Thursday, August 30, 2012

Thursday 13: Favorites

1. Favorite state visited so far (besides Texas cause that would be a given): Indiana
2. Favorite campground stayed at so far: No campground has had it "all" but probably the campground that had most of the things I like is Petaluma KOA in CA.
3. Favorite pizza: Arte Pizzeria in Loveland CO
4. Favorite burger: Tie between Culver's and 523 Tap and Grill in Elkhart IN
5. Favorite thing about this lifestyle: It's stretching me! and I love being able to see part of the US I've never seen before.
6. Favorite thing to wear for travel days: for warm travel days: running shorts, t-shirt and flip flops; for cooler days: my PPP bloomers, t-shirt and flip flops
7. Favorite bike ride: Monterrey CA!
8. Favorite book I've read on this journey: Living with Less (maybe because I'm living it!)
9. Favorite meal to make in the RV: anything requiring one pan!
10. Favorite phrase we've adopted: It's 10 degrees warmer/cooler out here, when stepping out of our home!
11. Favorite campground treat: Snickers ice cream bars
12. Favorite touristy thing we've done: San Francisco tour
13. Favorite item we have purchased since being on the road: our grill!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

We run for biscuits...

We run so we can eat... and because we have lots of time!

I've challenged myself several times to the Couch 25K running program. It takes you from lying on the couch to running a 5k in 9 weeks... or so. I started it the first time about 10 years ago. And restarted it many times since then. I wouldn't stick with it.

UNTIL the summer of 2010 in Central Texas. I decided to challenge myself again and run thru Texas summer heat! Of course I ran early in the morning when the temperatures were a cool 80 degrees. And I did it! I ran (no walking) a 5k with my husband just in our neighborhood. Then I did an actual race. And I got 3rd place in my age group... of course there were 5 in my age group. And the last 2 were WALKING!

On of our discussions on this road trip involved making sure this year on the road wasn't a "waste". We have all this time and all these new cool places to walk, run, bike and I wanted to take advantage of it. So we decided to start the c25k program again.

After I started it I found out that an online friend had been doing it (again for her too) and she is now in week 9 of the program! Go Jamie!

I've been running off and on (not far) ever since I ran that 5k in October 2010. So I knew that I could probably skip the first week or so of the program. So we decided to start with week 2. We had beautiful places to run while we were in Bristol Indiana... canopied forests, nice soft trails and thru our very spacious campground. Week 2 went great; Week 3 started and I still felt energized and like I could run more. So for our 2nd run that week we skipped to Week 4 of the program (got that?). It was just the right challenge.

So this week we started Week 5 (3rd week of running for us). We were supposed to run yesterday (run days are Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday), but with travel we decided to hold off till today.

And we run for biscuits! I normally don't like McDonald's... but I do love their breakfast biscuits and coffee (and something called a McRib but we won't go there)! And there's a McDonald's right across the road from our campground...

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Travel day...

Haven't had one of these in a while! And it was great getting back on the road after a month-long stay! D got back into the hang of pulling our home and we had some great conversation! We tend to get into a philosophical mood and conversation when traveling. Sometimes we use 365 Thought Provoking Questions, other times we come up with our own.

So we are settling in here in Sandusky, Ohio. Very nice campground, very empty. We are close to the highway, but we don't mind the highway hum.

D's already gone down to check out the pool... uh, it's 75 degrees (air temperature)! I can just imagine how cold that water is! This is Fall weather! And I love Fall!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Menu plan

Since we've hit the road on this year-long adventure, we've had really no routine. Which is good... and bad. I love routine. I like a daily routine and a weekly routine. When we lived in a stick and bricks, I would do laundry on the same days, buy groceries each week on the same day, etc. We do have a daily routine on the road... but a weekly one? Not so much. It all depends on travel days and those vary.

We get back on the road tomorrow after a month-long stay in Northern Indiana... where Mondays are the wash days for the Amish! So I'm washing today! And getting groceries cause we are low on a lot of things. The next 2 days will be travel days and we normally don't unhitch so I need to have enough groceries to at least see us thru those days. But I planned a full week's menu. I don't assign meals to certain days although I know the easiest meals will be on travel days. I normally plan for 6 suppers a week. We will either go out for dinner one night, or we have lots of leftovers, or we do a simple breakfast meal for dinner.

On the MENU this week:
Perogies with Bacon and Onion (thanks to my B-I-L, Dan - his spesh-ee-ality)
Some kinda veggie or salad

Shrimp Fried Rice

Skillet Hash w/Spinach

Taco Salad

Grilled Chicken with Peaches
Green Beans
Egg Noodles

Grilled Burgers with cheese and egg
Some kinda veggie or salad

Sunday, August 26, 2012

I've gone live...

I finally "publicized" my blog. First to my dear hubs... then to some online friends... then on Facebook and Twitter! Now I have a mention on our travel blog here. Hubs is the "true writer" of our family. I thought I might write some posts on our Flip Flop Vector blog, but I'm a pretty boring writer and that doesn't fit in with his style. He's hilarious! And a great writer! So thank you to all of you coming here from our other blog!

Truly this blog is more of a capture for me to look back on. I'm hoping to get out and take more photos. I love taking photos! I did a whole year of a photo a day back in 2010 when we first moved out in the country. I thought I might do something like that for this road adventure... started it off but dropped it not far into it. Maybe I'll pick it back up!

I've had highs and lows on this journey... mostly highs. But I get down if we are traveling too much or I focus too much on what I'm missing. Going back to my "living in the moment" seems to work for me. If I had to list pros and cons of this lifestyle, I'd definitely have more pros than cons because I've chosen not to dwell on the cons. I know some of the RV'in blogs I've read (and still read) this lifestyle sounded romantic to me before we actually got on the road. And it definitely has a romance to it... some days I just have to make it! And I'm not talking about romance with my hubs! I'm talking about the romance like in the song by Zac Brown Band - Free.


Friday, August 24, 2012

Friday Favorite Finds...

These posts were starred in my reader this past week!

I want to try these Coconut Date Energy Bites! Emily posted about a hike they did and she made these to take along.  And I just can't get enough of that cutey pie Cullen!

I continue to struggle to find a balance with my online time... interesting read about living without the internet totally!

Mmm... shrimp and tacos so go together!

We have been in a state of change or impermanence for almost 4 years now... I'm beginning to realize nothing is permanent!

Some friends and I have been answering some thought-ful questions lately and several of them have had to do with making life better, not having any regrets. I think this post might help us to be intentional in making the changes we wish to see!

Love things with chia seeds! This looks good!

Pinterest finds this week:

I really, really want to do more yoga!

Love this! Where we are parked right now the sun comes up thru the trees just like this!

Good reminder!

Hoop tricks!

Zucchini Patty Pitas... Mmmmm... 

HaPpY WeEkEnDiNg!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Higher learning...

[A synonym of higher education, education provided by universities, vocational universities (community colleges, liberal arts colleges, and technical colleges, etc.) and other collegial institutions that award academic degrees, such as career colleges.]

What is it that draws me to college/university towns and cities? I love being on a "higher learning" campus. I love the memories I have of my college years living on campus. I went to a small private university and loved every minute of my time there! I've also attended some classes at community and smaller colleges. I love learning. I love the community on a campus. I love the opportunities that result from learning.

Today we visited University of Notre Dame. It is a beautiful campus! School started on Monday so the atmosphere was exciting! At first we didn't see very many students but as we got deeper into the campus, there they were. We sat on a bench in the shade for a bit and just watched the students interacting and getting to their next class.

We also talked about going back to school. I've always thought I'd like to go back and finish what I started. At "retirement age" it is so encouraging that I have the opportunity to go back and do it again (or finish up as in my case). And I have a better idea of what interests me. At 18 years old, I had no clue what I wanted to do. I think now I would like to study in nutrition or social work... and eventually work some place like The Sustainable Food Center in Austin. I love the idea of helping people learn how to grow their own food and eat healthfully.

Monday, August 20, 2012

in the moment...

I have issues... I struggle being in the moment or even in the "day". I am often found looking ahead to the next thing. Living in Colorado, I looked ahead to living in Texas. When we moved into an apartment in Texas, I looked forward to having a house in the country. Once we were out in the country, I was looking ahead to when my husband wouldn't be commuting between Colorado and Texas. When he retired and moved to Texas, I started looking forward to the RV lifestyle... we are now living full-time in an RV and I'm looking to live in a sticks and bricks again.

I really am enjoying the RV lifestyle. It seems my mind wanders (the Bible mentions fools minds wander to the ends of the earth)... to other things. When I'm embracing the present wherever I am doing whatever I'm doing, I'm good! It's when I start thinking... that's gets me into trouble!
I don't want to have any regrets about this adventure... however long we do it! Some days I see us doing this for several years or more. Other days, not so much!

Things I love about the fulltime RV lifestyle:
  • Living small. I really love living in a small space. I have to be organized and neat. I cannot buy a bunch of stuff. And it forces me outside more!
  • Being close to nature. Literally! I can see outside from anywhere inside the RV and I'm outside more. 
  • Seeing new places! I have not traveled much before this and most of it was in an airplane. So driving across the United States and spending time in different areas has been exciting and refreshing!
  • Forcing myself out of my comfort zone. I'm an introvert and a homebody. David's a homebody too, but loves getting out and chatting with people. Sitting outside invites our neighbors to stop and chat. I'm still not all the way out of my comfort zone and probably still spend too much time inside the RV seeking privacy. But I want to change that!
  • New places to walk, bike and run! And new sports activities to try! Still want to do some kayaking and stand up paddle boarding!
  • If we don't like the neighbors, we can move on. We have enjoyed most of the campgrounds/RV parks we've stayed at. But it is nice to know that we have the freedom to move on if we feel like it.
  • Speaking of freedom, being mobile does feel freeing. Getting rid of most of our belongings is freeing. Being able to go where we want and do what we want is freedom. 
  • Being able to see family and friends! I'm finally getting to meet some online friends that I've been wanting to meet! And we got to spend time with our family in Colorado! Our sons enjoy visiting us all over the United States too!
  • Sharing this time, small space, adventure with my best friend! We've had some great conversations during our drives, in places without our laptops and TV, by the campfires and over dinners out. We don't have a lot to "do" as far as normal household/yard obligations which in turn frees up time... time for each other.
So I'm getting to travel and see the US and have my home come with me! The best of two worlds!

Thursday, August 16, 2012


Ugh... woke up to a not-working-properly coffee maker. It's quite persnickety with the carafe's position... and if it's not right, it overflows in the filter cup. When I didn't hear it tinkling into the carafe, I jumped out of bed and corrected it... Whew....

There was sunshine coming thru the back window first thing this morning, but from there it's been hiding behind clouds. We had a good rainstorm come thru early this afternoon.

The Olympics and a desire not to gain weight on this adventure has us training for a 5k (or several) again. And today was a running day. So we took off mid-morning and ran thru this canopy. This photo was taken on a bike ride on a previous day. I LOVE running thru this! If we were "planners", we'd have planned to run a 5k in each state or something like that. Since we are 4 months and about 18 states into our adventure, guess that's not gonna happen!

We had scheduled a mobile RV guy to come and do a maintenance check on our fifth wheel today. He never showed up, nor called. So we aren't sure what to think about that...

We had some great conversation this evening at supper. Supper was a sausage (grilled by the hubs) and pesto penne, with green beans and beer bread baked this afternoon. We talked once again about the "purpose" of this whole trip/adventure. We don't want to waste a  year on ourselves (being selfish), nor do we want to not be aware and intentional of this year of simplicity and travel to what God is changing or doing in our lives. Hubs feels "guilty" for not serving somewhere... I'm trying to figure out the purpose of my life during this year. I've read where other travelers say that the time spent traveling changed them. I'm looking for change, but maybe I just need to be and realize the change later?

I know that I'm on a path to authenticity... being the true me that God made me to be, but at the same time I don't want this year to be spent just on me.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012


Listening... to the whirrr of the fan
Eating... shrimp pesto pizza for supper
Drinking... ice water
Wearing... denim shorts and my Keep Austin Weird tie dye shirt
Feeling... content
Weather... sunny and breezy
Wanting... a Vanilla Coke Zero
Needing... to listen to my soul
Thinking... how blessed I am
Enjoying... peace and quiet

Sunday, August 12, 2012


Being "attracted" to a certain decorating style or a lifestyle doesn't necessarily define how you truly want to live... or does it?

A friend of mine has recently said "Though this simple, uncluttered look is what I am drawn to in magazines, I have finally faced up to the fact that, even if I had it, I would then proceed to fill it up with lots of colorful stuff."  I find I'm drawn to colorful cluttered looks on Pinterest and in magazines but my home has usually been filled with a simple, clean, neutral look. I'm slowly filling my living space with color because I love the way it looks... but it's scary! Stepping into color is wild for me! I have a spouse that always has in the back of his mind, when we have to sell it we will have to repaint, recover, etc.

We live in an RV right now with the ever-so-popular NOT beige and blue decorating scheme. While we can live with it, it's not us. So today we are changing that! We have begun painting the walls. And have chosen a fairly bright green and yellow to color our walls. We then need to figure out how to cover the blue and beige upholstery!

Here's some of my pinterest boards color inspiration!

Saturday, August 11, 2012

To blog or not to blog...

That is the question! I've gone back and forth on this... why blog? Because I feel like I want to... 

Background... I've had a couple of blogs before. Felt pressure to blog often and with content that would be interesting! Ha! I don't have dreams of being a writer... but I enjoy writing. I've journaled for several years and have boo-coos of journals in storage. Mostly I just write down things God impresses on me during my quiet times with Him.

I was sweeping this morning in our RV (which takes about 2 minutes), and have been trying to "be in the moment" with everything I do. And the phrase "the zen of sweeping" came to me. Being in the moment instead of thinking ahead to the next thing. I have problems with this! I'm always moving on to the next thing. I want to be here now. In whatever I'm doing!

My husband and I are on a year-long road trip right now. We are just starting month 5. My dream road trip includes a beach and an ocean. We haven't hit that yet! Well, we did explore Monterrey Bay when we were in California but it was just a day trip. I need more! In the process of wanting a beach location, I don't want to miss where we are... which is presently northern Indiana in Amish country. I've always been intrigued with the Amish lifestyle... and I'm around it right now. Even in the barrenness of New Mexico, I wanted to appreciate it for its own beauty. So this has been a journey for me in many ways... the most important one is being where I am!

Not sure where this blog will go... It's really just for me to remember where I've been.