Happy Thanksgiving!!

We are just 2 days away from the big turkey day. Am I ready? Not at all, tonight and tomorrow night I shall be busy prepping.

We are hosting this year and are expecting 5 or so people for dinner, not huge I know but anytime you have “company” for dinner you feel the pressure of everything to be “just right” 

It’s not the food that I am worried about, we will have plenty, it’s all the “extra” stuff. Cleaning, side dishes, if the dogs will behave.

We are dinning in our freshly painted finished basement, we have a 10 foot long table that is perfect for family get togethers. We purchased new comfy chairs this year so that will be nice. I am sure everything will be perfect and all my normal worrying will be fine. 

Speaking of Thanksgiving, there are so many things I am thankful for, this year and every year, topping the list is Family, all the love and support we all have for each other, second would be Friends, we all need friends and we may not see them on a regular basis, true friends are always there for you at a moments notice.  Lastly but not least, I am very thankful to have a roof over my head, plenty of food to eat, we work hard to make sure we have all the creature comforts and our efforts always payoff. 

HAPPY THANKSGIVING TO YOU AND YOURS!!

Fall Is “Leaf”ing

If these past two weeks have taught me anything is to appreciate every second of nice weather that is presented to you. Even if you just take a walk around the outside perimeter of your home, chat with your neighbors, play with your pets. Just enjoy it.

Upon my alarm sounding this morning, I did my routine as I do most mornings, then proceeded to go outside with the dogs as I do most mornings, I was shocked how cold it was, 27 degrees! Wait?!?! What?!?! This fall weather doesn’t seem normal OR we were spoiled rotten the last several years of having 60s and 70s well into November. Not this year, and from the forecast I looked at this morning we will be lucky and blessed to see another 60 degree day this weekend.

Yes we live in Michigan, yes winter, cold and snow come every single year, just something is different this year and I have really noticed it. 

So I will keep on keeping on, enjoy the nice weather when it comes, IF it comes and try to get into a “winter” frame of mind.

Summer, Don’t leave us yet!

I am having a hard time believing that we are fast approaching the end of summer, like where has time gone? We have managed to enjoy the outdoors as much as we could with the heat and the mosquitos. I for one am ready for a bit cooler temps without pesky insects. Perhaps it’s because we both work fulltime plus and the days just fly by.

We did go camping to our favorite place, Indigo Bluffs back at the end of May, just us and Duke, was a nice peaceful getaway that we very badly needed. Along with relaxing, we replaced our big TV with a smart TV so we wouldn’t need extra “things” hooked to the tv to be able to stream our shows. I must say we are both tickled pink with the upgrade and are looking forward to enjoying it more next month.

Next month (August 27th) we are heading to a new to us, campground just north of Alpena Michigan called Campers Cove, looking forward to having our 2 sites on the “island” in full view of the lake. The date can’t come soon enough.

Since I last wrote, our son moved out (beginning of May) and we have been in cleaning mode every since, it was shocking to me how much “stuff” we accumulated over the past 20+ years. I am fairly certain that our trash guy is happy we are finally done. We are so happy with how it went and how clean and tidy everything looks now, not to mention the room we gained, hopefully we won’t fill it back up with more “stuff” that will sit for the next 20+ years. We are slowly getting prepared for that day that we can hit the road as more fulltime RV people.

Last night we took a little road trip down to St. Joseph Michigan to meet up with some “celebrity” fulltime RV’ers that have a channel on YouTube called “Watts on Wheels” we have followed their channel for a couple years now and it was exciting to meet them and share a meal together!!! Can’t wait to cross paths with them again in the future!

I will post more next month after our new adventure to Alpena!

Happy Camping!

Dave and Karen Watts

 

Think Spring?!

As I sit here looking out the window with about 4 inches of snow on the ground and more in the upcoming forecast, I find myself daydreaming about warmer days, less snow and CAMPING SEASON!!!

This year we are going once again to Indigo Bluff, for the main reason being it will be Duke’s maiden voyage with us camping and we can’t think of a better place to go. Low activity at the time we go, quiet atmosphere and perfect areas to work with him on leash training. That is our first trip of the season.

Our second trip we are going someplace new, yes, you read that correct, we are headed to Ponchos Pond in Ludington, Michigan towards the end of August. It looks amazing and we love Ludington so this will be another fun adventure. There are many things to explore around the Ludington area with lots of beaches and beautiful scenery. We can’t wait.

We watch many full time RV’ers on YouTube and learned last week that you can create custom maps and save them for future reference. Thanks to You Me and the RV for sharing this insight, once you create them on a desktop computer you can easily access them from your smart phone. We can’t wait for the day to put it into full use.

I know 10 years is a long ways away but as we go through those years and learn of different places we just absolutely want to visit I shall add them to the “Retirement Travel” map I have created, because lets face it, we all lose memories as the years go by.

Until we officially kick off camping season I will put on my thinking cap about everything camping, food, clothing, Duke things. I shall wait for more snow and just smile because I KNOW it will be ending in the not so distant future.

Camp on my friends!

**Truck Upgrade**

We did a thing….. the day we returned from our Empire vacation (May 31st, 2019) we traded in Dozer and got “The Beast” She is a 2019 Chevrolet Duramax Diesel 3500 HD, that is right boys and girls it is a dually. Bruce is one happy “camper” this will haul anything we put behind her. She is at the dealership as I write this having some accessories installed.

2019 First Trip

16 days till we head to Empire, Michigan. This can not come soon enough for either of us.

Our April has been rough to say the least, on top of having repairs done to both our house and my car due to the hail storm in March, we had to say goodbye to our beloved dog Remington. Today marks the one week since and I still am struggling at times. He was by my side constantly and I miss him dearly.

We have purchased a few goodies for Randi this month, TPS and a pipe to mount underneath to store our black tank hose in, we also FINALLY purchased a keyless entry system that I am beyond excited to get installed, we have been wanting to do this since the first week of having our 5th wheel. I also purchased a few “beautifying” items for the inside, color coordinated items since purple is our chosen color, pillows, throw blanket, tea pot and a set of 3 pictures with purple flowers. I can’t wait to jazz the place up a bit.

I shall post again either during or after our trip to Indigo Bluffs in a couple weeks.

Happy Camping!!

2019 Spring Fever

The daylight is getting later and the temps are slowly rising, we are seeing more sun then clouds and that is a very good thing these days. February was brutal to say the least. Several good dumps of snow and some very frigid temps. It is nice to be well over half way into March.

We brought Randi home from the dealership after her facelift in the midst of February. She sat in our side yard for about 3 weeks before we moved our things back into her. Sure is good to have her back home but yet we have another dilemma, spring fever. Looking at her each day just gets us more and more anxious for that first trip, which is going to be in late May. Not to long but to long.

Another change of plans, we are heading to Indigo Bluffs in May instead of Aune Osborn, we are hoping staying further south will give us better weather. I am afraid that if we head into Upper Michigan even in May there is a chance of cold temps and maybe even some white stuff. We just want to have sunshine and a bit warmer temps.


Future Plans

Today, the first Monday after the long Thanksgiving weekend, we are getting slammed with our first real snow “storm” of the season. As I write this and look out the window, it looks like one of those TV commercials you see about driving in the winter, almost white out conditions. We have about 4 inches on the ground that has fallen since about midnight Sunday and it is still coming down with no signs of stopping anytime soon.

After several long conversations and deciding what our first trip of 2019 will be, we decided to head back up to Aunne Osborn, we REALLY want to put new tires on Randi before any long trips so we will revisit the Hershey, PA trip in the fall.

We are both looking so forward to returning to Sault Ste. Marie, on our last stay the weather was less then conducive for much outdoor activity, a majority of ship watching was done from our front room. Think Michigan hurricane 😉 And we had company 5 out of the 8 days we were there. Looking forward to going back for sure.

Changing Seasons

It would appear that we are marching into that time of year when daylight is less, temps are low and that other form of precipitation starts to accumulate on everything including your camper. I for one, am going to use this season to get organized.

After our final camping trip to Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan we needed to empty Randi out completely because she was headed to the factory for a semi face lift, we had a delamination issue that needed taken care of. We miss her very much and look forward to bringing her back home.

Upon hauling everything into our home, I soon realized we had so many things that we never used over the course of camping season. I would imagine that if we were full timers this may be different and we will evaluate that when we embark on that journey.

I spent the better part of 2 days sorting through things, repacking and organizing our totes. We had decided at the beginning of our camping season and the first time ever owning a fifth wheel, that everything we purchased to go into it would be the color purple if at all possible. Not just any purple, a deeper more rich color purple so as not to be overwhelmed with intense shades.  With that mindset we wanted to find purple dishes, after searching stores and online we found some, unfortunately they are stoneware, very heavy and break very easily, they got us through this summer but we have decided they will not be going back in next year, our search carries on for something a bit lighter and closer to non breakable.

I could ramble on about my organization skills but I shall not, I am sure we are not the only ones anxious to get thru this season and look forward to all the wonderful adventures that await next spring, we are headed to Hershey, PA in May and can not wait!!!

Randi (our 5th wheel)

Yes we named our 5th wheel Randi, this name was chosen by both of us because “Randi” is Native American for “wolf” “protector”. Bruce has a Native American heritage and we both have a love for wolves so this name was so appropriate.

The week after we brought Randi home we decided that even though we weren’t going to be hauling her anywhere soon that we wanted to spend the night in it. SO with it parked in our backyard we did just that.

If you aren’t aware of Michigan weather, lets just say we could experience winter and summer both in the same day. Under normal circumstances I would be mowing our lawn by the second week in April. That was the farthest from the case this year, in fact, I just mowed for the first time this season, last night.

The night we stayed in Randi it got down to 18 degrees overnight, we didn’t notice at all. We stayed toasty warm with the furnace running. We took everything we needed to prepare a wonderful dinner. We called it our “staycation”

Our maiden voyage away from home will be next Thursday and we are both very excited!! We are headed to a little town northwest of us about 4 hours called Empire, Michigan, directly due west of Traverse City, Michigan.  I shall be posting news and pictures at that time so stay tuned…..