Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Mission Bay, San Diego


This is our home for the month of Oct - the road trip is now essentially done. :(

We are trying to make a go of San Diego being our new home for the foreseeable future. I anticipate continuing to blog as a great way to maintain a family journal - being said, if you want to stop receiving emails about when I post, no hurt feelings if you stop "following" the blog.

The trip was a wonderful experience, and I something we will certainly never regret. The time together and experiences we had were wonderful to say the least. Missy and I are already thinking about what type of RV we will live in full time to see the rest of the country when the kids are out of the house! :)

Cheers to Toyota, the Sequoia was our first toyota, and we didn't have a single hiccup with the truck for the entire trip - what a relief. The Puma did well too, no major catastrophes either thank goodness.

Lakeside - what lake?

Gas: 3.05

We crashed Mikey's driveway for two nights while we searched all of the campgrounds in San Diego for our new home.

Unfortunately I forgot to take pics of the rig along side the house.

Zoe was in heaven running around a house and having Rocky to boss around and play with.

I looked around quite a bit and never did find the lake this town should be on the side of, but, oh well, seems to be working the way it is.

Da River - Palo Verde

Gas was about 2.50 - I didn't write it down exactly, but I know it was nothing big - but we feel the price climbing with each mile towards CA

We made it all of the way to Palo Verde CA - a small town on the Colorado border separating CA and AZ. Why here you ask? Well good question.
It happens to be the location of a vacation home of a dental school classmates family - and they have full RV hookups along side the house - can't beat that!!

Kes and Mikey Sr catching a snooze as the afternoon sun passes by.

Zoe doing the 'naked dance' in the good'ol Colorado river

These sunglasses were found on the sand bar - ground down so you couldn't see a single thing through them - but like any great model, Zoe still pulled them off without a hitch.

Zoe checking the cooler for more goodies.

Dr Tyler can fix just about anything with an empty beer can and some rusty pliers.

Smiles here - but neither enjoyed the life vests at all!! Zoe was hysterical wearing it until the boat stopped and she didn't have to anymore - then she asked to wear it running around the sand bar!!

These last shots are of Quartzsite - a town in between Phoenix and Palo Verde/Blythe. It has a bunch of gem mines, maybe?? Anyway, as you can see, as we drove through it was near a ghost town - but apparently for Jan-Feb the population explodes into the hundreds of thousands for the largest RV and Gem show and a huge months long flee market too. Strange, you may think, but what the heck else ya gonna do in Jan?? Really, what??

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Sucked into the Vortex

Odometer: I forgot to write it down. :)
Gas: 2.45

We did a day trip from Phoenix and drove to Jerome and Sedona with an early morning stop at AZ state park - slide rock.

Jerome is an old copper mine town about 40 miles outside of Sedona. Now it is filled with artists and bars that attract bikers.

Very pretty drive up the windy mountain road.

Bikers and open beer cans all over the place.

The water was FREEZING, but Zoe and I did get in and slide a little. This place has been known about for years, but only a state park since the early 90s. In fact, I went here on an RV trip with my family in the early 80s when it was just some cool rocks on a farm. Now that I'm older, I realize why none of the adults went in the water back then. Brrrr.

Zoe enjoyed walking around - but all of the rock was so slick I didn't dare let go of her hand.

Feel the power of the vortex even through the pictures - I thought so. We felt energized like we had a little Zoe in us from these beautiful mountains of Sedona.

Really is a beautiful area of the country - at least we think so. I wouldn't recommend walking around without ALOT of water though - this place was in the 90s and we never saw any nature water source.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Orange County East

Ah, It's a dry heat!!
Phoenix AZ

Powered through and found a nice campground just north of town with a great pool and work out room.

It was actually hard to find a place in the area - 98% of the campgrounds are 55 or older only. Yes, I made up that statistic, but I don't think I'm that far off.

We made it up half way on a camelback mountain hike - too steep to negotiate safely with Zoe in backpack and Kes in front pack - good hike none the less though.
A couple of days later, we also did a Squaw Peak circumference trail for about 3 miles, we left later and felt the heat on this one though.

The high lite of AZ for Zoe was this little play land in a park in Phoenix - all of the rides were centered on 2-6 year olds - no older kids to ruin things.

She had an absolute blast riding all of the rides "by myself".

She did great on the roller coaster - by the last ride she would let go and raise one hand into the air just like "the big kids".

Enjoying the warm evening.

We really just hung out alot at the campground here - tires of traveling and driving and it was about 105 degrees everyday so being outside wasn't exactly easy with the kids.

Had a scare one morning - the propane alarm went off at 4am.
That sucker is LOUD!! So loud, neither Missy nor I could actually locate where the noise was coming from. So, at 4 am - I dismantled the stereo and then took the speakers out the ceiling thinking it was from them. When that didn't work, I unplugged the trailer from the electric outlet - no help. Then I undid the battery on the front of the trailer - success, at least at turning off the noise. I re hooked the battery a few minutes later and sure enough it started again - but this time Missy noticed the propane alarm light was red instead of its usual green. Then I got really scared because we knew we had propane all around us. I turned off the propane tanks and we opened all the windows and door and kept all power to the trailer off and went back to sleep for 2 hours. :) Amazingly, Zoe and Kes slept through the whole thing!! We couldn't believe it because it was so loud our ears were ringing for 15 minutes even after the alarm stopped. We had a repair guy come by the next day and the system held pressure fine - it seems it was the probably the oven pilot leaking a little - anyway, no problems with anything since.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Benson - by Tucson

gas 2.41 and 2,49
Powered through. Went past 2 stops and kept going because Zoe was sleeping. Left at 6:30 Texas time but it was really 5:30 because on the time line. Thought we would try a different approach and leave while they were sleeping. But Zoe just stayed awake, although she was an angel so it was great.
Finally had breakfast in the El Paso Cracker Barrel - Zoe loved the rocking chairs.
Made it all of the way to Benson AZ by 2:30 local time. And, what you see is what you get. Very nice KOA owners, nice clean pool and we went shopping at the local walmart too. :) Only a few other rigs stopped by for the night and we were all gone by 9 the next morning. Nice and quiet for the night though.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Fort Stockton/Van Horn



Yup, another day of marathon driving. Fort Stockton had some campgrounds, but we thought we could make it further - all the way to Van Horn. After finding the playground in Ft Stockton and avoiding the broken glass, Zoe burned off enough energy to sit for another 2.5 hrs - so that we could make it from the right middle of nowhere to the left middle of no where. Van Horn KOA really is a dirt patch about 1/2 mile from the local truck stop. You can see the beautiful surroundings and neighbors in the pics. Anyway - did some laundry, took Zoe to the swings and then planned on leaving early the next morning for a huge driving day.

Again, very cold with the sun setting - the heater kicked on again. Brrr.

Yup - this is the playground. Before the playground, we stopped at a large grassy area outside the Demming courthouse - and we were stalked by the local huge German Shepperd - I was nervous enough that I made Zoe play just outside the courthouse doors so that if he came for us we could dive inside.

Click on this pic to enlarge - you will see a little black dog chasing a white van towing a trailer - we followed this chase for about 2 miles looking for the playground - that little dog never gave up or even slowed. I hope he was able to sink his teeth into that scrumptious trailer!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Junction TX



Pretty KOA, on the North Llano River. Small place and in the middle of no where - but a great place to rest none the less. Zoe tried to get the ducks to eat and all they would do is run away. 12 deer in a field next to the campground - a couple of babies that Zoe enjoyed watching.

Definitely into the desert - when the sun set, so did the temp - for the first time since way up north in July, Missy had to put on jeans the heater kicked on (~54 degrees). But definitely a stopover, in the middle of nowhere.

The campground did have a perimeter dirt road though that was just about 1/2 mile long - almost like running a track which was great for us after not having a place to work out at the last two campgrounds.

So this set up was actually by us in San Antonio the whole time. A retired gentleman with at least 6 dogs - he spends most of his time walking two at a time. Yes, he is driving a toy hauler motor home with a toy hauler travel trailer. He plugs them both in to water and electric. From what we can tell, he is just cruising the south west and treating his dogs like kings - they have more livable square feet than the Tillner family. :)