03.11.18 Adios to my job at RVillage, Marty McGill’s song, Mary Sue Wilkins on using Music and a repost from Rick Phelps

 

Saturday, March 11, 2018 – I’ve been forgetting to let ya’ll know that I don’t work for RVillage at all any more.  They no longer need me doing the project I was working on.  I think it’s been over 4 years since I started working for them.  I want to say thank you to Deborah Thompson, Aaron Thompson, Hillary Murray, Cameron Mills, Jessie Nordon for being wonderful co workers and managers. Of course I can’t forget the RVillage founder, Curtis Coleman.  Curtis took a chance on hiring this old lady for a job I was able to do wherever we were in our travels.   I thank him for that!  If you’ve  been following our Dora blog the last four years you may remember me showing the number of RVillage members growing.  It is now at 91, 205 which is way way more than when we started with around 1,000 members.

This is a link to when I was first allowed to share RVillage with others in January 2014.  I worked for them for a few months before this.  I wish all the members and staff a very blessed future.  https://rosalynandroy.com/2014/01/13/rvillage-com/

I’ve read about the frustration dementia caregivers experience. My husband Roy is wonderful with me, please pray that he can handle what’s coming in the future.  I don’t want to take anything from the toll their loving care giving takes on them.  This below says something I, as someone with dementia, need to put out there.  I don’t know from day to day how my brain will be behaving.  Symptoms are sporadic and present themselves in different ways all the time.  It is extremely frustrating to live like this.  When all this started I don’t think it really clicked with me that I had dementia.  I still functioned very well, until I didn’t.  Even now I have great days when nothing confuses me and everything goes well with me.  Then it will hit and I am an incapable, bumbling idiot who falls, can’t think, can’t remember, and gets angry if I am not understood.  Being in any social setting exhausts me.  I try to keep my brain kicking and try to have coherent conversations with people and that is exhausting. Dementia is so much more than just having memory problems.  So so much more, and it is frustrating for both the caregiver and the patient.

A song written by Marty McGill after losing his mother to Dementia.

 

By Rick Phelps, Alzheimer patient and founder of Memory People.

Dementia affects emotions.

Dementia produce misunderstandings.

Dementia affects recognition of loved ones.

Dementia causes paranoia, delusions, and hallucinations.

Dementia causes caregiver overload.

Dementia causes anger.

And…it is a memory impairment.

If your loved one is having anger issues what to do? There are several things to try. Give them space. Don’t invade there personal space. This causes them to be more agitated. No one likes their personal space invaded. Having dementia and invading ones personal space just intensifies an already hectic situation.

Don’t argue with them. Give them some time. If your loved one for example refuses to brush their teeth, don’t be persistent. Try again tomorrow. Same way with anything. Don’t make them do anything. This just causes more chaos to an already chaotic situation.

This doesn’t mean they have the run of the house or things that go on. But don’t pressure a dementia patient into doing anything. It simply will not work.

Use distraction. Some can be calmed down by music, but some don’t want any part of music. Every patient is different. To think music is a cure all for dementia patients is something someone came up with, and that someone didn’t have dementia.

Change the subject, change the environment, for example if they are in the bathroom and refuse to bathe, calmly suggest you both go do something else. Watch some tv, do whatever it is that you think will calm them.

Approach with one person. Don’t have two or three people trying to give them a shower for example. This too can trigger anxiety, and aggression. Again, demanding a dementia patient do anything is fruitless and simply will not work.

Try to determine the cause of their anger. This can be a shot in the dark most times. They could simply be angry because they are. There doesn’t have to be a reason.

Just having dementia, a brain disease can cause anger. In some cases their doctor may want to either change their medication or increase the dosage.

The thing with anger in a dementia patient is that this too will likely get worse. It’s not that they are getting more angry about things, it’s about the disease progressing.

Above all, make sure they and others around them are safe. Safe from themselves and safe from doing something that could endanger others.

© Rick Phelps 2018

Mary Sue Wilkinson will teach you five powerful reasons to use music in dementia care. Mary Sue is the Founder of Singing Heart to Heart and the author of “Songs You Know By Heart: A Simple Guide for Using Music in Dementia Care,” which includes a contribution from Teepa Snow. Learn more.

Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!

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08.07.16 FMCA Convention in West Springfield, Massachusetts

ese-gallery-history-01Sunday, August 6, 2016 – We arrived on Tuesday morning, August 2nd on the grounds of the Eastern States Exposition, known locally as the Big E.  The Big E is a massive place with several convention buildings all being used by the Family Motor Coach Association for this Convention which RVers know as a “Rally.”

The photos below are of the main expo center and several of the buildings along the Avenue of States that are not even on the aerial photograph of the Big E.

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWe helped Curtis set up our booth on Tuesday.  Wednesday the convention started and we worked 1 pm to 5 pm.  Thursday Friday and Saturday we worked 9 am to 5 pm.  Ours was the “RVillage” booth.  FMCA members are mostly older folks our age and much older.  Most of them have not heard of RVillage. I can say that most all of them at the Rally know who we are and a lot have signed up to be RVillagers.

We smiled, introduced ourselves and shared the RVillage love all day every day.  We truly loved every minute of it, mostly because we love RVillage.  We are beyond exhausted right now (Saturday evening) since we just left the exposition hall for the last time and are now back, enjoying our wonderful Dora who hasn’t seen much of us these last few days!

Curtis and one of our RVillage Ambassadors Jim Hollis (Jim is the FMCA Chaplain). Jim and his wife Jan were delightful to visit with.  20160806_122811

Curtis put on two RVillage seminars.  I attended this one with him and operated the computer showing the attendees all about RVillage.com.20160805_135636

A tiny bit of the the main exposition building.20160804_154700

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Our RVillage booth showing my boss Curtis in one photo, Roy in another and me in one!20160804_115058 20160804_105347 20160804_105025

One of the booths adjoining ours!20160803_131534

One night we went out to dinner on the convention center grounds in an area of old New England homes in Storrowtown Village.  The restaurant was the Storrowtown Tavern.  If you’re from Hammond the inside was similar to Jacmel Restaurant with the big fireplace and old wooden floors.  I enjoyed Yankee Pot Roast and Roy enjoyed Fish (cod) and Chip.  As we walked out the restaurant door we were surprised by some wonderful jazz music being played in the Storrowtown Square Gazebo.  Everyone brings their lawn chairs and claps and taps along with the music.  20160804_174319 20160804_174146 20160804_190554 20160804_190603 20160804_190637 20160804_190706

RVillage was so well received that our booth stayed very busy through out the convention so we all needed to be there most of the time. Roy was able to attend two seminars, Catepillar Diesel maintenance seminar and the Cummins Onan Generator maintenance seminar. He learned an awful lot from these two seminars.  The Spartan Chassis seminar was the main one Roy wanted to attend but it was scheduled at the same time the seminar Curtis and I did so Roy was needed at the RVillage booth and couldn’t go to that seminar.

Other than visiting the other booths we were also able to walk through dozens of new motor homes.   FMCA is predominantly Class A motor home owners, so that is what was for sale here.  The ones inside right by us were Entegra motor homes.  The ones like ours (Fleetwood) and other brands were all around the grounds outside.  I want to share with ya’ll what some of them look like but that will come next time.  These are motor homes ranging from $200,000 to $675,000!

See ya’ll tomorrow!  Ya’ll come back now ya’ hear!803a55b23f049f6011a992add4f34d7d

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07.30.16 – FMCA Convention in West Springfield, Massachusetts next week August 3 – 6

fmca_online_logoSaturday, July 30, 2016 – We’re in a fairly boring location right now so I’m really looking forward to next Tuesday when we drive over to West Springfield, Massachusetts for the FMCA Convention.

The Family Motor Coach Association (FMCA) is an international organization for families who own and enjoy the recreational use of motor homes. With approximately 75,000 active member families, FMCA is the largest association dedicated exclusively to the freedom, fun and enjoyment of owning a motor home.

We have been a member of FMCA for a couple of years now. When my boss, Curtis, made it known he was looking for a couple of RVillagers to attend the conference with him representing RVillage, Roy and I considered it and let him know we were his couple!!

We will help man the RVillage booth, #720 at Eastern States Exposition Hall. I’ll be sharing with ya’ll our experiences while we’re there but I wanted to take a little time today to share with you what they are about and what we think we’ll be experiencing there.

First-Year FMCA Membership is only $50 … Renewal $40. The value of FMCA’s member benefits far exceeds the cost of the annual dues. Benefit highlights:

  • Family Motor Coaching magazine — receive the monthly print edition (we receive ours online) and get immediate full access to the Web version and digital edition, including back issues, after you set up your online account
  • FMCAssist Medical Emergency and Travel Assistance Program — included with membership. As soon as you join FMCA, you are automatically enrolled in this program. It covers you worldwide, as long as you are 100 miles from home. And you can be traveling in a motorhome, car, plane, ship, or motorcycle.
  • Michelin Advantage tire purchasing — save on RV tires and passenger car tires with this popular benefit
  • Discounts at FMCA commercial member campgrounds
  • FMCA RV Insurance — priority access to the industry’s leading RV insurance experts who can find the right carrier for you and your motorhome
  • FMCA Roadside Assistance Program — group rates on this customized program
  • Approximately 475 special-interest chapters to join
  • Chapter rallies, area rallies and Family Reunions (aka conventions)
  • Exciting RV caravan tours at discounted rates

We’ve received the 112 page digital version of the Conference Magazine and the theme is “Celebrating Your Freedom.” You guys know we definitely celebrate our freedom of living on the road! We are looking forward to getting to attend some of the following:

  • Several big named manufacturers will have their motor homes on display for us to check out! We love Dora but we always love seeing what’s new! We just don’t talk about it in front of Dora!
  • Evening entertainment by “The Texas Tenors” that was featured on America’s Got Talent, Dave and Daphne, and American Idol semifinalist Ayla Brown.
  • We just know we’ll win the Grand Prize of a 34 day Mississippi River Run RV Vacation for Two!
  • We will attend the “First Time Attendees” Get Together!
  • Lots and Lots of play opportunities!
  • Roy’s going to attend the Spartan Chassis Maintenance Seminar and the Caterpillar Engine Maintenance Seminar.
  • We hope to attend as many seminars as possible in some of these areas as they relate to our Full timing RV life. There are dozens of seminars within each area below and several other areas:
    • Communication and Technology
    • Satellite TV and Sound
    • Websites and Blogging!!!
    • Motor home living
    • Cooking
    • Coach interior upkeep
    • Travel – from how to travel to what to see when you travel
    • Motorhome maintenance and operations
    • A big major thing that Roy’s all excited about is having Blue Ox rebuild Boot’s tow bar. This tow bar goes between Dora’s rear end and Boot’s front end.

Since the list of seminar topics within each category is very long it will take some time to narrow down the most important ones we want to see.

The list of Exhibitors (which includes RVillage) is quite extensive and should provide us with a great learning experience!

I will be spending most of the time 9-5 in RVillage’s booth but Roy will have plenty of time to learn more about this lifestyle we love. I hope to get out of the booth to take in the sites at all the other booths and to learn a little bit at a seminar or two. I like the Blogging, Cooking and Travel seminar categories! Roy will like all the maintenance and technology stuff! Hopefully we’ll get to meet and become friends with the almost 10,000 that are expected to attend.

I hope this gives ya’ll a little idea of what we are going to be experiencing next week at the Conference.

If you haven’t already checked out RVillage.com, click on the link and go on over there to sign up – it’s free!

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03.12.16 RVillage’s new video and we’re ready for the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Metairie!!!

Saturday, March 12, 2016

I recently read the following:

To encourage people to travel more, British Airways released data from two somewhat sad studies, which revealed two of the biggest regrets of 2,000 U.S. baby boomers — that they worked too much and didn’t travel enough.

How about all ya’ll out there start making plans to live on the road full time so you won’t have this regret!  When you make that change be sure to join RVillage.  Check out our new video! You may start seeing some of it on a television commercial soon!!!

We have arrived in Metairie on the corner of Metairie Road and Ridgelake where we will be joined this evening by Chip’s family and tomorrow by the rest of the Chauvin family.  All those who can make it.  The torrential rains have trapped a lot of folks in but Dora is such a big girl she got us out of Amite and into Metairie quite easily!

Here we are all set up in the big empty lot all ready for the parade to come by tomorrow!

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This is one of the most unusual parades you’ve ever seen.  We will almost definitely leave here tomorrow with a huge bag of cabbage heads, carrots, onions and whatever else they throw to us including of course beads and doubloons!  I’ll be sharing photos with ya’ll as soon as I can after the parade.  Since we’ve arrived we’ve watched a car here and a truck there pull in and folks get out their wooden stakes and ropes to mark their area.  One other RV is parked a good distance from us but they are here.

I couldn’t wait to share the RVillage video with ya’ll, hope you like it and want to join RVillage now!  It’s free and even if you’re in the RV dreaming stage come on and join, you’ll learn a lot fro other RVers!

Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!!

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08.12.15 A day in Glacier National Park!

Wednesday, August 12, 2015 – What an unbelievable day this was!  Glacier National Park in northwest Montana is open to tourists after the horrible20150811_105809 (Medium)

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20150811_094036 (Medium) fires of this past month.  Yay for perfect timing, so we could see it while we’re in the area!

Our RV park is almost 4 hours from the West Entrance to Glacier which made for a very long day of continuous driving to the park, through the park, and home from the park!  It was worth all that driving, as I hope you’ll see from our pictures.

We left at 5:45 am and returned home at 7:50 pm.  The drive there is very pretty along lakes, creeks, hillsides, mountains and many cows, sheep, and mountain homes.

I’ve never heard of Going to the Sun Road before we planned this trip.  It is a two-way road of approximately 50 miles from the west entrance to the east entrance.  Then you turn around and come back the same way.   Some of the drive, near the east entrance of St. Mary’s, has been closed because of the forest fires.  It just opened last Friday and we are quite glad it did!

I plan to publish a blog post tomorrow with several pictures of the burned-out area.  They are quite sad.  Today’s post will be pictures of the beautiful sights we saw today.

The park encompasses over 1 million acres and includes parts of two mountain ranges (sub-ranges of the Rocky Mountains), over 130 named lakes.

The pictures below are in the opposite order to how we drove through the park.  Too many pictures to rearrange.  At our last stop, we bought huckleberry shakes and other huckleberry related items!  The first picture is Roy in our truck enjoying his delicious treat!

Get comfortable wherever you are and enjoy this adventure with us!

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I thought it was interesting that drowning is the number one cause of death in Glacier.  I would have thought it would be cars going over the edge of the sharply winding roadways!20150811_144315 (Medium) 20150811_144304 (Medium) 20150811_144202 (Medium) 20150811_143942 (Medium)While driving along the road we saw these beautiful white mountain goats.  I’m not that great at identifying animals so I could be wrong.  There are five of whatever they are in the picture!

20150811_140302 (Medium) 20150811_140132 (Medium)Across the road from where water was gushing from above down onto the road.20150811_135419 (Medium)Roy, as Superman, flying across the mountain!20150811_135240 (Medium)The water gushing from the top flowing down to the road.  20150811_135231 (Medium)My cutie, patootie, resting with this glorious view as a background!20150811_135213 (Medium) 20150811_135207 (Medium)Me acting silly under the waterfall by the road.20150811_135200 (Medium) 20150811_135153 (Medium) 20150811_134946 (Medium) 20150811_134536 (Medium) 20150811_134531 (Medium) 20150811_134525 (Medium)A group of young Chinese folks offered to take Roy and my picture! We did the same for them!20150811_134038 (Medium)A young family going where we could not go, up a creek flowing down the mountain!20150811_133758 (Medium)We saw this young painter on our way in and stopped on our way out.  His painting is of the scene on top.20150811_133152 (Medium) 20150811_133137 (Medium)Lake McDonald in Glacier National Park.  It is very long.

20150811_130642 (Medium) 20150811_120529 (Medium) 20150811_114129 (Medium) 20150811_114027 (Medium)We loved the two tunnels, one near the beginning and one near the end.  You’ll see more pictures of them down the line.  This is the west tunnel and is 192 feet long.   The second tunnel is way cooler so be sure to check it out!20150811_114009 (Medium) 20150811_114006 (Medium) 20150811_113951 (Medium)Water cascaded down the mountains in several places along the road.20150811_113305 (Medium) 20150811_113057 (Medium) 20150811_113024 (Medium) 20150811_112826 (Medium)This is known as Triple Arches. Look at the bottom left part of the picture.20150811_112753 (Medium) 20150811_112639 (Medium) 20150811_112618 (Medium) 20150811_112539 (Medium) 20150811_112400 (Medium) 20150811_112000 (Medium)This is a panoramic picture that can be viewed better by clicking on it. 20150811_111945 (Medium) 20150811_111709 (Medium) 20150811_111654 (Medium) 20150811_111634 (Medium) 20150811_111555 (Medium) 20150811_111319 (Medium) 20150811_111009 (Medium) 20150811_110902 (Medium) 20150811_110847 (Medium) 20150811_110844 (Medium) 20150811_110828 (Medium) 20150811_110643 (Medium) 20150811_110638 (Medium) 20150811_105824 (Medium)This is known as Heaven’s Peak20150811_105641 (Medium) 20150811_104729 (Medium)This tunnel is the East Tunnel which is 408 feet long and runs through Piegan Mountain.  This first picture is through one of the openings on the side of the tunnel overlooking mountains and valleys.20150811_104721 (Medium) In the picture below you can see on the left the two openings, one of which is the picture above.  20150811_104700 (Medium) 20150811_104646 (Medium) 20150811_104641 (Medium)The view driving down the road.20150811_104105 (Medium)Cutie, patootie again in his cowboy hat by a beautiful creek.20150811_103407 (Medium) 20150811_103206 (Medium) 20150811_102923 (Medium)Look at the color of this water – it was a beautiful blue-green and so clear!20150811_102840 (Medium) 20150811_102435 (Medium) 20150811_102418 (Medium) 20150811_102349 (Medium) 20150811_102300 (Medium)This last picture is of the Weeping Wall.  There was very little weeping going on that day so I found this one on the internet when it was really weeping!  The information we found says it gushes in the early spring and just dribbles in the early to late summer.20150728_170523 (Small)I reduced our 300 pictures down to about 80.  Every corner, every curve, every minute there was something new and beautiful to see. We drove inches from10252138_10152148187178773_4635180290016292912_n the rock walls in many places and as the passenger, I could see straight down into valleys along our way in.  RVs longer than 21 feet or 8 feet wide are now allowed through most of the park.  After seeing it, that is very understandable!

God is so amazing and creative in His world-building and growing that I have to give Him praise for this place!  I’ll never forget all we saw and am thankful for all these pictures to help me remember it in the future.

I hope you enjoyed going on this ride with us.  I hope you don’t just zoom through the pictures but look at each one for a while before moving on.  They can always be seen better by clicking on them to enlarge them.

We were so exhausted from this trip that we’ve decided not to go further north to Canada since it’s so far away.  We’ll be touring the Old Prison and Montana Auto museum tomorrow.  Saturday and Sunday we’ll spend some time at the Tri-County Fair which is practically in our back yard.  We’re planning to attend the parade and check out the craft booths on Saturday and the Demolition Derby on Sunday evening.

Tomorrow my blog post will be of as much of the burned area as we could photograph.   There is a new fire burning right now but it is not near the Going to the Sun Road but we saw the smoke from that fire.

Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!!

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08.09.15 – Y RV?

10492165_10152489539708903_3852041808756035049_n Sunday, August 9, 2015 –  Bob & Michelle Hazlett are fellow RVillagers who also write a blog. Theirs is called Follow the Cougar!  Their post on Thursday describes so well the wonderful world of RVing.  I have to share it since I don’t think I could write a better piece on why we love this life.

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Y RV? by Bob and Michelle Hazlett

Recently while browsing some of the blogs I follow, I came upon this interesting challenge: “Pick something you are passionate about and describe it in the context of all five senses”. I took that challenge and here is the result.

In my later years, after too many in a suit with a mortgage, I became a full-time RVer. I love it; I wish I had started thirty years earlier; I wish I could do it forever; I hope to be doing it on the day I die. I used to hate Sunday afternoon because of impending Monday morning. No more. Between now and the end of my days, all the romance of the open road is real for me and I face every day with eager anticipation. This life excites all five senses every day.

When traveling, the ever changing view through my windshield exhilarates me – mountains, valleys, plains, rivers; summer, autumn, winter, spring; awesome sunrises, spectacular sunsets. When parked, new places intrigue me – old forts, lighthouses, museums, ghost towns, truck stops, small town diners, backwoods campgrounds, the couple in the next campsite. Wherever I am, I love the scene that greets me every morning when I open my door.

Pulling on an old shirt, jeans, and boots to head out for a day to be spent my way is both comforting and exciting. I never use a watch and seldom a calendar. What time I go out doesn’t matter; what time I come home matters even less. Like everyone, my life was a mixture of success and failure, hits and misses, good decisions and bad. My age and my RVing lifestyle make me comfortable with the idea that none of that matters now – and in reality never did.

Fresh coffee brewing over a campfire, campfire smoke, diesel fumes at a busy truck stop, the smell of horses and cows on a ranch, the smell of the ocean or a mountain pine forest all tickle my nose and make me feel good inside. The smell of ozone in the air after an afternoon cloudburst on the eastern side of a mountain range somewhere makes the world smell clean.

God’s greatest creation was bourbon in a tin cup. I usually sip that quietly at sunset in a nice place. Close behind is that fresh brewed coffee in the morning. But I also love lobster and clams at a New England Lobster Pound and Tex–Mex in a little border town on the Rio Grande. Then there is the home cooked special at a little non–descript Momma’s restaurant along some back road in the middle of nowhere that turns out to be a meal I’ll never forget.

The purr of diesel engines in a truck stop; the night sounds in a campground; birds in the morning; screaming tires on the highway; the bugling of an elk on a frosty autumn morning are all part of my world. But the best sound of all is the clang of my fifth – wheel hitch slamming shut signaling the start a new adventure.

I’m sure glad God gave me five senses so I wouldn’t miss any of it.

Now wasn’t that wonderful!  If you’re leaning towards RVing I”m hopeful it will give you what you need to begin the transition.  Here’s a link to this post and their blog if you’d like to read more of what they write!  http://followthecougar.blogspot.com/2015/08/y-rv.html

Slide4Roy and I will be leaving Conestoga Campground in White Sulphur Springs, Montana Monday morning no later than 9 am headed to Deer Lodge, Montana.  We’ll stop in Helena again on the way to Deer Lodge to visit the dentist,  pick up a package at UPS and prescriptions.  Then we’ll go on to Deer Lodge to stay at Indian Creek Resort.  It’s a Good Neighbor Park within the Coast to Coast system.  GNPs cost us trip points which we either buy through the system or transfer points from our Coast to Coast Credit Card.  We accumulated enough points from the credit card to buy us almost a week’s stay at two Good Neighbor Parks.

We’ve enjoyed this time in White Sulphur Springs.  We love how the park has twice a week ice cream socials and the owner share s a bit about the area and things to see.  Wish more parks did that.

This time here allowed us a good bit of downtime for me to read and get caught up onGlacier-National-Park-10 household things.  Roy spent a lot of his time upgrading our two laptops and his desktop to Windows 10.  It’s nice to have some slow, peaceful time in between all the adventures!  We’ll be much nearer to Glacier National Park tomorrow and plan to take a couple of days next week to see it all!

Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!!

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08.05.15 How to downsize your home to an RV – reblogged from Stephanie Henkel, and other recent events!

DonnaBDAugust 5, 3015 – I remembered what special person’s birthday is this week (it wasn’t Monday) and that is my former boss and current good friend Donna Methvien!  Happy Birthday Donna from the Chauvins in Montana!!

20150804_140006I read a blog post written by someone else today and want to share it here.  We love our RV life so much that I’m hopeful others will join us as soon as they can in having some of the fun.  To make this transition most of have downsized from all the “stuff” we collected in our sticks and bricks home to what we could “reasonably” take with us in our RVs.

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Montana State Capitol building

Diesel Pushers (which is the Class A type we have) are capable of carrying much more weight than any other type RV so knowing the type of RV you want to live in should probably be a first step before getting rid of most things!  We can carry with us a couple dozen storage containers with off season clothes, tools, computer parts (yes Roy has many of those underneath) and just about anything we really want to carry with us.

The blog whose link is included below was written by Stephanie Henkel. I think it’s the most thorough guide on what to think about and consider as you are doing this.  Beginning that journey is difficult but once you begin it you feel such a freeing release from all that “stuff” that you willing get rid of more!  I can honestly say that NONE of the “stuff” of mine that left our life has ever been missed.  In addition to ours being a diesel pusher, it’s pretty large so I have ample storage space inside and out.

Here’s the link: http://stephaniehenkel.hubpages.com/hub/Full-Time-RVing-Downsize-Your-Home

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The first fast food places we’ve seen in several weeks! This is in Helena, Montana. The state capitol city.

Feel free to bookmark either this blog or hers for that time when you get the itch for freedom!  I can guarantee you it’s worth doing all of this for.

We’ve decided that when we do make the transition back into stationary living we will still live in our RV.  We probably will continue traveling in the summer months to get away from the heat.  And (we’re giving her mom and dad some warning) we’d love, love, love to take Madisyn with us on those summer adventures at least for part of the summer!

I just came back from the Hutterite’s farmers market in White Sulphur Springs (3 minutes from our RV park).  They had many wonderful things and I tried to buy a bunch.  The ladies and the man selling are so friendly and informative.  The man brought all my purchases to the truck for me.  I learned that they do not mind having their picture taken if it is not going to be published.  I, of course wanted to do that, so I just took a picture of their produce and their pricing board.

If any RVers or other travelers are ever in the area I highly recommend coming by here on Wednesdays from 3 – 7 pm in the Hot Springs Motel parking lot!

20150805_150610 20150805_150620One of the items we bought was what I found out is called kohlrabi.  I’ve learned that it has a cabbage, turnip flavor.  I’m trying to eat healthier and love to eat fresh raw vegetables so this one will probably get eaten raw!

20150805_155423This was the beautiful temperature here at 9 am this morning.  It only got up to 75 by the heat of the day.  Love it!

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We’re heading over to the RV park’s office to enjoy their ice cream social where we’ll have some Moose Tracks (see picture near the top!)

Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!

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08.03.15 Quick update

Monday, August 3, 2015 – It seems like this date is someone I knows birthday but for the life of me can’t remember who it is.  Happy Birthday to everyone having a birthday today!!!

We received here at the campground, several packages of various things we ordered.  Roy has several new rolls of lights to replace the ones under our awning and under neat the RV.    He’s tried to convince me that this is an RV maintenance purchase!  Right!!!!!

We also received replacement parts for our sleep number bed and Roy’s already done with those what needed doing!

I ordered a selfie stick (!!!!) and now we can take more normal looking selfie pictures!!  Gotta figure the thing out first but we’ll get it!

We ordered an upgraded Verizon mifi, but when it came in we found it needs a smaller sim card, so we’ll be going to a Verizon store tomorrow to get that worked out.

We have not seen a Walmart, Walgreens, CVS, KMart, Wendy’s, McDonald’s, Burger King or other big chain stores in at least the last month.  We’re so use to there being a Walmart (or other) at the next stop or where we are currently that this seems strange to us.  However, it forces all the locals to shop at local businesses which probably is a good thing for their local economy.

The two groceries in White Sulphur Springs are small and fit into old existing businesses. You enter the larger one through the back door!!  Really, you do!!  They are laid out to fit into the existing buildings which makes navigating through them a bit difficult.   Roy went to both stores this weekend to get okra for our gumbo.  One said they didn’t carry it and the other said “what’s okra”???????!!!!!  So I made gumbo with no okra but froze most of it for when we can get okra to add to it!

I haven’t seen any of the containers of chopped onions and other seasonings like I’ve gotten use to buying.  None of that to be found here so when I made gumbo it felt like I would never finish chopping onions, garlic, celery and green onions!

These northern states are much less populated than southern states.  The total population in Meagher County Montana is 1000!

As we’ve gotten further north, more and more businesses do not accept debit cards for small purchase since the card charges are high here.  That didn’t happen at all in the south as far as I can remember so there must be some reason for it.

We’ve discovered a real liking for all things huckleberry (there’s huckleberry everything here) so we’ll be looking for some fresh ones when we go to the Farmer’s Market in town on Wednesday afternoon.   We both gobbled up two huckleberry ice cream sandwiches yesterday and loved every bite of them!  The Hutterites come to town on Wednesday with their goods for the Farmer’s Market and we’ll be buying more of their fresh produce, bread and pies!

We may top Wednesday off by attending the Conestoga Campground ice cream social and have some moose tracks ice cream – delicious vanilla with chocolate chips and bits of reeses cups!  This place is not good for the healthy eating I’ve been doing since we left Louisiana.

Tomorrow, we are going to the state capitol, Helena, Montana, (it’s 1 hr. 15 min. away) to see things, shop at a real Walmart and Walgreen’s and visit their Verizon store about our new mifi!  We’ve stayed around the campground for a few days resting so it’s time to get out and explore again!

I think that’s about all the stuff I wanted to share!  Okay, so it wasn’t a “quick” update!!

Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!

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08.01.15 Touring “The Castle” and visiting a Hutterite Colony

11745872_1142220285793390_4948386386060687588_nSaturday, August 1, 2015 – On Friday we toured the Castle Museum and Carriage House, known by locals as ‘The Castle’.  It is on a hill in downtown White Sulphur Springs, Montana. ‘The Castle’ is an imposing 12 room mansion built in 1892 by Bryon Roger Sherman, and is now the home of the Meagher County Museum. The Victorian landmark is made of hand-cut granite blocks hauled by oxen from the nearby Castle Mountains. The museum is complete with period furniture, clothing and artifacts from the region’s past.

All rooms were laid with hardwood floors and covered with Belgian 11143520_10153313872654939_6778892482954480369_nand Oriental rugs. In the bathrooms were washbowls (painted, as is in vogue again) and stands of Italian marble; the light fixtures were of crystal and brass.

The admission is $5 per person or for old folks like us it was only $3 per person!  The young lady who guided our tour was very knowledgeable about the castle and shared a lot of good information which helped us better appreciate what we were seeing.

They do not allow photographs to be taken inside the castle.  This was not a good thing for someone who goes picture happy when she can.  I did find some photos from their facebook page to share here.

ENTRY WAY STAIRCASE

castle entryway staircaseCASTLE MASTER BEDROOM

castle master bedroom

CASTLE PARLORcastle parlor

CASTLE TEA ROOMcastle tea roomONE OF THE ARTIFACTS WAS THIS OLD CAMERA

castle cameraOutside, photos are allowed so we snapped away!

castle front castle historic plaque castle rosalyn

After our castle tour we headed a few miles away down a long long dirt and gravel road to visit the Springdale Aerial of a Hutterite Colony in Cascade County, Montana, USAHutterite Colony and buy some fresh produce and bread.  We thought we must have gotten bad directions after traveling 5 miles down the dirt road and still seeing nothing!   Finally we arrived at a very large piece of property where they live and work.  Here’s a picture of the property they all live on.

We were told that the Hutterites are similar to Amish yet different.  The Hutterites are open to most modern technology, while the Amish shun it. The Hutterites also believe in an undivided way of life, such as what’s mine is yours and what’s your is mine, while the Amish tend to have a more independent lifestyle.  Like the Amish, the Hutterites all dress in handmade clothing of similar style but the fabric seems to be more colorful with patterns and is very pretty.  The little boys wore either cowboy like hats or what I call a soldier style hat.  They are descendents, like us Baptists are, of Anabaptists so they believe in adult only baptism.

hutterite from far awayEveryone there was more than friendly.  They all talked to us, asked where we were from and were very interested in our lives.  There are no signs showing where to go for their produce, etc. so we had to keep asking.  I really think they would sell more of the things they produce if they put a couple of signs up.  People gladly brought us from one building to the other.  We went to one building for the produce, a different building a ways away for the bread and a third building to the kitchen where we purchased the pie.

There were other people buying produce but we were the only people at the bread and pie buildings. We purchased fresh carrots, fresh cabbage, pickled green beans, fresh homecooked vegetable soup, an uncut loaf of bread and a strawberry rhubard pie! I cooked the carrots this evening with our chicken thighs and their pickled green beans and slices of their fresh bread!  Delicious dinner!

I thought that, like the Amish, they didn’t like their pictures taken so I respectfully did not pull out my camera.  I found a lot of pictures on the internet that they obviously posed for or were aware were being taken.  They are most likely not from the Springdale Colony but they may be. Here are some photos I got to share with ya’ll. hutterite childrenHutterites near Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, Canada. (Photo by Independent Picture Service/UIG via Getty Images)OB-AP050_HUTCEL_20070829115328hutterite boys 2 hutterite boys hutterite carrot growing hutterite menWhat a nice day we had exploring The Castle and the Hutterite Colony!  Now for two days of RVillage work this weekend!

Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!

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