. By the time we got back to the Motor Home that night I was dead tired and slept till noon the next day.

Rosalyn’s Note: Today, Sunday, we are leaving Arkansas after being here for three weeks!  We are headed to Branson, Missouri where we’ll stay for 9 days!  Because it is unbearably hot right now and will be that hot, if not worse, along Route 66 right now, our travel plans past Branson have changed.   The plans still include Route 66, just not now. Once we decide exactly what the new plan will be I’ll share!

Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!

 

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07.12.17 The Pottery Store in Clinton, Arkansas

Wednesday, July 12, 2017 – We stopped in Clinton, Arkansas at the coolest yard decoration company and came away with a really cute addition to our yard art!

The Pottery Shop located at 850 Highway 65 N in Clinton, Arkansas has so much to chose from it was quite overwhelming.  There is way more metal art there than Pottery so don’t be mislead by the name!  If you’ve been to Smith’s Landscaping in Ponchatoula you have seen metal sculptures similar to the ones at the Pottery Shop.  Wow, Oh Wow!!

The first piece of metal art that we saw was three sunflowers and a lady bug.  I fell in love with it and before we left I bought it!!!  Not sure yet where it will live when we return home but for now it has a proud place on our dashboard!  I brought it out in the sunshine to get a good photo of it.

Here are some of the crazy cute yard art sculptures they have for sale there.

Most of them are outside but inside is a maze of rooms with clothing, jewelry, indoor home decorations, more art sculptures and everything else imaginable.

The only thing I disliked was all their Arkansas Razorback metal art.  I just looked away from it and of course didn’t photograph any of it!  I did recommend that they stock up on some LSU Tigers art!

Their phone number is 501 745 2060.  Ask for Todd or Amy!

I left one of my painted rocks there.  I asked before I left it and Amy said yes, and that they found one at the front door of their church recently and everyone loved it!

Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!

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07.11.17 Delicious Smoked Baby Back Ribs at Chow Hall BBQ in Shirley, Arkansas

Tuesday, July 11, 2017 – Friday we went over to Chow Hall BBQ which is just 100 feet from our RV to try out their smoked food!  This is from their facebook page:

Our BBQ is smoked low and slow! We offer Pulled Pork, Brisket, Chicken and Baby Back Ribs. All our sides and desserts are handmade. Specials everyday!

We ordered a rack of baby back ribs, bacon and ranch potato salad and BBQ beans.  These were the most delicious ribs I’ve ever eaten.  Very meaty and what we bought was enough for both of us one night and Roy ate the rest the next night.

If you’re ever anywhere around here you must stop and eat here!

Here are some photos of this small little wonderful place.

 

Allen, the man who owns the Chow Hall said it was okay for me to leave a rock on one of his tables!

Here’s our little homestead from July 2nd to July 16th at Golden Pond RV Park!  The plants are loving this beautiful Arkansas weather and our flamingo is just a pedaling away!

Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!

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07.10.17 An evening in Mountain View, Arkansas – for the third year!

A sign just like this one but in blue was hanging in the Kin Folks BBQ restaurant. Just one more reason I love Arkansas!! My photo was very blurry and I want it to be clearly read so I found this one!

Monday, July 10, 2017 – We have traveled to Mountain View, Arkansas in 2013, 2015 and again in 2017 we are not far from Mountain View.  We would be staying in Mountain View but they didn’t have any openings so we are in Shirley, about 30 minutes away. What draws us here is the towns musicians gathering in the town park square, the courtyard front yard and several other places around the town.  It is the friendliest, happiest environment you can imagine!  I could easily, easily live here and as long as we continue RVing we will keep coming back here when we can.

Saturday evening we drove the 30 miles from Shirley to Mountain View where we had a wonderful time!  We strolled the streets in downtown and hid several rocks there!! We listened to the picking at the courthouse and I sat on the giant chair on the main street!

This is the courthouse where pickers play.  We listened to the lady who was playing for a while. The lady singing was broadcast and is very different than the pickin in the town square.  We then went to Kin Folks BBQ across the street from the town square where the musicians sit around picking songs and singing along with banjos, guitars, ukulele and other various instruments.  We both had jumbo hamburgers with fries and cokes.  We learned about this place from our sweet friend Elizabeth Halpin Smith and keep coming back.  Elizabeth’s husband Freddie’s dad Donnie Smith use to pick in the square and when he died his photo was hung on the wall in Kin Folks.  We have been able to sit right next to the photo each time we eat there!

While we were there we met a really nice couple Lynn and Kay who are from Crowville, Louisiana.  We saw on Kay’s t shirt that they are members of a Baptist Church in Crowville.  We heard them talking to another man (you can’t help but hear other conversations the tables are quite close!)  Them being Louisiana Baptists like us gave us a great place to start talking! Come to think of it I don’t think we even mentioned we are Baptists!  Anyway we found out that they have visited Mountain View for many years and love it like we do!  They also have really cute grandchildren that we enjoyed getting to see pictures of!!  I’m hoping their trip home on Sunday was a safe one!  When you read this Kay and Lynn I didn’t mention it when we were talking but I write another blog called Wacky Wonderful Wednesdays.  A link to that one is at the bottom of this blog post.  I think it’s something ya’ll might enjoy!

Outside of Kin Folks BBQ a group of musicians had gathered and were playing. After eating we all walked over to the town square to listen to the musicians there. People come with their chairs or sit on the benches there around several gazebos.  I hid a bunch of rocks when we first got there.  We sat our chairs out and listened to one of the groups gathered under one gazebo.   This is where the amazing feeling of friends and family just shines!  People from all around the country join locals at any one of the several groups to listen to all sorts of music.   Any musician can join the others or start their own group.  Very informal but special! A little girl saw me holding some of my painted rocks and said she had found a couple of other ones from around town.  She got so excited that I was the lady that painted them so I gave her the two I was holding.  She may look like she’s eating the rocks, but she’s not! When we left she was still looking for more!

Here’s some of the rocks I hid.

Near the end of our time listening to music we got some Ice Cream from another place across the street from the town square.

On our way back to Golden Pond RV Park we pulled over and I got a photo looking down on Mountain View from up a mountain.In case you haven’t read them in the past, here are some previous posts about our time in Mountain View. We seem to come here in odd numbered years 2013, 2015 and 2017!

https://rosalynandroy.com/2013/05/01/mountain-view-arkansas-holiday-mountain-resort/

https://rosalynandroy.com/2015/05/07/05-08-15-anglers-holiday-mountain-resort/

https://rosalynandroy.com/2015/05/08/05-09-15-a-stroll-around-anglers-holiday-mountain-resort-some-of-it/

https://rosalynandroy.com/2015/05/10/05-10-15/

https://rosalynandroy.com/2015/05/13/05-13-15-we-is-zip-lining-fools/

https://rosalynandroy.com/2015/05/13/05-14-15/

https://rosalynandroy.com/2015/05/14/05-15-15-an-evening-of-mountain-music/

I’m pretty sure you can tell we love it here!  One of the places we are looking forward to going to this week is to Cherokee Village, Arkansas to visit some very dear, long time family John and Barbara Tate.  We’ve always know them as Barbie and Johnny but somehow they grew up and like being called John and Barbara.  We’ve shared many many memories with these guys until they moved to Arkansas.  We are really looking to getting together with them on Thursday!

Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!

 

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07.09.17 Natural Bridge in Clinton, Arkansas

Sunday, July 9, 2017 – Thursday after Roy and I collected rocks in Weaver’s Creek in Shirley, Arkansas we saw a sign indicating that “Natural Bridge” was nearby just outside the town of nearby Clinton.  We decided to check it out!

After traveling down a very interesting winding road you reach a parking lot at the bottom. At one end there is a log cabin built in 1871, according to a sign above the door. The cabin is the entrance to the bridge area and also contains a gift shop. The covered wagon was very cool.  Roy said it was an early RV!!!  Guess he’s right!!

 

On entering the cabin, you will meet a ranger who will give you a history of the bridge and area.

After paying your entrance fee of $5 per person, you exit the back of the cabin to a pathway that leads to another cabin. Inside are a lot of antiques and pictures with information, etc.

Look at the REWARD sign.  $10,000 in Gold Coin was a whole lot back then.  These must have been two bad folks – Sam and Belle Starr!

I thought seeing all of these old utensils were cool.  Especially the bathtub in the first photo.  It was much larger than it looks in the photo! Underneath the cabin an old still sits. Past the cabin is a picnic area with tables and benches.

Natural Bridge is a compression bridge of a flat huge slab of stone stretched across a waterway tumbling down the hillside. You cannot walk/climb up to it, but you can view its beauty.The main slab, supported by two buttresses of stone, is about 120 feet long and over twelve feet off the ground.

In the years following the Civil War, the timber industry exploded throughout the state. Loggers would come to use the Natural Bridge to haul logs across the steep and treacherous terrain. This is an old photo taken during that time.

Situated in a quiet forest area (hazelwood, birch, pine), it is a pretty place to visit, hear some bird calls, see and smell the beauty of the forest greenery. If you walk past the bridge you come to the top of the hill to another picnic area and on to the end of the path. Along the pathway there are a couple of caves along the rock formations there.

I was so thankful to reach the end of the path I had to take a photo with the sign that says Trail Ends Here!  After picking up and hauling rocks earlier, this short walk seemed way longer than it was! The address for Natural Bridge is 1120 Natural Bridge Rd, Clinton, AR It is open Mid-March – October. (Call to verify)Phone:501-745-2357

The beauty of nature in Arkansas is exceptional!   Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!

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07.06.17 Looking for something for the kiddos to do this summer??? Happy 36th Birthday Chip Chauvin!!!

Thursday, July 6, 2017 – Today is our youngest son Chip’s 36th birthday.  He’s getting old (ha ha) and we’re already old!! Happy Birthday Chip!

If you’re looking for something for the kiddos to do this summer and want to get them away from their video games and phones, try PAINTING ROCKS!!  I wrote recently about a lady who paints rocks and since that time I’ve gotten into it ALOT and spend time each day either looking for rocks, painting them or hiding them for others to find! I like the idea of being able to, in a subtle way, put a smile one someones face and maybe brighten their day!

For less than $15 you can put together a basic rock painting set of ACRYLIC paints. Here’s a photo of basic supplies and a few paint markers. Thanks Charlotte Emerson for letting me use your photo. She got all this, including the rocks, at Walmart.  What you see here was probably more than $15 but you absolutely can start out for that amount.

 Roy and I don’t do anything basic so our paint supplies have expanded way past that, but you don’t have to. This is our painting supplies not including the cans of spray paint!

First thing to note is that artistic skill is absolutely NOT a requirement.  I do ooh and aah at the really pretty painted ones I see, but whatever a child wants to create is just as fantastic!

I am including links to two Facebook group’s pages that have fairly detailed guidelines (remember they are not rules, just guidelines to help you get started) but if you don’t want to read all that here’s the basic guidelines as I know them:

  • Find or buy rocks from Lowes, Hobby Lobby, Dollar Tree, Dollar General or Walmart – if you find one out in nature, clean it really good and let it completely dry
  • Buy cheap or expensive acrylic paints, paint markers, glitter glue, glitter, stencils, paint brushes, clear spray paint and any other colors you may want.  I also use finger nail polishes that I have but don’t really like or use on my nails. Walmart has 95 cent white and black spray paints!
  • Paint your rock however you want to, being sure to add an inspiring message to either the front or the back, let it dry completely and spray two coats of clear sealer to protect the paint.
  • If you plan to post your rock to a Facebook or other group – we have a group on RVillage for RVing Rocks – you can put a message on it asking them to post a photo in that group of the rock when they find it.
  • Hide, in plain sight, your rock.  Be sure not to put it in grass that needs to be mowed or somewhere that it would be dangerous to get to.  Just use common sense in where you place them.
  • I kind of do what I want to do with mine since we’re never in the same area long with our RVing.  Just be safety conscious and have as much fun as you can with it!

There are general guidelines that people seem to be following somewhat that you can read at these three Facebook pages:

Montrose Rocks!

St. Tammany Rocks!

Culpepper Rocks!

This group doesn’t have guidelines but they are specifically for RVer’s so it’s one of my favorite groups!

RVing Rocks (for RVers – isn’t that so cool)

There are hundreds of Rock Painting Facebook groups.  You do not have to be part of a Facebook group to do this but it definitely adds to the fun!  The reason it adds to the fun is that when you leave your rock somewhere you put a photo on the Facebook group and a hint as to where it is located.  When someone finds your group, either using the hint or just stumbling upon it, they post a photo and you get to see it’s been found.  They can rehide it or keep it!  This part is especially fun for little ones so if you find a rather crude looking creation it may be from a little one so be sure to post the photo!

I shared my rock painting hobby with my nieces recently and one of them and her daughter have started painting and hiding them in St. Tammany Parish (Louisiana).  I started saving photos of rocks that inspired me in a folder on my computer.  I recommend doing that!  Not that any of my rocks will inspire you but since you know I’m all into sharing photos, here are some of the rocks I’ve painted and photos of some of the places I’ve hidden them!

Please let me know if you get into doing this and share some of your rock photos with me.  They may show up on our blog for others to enjoy!!

This first photo are all of the rocks we gathered from Weaver Creek here in Arkansas today.  They were free though the gathering of them and hauling them back to the car was pretty rough for Roy and I!  But they were free! The next two photos are of Weaver Creek where we got all of these rocks.  It was so much fun! We were exhausted afterwards, but it was fun!

I’ve already painted probably 50 rocks and these are just a few.  I’m also showing where I hid them to help ya’ll along a little!  I’m still getting use to leaving rocks in public places so there are not many of those photos yet! This first one was inspired by my sister Harriett who suggested that I put “Turn Me Over” on a rock.  I love that idea and have done a few of those!

 

My granddaughter Kallie painted the front of this one when we were still in Louisiana.  It was hidden at a Walmart parking lot.  

 

 

  “God Loves You” can be written on even the tiniest rock.  I may even create some Trump rocks!  If you want to spread God’s love or a Christian message this is the perfect way to do it!   Here’s a big and a small one with Smile on the front and God Loves You underneath! Get as creative as you want and sleep well in the knowledge that you may have added some sunshine to someone’s day!

If you want to see plenty of rocks other people have painted (and some really spectacular ones) go to any of the three Facebook pages I included links to above.

Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!  I’m going outside to play with rocks!

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Click on the links below to go there!

Wacky Wonderful Wednesdays published on Wednesdays

Some Things I Learned About Dementia published randomly

07.04.17 Hot Springs to Shirley, Arkansas

Tuesday, July 4, 2017 – Happy Independence Day everyone from the Chauvins in Arkansas!

We thoroughly enjoyed the beauty of Gulpha Gorge Campground in Hot Springs National Park while we stayed there for five days.  I found several nice rocks to paint and left them around the campground before we left.

I wrote Hot Springs National Park, Arkansas on two nice size rocks that will head back home with us to Amite!

We left Hot Springse on Sunday morning fairly early.  At 10:30 we pulled into the Greenbriar, Arkansas Walmart so we could watch our church’s Live Stream Worship Service.  Bro. Bob Adams, our interim pastor was preaching again to further prepare us for our new pastor who will start on July 9th, next Sunday!  As always it was a wonderful experience though I’m sure the Walmart customers wondered why the lady in the RV was singing hymns fairly loudly!  We bought a watermelon while there and got back on the road headed for Shirley, Arkansas where we will stay at Golden Pond RV Park for two weeks.

Before leaving Hot Springs, Roy looked into remote control flying opportunities around Shirley.  He found something right down the road!  He spoke to someone associated with the air field and got the okay to fly there! As soon as we arrived at Golden Pond RV Park and got settled, he went over to the Lake Area Fun Flyers Squadron. https://www.facebook.com/laffsrc/  They have a beautiful field with an 800 ft long runway. He hopes to get plenty of flying time in while he’s here.

A young couple own Golden Pond RV Park and are working hard at making improvements.  There is a nice adults only hot tub, a pond to fish in, an above ground new swimming pool, pretty trees and lots of sun!  One of the neatest attractions is the Chow Hall BBQ which is just about 50 feet from our RV.  The BBQ place will open on Wednesday and I’m pretty sure we’ll be eating there while we’re here.

Shirley, AR is about 30 minutes from Mountain View, AR.  If you’ve been reading our blog for a few years you know that we absolutely love Holiday Angler’s Mountain Resort in Mountain View, AR.  That resort was booked for several of the days we’ll be here, so we chose to stay at Golden Pond instead. We planned to head in to Mountain View for the 4th of July parade and music celebration but heavy rains have cancelled those plans!  I hope you’re having wonderful weather and getting to have special time with your loved ones!

Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!

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Click on the links below to go there!

Wacky Wonderful Wednesdays published on Wednesdays

Some Things I Learned About Dementia published randomly

06.29.17 Garvan Woodland Gardens in Hot Springs, Arkansas

Thursday, June 29, 2017 – Today we went to Garvan Woodland Gardens, the 210 acre botanical garden of the University of Arkansas is nestled in the picturesque Ouachita Mountains of Southwest Arkansas.  As their website says:  “Garvan Woodland Gardens is an example of The Natural State at its best: a canopy of pines reaching skyward providing protection for delicate flora and fauna, gentle lapping waves that unfold along the 4 ½ miles of wooded shoreline, and rocky inclines that remind us of the surrounding Ouachita Mountains.”

The Gardens are open February 1 through mid-November 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.   Admission for adults is $15 each.  The map on the left shows the whole gardens.  We made it through about 2/3rds of the gardens which is pretty good for our first outing in several months!

 

Roy found a turtle!  

This is a beautiful place where many have weddings.  There is a Groom’s Building and a Bride’s Building and then there is the Chapel!  In the middle of all the beautiful green trees and plants, what a beautiful church!

This was a beautiful place to walk around. The humidity was very high so we came away from it dripping!   I kept thinking that this was not something I could have done even two weeks ago.  I am so thankful that God got me through all the medical stuff and to this point!  When we got back to the car I left one of the rocks I’ve been painting!  I hope someone finds it and it helps brighten their day!

Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!

cooltext1838781539

Click on the links below to go there!

Wacky Wonderful Wednesdays published on Wednesdays

Some Things I Learned About Dementia published randomly