Monday, July 25, 2011

Gorgeous Weekend and I Spent it Inside

I have a new follower...jld52405 and it appears you don't have a blog. Thanks for joining me as I decide what's next and where.

Finally, finally, finally some gorgeous weather and I spent it inside.  We, the Seattle area, have experienced 351 minutes of summer.  Prior to this last weekend that number was 78 minutes, so the weekend really helped.  What do these numbers mean, you ask.  Summer = 80〫or higher.  Today we might break a low temperature record.  No wonder I've decided to move back to Tucson.  

It's because of that decision to move back to Tucson that I spent the weekend inside.  I mentioned in an earlier blog that I have to take up the rest of the carpeting in my house and that's what I was doing.

It took me most of Saturday to remove the carpeting in the master bedroom.  I was able to finish it Sunday morning then spent the rest of the day on the living room.  

With carpeting

Without carpeting

Removing the carpeting is easy, it's getting the tacking strip, nails and staples up that takes so much time.  I kept a large piece of carpeting to put down for my dog to walk on and be able to sleep on at night.  I'm kind of wishing I'd done this a long time ago since I really like how it looks without the carpet.  Oh well, I'll enjoy it while I can.  The pictures make the room look long and skinny and it's actually quite large...almost twice as large as the pictures show.  

The "For Lease" sign isn't even up yet and I got a call for someone to look at the house today.  On one hand I was glad for the call, and on the other, I wasn't.  Because someone wanted to look at it, I had to stop what I was doing or going to do as I hadn't started yet on more carpet removal, and clean house.  

They were supposed to arrive at my house at 4:00 so I loaded my dog into my car and we took off.  We got back around 4:00 and parked across the street and by 4:20 nobody had shown up.  I called my property manager and she suggested I give it a few more minutes then go home.  I drove around the block, pulled into my garage and as soon as the door closed they arrived.  Believe it or not, they never looked in the garage so they had no idea we were there.  

Before I close and get back to carpet removal, I want to apologize for not commenting on your blogs.  I haven't even had time to read them let alone comment and I'm missing all of your adventures.  Bear with me and I'll have some time to get caught up one of these days.

Missing reading your blogs,


Saturday, July 23, 2011

My House is Available to Lease

Yes, I'm going to lease my house and then move back to Tucson.  I know that I'll do a lot more traveling in Olivia with my base of operations in the Southwest.  I won't have to worry about snow and ice and that's a real concern for me so I'm relieved to put that worry behind me.  I'm pretty excited and I'm letting all my friends down there know that I'm finally coming back.  

I started pulling up the rest of the carpet today that's left in the master bedroom and living room and dining room.  I've left it down because my dog has trouble walking on hardwood floors.  I plan on leaving strips of carpet down on the paths he walks the most.  

The realtor in Tucson who has shown me houses to buy off and on for a couple years has agreed to find me a house to rent.  I've been thinking that I might just live in Olivia instead and save a few bucks.  There are lots of RV parks in Tucson so I can go around checking each one out when I get tired of the one I'm at.

To say that I'm exhausted tonight would be an understatement.  But it's an "I accomplished something" exhausted.  It feels like the exhaustion is reaching my brain so I'm going to close for now.

Lots of sunshine today,


Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Why Don't I Just Listen to What My Gut is Telling Me???

Life would sometimes be so much simpler if I just listened to my gut.  I wrote a post not too long ago asking for input on memberships for RV parks. I appreciate all the feedback I got, and I already knew the answer for me, but did I listen? No way.  I had already signed up for membership in one of the organizations, based in Washington.  How much sense does that make when I plan on going back to the Southwest?  Sometimes it's easier to give in to the salesman because it just seems like they're just going to beat you down anyway, no matter what you say.  When I was told that I'd have six days to opt out if I wanted to, I folded and signed on the dotted line.

When I was in Sequim over the weekend I checked out what would be my home park, meaning I could stay there for free.  I was very disappointed in what I saw and I have no desire to return to that park.

I read the fine print today on the contract I signed, followed it to the letter, and got out of my contract.  Whew, what a relief.  Another salesman did his darndest to get me to sign up for a different program.  I listened for awhile, thanked him for his time and left.  Now I have to wait for them to return my deposit to me.  

Am I the only one who doesn't listen to their gut?  I've done this so many times and it always seems to end up as an "if only."  If only I'd listened to my gut...if only I'd gotten up and walked out before signing on the dotted line, if only I'd never returned their first phone call, etc., etc., etc.  At least this had a happy ending.

Speaking of happy...sunshine and 73〫today!!!  Hallelujah!!!  I had a number of plants to plant so I got out in my backyard and planted them.  My dog even enjoyed himself.  

That reminds me...someone asked me recently on a different post if I was taking my dog with me to Arizona and my answer is YES!!!  We've worked out how to get him into Olivia.  He went with me to Sequim last weekend and did  pretty good.  In fact, he seemed to love being there and the change in routine didn't seem to bother him.  Usually I let him out in our fenced backyard but I wasn't able to in Sequim.  I'd take him out on his leash and he just wanted to walk, so we did.  I'm very uncomfortable when it comes to cutting his toenails so they were a bit long.  I took him to the vet yesterday and got them cut, so we're going to start walking.

He's been on thyroid medication for years and our current vet checks his blood periodically.  Yesterday was the day for that, besides clipping his toenails.  I got a call from the vet today saying that he's in great health and all his organs are in great shape.  The vet also mentioned that other dogs would be jealous of him.  That's good news because with him being 14 I'm thinking our time is limited but maybe we have a few more years left.  I hope so because he's the best dog I've ever had and I adore him.  

That's all I have for now so this is the end this post.

Loving the sunshine,


Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Weathered Out

I understand that parts of the country would love to be experiencing the weather we're dealing with here in the Pacific Northwest.  It's the middle of July and I'm sitting here with wool slippers on, a light jacket and earlier I had a portable heater turned on.  It was supposed to reach 72〫today and only reached 65〫at my house.  The sun we were supposed to see never appeared.  It's windy and looks and feels like early Fall.  I'm so weary of the constant gray.  What gives????

I've decided that I'm going to lease my house and return to the Southwest probably sometime in late September or early October.  If it feels like Fall in July I can't imagine what it'll feel like in September.  I'm surprised that I'm torn between Tucson and Palm Springs, but I think Tucson will win out.  I feel such a connection to Tucson and I feel a twinge whenever I hear someone is going there and I'm not.  

I figure that once I'm in the Southwest I won't have to worry about snow and ice and I'll be able to travel, travel, travel with Olivia.  I'm looking forward to it.  I know, I know, there are places that do have snow and ice in the Southwest, but I'll be below those areas and won't have to worry.  

I was telling a friend today when I want to go down there and mentioned that I'll have to figure out how to get two vehicles down...Olivia and my Volvo.  She indicated that she might be interested in driving my Volvo down and I offered to fly her back to Seattle.  We didn't have too much time to talk but talk we will.

I've been going through the house and sorting for a garage sale.  I would like for it to be warmer when I do have it so I'm holding off for a few weeks. I'm also nowhere near being ready.  The last weekend of the month is a very popular Arts and Crafts show in the city I live in and I don't think a garage sale can really compete so I'll probably wait until the first weekend in August.  Did I just type August?  Where has the summer gone?  Wait...we haven't had summer yet.  

I don't have any pictures to publish because I'm not interested in showing gray, gray, gray.  So, I'm changing the subject to one for which I do have pictures.

I thought I'd show where I "lost" my GPS in Olivia...

I also have a Beanbag Dashboard mount to which my GPS was not mounted when they went missing.  As you can see, it is mounted on the beanbag now...

Yes, I also lost the beanbag.  Can you see either one in the picture?  They're both there.

Before I left for the Lavender Festival in Sequim I paid a visit to Verizon and got myself a MiFi...


While I already have a portable internet service...

I find the MiFi easier to transport (and probably lose).  It takes up less space and I imagine I'll have more internet access.  I've had Clear for years and once they got the bugs worked out it's been a good service.  But, I think I'll have better access with Verizon.  Besides, when I go to RV Maintenance Boot Camp and Kathy stays at my house, she'll need Clear and I'll need Verizon. When I head for the Southwest I'll only need Verizon. dog just spit up on the carpet...two inches from the hardwood floor.  Why oh why didn't he do it on the floor????

I think on that happy(???) note I'll close for now.  

Thinking sunshine,


Monday, July 18, 2011

Lavender Festival...Part Two

My apologies to my new follower...Carolyn at her blog amigoingsomeplace. That's what I wrote down to type but in my post yesterday I typed amigoingsomewhere.  Sorry about that Carolyn, thanks for pointing it out and thanks for enjoying my blog.  

And now back to the Lavender Festival...

While I was walking through the festival and admiring all the creativity, my mantra was...downsizing, remind myself not to get carried away with purchasing.  I don't think I've mentioned this, but I'm getting ready for a garage sale and I'm supposed to be getting rid of things, not adding to what I already have.  

Some of what I bought will be going to Germany shortly because they're for my future grandchild...

Organic bib
Detail of bib

Lavender filled cat
 This will be going in my backyard...

Clay bird feeder

Lid to bird feeder
Despite the weather I had a good time and I'm glad I went.

Even though I was horrified by the price to ride the ferry, I decided that I wanted to return home on the ferry.  I think it's a fun thing to do and before this trip I hadn't ridden a ferry since last year.  

Before we left Sequim I decided to fill my gas tank even though I knew I had more than enough to get home.  I wasn't planning on getting lost but we did...twice.  AARGH.  Kathy is familiar with the area around Sequim so I followed her directions.  We were going to Kingston to catch the ferry back to Edmonds and after crossing the Hood Canal bridge she told me to take a right.  I told her that the sign said Kingston was to the left and she told me to ignore that.  By the time we got to signs for the Navy base she admitted that we might have missed our turn.  Long story short, we ended up in Bremerton and decided to catch the Bremerton ferry which would take us into downtown Seattle.  Lucky for Kathy, being in Olivia mellows me so I didn't get upset.  I just kept driving.  When we reached the ferry terminal in Bremerton she offered to pay and I took her up on it with much appreciation.

Turns out this wait was only going to be 25 minutes and I was disappointed because there were some pictures I wanted to take and I didn't think I'd have enough time.  The entry to the ferry terminal in Bremerton is really nice looking and that's what I wanted to capture.  I guess that means another trip to Bremerton.  

I don't think I've ever been at the beginning of a line for the ferry until yesterday...

There was a Washington State Patrol trooper and his german shepherd walking up and down the lines, sniffing for drugs, I'm pretty sure.  I don't think they found any.  

When I noticed the ferry coming towards the dock...

Waiting for the ferry

Here comes the ferry

The ferry has arrived

I got out to take pictures and happened to glance down and saw this starfish...

I hope it was alive and just waiting for the tide to come in.

I didn't have a ferry schedule so I decided to go upstairs and look for one and this is what the ferry looks like inside...

Lots of people walk onto the ferry and leave their cars behind.  Besides the decks outside they have a nice place inside to wait.  The people who drive on can also go upstairs.  This particular ferry didn't have any food service on it.

And last but not least on this ferry trip...the blurry Seattle skyline...

The wind and rain were so strong I couldn't even see if I was getting a picture or not, but I guess I did alright.  I tried to get the Space Needle, off to the left, but I couldn't capture it.  

After the ferry docked and we'd driven off of it, Kathy told me to go left even though I wanted to go right.  So I went left and that's how we ended up getting lost a second time.  We were trying to find I-5 and, again, I followed her directions, to my chagrin.  We finally ended up going right like I wanted, got hung-up waiting for the ferry traffic that we would have been a part of, if we'd turned right the first time.  When she suggested we turn left to get away from the traffic I thought it was a good idea, but it turned out not to be since neither one of us knows downtown Seattle.  We eventually found I-5 but it took awhile.  
Getting home was easy from that point on.

And that is the story of my trip to the Lavender Festival in Sequim, Washington.

Sunshine today,


Question About RV Park Memberships

This is not my Part Two of my trip to the Lavender Festival, but a quick question.

Do any of you have a membership in Coast to Coast or KM Resorts or something like that?  It's involves a membership in an organization that has a number of RV parks which only lets members in.  If you belong to one, do you think it's worth the $$$ and what has been your experience with the parks?  Are they nice or tacky?  Would you go there if you weren't a member?  If you think of something I haven't asked, please share.

Thanks for the info.

Still hoping for sun,


Sunday, July 17, 2011

I Found My GPS!!!!!!!!!

Before I tell you where I found my GPS I want to welcome two new followers:  Carolyn from blog amigoingsomewhere and NanaDiana who doesn't appear to have a blog.  Thanks for joining me on my journey.

OK...drumroll...I found my GPS in Olivia in an opening on my dash. When I bought Olivia the hardware needed for Sirius radio was mounted in a location on the dash between the seats.  I took out the radio hardware because I don't want to pay for the service.  I'd been trying to mount my GPS in that location and it's pretty deep and slopes towards the front and the GPS and Bean Bag dashboard mount slid to the front and I couldn't see them...too dark and they blended in.  For some reason, before I took off for my trip to the Lavender Festival in Sequim, WA, I bent over and looked into the space and there they were!!!  I felt so relieved and so silly.

Friday being Friday in the Seattle area, traffic crawled.  We left the storage unit where Olivia lives and got on I-405 and eventually switched to I-5.  We were driving to Edmonds to catch the Edmonds ferry to Kingston.  When we got off the freeway and closer to Edmonds a sign told us we were going to have an hour wait.    Normally I'd freak about the wait, but when you have an RV with a potty, the ability to get up and move around and other places to sit, it doesn't seem so bad. This picture was taken after we'd waited around 45 minutes.  

This is us waiting for the line to start moving...

I've never driven a motorhome onto a ferry so I had no idea what it was going to cost.  Would you believe it was $50 for a one way ticket???  I was horrified.  But I wanted to ride on the ferry so I had no choice.  

We finally got on and this is where we sat for the 30 minute ride...

After we got off the ferry we drove over the Hood Canal bridge and weren't able to take any decent pictures because of the weather...

Unfortunately, it poured all the way to Sequim.  I was not happy.

After buying Olivia I learned pretty quickly that not all gas stations have diesel.  We'd arrived in Kingston and were heading towards Sequim when I saw a gas station with diesel but decided to wait until we got to Sequim because I figured  it would be cheaper there.  I wasn't anticipating that we'd get lost.  So the three lines I had left of gasoline became a bit scary because I wasn't seeing any gas stations, let alone gas stations with diesel.  

I finally decided it was time to put my GPS to work and we got back on track very quickly.  Kathy was playing with it while I was driving and she was able to let me know that the next gas station was 1.5 miles away.  Two wrong turns later we were at a gas station with diesel.  I stood in line to pay for my gas behind a gentleman who spent $400 on scratch lotto tickets.

We finally arrived at Kathy's mom and step-dad's house, a bit late, but at least we didn't run out of gas.  I imagine you might be wondering how we got lost going to Kathy's mom's house.  Kathy doesn't take the ferry, she goes a different way.  Both times we've gone on the ferry we've gotten lost. Now that my GPS is found I'm hoping that's the end of getting lost on the way to Sequim.

Sequim is considered the banana belt of Washington so we were expecting better weather than Seattle and it didn't happen.  It was identical to Seattle...gray, raining and just ugly.  I was so bummed because it was gorgeous when we went last year and I was expecting the same this year.

We weren't going to let the weather stop us and apparently we weren't the only ones...

When we were waiting in line to get lunch, all of a sudden a really fast beat song came on and all of a sudden there were a whole bunch of people that just started dancing...

The music and entertainment were fun for the length of that one song.

We walked and walked and walked for hours.  We ended up going to a Farmer's Market first, without realizing that's what we were doing.  The actual lavender festival was just a couple blocks away so it wasn't a problem.  It started to rain...the first time of many...and we popped into a consignment shop right behind one of the booths at the Farmer's Market.  It turned out to be one of the nicest consignment shops I've been in.  I've been looking for a vest and found this one for $6...

I also bought a denim shirt for half-price.  Then I bought some Rainier cherries and they were fantastic!!

I've just decided that the Lavender Festival is going to take two posts.  I'm exhausted.

Part Two tomorrow.

Wishing for sun,


Tuesday, July 12, 2011

I'm Back from Las Vegas

The following is what I wrote on my return flight to Seattle:

When I left Seattle it was gorgeous and sunny.  When we arrived in Las Vegas it was cloudy.  Can you believe it?   Sunny in Seattle and cloudy in Las Vegas.   That just isn’t fair. 

I’m on the plane now returning to Seattle and apparently it’s 56〫degrees and cloudy.  I’m not looking forward to going back because I’ve enjoyed the sunshine and dry air so much. 

I didn’t use the internet while I was there because I was too cheap to pay for it.  Rather, I preferred to spend my money on other things. I gambled my limit ($5) and I tripled my money so I think I did ok.  At least I didn't lose any money.

We stayed at The Orleans... and it was a pretty nice place.  The room was huge.  All the other times I’ve been to Las Vegas I’ve stayed at Motel 6 across the street from the MGM and they aren’t fancy so this was quite a treat. 

Top of the sign

Bottom of the same sign

I didn’t have much of a view from my room…

What I neglected to show in the picture from my room were all the air conditioning units that were visible to me.  I chose to just look out further so that I'd have a better view.  You can barely see the mountains on the right side of the picture and on the left side a monsoon was going through so the mountains weren't visible.

The view from the bathroom shower stall was pretty good…

The blur in the picture above is because of the window…

The thing I disliked most about this trip was the smoke in the casino where I was staying.  (This was all I wrote on the plane.)

I thought the smoke was terrible and I haven't been around cigarette smoke since 1994 when I quit smoking and it was awful for me.  Most of the time when I'm near a smoker outside I'll just hold my breath until I get past them.  Try doing that in a casino.  If it wasn't the smoke in the casino, it was the cleaning products used in the rooms.  I've become very sensitive to smells since I quit smoking and this trip taxed me to the max.  I still had a good time and I'm glad I went.

That monsoon shown in the picture above?  We were right behind some of the monsoon when we went to Red Rock Canyon.  Unfortunately, we weren't able to go beyond the Interpretive Center because the desert was flooded. What we were able to experience were the wonderful smells in the desert after the monsoon.  While I can't stand the rain in Seattle, give me a monsoon in the desert any day. I think they're a fantastic display of Mother Nature and I love them.  

Believe it or not, I had to point this Bobcat out to my friends because they didn't look up...

It was right over the desk in the Interpretive Center where we were told we couldn't go any further due to flooding and lightning strikes.  So I went into the gift shop and bought a coyote hand puppet...

for my future grandchild (it reaches up to my elbow) and went outside and took a picture of...

the lovely mountains.  I don't know what they're called but they are colorful. I also got my Senior Pass for Federal Parks, etc. while we were there.

After we left Red Rock Canyon and were back in Summerlin, we tried to find the Del Webb community on that side of Las Vegas and weren't able to.  We looked at a number of houses in the Del Webb community in Henderson, which was the reason for going there.  

I'm leaning towards the thinking that if I have to get permission to do something on my own property that I might not like living there too much.  

I think I've mentioned before that I live on a busy street.  I also store Olivia at a Public Storage not too far from my house.  I was at Public Storage at 6 AM last Sunday to get Olivia and take her home so that I could wash her.  I was hoping to miss out on the traffic and I did.  I back her up my driveway and I didn't want to mess with any speeders on my street, which is almost everyone.  I did the best I could washing her since my drive is fairly steep and I wasn't able to use a ladder for the tall parts.  I was pretty soaked by the time I finished so I accomplished something.  Actually, she looks a lot better now and I'm not embarrassed to drive her around, which I did.  I took a friend for a ride.

This Friday my friend/pet/house sitter, my dog and I are going to Sequim, WA (pronounced Squim, like swim) for the Lavender Festival.  Yes, we're going in Olivia (that's why she was washed).  Kathy's (my friend) mom and stepdad live in Sequim so we'll spend Friday night at their house and go to the festival on Saturday.  I'll take pictures and report back.

I've signed up to go to an RV Maintenance Boot Camp in Oregon next month through RVing Women and then a weekend RVing Women gathering on the Washington coast.  I'm looking forward to both.  

I have a call into my friend in Twin Falls, ID to see if she wants to go to Tucson. I think I'm catching the travel bug!!!

Before I close this post...NO, I haven't found my GPS yet.  I think I've looked everywhere, but apparently not, because it's still missing.

Raring to go,


Sunday, July 3, 2011

What If and If Only

I was thinking about “what ifs” today after I realized that next month it will be a year since I lost 80 lbs and kept it off.  I was thinking…what if I hadn’t started on a nutritional cleanse program to lose weight?  Well, then it would be two years later and I’d still be overweight.  Two years because it took me a year to get the weight off.  It would be a year later and instead of hating myself because I was embarrassed by how I looked at 200+ lbs, I feel proud about my weight loss. 

Here’s another what if…what if I hadn’t gone to Weight Watchers meetings weekly specifically for support.  What if I hadn’t heard the Weight Watchers leader when she said at meeting after meeting that the most successful people in maintenance…exercise.  If I hadn’t “heard” what she was saying, I wouldn’t have gone to 24 Hour Fitness and met my personal trainer, the personal trainer I’ve worked with twice a week for 1 year and 4 months.  I don’t even want to think what that’s cost me financially, but it’s been worth it. 

What if I hadn’t gone to Silver Sneakers?  Then I wouldn’t have a wonderful group of people to exercise with twice a week.  I wouldn’t have a group of women to get together with after class on Tuesday. 

Speaking of my personal trainer…my birthday was July 1st and after my workout on my birthday she had me do 63 squats, 63 lunges and then raise a 10 lb ball over my head, slam it down onto the ground, and squat to pick it up, 63 times.  And, yes, 63 = how young I am now. 

Sometimes I wonder where the discipline to accomplish this has come from.  I like to do things the easy way and this hasn’t been easy.  But, I’ve done it and I will continue to maintain my weight loss.  To me, this is the hard part…maintenance.  Losing the weight was easy, now it’s going to take some serious discipline to keep it off. 

I’m glad that I don’t have to look back and think “if only” I’d done something about my weight two years ago.  It feels so much better to love myself than to hate myself. 

I don't know where this post came from and I almost hesitate to post it, but I'm going to.  This is where I'm at right now and  think I want to document it.  On an RV blog, no less.  

I’m heading for Las Vegas tomorrow!!!  My friends who joined me in Palm Springs to check out the Del Webb community I was pet/house sitting at are going to Henderson/Las Vegas to check out the Del Webb community there.  I’m tagging along.

The people I pet/house sat for in Palm Springs have asked me to come back in September and I think I will.  

Next post from Vegas.