06.14.13 RAVE, Glorious work day, Adult Quest!

936406_584210671603518_727263307_nFirst day back at work was a glorious day!  After thinking I should just get under Dora and hide for a while with my back hurting I’ve recovered and am now ready to conquer the world again.   Maybe not the world but at least my duties here at Northern Lights Resort.  I watered plants and picked hundreds of tiny dead flowers of the hanging baskets.  You really couldn’t see most of the dead ones but once they were gone it made the plants look like brand new and I really enjoyed doing that.  Little things really do make me happy!  The little orange guy here made me laugh when I first saw it but I couldn’t imagine when I’d ever include it on the blog. Now seems the appropriate time so here he is! On a more serious note this scripture meant a lot to me this week after last Saturday. Jeremiah 31:25 “I will satisfy the weary soul, and every languishing soul I will replenish”

Then to top off an already good day I got to call all the guests who are coming in this Saturday and remind them of a few things they need to bring, the check in time, etc.  I was a little nervous as first but once I got to calling them and hearing how excited they are to come I didn’t want to hang up with each of them.  Several of the guests I called will be here for the first time and I let them know they would have a wonderful time here.  I have a couple more to call Thursday and am looking forward to this evening when I’ll be at work to do that.  Now that I know who the incoming guests are it adds a different spin to their arrival for me.  I guess my mama’s training in Southern hospitality is coming in handy up North!  These Northerners (not the guests of course) do like to remind me that they won the war so if anyone of you true blue Southerners have a good come back for that please share!

They are putting out the RAVE this week which is this giant inflated climbing wall, trampoline,  propeller of humans that floats in the water.  Several of the pictures in this blog are of the RAVE before it was put out in the water and I’ll have some more next time of them assembling it in the water.  All the kids coming next week will have such a great time on that.  I’m thinking I may try it out myself  🙂  I’ll report on that when (and if) I do attempt it. The water temperature is in the 60s, so it’ll have to get a bit warmer for me to jump, or fly, or fall in there.

Wednesday evening I strolled over to Annie and Russ’ to join them around their campfire.  Then Pat, Tom, Debbie, Rick, Pat’s Niece Tracy, her husband Bill and their friends Jill and Mike joined us and Roy finished off the group when he finished work at 9.  Keep in mind it is still bright daylight at 9 here so at that time the campfire was just for warmth and roasting marshmallows or hot dogs.  Russ and Annie do Kid’s Quest on Mondays and help the kids finish a walking stick that they can take home with them.  That evening Russ let Tracy and Jill pick a stick and they whittled away at it around the campfire so we named this event Adult Quest.  You never know when a group event is going to crop up around one of our campfires and I just love it!

gatheringroy
The Adult Quest Gathering
10 pm moon
The moon at 10 pm when the sun had finally set
sunset on lake
The lake at 10 pm

We’ve been without the internet the last two days and boy did I miss it.  We’ve been hard at work so haven’t had much down time to enjoy it anyway. I’m on my way now to the linen room to fill all 12 tubs with the appropriate linens for tomorrow’s Crunch Day when we clean all the cabins and change the linens.  I have to find a better word for Saturdays that describes it more appropriately than Crunch Day.  Crunch isn’t a bad enough word and doesn’t sound like there’s much sweat and soreness and pain and exhaustion involved in it!!   I’m toying with Senior Citizens Hell Week Rolled Into One Day!  We’ll see!  Ya’ll enjoy your Saturday off and be thinking of us toiling away tomorrow  before we start our three days off.  One shining spot tomorrow will be when I get to meet all the guests I called this week at our Meet and Greet BBQ.

See if anyone can guess what this last picture is.  Let me know what you think!

unidentified lights

Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!

06.08.13 Siberian Tiger screen, beaver and beautiful scenery!

siberiantigerinsidescreen
Siberian Tiger sunscreen view from the inside of our RV
siberiantigerscreen2
Siberian Tiger sunscreen view from outside
otter
The huge beaver Roy say this week
otter3
Look at that tail!

Most of the pictures below are of the scenery we were blessed with on our recent pontoon boat adventure.  The first pictures are of our new Siberian Tiger sunscreen that is attached to the inside of the front window of our RV.  The original one we received was the wrong one so now we have the one we’ll keep!  The next pictures are of a beaver that visited the resort this week and Roy had the good luck to take pictures of it. I still haven’t figured out the WordPress problem so I’m not writing much and most of the pictures will not have captions!  Some of the scenery pictures are of Canada but I don’t know which are!

The last two days of work have been very hard on my old body. Muscles and joints I didn’t now I have are hurting terribly.  I’m hanging on to the hope that as time goes along we’ll get more use to it and not hurt so much! Roy is having similar hurting and aching issues so please keep us in your prayers that our bodies will be better able to handle the Friday and Saturday work days.  Thanks!

Ya’ll come back now ya’ hear!

eagle on nest
Bald Eagle on its nest. If you look closely you can see the huge nest at the top of the tallest dead tree and the eagle on top. It was a beautiful sight!

IMG_20130606_163236  the IMG_20130606_152943 IMG_20130606_152830 IMG_20130606_132244

04.10.13 Northward bound to live in Minnesota!

Big News!  Not that we haven’t been planning for this forever and ever and ever but finally the moment has arrived, well soon anyway!  No we haven’t sold the house.  However, Dora, Boots and the Explorers (Roy and Rosalyn) will be heading north on April 30th or May 1st to LIVE and WORK at Northern Lights Resort in northern Minnesota on the Canada border.  We’ll begin work between May 8th and May 15th and work until October 1st before the snow starts falling!  We got a workamping job there where they will pay us salary plus a full hook up RV site.

resortlayout.This is from the Northern Lights Resort home page “Our beautiful family-friendly cabin resort is surrounded by wilderness in a secluded bay on 16 acres, with nearly ¼ mile of shoreline. Lake Kabetogama (Ka-be-tow-ga-ma) is one of a chain of wilderness Border Lakes with majestic scenery and part of Voyageurs National Park on the Minnesota, Ontario border.

Northern Lights Resort (NLRO) is just a few miles from the Canada border and we will be able to see the Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis) from there.  Roy’s always wanted to see that.   They say it can be seen 200 times during the year.  Sure hope that’s while we’re there!

When we got the job offer call from them this morning I had to repress a big scream of happiness but turning my resignation in this morning was rough.  My boss Donna is my dearest friend and while I know she’s personally happy for us she’s not wanting to lose an employee.  I’ll be starting the retirement paperwork in the morning, with April 26th being my last work day.  We’ve retired one time before about 7 years ago but certainly didn’t move out of town much less 1,450 miles away!  That retirement lasted two years, let’s see how long we can make this one last!

We’re hoping to spend plenty of time with out little Madisyn before we go and she’s coming to spend the night tonight and play with Paw Paw while Grannie goes to work in the morning. Paw Paw has all the fun!

Then we’re headed to Pass Christian for a little taste of RV traveling life and will be staying in an RV park there not too far from the coast.  First time we’ll be taking Boots our toad on the road and I’m hoping for a good experience with that.

Don’t know how much posting I’ll be able to do now that we know crunch time is here but I know we’ll be posting about our travels through the US towards Minnesota.  If anyone has suggestions for RV parks along that route, please lt us know!

Ya’ll come back now ya’ hear!

04.03.13 Family Easter and Computer Sale!

Easter is over and Spring is here!  We shared a wonderful family day at our empty house the Saturday before Easter with our son Chip’s family and my sister Harriett’s family.  They are all genuinely kind and caring people and I cherish each time we’re able to get together.  We had plenty of food to go with our traditional meat – Popeye’s Chicken!

madisynandeggsMadisyn spent last Friday with me decorating (with the things my coworkers gave me so the house wouldn’t be totally empty and have a somewhat festive spirit about it!) decoratedeggsand cooking.  We had a wonderful time together.  One of the things we did was decorate eggs.  They were yard eggs that our friend Elizabeth gave us and were naturally green, blue, pink and light brown.  So no need to dip them to get them colored.  We put little pastel rhinestones and smiley face rhinestones on them and not only did we have a great time doing it but they came out precious!  A first for me to have pretty Easter eggs!

hunting eggsThe youngest  children, Madisyn, John and Sally enjoyed the Easter egg hunt.  My sister came up with the idea of having 12 eggs per child (six of one color and six of another color).  Each child was assigned two colors and were instructed to hunt huntingfor their colors.  It was a wonderful way to cut down on the everyone for themselves that egg hunts turn into.  They were helping each other by telling the person with a blue egg that they found one instead of scooping up the egg and keeping it.  Everyone got the same number of eggs and they were all happy!

twohorsesI included some pictures of the hunt and of our visit to our next door neighbor’s house where her white miniature horse had just given birth two days before to a little horse.  The children enjoyed seeing that and the other miniature ponies in the coral.  Someone said the other day that we live in the country.  I don’t see it that way at all since we’re close to the big city of Hammond.  However when I think about the fact that we live next to property with ducks, chickens, a donkey and horses I guess we are in the country!

This Saturday is the long awaited Computer sale. Probably no one’s been long awaiting it but us though!  Tables in the garage are all laid out with computer parts, cables, keyboards, mice, 10 computers with monitors and keyboards, desks, bookcase and a table with chairs for sale.  There are even around 150 tire stem valves. Perhaps everyone has this many but since I seriously doubt that.  It’s just another one of Roy’s purchases where he couldn’t resist getting an over abundance just in case they are needed.  I’m thinking that if we didn’t sell them we would be passing down tire stem valves to our great, great grandchildren and still would never run out.  A few household items and tools round out what’s for sale and I can’t wait for this last sale to be behind us!  Not that we’re going anywhere yet, but we could at the drop of a hat when all the selling is over.

Ya’ll come back now ya’ hear!!

03.11.13 Wonderful food and saying goodbye to Roy’s computer toys…..

Philippians 4:6-7, “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.” (NL

Roy finished his work on the washer/dryer after recovering a hand full of change, a Saints earring and a necklace from the pump.  He’s totally familiar with the little washer/dryer that was a total mystery to him before.  I am now charged with searching all clothing before washing it to make sure nothing is left in them that could clog up the pump again.

My retired husband surprised me one day this week by vacuuming, taking out the trash, doing 3 loads of laundry, cooking dinner and several other wonderful things to chickenbrocollicome home from work to.  He cooked baked chicken and fresh broccoli and cauliflower with cheese.  He even served it to me!  What a nice thing to come home to after a long work day!

Another day he cooked real mashed potatoes to go with the roast and carrots that were cooking in the crock pot.  That’s an ongoing issue between us.  I make mashed potatoes from a box of potato buds and he’s always wanting real mashed potatoes so when it was his turn to cook he made the real ones.  One of the presents in his care package from his co workers when he left work was a bag of potatoes and a recipe from our boss, Donna, for real mashed potatoes.  He made good use of that and they were delicious!!  Here’s a picture of  that meal.  I promise I won’t post a picture of every meal we have but this was such a big deal I just had to!

We’ve begun the formidable task of going through all his computer accessories, programs, disks, parts and computers getting them ready for his computer sale.  Chip and his friend Stan helped us by moving the two desks and bookcase out to the garage this past week.  Yesterday at work I received a text message from Roy that said:  “I’m a hoarder.  I can’t do this by myself.  I need your help.”  I could just hear the desperation in his voice.  When I got home we spent Friday evening getting the garage ready with the tables, two desks and bookcase.  He placed 6 of the computers, monitors and keyboards in place.  Today we worked in the computer room for several hours dividing things into piles of things to keep, sell or trash.  The sale pile got priced and packed in storage bins to make out to the garage. Seeing him sitting in the middle of all his little toys with a dozen jump drives around his neck I had to take a picture of him.  He made comments like “This is a sad, sad day.” and I made comments like “You have more computer stuff than any 10 families should have.”

royincomputerroomHowever we look at it, we’re making progress and hopefully by tomorrow night the room will be mostly empty if not totally empty!!!  Hopefully we’ll have the computer sale the Saturday after Easter.  Here’s a picture of the garage with a few of the computers set up.  There are more to come! computers in garage

We’re having our family over to our empty house for Easter.  It will be totally different from any other holiday we’ve had but with everybody bringing their own chairs and a table and food, we’ll have fun just being together, hunting Easter eggs and playing games! My sister and her children’s families are very special to us and this might be our last holiday at our sticks  and bricks house with them.  Some parts of this taking off and traveling does make me sad and leaving our families is one of those.

I was especially thankful to our friend Rhonda who is buying our garden wagon but has allowed us to keep it until we’re finished with it.  We made very good use of it today hauling things out to the garage.  We stopped sifting through computer “stuff” long enough to cook dinner and eat and we’re going back up there to do some more.  Having a completely empty house is the goal and we can see the goal in sight!

Ya’ll come back now ya’ hear!

01.27.13 Santa Paul, RV trash cans, 2 tsp of detergent, stinky foods, Sam’s visit…..

Roy's brother Santa Paul
Roy’s brother Santa Paul

Two months ago we purchased a medium size bottle of laundry detergent. Since we only use 2 teaspoons per load in our tiny Splendide washer/dryer I still have two week’s worth of detergent left. By comparison, in my previous life living in a sticks house with a regular washer/dryer, I purchased one of these size bottles every two weeks, if not more often.

Roy’s older Brother Paul came to see our RV for the first time. He looks so much like Santa with his long white beard (it was way longer than in the picture) and body shape that our granddaughter Madisyn is convinced he’s truly Santa. We had such a fun evening visiting with him and seeing Madisyn in awe the whole time. She thanked him for the bicycle he brought her last Christmas and gave him her next Christmas order! His wife Lois called Paul while he was visiting and his ring tone is a Christmas song. Madisyn’s eyes got huge when she heard that and then he told her “Oh, it’s Mrs. Claus calling”. She was in little girl heaven totally convinced that Santa was her Uncle Paul! We showed her his Facebook picture where he has his Santa costume on and she was totally sold!

We’ll have the most prepared house ever when we finally get to show it. Our son Chip has been helping a lot lately with those finishing touches. Removing all the outside porch globes and cleaning them out, painting the front riser part of the inside steps to the second floor, trimming back plants that died in a recent frost, etc. Our agent says we’ll have an Open House in February and we’re considering lowering the price again so hopefully things will move along then. Soon the grass will need cutting and of course we sold the lawnmower, weed eater, etc. All are gone, and the pretty little green blades of grass that I normally cheer about are not a welcome sight this year! Our sweet neighbor Jeannette offered to loan us her lawnmower, but we’re truly hoping to be long down the road before the lawn mower is needed too often!

We're living here in our driveway!
We’re living here in our driveway!

We’re still living in the driveway of our sticks home seeing more of our area than we did in the house.  We have windows everywhere you look in the RV and it’s lovely to see outside, even in our own yard!  Maybe one day we won’t live in a driveway!  Roy’s underneath the back in this picture doing something!  He’s promised me to write a couple of blogs soon about the work he’s done getting Boots, our toad, ready and all the incidental work he’s done since we purchased Dora.  I’m sure it will be him dictating and me typing if it ever does happen!

I’ve made some great progress on preparing for our final garage sale. I don’t think I’ve had three garage sales in my entire life yet after this one we’ll have had 3 sales in 6 months! Several tables are set up with goodies displayed and priced. Roy and Chip gathered all their old carpet/flooring installation tools and loaded them up in Roy’s truck bed. Roy use to work at Halpin’s Flooring in Baton Rouge and stays in contact with the owner Elizabeth, who is just the most delightful young woman. Now instead of installing flooring for her, he repairs all their computers. Elizabeth brings us fish, deer, fresh peaches and other goodies when Roy works on her computers. I love to hear that she’s coming with a computer cause we always know a goodie will accompany her! She said he could bring all his old tools to her and hopefully the flooring installers there now will want to buy a lot of his work goodies! This cleared a lot of space in the garage to set up sale items. It’s taken 5 months to clear out our house and garage and we’re not finished yet. Several pieces of furniture are still at the Estate Consignment Center in Hammond. They’ve sold some and there are still some there to be sold. February 9th is the garage sale date and if all goes well we should be close to cleaned out! Whoo hoooo!!

We have avoided cooking stinky things or pots of food that have to cook for a while to avoid smells accumulating inside our new home. This was something we were warned about on another RV owner’s web site.  Last weekend I decided to cook some fresh vegetables to serve with dinner during the week. I was not thinking about the smell when I chose cauliflower and turnips bottoms! They did smell while they cooked but after a little airing they left no lasting smell that I can tell. We (or at least I am) are trying a new healthier food approach. I want to be a trimmer version of myself when we are on the road and be able to climb hills and cycle around at will so I’m eating healthier and trying to be more active. No marathons for me yet, but a few more stretches and walking more is a start at least!

Our trip to Sam’s today was totally different than previous visits. We only go about 4-6 times a year and haven’t been since we moved into Dora. We’re use to getting whatever we can afford because storage was no problem. Our RV refrigerator/freezer is larger than most we’ve seen in motor homes but it’s not the same size as in a sticks house. Ours is now packed and at least half of the non cold stuff we purchased is headed to the storage bins beneath (I call it the basement). At least we have that space for our “overflow”.

Amazon Trash Can - paid 11 cents!
Amazon Trash Can – paid 11 cents!

One thing we have taken care of is our trash can. May not be a big deal in a regular home but in an RV it is. We tried a small one under the sink but that lasted about a week since  we had to empty it every day. We’re use to having a trash compactor that only needs to be emptied once a week so once a day was not going to work.  Then we purchased a tall plastic one with a lid. Well, it was white and when you walked into the RV the first thing your eyes locked onto was the white talk trash can. Not the look I’m trying to achieve! I shopped in all the stores around here and found nothing. Didn’t want white, didn’t want too small. I really wanted it to just disappear into the room. Finally on Amazon I found the right one. It doesn’t disappear into the room but at least it doesn’t shout, look I”m a trash can! When I checked out I found I had a large enough cash back balance on my Discover Card that the trash can only cost me 11 cents! We’ve received it and it’s in use and it is perfect! For owners looking for one, this is a picture of the one we got from Amazon.

I know this is a blog with very random thoughts, not many related. Yet that’s how our life is right now, all over the place so this is probably a good reflection of the current life of Dora, Roy and Rosalyn the Explorers!

01.04.13 Black tanks and toilets, oh my!

Today’s blog may not be of any interest to our family and friends, unless they plan on RVing or have a fascination for all that is RV related.  If you want to learn about RVing keep reading.  This may be a very weird blog to those who really just want to know about our travels, because it’s about the toilet and the black tank.  If you are planning on living in an RV, and know nothing about an RV toilet this is good information for you.  We don’t know all yet but have learned enough to know we can share with those who are just starting out. Since the weirdness of all this is slowly becoming our normal, here goes! THERE WILL BE NO PICTURES IN THIS BLOG!

Roy and I have never camped in our lives, not in a tent, not in a cabin and certainly not in an RV.  The closest our family ever came to camping was when our sons camped out in their big tree house across the pond from our house.  Roy and I slept in our nice warm bed while they roughed it in the tree house, never more than one night at a time!

We’ve never even been in an RV until we started looking for ours.  We went into this knowing absolutely nothing about this new world of ours so the odds of making mistakes is high and the odds of us learning a lot is high as well.  Everything is new and interesting to us.  I’ve never used a toilet that didn’t flush using a handle on the toilet tank.  Our new home has a toilet that flushes by stepping on a pedal and has no holding tank behind the toilet.  This aspect of RVing is absolutely the weirdest part of our transition from a sticks house to an RV.

I’m not a plumber but I’ve seen enough plumbing work done to understand how a house toilet works.  Fairly simple and who really cares what happens once you flush.  Well in an RV it’s very different.  There is no water (or very little) in the toilet bowl.  You can add more water by pushing down on the pedal just a little bit.  which is the reverse of what you do when you’re flushing and you push down on the pedal.  That allows some water into the bowl for “special occasions”.  I don’t want to get too graphic so if you can’t imagine what a “special occasion” is, think about it.

Once you’ve done whatever you’re going to do in the toilet, you push the pedal down with your foot to flush it.  A little dome opens over a 3 to 4 inch wide pipe and your “stuff” goes down the pipe to the big black tank which in our RV goes from one side of the RV to the other.  You can look down the tank (yes I did that today!) and see all your stuff and water.  Not something I want to do again but I did learn from it.  I learned all this today because Roy took me on a potty tour to learn all about the black tank and how the toilet works.  I want to learn as much as possible about all things RV so I can be as helpful as possible when we are on the road.

The black tank is a large tank that is black that all of the toilet water, toilet paper and “stuff” goes into.  Nothing else goes into it.  The gray tank is a large tank that is gray that all the shower water and sink water goes into.  Since we are parked in our own driveway and we don’t live near anyone we have a long expandable tube attached to the gray tank (definitely not the black tank) and it continually empties into our side yard.  That allows us to not worry about filling up the gray tank and having to empty it.

We also had a problem which was uncovered today when I opened one of the empty storage bins underneath the RV (right under the toilet) to see how much room was in it.  It was empty but had a lot of pee in it which is just about as gross as it gets.  Roy had to figure out where it was coming from so he could stop it which lead to the toilet lesson for the day!  We now have one very clean and sanitized storage bin!

Something interesting about the black tank – it has sensors that show up on the control panel indicating whether it is ¼, ½ ¾ or completely full. The gray tank has the same type sensors so you know when to empty both of them.  This is a whole different aspect that is totally, totally different than a house toilet.  About every two weeks we have to empty our black tank and you do that at a “dump”.  RV dealerships have dumps and our RV spot at Disney had one.  I think a lot of RV parks have them but don’t have any experience with those yet.

We know nothing about the chemicals some use in their tanks.  Most people say to just make sure you put plenty of water in the tank so nothing gets stuck……………………  We just read about a method called the GEO Method that uses Dawn Dishwashing Liquid (blue) and Calgon Water Softener after you empty your tank and it takes care of lots of issues! We’ll try that one as soon as we buy some.   We don’t have a real problem so far. I like things always smelling pleasant and reading other people’s descriptions of “smells” makes me want to be much more proactive than sit back and wait!

Toilet paper is another “topic” of discussion amongst RV owners.  Our wonderful Charmin toilet paper is considered by some to be not appropriate for use in an RV toilet.  Most RV bloggers say they use their regular toilet paper and don’t have any problems.  Our RV Technician says that you must buy RV toilet paper or it stays forever in the bottom of your black tank and can fill it up.  He said it mixes with the liquids and makes like paper mache which is hard.  I’ve heard RV toilet paper is not as soft.  We just bought some septic tank safe paper at Lowe’s so we’ll see how that does and then try real RV toilet paper last.  There is a test they say to do that shows if the toilet paper dissolves quickly.  I put our Charmin in a cup of water and stirred it for a few days and it did get looser but didn’t come close to disintegrating like they say the RV toilet paper does.  I’ll have to put the paper we just bought to that same test and report on it!

Like I said previously this aspect of RVing is the weirdest.  I’ve never liked using the toilet on an airplane for similar reasons to why I dreaded using the toilet in our RV.  It must be some phobia I had but now I think our RV toilet is very normal.  I guess it’s our new normal!

This is definitely a basics lesson on RV toilets as we only know what we’ve learned these last two months and you don’t just naturally spend too much time focusing on the toilet!  If experienced RVers read this and can give us tips please comment away!

I plan to write about our tiny washer/dryer combo next time since that’s a cool, very different aspect of RV life.

12.25.12 Baby Jesus, Christmas, memories, cooking, and more selling!

Christmas Eve service at church tonight was exactly what it should be. A beautiful reverent reminder that Christmas is about the birth of Jesus Christ. He came from Heaven to earth as a tiny infant – a human. How amazing is that! God chose to come to earth in the form of his son Jesus as a human. Bro. Randy spoke on Sunday and tonight about looking past the cradle to the cross. That is what the total message is about. Jesus came as an infant, grew up in the same world we live in, remained sinless and gave his life on the cross to take on our sins and save those who choose to follow him for all eternity. I’m very simple in my beliefs and while it could be described much better by others what I described is the basic truth.

Southern Baptist aren’t very much into rituals but the Advent Wreath is one tradition I look forward to each year since it represents the story of Jesus’ birth. A candle in the Advent Wreath is lit every week leading up to Christmas. Each candle represents a part of the story so the children hear it a little at a time and learn from it. The final candle, the Jesus candle, was lit tonight with all the children surround our pastor as he spoke to them. These children will learn over time how blessed they are to have parents who love them enough to introduce them to Jesus Christ and bring them to church to increase their knowledge of him. Some of those children’s parents grew up in our church and I’m so happy to see that their children are now learning about the love of Jesus through their teachings and those of the church. Our children were brought up learning about God’s love and it was wonderful to see our granddaughter in the gathering of children around the advent wreath on Sunday morning when the second to last candle was lit in the group around the Advent Wreath. I pray that all parents will make their children’s faith the highest priority of teaching they can give them.

Today on Christmas Eve, 2012 the last of our house furniture was sold. The dining room table and chairs were sold yesterday and the matching buffet server went today. The table and chairs were the hardest pieces of furniture to let go of. We purchased it around 30 years ago when we lived in Metairie, Louisiana. Many, many memories were created around that table from dinner parties with friends, family dinners, regular family meals, children’s homework, dozens of puzzles and whatever else we used it for. It was a beautiful solid oak dining table and matching oak chairs with cloth covered padded seats. After our sons wore out the original seat covers they were replaced and held up well. I hope their new owners will take good care of it and have many years of enjoyment as we did. Selling our house furniture hasn’t been too bad until this. The house is looking even emptier now.

We’ve still got a lot of computer stuff upstairs but that’s going to be addressed really soon – even if it kills us (meaning Roy!)  Today Roy, Chip and I spent a lot of time cleaning up some tools and electronics to list on Ebay. Roy’s stilts used for installing sheet rock on ceilings were bid on minutes after posting it. I love it when people buy the odd things you’re afraid no one will want! There is truly a buyer for everything. I spent time in the garage putting garage sale stickers on five boxes of household things. The garage is starting to look better and more manageable. I posted pictures and descriptions of several things on our local Facebook buy, sell trade page. I doubt too much will be sold since tomorrow is Christmas but we can always repost after Christmas. Hope people didn’t spend all their money on Christmas! We bought our RV for our 40th anniversary, Christmas, birthdays Easter, and every holiday from now until forever!

We won’t have any presents to open tomorrow (Christmas morning) since we did that on Sunday morning before church when our granddaughter Madisyn was here. No furniture in the living room except for the small tree and a few presents but that was all we needed. Our oldest son and his family won’t be with us this year so Paw Paw, Grannie, Chip and Madisyn had a lot of fun on our own. After church we watched our Saints win another heartache giving game! Geaux Saints!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Louisianians say “Geaux” instead of “Go” so when you see Geaux you know it’s one of us! Once we said goodbye to Madisyn we all crashed and started recovering from several days with our active 3 year old granddaughter! Now that she’s gone and we’ve experienced having her with us in the RV we know better what we’ll need to take with us for when she comes to visit. I can envision a new Princess/Dora container designated for her in the RV basement.

Cooking for Christmas so far has been interesting. The sticks house kitchen is pretty bare but does still have cooking appliances. After making a couple of trips to the RV to get things Chip and I needed we decided to make due with whatever was in the house. We had a spoon, a fork and one 16 oz. plastic cup. We used one of the cups to mix ingredients in, melted butter in the wrapping and several other makeshift things so that we didn’t have to keep running back to the RV for the real tools! I’ve sold the turkey cooking pan with lid so we’ll be cooking the turkey tomorrow in a short gumbo pot. I’m sure it will taste fine but this is quite an unusual cooking experience. There is no refrigerator left in the house so some stuff is in the RV and some in the sticks house waiting for morning to finish up the cooking.

I’m becoming more convinced that once we sell the house, retire and take to the road that the experience we’re hoping for will come to fruition. Right now, living in our sticks house driveway with most of our life in the RV and a little still in the house is complicated. Having to keep work clothes available when what we’d really like is all play clothes is a challenge in itself. I do still have my washer and dryer since it hasn’t been picked up so I’m taking advantage of that whenever I can. I definitely like having the RV washer/dryer and it works fine for during the week but on weekends when there’s a lot of extras I still go in the house. I can tell that the RV washer/dryer will be sufficient for when we’re on the road and am happy we have it, as opposed to going to a laundromat on the road. When our son Chip comes home to visit he stays in the sticks house so there’s a lot of going back and forth. So many things are just unusual when living in your driveway! Chip and I were talking today about going through the various seasons in our lives. I guess we’re in the limbo season right now!

Please someone buy our sticks house!!!!!