Posts Tagged With: Fulltime RV’ing

Lake Powell and Glen Canyon

Lake Powell and the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area are in both Arizona and Utah. We stayed at the Wahweap Campground in Page, AZ. We actually stayed here in the summer of 2015 but left after only a couple of days because it was 105 degrees during the day. We loved the area and wanted to come back again and see more of it when it wasn’t so hot. March turned out to be a great time to visit. The weather was much nicer and it’s still the off-season at that time so it wasn’t very crowded at all.

0328171937_HDR

View from our campsite at Wahweap Campground

There is so much to do in this area! For starters, Lake Powell itself is absolutely gorgeous with the sky blue water and colorful rocks and cliffs in the background. It’s stunning!

0329171624_HDR

Lake Powell at Glen Canyon National Recreation Area

The Glen Canyon dam and visitor center are close by so we went there to check out the dam and pick up Junior Ranger booklets. The dam is incredible to look at! You can walk across the bridge to get an amazing view looking down at the Colorado River. The visitor center also has great views of the dam and bridge and is very educational as well. The visitor center and bridge are free, but you can also take a paid tour of the dam which we did not do.

0329171230_HDR

View from inside the visitor center

0329171232a_HDR

0329171242a_HDR

0329171248_HDR

0329171252a_Burst04

0329171250_HDR

View of dam from bridge

0329171255a_HDR

View of Colorado River from other side of bridge

New Junior Ranger badges. Their vests have gotten too heavy to wear for long and we now need to add badges to the back of their vests.

0402171012_HDR

Horseshoe Bend is another place that is a must-see in this area and it’s free! It is a section of the Colorado River that bends through the canyon. It is incredible, but also a little scary. There are no railings or anything to prevent people from falling off this cliff. I would be very hesitant to take small children here. Chris is afraid of heights and he didn’t like this very much, but I thought it was awesome! He was happy when I finished taking pictures and said we could go. 😉

0329171334_HDR

Horseshoe Bend

Notice the people laying down at the edge to the right of us in the picture below. That was a good way to look over the edge and see the river below. It was very scary to stand at the edge!

0329171428_Burst02

0329171436_HDR

Another fantastic place to visit in Page is Antelope Canyon, but that deserves a post of its own so stay tuned for that next.

Categories: Arizona, National Parks | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Grand Canyon National Park

On our way out west we are passing by some areas that we visited a couple of years ago. Grand Canyon is one of those that is worth repeating. We were excited to be there when they got a little bit of snow. We don’t see snow very often so this was a treat for us.

Arizona does not observe daylight savings time so at this time of the year they are on the same time as Pacific. That means that the sun comes up pretty early in the morning and we were up bright and early to witness our first snowy day of 2017. This was at the Trailer Village RV Park right inside the national park. We love staying right in the park because they have bus transportation to take you where you want to go. And they have restaurants and lodges that are fun to visit.

0323170632_HDR

I know it’s not much but it was better than nothing. This was Fat Cat’s first experience with snow ever. She didn’t know what to think of the stuff!

0323170632d_HDR

Later in the afternoon the snow had already melted off the picnic table but it started snowing again so we brought Fat Cat back out to see how she liked it falling on her head. I think her expression in this picture is so funny!

0323171514d_HDR

In the morning we headed out to check out the canyon before the snow melted.

0323170801b_HDR

0323170834_HDR

We saw lots of deer out at that time of the morning looking around for some breakfast.

0323170805a_Burst01

The snow on the trees was so pretty!

0323170823_HDR

The boys enjoyed a snowball fight.

0323170819a_Burst01

We enjoyed this so much! I know for those of you that live in cold climates where you see snow all winter, this would not be very exciting. I’m sure a warm and sunny beach scene with palm trees would be more appealing. As one of my friends told me, it’s all in your perspective. For us Floridians, snow is a novelty to us and we enjoy it so much when we see it.

0323170833a_HDR

After our one day of snow the weather cleared up and we saw a spectacular Grand Canyon sunset the next evening.

0324171838_HDR~2

We did 2 hikes while we were there. The first one was the Bright Angel trail hike.

0325171218_HDR

We started down into the canyon and about a mile down we heard loud thunder and it started to storm and sleet. We know from our visit here 2 years ago that being inside the canyon during a lightning storm can be very dangerous so we abandoned the rest of that hike and went back up.

This was the start of the hike and the skies were a little cloudy but not too bad.

0325171225a_HDR

But then the storm clouds rolled in and it looked pretty ominous.

0325171257_HDR

The next day was much better for hiking and we did our favorite hike down the South Kaibab trail. We did this hike 2 years ago, but only went as far as the Ooh Aah Point. This year we continued on down to the Cedar Ridge Point which was amazing!

0326171311a_HDR

Starting down the South Kaibab trail

0326171312_HDR

Spectacular views every step of the way

0326171415_Burst02

Ooh Aah Point

0326171321_HDR

0326171322c_HDR

0326171325a_HDR

0326171328a_HDR

0326171335_HDR

0326171338c_HDR

Cedar Ridge Point

This was on the way back up. See those ants crawling up the cliff? Those are people, and would soon be us. I was so tired at this point I didn’t think I would make it up there, but I’m here to talk about it which means I made it. 😉

0326171436_HDR

Grand Canyon is such a magical place and definitely one of those places worth going back to again and again.

Next we moved on to Lake Powell in Page, AZ. Stay tuned…

Categories: Arizona, National Parks | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Boondocking at the City of Rocks

Well we finally did it! We bought a generator and tried boondocking for the first time. Boondocking or dry camping is camping with no hookups, meaning no electricity, no water and no sewer. We have done no sewer many times, and even went without water a couple of times where we just had to fill our water tank before we got to the campsite, but this was the first time camping without electric. We quickly learned what we could and could not do with the generator. For instance, we learned we can’t use the A/C at all, and we can use the microwave oven briefly (like maybe 30 seconds). The coffee maker works, but you can hear the strain on the generator. Most campgrounds don’t want you running a generator all night, and we wouldn’t really want to run it that long anyway, so the nights are very dark and quiet.

All in all our first attempt at boondocking went very well. We had beautiful weather, and we couldn’t have picked a better place to try this out.

0318171919a_HDR

Campsite among the rocks.

One of the benefits of boondocking is being able to camp in some pretty amazing spots out in the middle of nowhere.

City of Rocks State Park is in Faywood, New Mexico. We stayed at this park a couple of years ago in an electric and water hookup site, but these sites tucked in among the rocks are so much better! At night the skies were so dark we were able to see so many stars!

We had an interesting experience when we first pulled up to our site. A minivan was already parked there. I figured someone just stopped for a few minutes to take pictures or something so I got out of the truck to let them know we needed to pull into that site. The guy that was already there barely spoke English so I had a hard time communicating with him, but he basically said he was staying in that site and we were welcome to join him if we wanted to. Okay, that’s never happened before. This site was a reservation only site and I knew we had reserved it and there weren’t really that many sites in the park that we could fit in with our big rig. So I called the Visitor Center where I had just checked in and let the ranger know about this awkward situation. She sent some park rangers out to deal with it. They let us know that the guy just didn’t understand he couldn’t take reserved sites, so he went to find another one. Still, it made us feel really uncomfortable because it was like we had him kicked out of that spot, but what else were we supposed to do? He was only in a minivan and could basically fit in any site, and we didn’t really have any other options.

After that uncomfortable start, it took us FOREVER to get leveled in this site because it was on a slope. Finally we got set up and learned how to use the generator. Then we had a nice surprise! Our good friends from Ditching Suburbia just happened to be passing through this area on their way back to Texas and stopped in to spend the night with us.

0317171927_HDR

Hanging out with Mike & Crissa Boyink of Ditching Suburbia

We enjoyed beautiful sunsets and wide open spaces at this campground.

0317171912_HDR

0318171918_HDR

0317171918

Our campsite had a cute little nook tucked in the rocks with a picnic table and fire pit.

0318171654a_HDR

0318172002a_HDR

Fat Cat liked climbing on the rocks.

0318171115f_HDR

0318171851e_HDR

This park has a whole bunch of rocks to climb on, it’s like a playground of rocks!

0318170936a_HDR

0318170957_Burst04

0318170941_HDR

0318171001a_Burst01

0318171014a_HDR

0318170930a_HDR

0318170930_HDR

0318170932_HDR

0318170931c_HDR

0318170927_HDR

Our campsite is way back there in a cluster of rocks

City of Rocks was such a fun place to try out our first time dry camping. Now I guess we’ll have to get more adventurous and seek out some free BLM lands to camp on.

Categories: New Mexico | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

More Random Thoughts

It’s been quite a while since I first posted some random thoughts about life on the road. You can view that post here: Random Thoughts about Life on the Road. I figured it’s time for an update now that we’ve been on the road for a little over 2 years. I usually only post about destinations we visit, but I think some people like to hear what it’s like to live in an RV fulltime.

I’ll start with some funny things that have happened. Living in campgrounds and RV parks means you get up close and personal with neighbors sometimes. I remember one time sitting at our kitchen table eating lunch while I watched our neighbor out the window in his bathrobe letting his dogs take care of their business. Still in his bathrobe after noon? Sure why not? I sometimes stay in pajama pants all day!

Another time we had one of the only campsites with a porch swing. One day Chris left to go somewhere, and I guess our neighbor assumed we all left with him because he used that time to make himself comfortable on our porch swing. I thought it was cute and hilarious! I didn’t want to embarrass him by letting him know the kids and I were still inside, so I just took his picture out the window so I could show Chris when he got home. 🙂

0515151218

Then there was the time our GPS took us down a dirt road on the way to a campground in Idaho. Oh boy was that a mistake! If I hadn’t been so nervous at the time I might have thought to take some pictures, but you’ll just have to use your imagination. This was a long one lane dirt road up and down hills and over a narrow wooden bridge. There was no way for us to possibly turn around so we just had to keep going and hope for the best. Thankfully we made it to the campground safely, although with a very dirty truck and RV. At least the campground let us wash the vehicles there and they let us know of a better road to take when we left.

Another funny thing happened in Dodge City, Kansas. We were on a very long drive and needed a place to spend one night before we continued on the next day. We pulled into a cute little RV park right off the highway in Dodge City called Gunsmoke RV Park. The lady that checked me in was quite interesting. She informed me that checkout time was at noon sharp! If we planned to stay until 12:01 or later we better pay up or get outta “dodge”. I suppose that was supposed to be a funny play on words since this place was in Dodge City. Anyway, since we were just passing through for the night, she didn’t have to worry about us overstaying our welcome, we were on our way bright and early the next morning. Besides the strange welcome, she read me a super long list of rules for the park. One of the weirdest rules was that our truck must be perfectly lined up in front of the RV. It could not be parked sideways or diagonal; it must be perfectly lined up. What?!? I wonder if they come out with a yardstick and make sure everyone’s RV and truck are perfectly in line? There were so many other weird rules that I don’t remember now, but that was definitely not the most welcoming place we have been to.

I spend countless hours trip planning and trying to book us into the best possible campsites with lots of space, privacy and amazing views. But every once in awhile we end up in a very crowded RV park so close to neighbors that you don’t even want to sit outside unless you enjoy sitting beside your neighbor’s sewer hose. Yuck! We were recently at a campground where a truck camper pulled in next to us as close as he could possibly get. We still can’t figure out the logic behind why he did that. He had to squeeze himself in between us every time he needed to get something out of his storage compartment. I could see the top of his head every time I looked out the window and I could have handed them ketchup through our windows if they needed any. Talk about being up close and personal!

0221170856_hdr2

I definitely prefer a view more like this one.

0901161952_hdr

I’ve learned that I absolutely love the west, but I miss friends and family in the east so we end up doing a lot of back and forth. Whenever our truck and home take a turn onto an interstate going west I get super excited!

Some people assume we are on a permanent vacation, but that is just not the case. When people we meet at campgrounds realize we fulltime RV they think we won the lottery or are somehow independently wealthy. No, we still work and it’s a constant balancing act between getting our work done and fully enjoying our current location. And trip planning is like a second job for me. Imagine having to find where you’re going to park your home every single night of the year. And I’m picky! I don’t want to park at some junky run down RV park. I like amazing views and space and kid friendly locations. And of course I have to make sure wherever we go that there is Verizon coverage.

Some days are just regular days; we’re not out exploring and doing exciting things every day. We have real life like everyone else. We work, we do school, we clean and do laundry, etc. We just replaced all 4 tires on the RV, had annual maintenance done which included re-sealing the roof, and we had to replace our refrigerator. There seems to be no shortage of things that need fixing or replacing in a house or an RV, so in that respect it’s not all that different from living in a house.

The #1 question people ask me is “how do you get your mail??” Good question, and I wondered that too before we embarked on this adventure. The RV community has already figured that out for us. There are several mail-forwarding services that cater to fulltime RV’ers and boaters. We have a mailing address in Florida which is the address we use for our driver’s license and registration. All of our mail goes there and when we receive mail the service scans the envelope and sends me an email so I can view it online. I can select the option to have them open it and scan the contents, or hold it until I can have it forwarded or have them shred it. Most RV parks allow us to receive packages so when I’m at a location that will allow that I can have the mail forwarding service send our mail to us there. I also make heavy use out of my Amazon Prime membership when I’m at a campground that allows deliveries.

Life on the road can certainly be challenging, but it is so worth it! I absolutely love waking up to new and exciting places and adventures every week or so. I love that we have been able to see so much of this beautiful country, places we never would have seen if not for living in an RV, including some hidden gems that I would never have even known about. I love the priceless memories Chris and I are making with our children. I love the close family bonding we experience living in such close quarters 24/7. Okay, so maybe I don’t always love that when the kids are fighting, lol! But I honestly would not trade this life for anything! I feel so incredibly blessed to be able to live this way.

If you have any questions, send them on. I’m happy to answer questions people have about this lifestyle.

 

Categories: Fulltime RV'ing | Tags: , , , , | 6 Comments

Fulltime Families Tally Rally

We attended our 5th Fulltime Families (FtF) rally in Tallahassee, FL at the North Florida Fairgrounds. Affectionately known as the “Tally Rally”, this was the biggest rally we have attended so far at approximately 85 families. I have to admit, being an introvert, I was quite overwhelmed by this many people at first. When we first pulled into the giant field where we all camped for the week, I really had second thoughts about whether or not we should have come. But I needn’t have worried about that. Within an hour or so some good friends from previous rallies stopped by and we got out and about meeting old and new friends. We ended up having a blast!

0202171155_hdr

fb_img_1486607387358

Here is a cool video that a rally attendee made early in the week:

The rally week started with a field trip to the Mission San Luis where we were transported back to the year 1703 and learned about how the Apalachee Indians lived.

0131171502a_hdr

0131171529a_hdr

fb_img_1485903089716

The next day we had a field trip to the Tallahassee Museum and Tree to Tree Adventures. The boys had their first experience on a ropes course. Jesse was not yet tall enough for us all to do the larger ropes course with zip lines, so Jake and Jesse did the ropes course for smaller adventurers. The larger one looked like lots of fun so once Jesse is a little bit taller we will look for a place for us all to do this together.

0201171409c_hdr

Besides the ropes courses, the museum was fun to explore. It was more like a zoo and gardens.

0201171518b_hdr

0201171530_hdr

fb_img_1485989957912

One of the really fun activities for kids at the rally was building a box city. Many thanks to the mom who came up with this idea! It was a big hit with all the kids. They built a city out of boxes and then had to sell stuff and earn “money” to spend at other businesses in the city. Some of the kids thought it was funny to commit crimes so they would be arrested and brought to the city jail. 🙂

0202171418a_hdr

0203171045a_hdr

0203171106a_hdr

One afternoon some of the adults played bubble soccer. This was hilarious to watch! Chris played, but I did not. It looked pretty dangerous and painful, and you even had to sign a waiver in order to play because you could get seriously hurt or even die. No thanks, I’ll just watch. 🙂

0204171538c_hdr

0204171538e_hdr

fb_img_1486607235603

fb_img_1486607298513

One evening the moms attended a Pampered Chef party, other evenings were spent having potluck dinners followed by games or dancing. After all the other festivities, we usually could be found at one of many campfires around the fairgrounds while the kids ran around and played until they crashed from exhaustion.

0131172126a_hdr

fb_img_1486744358215

We had such a great time at this rally! If you are a fulltime traveling family or planning to be, I would highly recommend attending one of these rallies. For us it has been a great way to get to know other families living this lifestyle.

 

Categories: Florida, Fulltime RV'ing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Disney’s Fort Wilderness

While we were in Florida last winter we purchased Disney annual passes. We got some use out of them last December and January and then headed west. Now that we’re back on the east coast again, we headed back to Disney to get some more use out of those passes before they expired.

We stayed at Disney’s Ft. Wilderness campground for Halloween and went back again a few weeks later to enjoy the sites decorated for Christmas. Ft. Wilderness is still my favorite campground ever. Disney just knows how to do everything with excellence, and their campground is awesome. Of course you have to pay for that awesomeness. Ft. Wilderness is definitely the most expensive campground we ever splurge on. For us it’s worth it to stay right on Disney property and take advantage of the bus, boat and monorail transportation to all the parks as well as all the amazing amenities this campground has to offer.

Our first stay started the day before Halloween so that’s where our kids went trick-or-treating this year. Many people decorate their campsites for Halloween and give out candy. This was such a fun place to go trick-or-treating!

1031161907a_burst01-2

Sorcerer Mickey and the Storm Trooper

Some nicely decorated campsites.

1031161924_hdr

1031161936_hdr

1031162011a_hdr

1031162008_hdr

Can you tell which storm trooper is Jake and which one is a decoration?

1031161938_hdr

Ft. Wilderness has so many fun things to do that you could really stay there and not even go to any Disney parks if you don’t want to. They have a really nice bike trail that goes between the campground and the Wilderness Lodge Resort Hotel.

1106161258_burst09

1106161258a_burst08

The marina beach area on Bay Lake is really nice. From there you can catch a boat to Magic Kingdom or to the Contemporary and Wilderness Lodge resorts.

1104161823a_hdr

At night you can watch the Magic Kingdom fireworks from the Bay Lake beach and also the electric light parade passes by every night at 9:45. Both are awesome to see!

The pool at Ft. Wilderness has a water slide, a kid’s splash park and a hot tub. Every day they have a pool party and games for the kids.

1110161623_burst03

One weekend while we were there some really good friends from our Nassau County Homeschool Group (NCHE) came to stay with us. Our homeschool group had planned a Sea World field trip which was perfect timing so we could attend and see lots of friends from where we used to live.

1110161625a_burst07

We took a break from Disney (as if we ever need a break from Disney!) and went to visit my sister and brother-in-law in Atlanta and then my parents in Charlotte for Thanksgiving. Then it was right back to Ft. Wilderness for my favorite time of the year to be there. The way some campers decorate their campsites is something to see! We like to rent a golf cart whenever we’re there in December so that we can ride around the camping loops at night and check out all the decorations. Ft. Wilderness is huge! Having a golf cart to get around is nice, but certainly not necessary. They have internal bus transportation to take you all over the resort if you don’t have a golf cart. Disney charges way too much for golf cart rentals so we rent from someone off property for half the price Disney charges. Keep that in mind if you go, there are other options. 😉

This campsite was right in our loop and it’s amazing. They come every year I think because we’ve seen this set up many times and it’s one of the best.

1129161731b_hdr

Another one that seems to be there every year is a site that includes a lighted walkway and they allow you to walk through their site and check out all their decorations. It’s pretty amazing and super nice of those folks to let a bunch of strangers wander through their site.

1202162138_burst02

1202162139a_burst03

1202162140a_burst01

1202162141_burst06

1202162142b_burst01

And lastly, Cinderella’s castle at Magic Kingdom is stunningly beautiful at Christmastime. Although I really miss the Christmas lights they used to have at Hollywood Studios.

1130161954b_burst05-2

I love traveling all over the country, but I will always love coming back to Disney whenever our travels bring us back east.

If you need advice or tips on traveling around Florida, please check out my friend’s blog over at Crazy Family Adventure for the Ultimate Florida Road Trip. They put together a great post with ideas for visiting many different places in Florida. Their post also contains some helpful links for visiting Disney World.

We’ll be spending the remainder of this year with friends and family in FL and NC. I hope you all have a very Merry Christmas and a blessed 2017!

Categories: Florida | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

50th Anniversary Celebration

When we left Montana at the end of August, we had exactly 6 weeks to make it back to Charlotte, NC for a very special occasion. We covered a lot of miles in those 6 weeks! The special occasion was a party for my parent’s 50th wedding anniversary. Not many people these days can say they’ve been married to the same person for 50 years. That’s quite an accomplishment and I’m so proud of them.

_w0a7768

The party was held at the Extreme Ice Center in Indian Trail and we couldn’t have been happier with the excellent customer service we received there. Many friends and relatives came in from out of town and we appreciate all of them so much, as well as all of the local friends and family that came out to celebrate with us! It was so much fun spending time with people that we haven’t seen in so long.

14567436_10154633981081983_2706814210461277921_o

Pre-party festivities at Mom and Dad’s house

My amazingly talented brother-in-law Chris and my sister Cheryl put together a really awesome video highlighting my parent’s story beginning from their dating years. There were a lot of really funny parts to the video and I love the pictures Chris captured here of everyone’s laughter.

_w0a7600

_w0a7605

_w0a7583

We had wonderful food, dancing and lots of laughing.

_w0a7712

_w0a7776

_w0a7814

My beautiful Mom with Cheryl and me

_w0a7826

Group picture with my mom’s sister Jackie and her brother John with wife Patty

_w0a7828

Lifelong friends: Jim & Beverly and Fred & Rita

After the party we went back to Mom and Dad’s house for some more family time. Yes I’m wearing pajama pants in the picture below. After a fun-filled day I was ready for “happy clothes”. 😉

14753239_10154642318741983_8734735945556149958_o

My Aunt Jackie… I love her!

After the action-packed party weekend, some of us went to Hilton Head Island to continue the celebration for a few more days. We stayed in a really cute rental house together and had lots of fun playing games and just spending time together.

_w0a7920

My Chris (my brother-in-law is also named Chris so I have to distinguish by saying “my Chris” and “Cheryl’s Chris”) prepared a fabulous dinner one night for everyone including crab legs, salmon and steak.

14720330_989411407851410_1597311080010876510_n

One day the guys played golf while Cheryl & I took the boys for a bike ride, and the rest of the ladies went shopping.

14714994_10154654848036983_7206357350094573800_o

One thing that made this trip extra special is that Chris & I were celebrating our 16th wedding anniversary that week and it just so happens that we were married in Hilton Head. We visited the Westin Resort where we were married and showed the boys the “scene of the crime”. 😉 Our wedding took place to the left in the picture below where the green roof is.

1020161204_hdr

14712721_10154658218146983_714891836769618032_o

Westin Resort, Hilton Head Island, SC

The week-long celebration was such a wonderful time for all of us! Next we headed back to Florida.

Categories: Fulltime RV'ing, North Carolina, South Carolina | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

The North Shore of Minnesota

After driveway surfing in Wisconsin we headed back into Minnesota up to the North Shore.  We stayed at Burlington Bay Campground in Two Harbors right on Lake Superior.  Do you see a Fat Cat on the fence?

0921161606_hdr

She’s easier to see close up.

0921161631a_hdr

Lake Superior is amazing!  I swear this seems so much more like the ocean to me than a lake.  It’s enormous and on windy days the waves were just as big as ocean waves.

0919161820b_hdr

0922161804b_hdr

0922161805_hdr

One evening we went to visit beautiful Gooseberry Falls State Park, and enjoyed riding the bike trails.

0919161733_burst01

0919161739_hdr

0919161750_hdr

0919161756_hdr

0919161757_hdr

0919161818_burst21

We heard that when you’re in Two Harbors you must stop and try Betty’s Pies.  So after walking and biking around Gooseberry Falls we stopped there for dinner and dessert.  Delicious!

0919161944a_hdr

Another evening we checked out Split Rock Lighthouse State Park.  Wow, this was absolutely gorgeous!

0922161812d_hdr

0922161813a_hdr

0922161818a_hdr

0922161816b_hdr

We also enjoyed walking the trail across the street from our campground.  I loved watching the waves crash against the rocks!

savedimage_0923161751e_20

That’s our home back there, parked in between several other homes with a view.

0923161822a_hdr

We found a nice playground down the street for my little monkey.

0923161802d_hdr

On Saturday my boss and his wife and daughter came up to visit us for the day.  We went back to Gooseberry Falls with them.  It was a lot colder that day than when we went earlier in the week, but lots of fun to enjoy this with Mike and his family.  They have been here many times before and were able to show us around to other areas of the park that we missed when we went the first time.  It’s always nice to have locals to show us around!

0924161431_hdr

0924161528c_hdr

0924161510_hdr

savedimage_0924161515d_09

We got to see an eagle on the trail!

0924161549_hdr

I’m so glad we took this trip up to the North Shore.  It was a little out of our way since we were on a tight timeline to get to North Carolina by mid-October, but it was worth it.  Such a beautiful area and definitely a place I would like to go back to again when we have more time.

Categories: Minnesota | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Fulltime Families Rally in Colorado

We attended our 4th Fulltime Families (FtF) rally in Montrose, CO.  It was a total blast!  We met up with some families that we met at previous rallies and also some new families.  Some of our favorite memories on the road have been spent with other traveling families.

13483304_10207531638944013_6522466343043309646_o

The rally was held at the Jellystone Park in Montrose, CO.  We went a few days earlier than the rally started which gave us some time to catch up with some other friends that got there a little early.  We went back to Ouray to visit Box Canyon Falls with the Lundy family.  The falls were really cool!  The water coming through the canyon is so powerful and loud!

13501656_10207502146686725_7101990162615666433_n

0621161648_HDR

0621161805a  0621161647

Soon enough more families started pulling into the campground and the rally officially began.

0622161801

I can’t even explain just how much fun it is to be parked next to several other traveling families.  We hung out every evening for campfires and happy hours and talked until late into the night.  Meanwhile the kids were off and running from sunup until sundown (and beyond) having a blast playing with all the other kids.

One afternoon when it was raining outside, several kids ended up at our RV to play with play-doh. Or I should say “to make a mess” because you know that’s how it goes with play-doh! 😉

0623161206

One of the planned activities was an obstacle course for the kids where they went to each “booth” for an activity to complete.  At this table the activity was to paint a mask because the theme of this rally was “Super Heroes”.

0624161401

Jesse’s friend Dylan was showing him how to use the bow & arrow to shoot the colored soda bottles.

0624161409

I love Olivia’s face in this one.  She is determined to hit that soda bottle!

0624161416a

After everyone completed the obstacle course, they all gathered around the Yogi Bear statue for a picture.

0624161432b

One of our favorite activities was the Super Hero Pet Parade.  We made a cape for Super Fat Cat to wear.  She was not happy about being paraded around the campground, but she really tolerated it well.  And she became famous!  After that everyone knew who Fat Cat was, and whenever people passed by our site they would say “hey, there’s Fat Cat!”

0625161042

There were all kinds of pets in this parade including frogs and rats.

0625161034  0625161037a

And dogs of course!

0625161037c

0625161044a

And even stuffed animals!

0625161040_HDR

Once the parade started, Fat Cat tried to fly away.  Too bad her cape didn’t have real super powers!

0625161045d

0625161047d

Strangely, the pool at this campground was closed for most of the time we were there (even though it was well past Memorial Day and the weather was in the 90s).  I say “strangely” because this is supposed to be a Jellystone Park, but it wasn’t like any other Jellystone we have been to.  They did not have nearly as many fun activities and amenities as most Jellystone Parks have, but we made up for that with our own FtF activities.  The pool finally opened a couple of days before we left so the kids wanted to make the most of it while they had the chance.

0625161900a

 

On Saturday night we had the Super Hero pizza dinner and dance party.  Clementine had a really cool costume!

0625161757a

0625161832a

Jennifer made us feel tall by making herself look short next to us. 🙂

13566063_10153576887856367_2102575618_n

Our last night around the campfire was really fun.  I think we stayed out so late because we knew we were leaving the next day and wanted to make the fun last as long as possible.

0625162219c

I miss these girls!

13466334_10154273631520489_3464768052502912512_n

If you are a traveling family, I would highly recommend you find a Fulltime Families rally near you and go.  We have made the most amazing friendships and memories at these rallies!

One last silly picture of the super heroes. 🙂

13475204_10207531638904012_6435002662565300304_o

Categories: Colorado, Fulltime RV'ing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Navajo State Park

Navajo State Park is located in southwest Colorado, just across from New Mexico on Navajo Lake.  This was the perfect place to rest up after a busy couple of weeks in New Mexico and to prepare for another couple of busy weeks visiting national parks in Utah.

This state park is about 45 minutes from Durango and Pagosa Springs, and you know what?  We didn’t go to either one.  That’s what happens when you’re a full-time RV’er.  Sometimes you realize you just need some downtime and you can’t see and do it all. We’re not on vacation, this is our life.  And sometimes in life you need time to get caught up on work, school, household chores, and time to just chill out.  That’s what we did at Navajo State Park.  Not a bad place to just unwind and rest for a week.

0502161720b

Chris is walking the cat. 🙂

0502161721b

0502161722c

0502161724a_HDR

The day we arrived in Colorado it was very cold.  It was snowing during parts of our drive that day, but by the time we got to our campground it was only raining.  It was the first time in all of our travels that we had to set up our home in the rain.  And it was freezing!  By the next day the sun came out and the rest of the week was just beautiful.

Jake and I went hiking on the nature trails that we could access just behind our campsite.

0503161351

0503161439a

He is getting a lot of use out of his camera he got for Christmas.

0503161402b

We had a nice backyard for the week to enjoy.

0505161900a_Burst08

Jesse was playing badminton by himself!

0505161906_Burst01

0505161906_Burst02

Fat Cat settled into a shipping box and asked to be shipped back to Florida. 🙂  Just kidding, I really think she loves these new places to explore (including boxes)!

0505162047a

Chris took both boys to play golf.  Now they can’t wait to see Grampa again and play golf with him.

IMG_0783

IMG_0784

IMG_0786

IMG_0797

IMG_0804

IMG_0811

IMG_0819

Next up we plan to visit some of the fabulous national parks in Utah.  Be prepared for lots of blog posts.  I imagine I will be taking LOTS of pictures!

 

Categories: Colorado | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment

Blog at WordPress.com.