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Thursday, September 30, 2010

MOTORHOME MODIFICATION- more new little things we did

First, we need best wishes, good thoughts and prayers if offered for my brotherinlaw Fuzz... he has an infection at the surgery site for his bone cancer in the jaw and is on his way back 450 miles to see the surgeon in Ann Arbor, MI.  They are admitting him in to the hospital and will know more as the tests are done and results are gone over by the docs.


Okay.. we are at it again!   Doing some more stuff to our motorhome to make it more livable. We did some new little things to the rig this week.

First item is:  We have a large side by side 2 door Dometic fridge.  We notice after a week or so, we do get frost building up on the inside fins in our fridge. For just weekend camping, this hasn't been a problem, but longer periods like vacation we do notice the frost building up. Not in the freezer, just on the fridge fins.  We do have two of the little FridgeMate fans that run on 2 D cell batteries, but they are not enough to really keep the frost off the fins, they just circulate the cold air for even temps within the box when setting on a shelf.  I suppose we can put these 2 fans now in the back compartment on very hot days to move air over the back coils behind the fridge. This is what we HAD .......

But now, Steve saw this cute little fridge fan on Ebay.   
the link:  fridge fin fan  

ebay number  250677760674   
It was $14.99 plus $2.60 shipping.
Seller is Richard Lockhart
597 Pickens Gap Road
Seymour, TN 37865

It came in the mail, fast shipping, and we installed it last night.  Pretty easy. The hot lead wire attaches to the 12 volt fridge light wiring before the switch, so there is always 12 volt running to the fans.  Then the ground is a clip that does double duty.  It attaches to the fins of the fridge to hold the fan in place but also completes the 12 volt circuit.  It runs all of the time the fridge is on, with very little draw, one tenth of an amp.   When you turn the fridge off after the weekend of camping is over, the fan goes off.  We put it right where our frost builds up and I think it's going to help a lot--  It sure seems to move the air!

From his website:

RV refrigerators are not frost-free. The longer they run, the more frost & ice accumulates on the fins. Frost comes from opening and closing the door, letting in warm air. The warm air has higher moisture content which results in frost & ice buildup on the fins. The buildup causes your refrigerator to think it is colder than it actually is. Frost also prevents the fins from extracting heat from inside the refrigerator box. The purpose of the fins is to EXTRACT HEAT from the refrigerator box as they are cooling down.

Life Expectancy: 30,000 hours; Rated Voltage: 12 VDC; Max Air Flow: 18.86 (CFM) CUBIC FEET per MINUTE; Max Current: 0.10A; Power: 1.20 watt; Fan Speed: 4800 RPM + or – 10%; Bearing type: Sleeve Bearing; Noise Level: 27.7 dBA; Comes with 22” of wire to hook to power supply.


Okay.. on to the next thing...
We had those white vinyl tire covers on our rig for the last 4 years when parked in our yard.  They are on the west side where the sun beats down unmercifully in the afternoons.  The vinyl soft covers have taken a beating, blew away down the road a few times and are pretty expensive to replace.  Steve decided to cut out these nice flat plywood boards!  He had the wood in the garage. I have to paint them yet.
What do you think?:  Silver, White or Blue?     (or big yellow Smiley Faces?)


This next item I made from vinyl and used a snap setting tool to make it secure.  It's a cover for our Blue Ox tow bar!  They wanted upwards of $40 for one from Blue Ox, so I made my own.  I used leftover grey vinyl from when I made the front spare tire cover.  It keeps the grime and rain off the expensive towbar when setting in the campground after unhooking. Or if we are in the yard and taking off again in a few days and don't want to remove the whole towbar and stow it away. It doesn't look like much, but it sure helps.


Now, the last thing really isn't a modification TO the rig, but rather an item to use IN the rig that I found out works great for us.   About a month or so ago, I was rummage sale-ing with my sister, and saw two of these Swiffer Carpet Flicks brand new in the boxes for $4 each.   

They operate similar to the old fashioned carpet sweeper that Grandma used to have.  But the improvement is the stuff *sticks* to a double sided sticky pad. When the pad is full, you pull it out and toss it in the trash.  I remember on Grandma's sweeper we had to lift it and tilt it and knock on it a few times to get the dirt out, while holding it sideways over the garbage can with the handle flopping around behind you.  Sometimes you made more mess emptying it than when you started out. 

What is sooo nice about this new type----  NO electric is needed, which is great for us boodockers who camp without hookups and have to conserve our power.  Running our Dirt Devil vacuum cleaner would take a lot of solar power or need to start up the generator just to vacuum.  The Dirt Devil uses a 12amp motor that is going to draw power down fast.   

We get a lot of *Leaf Butt* from the dogs and their long hair, with dried crinkled up brown leaves being dragged into the rig. The crushed leaves cling to their belly and skirt hairs behind their back legs. We try to brush them off before getting in, but you can't get them all.   This sweeper unit picks em up toot sweet! The top of the pad collects the dirt as it flicks up inside the unit, and the bottom sticky surface of the pad catches the dog hairs! 

Sometimes right before bed we want to clean up the carpeting quick so we can walk around in stockings or first thing in the morning when we want to walk around bare feet.  Those are not good times to run the generator just to vacuum.  Our carpeting is this low loop Berber in the background on this photo, and it works very well on that.  Not sure about how well it would work on higher pile rugs.

(see all the little flecks of dirt and leaves on the pad in the see-through window?)

One glitch---  when I was at the rummage sale, remember I said they had TWO new boxes for sale?   I looked in one box and saw it was all there, brand new, unused.  But then I grabbed the other box instead without really looking inside.  Oh well, it turns out the second box was missing the pack of 24 adhesive strips that go inside the Carpet Flick for the dirt to stick to.   Dang!   The base unit and handles were all brand new still sealed in the packaging and not used.  Maybe the refills were never in there to begin with? The box said it had 24 refills included.  What the seller did with the refills, I do not know.  Nor why they had two brand new ones for sale at their rummage without even using them.   

I looked at a few stores and finally found the refills at our local True Value hardware store.  The Carpet Flick is $18.99 there! But I bought mine for $4.  Tee hee!    Refills were on sale for $3.99 a box of 12.  So I grabbed 8 boxes of refills because I had read online that they were being discontinued!   

Why is it when you find something that works so great, they discontinue it?   

So if you want one for your camper, buy it now and get lots of refills.  I did read on a Yahoo Answers list that you can make your own refills with thin cardboard like from gift boxes and some double sided carpet tape too.  Good to know.  I could do that too.   Of course I will use the big vac for all the sand and dirt and deeper cleaning, but this is great for the quick little pickups of the surface stuff. 


Well, it's countdown here ... just 8 days till our daughter Heather's wedding.  We are in a flurry of last minute plans and coordinating dog sitting, baby transport who and when and what time to and from so Erin can be Matron of Honor and who will take the baby when.  Then of course the rehersal, decorating, last minute stuff... plus we are videotaping with 2 cameras and taking still photos too, so being sure we have everything charged and set up and ready.

But this weekend, we are going camping!
Fall is here, it's my favorite time of the year and we are going to the woods, no matter what!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Scooter for Sale and a Weekend of Grandparent-itis!

First, I would like to mention that since we have our little Tracker to tow behind the motorhome, we have decided to sell our Scooter and carrying hitch rack for our motorhome as a package deal for $1,500.  If any of you kind readers know of someone who might want to buy it, let them know and there is a nice pair of handmade socks in it for ya! Located in NE Wisconsin.

1986 Honda Helix, 250cc, only 12,600 miles 

This great scooter rides 2 people comfortably, travels at highway speeds (or higher) and gets 60+mpg.
This is not a little toy miniscooter, but a large 2 person road licensed vehicle. The wheelbase is 65" long.
Liquid cooled engine. Twist N Go type throttle, no manual shifting required. Synthetic oil in engine.  Weighs 350 pounds.

Recently new tires, new battery, a new higher windshield than original, passenger back rest with storage pouch. Rear luggage rack, and enclosed rear trunk area that holds an amazing amount of cargo. Special locking feature of turning front wheel to one side and locking into place, aids in theft-prevention. Digital dash readout includes speed, fuel level,  and a clock.

Runs great and is easy and comfortable to ride and drive.  It is called a "Barcalounger Ride".  Easy to mount and dismount with comfortable seating and leg room.  Very quiet and dependable. Garage kept, and has some small scrapes from the rack, and cracked front grill that has been glued.

Included is a sturdy custom fitted rack that carries the scooter with two padlocked hasps for security. One hasp is at the handlebars and one hasp is at the side of seat to lock into place on the rack. Ramp attaches on end of rack to enable you to throttle the scooter up as you walk alongside,  and to remove scooter, you can roll it backwards easily down the ramp.  The ramp stows on two pegs and clips onto the rack when in transit.

The rack inserts into a 2" reciever hitch, and you can also add another 1" reciever to your vehicle for added stability. The ramp and track will accomodate 4 1/2" inch width tires. There is another ball hitch on rack so you can tow another hitch item at the same time.

The scooter has a clear title, cash only accepted.  No checks, no payment plans.   We are willing to include two white half shell helmets, one M and one L, and 2 large rain coats with full price offer

We are willing to sell the rack and scooter separately
Helix scooter $1,300
Hitch mount rack $200



After spending 2+ weeks on the road for vacation, we sure made up for the lack of seeing the grandkids this weekend!   First we took Jameson on Friday, where Steve took him at work right from Heather as she came into work. (they both work at the University of Wisconsin, Green Bay)   Jameson had a blast with us, and we found lots of fun stuff to do.  Here is checking out my birch trees in the front yard.

Then on Saturday, we added Chelsea to the nest, and had her overnight so her mommy could preform the Matron of  Honor duties at Heather's bachlorette party and Mark could go hunting early in the morning (bow season)    Friday, Oct 8 is their wedding day!   Chelsea got to post by the birch trees too! 

Then on Sunday we joined up with little Allegra at cousin Jen's baby shower!   (we have to get a shot of her by the birch trees yet)

Steve's mom was feeling good enough to attend the shower too, so she got to see all three of the little great grandchildren, plus the new baby on the way in Jen's belly!  It was so nice to see her out and about a bit and with family.

Ohhhhh being a Granmuddah is quite a lot of fun, dontcha think?

Friday, September 24, 2010

Update..... the waters are down

As of 7pm tonight, the waters have gone down almost a foot... whew!

We have our grandson Jameson here tonight, so we took him up to Marinette for a treat, out to supper, and we did a little shopping.  Took him to Micky Lu's BBQ --- check this place out, it's FAMOUS!

Jameson had his very first milkshake!   He was amazed to find out ice cream could come out of a straw!  

For two years old, that is a pretty big exciting event in a little guy's supper----  he also had a grilled hot dog, cut up into strips, dipped into ketchup and nibbled on a few chips too.   

and danged if I DIDN'T bring the camera.... drats! 

so hoping the slight drizzle we came home to is going to lighten up and stop overnight, and let the waters on the river go back down to normal range, of 4-5 feet.  Right now it's at 7.75 feet... lot better than almost 9! 

Thanks for all your concern and prayers and well wishes! 


Flooding---- How High's The Water, Mama? NINE feet high and risin

I recall a Johnny Cash song from my childhood....
How high's the water, mama?  
Five feet high and risin

Yes, after many inches of rain in our state of Wisconsin, much of the water from north and west of us flow on by our house... on their way into the Green Bay and Lake Michigan.   Our rive is now almost at flood stage at 8.78,

The web site also states:
At flood stage...widespread flooding occurs in a public campground in the city of Oconto. Water approaches the back yards of several homes along the river in Oconto...and there is widespread lowland flooding

It has gone as high at 14+feet in the past and we have been fine and high and dry, so not really worried.  Our house is build up on high ground, and we are not even located in the 100 year flood plain.

But IF ... and that is a huge IF the dam upriver were to fail, then we would have to get outta here.

Our plan is that if it gets halfway to the house, which is built up very high away from the river, that I pop the grandkid and dogs in the motorhome and take off to higher ground...  who cares about the house.  That is replaceable, we are not.    We have a friend up on higher ground with a large parking lot by his rental storage units to hole up at if we need to. 

The winds are really whipping up now, and the television reports are that because of the over saturated ground, the trees are easily blown over.  A few are down already on our road as Erin came out this morning.  At least the rains stopped, though the river is still flowing from the runoff up in the NW areas of us upriver.

Chelsea and I are singing:

How High's the Water Gramma?   Nine Feet High and Risin.....

Thursday, September 23, 2010

ooops ---- accidently posted three blogs about Florida

NO, you were not seeing things... this morning three posts full of Florida pictures and a short story were accidentally posted on my blog.

What happened was:  A while back, when sitting at my daughter's house, with her very fast DSL, I put together three blogs full of photos using Blogger where the pics are saved at Blogger.  I find it is faster to upload my pics when at her hours, and just add the words later and hit *post* .   This uses less of my bandwidth on my aircard than if I were to do them at home on LiveWriter.

They can be dated in advance, which I had planned to add words and use them on days when I didn't have much else to say... posting about past long trips to Florida and when we were out in Rushmore and Badlands.

Needless to say, I never got around to adding the words to go with the pics... ack!  and suddenly my time ran out from my selected date and they got posted before I knew it!

So thanks for the comments from the folks who saw them... but I pulled the three posts and will use them in the future.  On some snowy icky icy sleeting day when I am trapped at home this winter... and will be dreaming of camping trips!

Then we both relive them together?

PS... had a great day together with my daughter and two of  the grandkids

Jameson and Chelsea had a blast... and Jameson was learning how to share toys... and pine cones!  I have a little wooden cart of pine cones that set on the handrail, and he loves to play with them and count them, etc.  Today he learned to share them with little Chelsea too.

(see? eventually he DID share them with her-- we had to make sure she didn't eat them) 

(dontcha love how she has one sock off and one sock on?)

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

MOTORHOME MODIFICATION- Three little things to make life easier

Before I get into the new things we have done to the rig... I wanted to just say I had the most DELIGHTFUL phone call today!  My grandson, Jameson, told me for the first time, in his own words:

 "I WUV OOO, GRAMMA" !!!   

Made my heart melt! 

Now, on to the modifications---

This first one is kinda a "two parter"  ....  first off, let me explain that we use a tire pressure monitoring system for all 6 tires on the motorhome.  Recently, by adding the Tracker being towed behind, we put four more sensors on those tires too.  BUT--- the base unit for the monitoring system could not pick up the signals of the four Tracker tires when the base is setting up on the dash.  

We could invest another $100 into a signal repeater for this specific brand of tire monitoring system... but we are thinking there is another way to work around this. Plus, we are *cheap*! 

We first tried moving the base unit to the dining table that is in the middle of our coach,  after Steve installed a 12 volt cigarette lighter type outlet there... but..  now it could *see* the two back tires on the Tracker, but not the two front ones!   I figured the heavy lined metal box around the rear engine compartment under our bed was blocking the signal between the table and the front tires of the Tracker. 

So Steveio decided to install another 12 volt outlet in the bedroom closer to the back of the rig to see if we can pick up the signal from back there, above the engine box, making a clearer path to the Tracker.  Plus, the outlet can be used once we are parked in place for either charging up a cell phone or even plugging in my laptop (I have both AC and DC cords for my laptop)  

The valances in our bedroom, we have 12 volt fluorescent lights running the length of them, hidden inside, that are original to the rig.  So the wiring is already there to tap into, and no holes needed to be drilled after Steveio located the best spot for the outlet.

He snugged an outlet up in the corner of the valance, hidden out of sight, and ran the wires along the inside over to the wiring for the light. A few wire clips and wire nuts, it was Easy Peasy and no holes drilled!~  

Next was *where* to locate the base unit for the monitor?  Well, the entire back of our motorhome above the headboard is one huge mirror.  Ain't gonna be drilling any holes in that!   Sooooo  my idea... a suction cup and an eyeglass cord!   

By locating it up and center over the bed, the cord can reach the outlet, and from my passenger seat up front, I can glance back and see the green light to the left, meaning all is fine.   If we have low pressure, the red lights goes on and a very loud beeping ensues.  Easily heard from up front. 

And yes, it now monitors all 4 tires on the Tracker and all 6 on the motorhome.  Mission Accomplished!

Next up on the list...  
This is something we saw in a rig owned by our Safari Friends:  Mel and Snap Snap Snap Paula    (that snapping is Steveio trying to remember her name)   LOL   They had mounted a nice towel bar on the side of the kitchen cabinet, next to the stove.  Previously, we had been hanging towels through the handles of the drawers, which just seem to get in the way of the cabinets below. 

Now, of course, we could just go BUY a towel bar, right?   But we are *Cheap* and like to reuse, recycle or make something work.  Last year we had removed the stair cover (in the photo below) because it gets in the way of our heater.  We never used it anyway. It's made to flap down over the stair well, and the handle is a grab bar for entering and leaving the rig.  It really was just in the way, so we took it out.  We still had it laying in the garage.  Are you thinking what we were thinking?  See that nice grab bar on the side of the stair cover? 

Yup.  We pulled it off and attached it to the side of the kitchen cabinet... nice low profile, doesn't stick out too far, and the wood matches our cabinetry PERFECTLY!   LOL 

Okay, now the last one is pretty minor... but still I thought it was worth a mention.   A long time ago, I bought this little cord to be able to plug in a portable Walkman CD player to my home stereo to play through it's speakers.  It has a plug for headphone jack on one end and two RCA stereo plugs on the other side.  We have had the cord laying in a drawer now for years....    And I got to thinking.....

In our motorhome, we have a huge stereo home theater system that we never use.  It's hooked up to the TV with the DVD player.. and also the dash stereo with a 10 disc CD player.  We never use those speakers.  There are FOURTEEN of them, I am not kidding!  They are mounted on the ceiling, in the cabinets, down on the floor in front (sub woofer stuff)  and we have not really ever used them at all.  If we do have the tv on, it plays through it's own speakers, and it's just for news in the background.  Not to listen to some heart-stopping thriller movie with great sound effects!  Not our style.   We had contemplated in the past to take the speakers down, but they would leave marks and holes and wires all over the ceilings.  So they just sit there, looking impressive.

But we do like this little tiny MP3 player I have.  It's a mere $20 gadget that plugs right into the USB port on my computer to load it up.  Often I plug it into some tiny speakers  that are powered right from MP3 player and take it outside to set by my lawnchair.  Or if we do use them inside, we let them set by the table in the photo below.  I like to set it on Random and let it play whatever it wants.  It's all good to me. 

Soooo back to that little cord.  If it could be hooked up between that little MP3 player and our speakers, it could use them for music playing in the rig!   Sure 'nuff!!!!   Looking up in our front cabinet, on the big Hot Shotz amp unit, there is a pair of left and right RCA jacks!   Hook it up, flick the switch and it works~!

I know it will use some battery power to run, but we checked it out on the Trimetric gauge and it is very little.  The MP3 unit runs off one AAA battery, so no recharging is needed for that to run. 

So that is it for our three little modifications.  
Nothing earth shaking.  
But just enough to make things even more comfortable in our 
Home Away From Home! 

Sunday, September 19, 2010

CAMPING - Richardson Lake in the Nicolet National Forest

After our stop at the cheese store on Friday evening, we made our way up to Richardson Lake.

Here is a link to the website:

There are 26 sites here in this rustic campground, and the rate is $12 a night.  We had driven through here before, but never camped here yet.  So we marked all of the sites we can fit on in our handy dandy Nicolet - Chequamegon National Forest campground book, they don't have campground maps on their website.

We chose site number 8... but had a little bit of a tough time making the corner into the campsite ---(remember these campgrounds were made in the 50's and 60's when you only had a tent or a small popup)
So we had to gently remove the wooden sign post to make the curve, and then replace it once we got in!

But the campsite is a *winner* once we got in and settled! 

I love being surrounded by the big trees and seeing the sun dappled patterns on the ground when the breezes blow through the trees.  Our solar panels still charge up, seeing as we have four panels up there, each one catches some sunlight at any given time.  Each day we are fully charged back up again anyhow.

There are three other campers here, and we are located away from any of them so we can't even see them through the trees.  We set up and got comfy in our weekend site.  It's so great to change our view each weekend.  Folks with a cottage got the same view time after time, and have all that upkeep to take care of on the weekends.  I sure like having a *moving cottage* for our weekend getaways!

We decided to cook up a few of Steveio's natural casing wieners for a treat for supper, and I had made some tuna noodle salad earlier in the day to take along.  Quick easy meal and I didn't even take pics----

We had time for one good long walk around the park before darkness fell.  In September, before Daylight's Saving Time change,  it's already dark by 7pm.  We had both been up since 4:30, so it was time to head into bed and make it an early night.  I think we were bed by 8 and I was asleep shortly after 9 and don't remember a thing about the nightly news on the tv.    Steve has our inverter wired into a big timer so we can crank it it to a couple of hours on the timer and it will shut off itself.

Conserving battery power by not leaving the inverter on all night is a handy thing when boondocking.   At this location, we have 8 stations coming in here on the digital airwaves, but none are CBS where the Packer game will be broadcast at noon on Sunday.  So we either have to leave here early to get home to watch it, or Steve will have to be satisfied listening to it on the radio.

As we went to bed, the rain started falling gently on the roof.  It was such a pleasant way to go to sleep...


We were lucky to wake up on Saturday to blue sky and sunshine!  The rain had passed and the clouds broke way to a lovely day!  The temps were only to get up in the low 60's,  but with a heavy sweatshirt or light jacket, we were comfortable outside.

Fall is definitely coming to the northwoods... the colors are changing, not quite full foliage change yet, but enough to feel the crispness in the air and smell the drying grasses and leaves in the glints of sunshine.

The tops of some of the trees are starting to turn red and yellow.... 

We wandered around the woods on the roads and down to the lake

It was very quiet and we hiked along in the woods by the shore, stopping at the small beach area 
where the dogs checked out some big boulders at the edge of the lake.  
Duchess always has to do her "Lassie Impression" and jump up on the big rocks! 

It is so nice to sit along a lakeshore,  no boats, no motors, no cottages, no people.  Just US! 

We have had a lot of rain lately up in this area of the state, so the mushrooms were out in full force.  
The one on the left was HUGE, almost a food across.... the ones on the right looked like a crowd of people all climbing up to a plateau, with a few falling over the edge???  Some imagination, huh?

We met some fellow campers from another site... they were walking their two big standard poodles, each a lovely soft caramel color.  Goofy Ducky, at 10 years old, romps like a puppy when she sees other dogs her own size.  If they had all been off leash, they would have had a rip-roaring good time! 

We came back to our campsite and I got some knitting ... these are some warm woodsey wool socks I am needle knitting (2 at a time on a long circular needle for those who are knitters reading this) 

The socks don't look like much yet, but once they are finished, blocked and steamed, they will be fantastic!  Thick and lush and warm for the upcoming fall days and nights. 

The yarn is from some that I bought quite a while back and I am finally getting around to knitting it up. It is a project yarn from a group of women in Uruguay, where they are learning to market their handspun yarns and it is sold in other countries to help them learn commerce, a skill, and how to become financially independent.  

Here is what it says on a website:

Manos del Uruguay Yarn

The Manos del Uruguay brand was born in 1968 when a group of women developed an idea to promote economic & social development of women in rural areas of the country. These craftswomen are the owners of Manos & are able to stay in their home towns yet still make a decent living by handspinning & dyeing the wonderful Manos wool & wool blend handknitting yarns. 

So I bought three skeins of it, because the colors really spoke to me.  I wonder what the woman was thinking as she spun this? It was very expensive, probably the most expensive yarn I have ever  bought at $16 a skein. I bet that money means a lot to her, probably helping to feed and clothe her family with her artistic skills. The tags on the yarn say the full profit goes to the women in that group.

For lunch, we hauled out the Easy Bake Oven (my Coleman Instastart Oven) and made up my favorite meal.  It's the big pot pies from Aldis store.  The brand is Bremer and they are large potpies in the box of 4 in the freezer section for $5.99.   We have tried the smaller Bremer ones (like the Banquet size) but they are not the same and not nearly as good.  These are big, and have big chunks of real white meat chicken, crunchy veggies and a great crust.   

We like to put them in our Corningware Grab It soup tureens.  Hey, I am missing a lid to one of those tureens, if anyone has one laying around after they broke their dish, I would LOVE IT!  Its a rubbery lid with the shape of the handle too and snaps over entire dish!  I always look at rummage sales for another lid, but never find one.  The whole dish and lid are still available in stores for $10, but all I need is another lid.  I have even checked on Ebay from time to time.   No luck. 

Here is a photo I robbed off Ebay if you want to see what I mean. 

When we are done with our pot pies, our doggie woggies wait for the cardboard bowls they were baked in
WOW--- look at how fast they move when I say "Okay" !!!

After lunch, I hauled out my spinning wheel for some quality time in the sun.... 

the color of this merino wool I dyed myself is really more golden, olive and rusty like fall leaves, but the photo makes it look very greenish...   I have enough to spin up sock yarn for about three pairs of socks. 

It was a great afternoon in the sunshine.. I had soft music going on the MP3 player and tiny speakers on my side table, a cup of coffee in my Grandchildren Mug, and my spinning wheel and fibers.  What more does a Fiberholic gal need?

Since the Easy Bake oven was out, I decided to try a new recipe.  I found this in the last issue of the FMCA magazine (Family Motor Coach Asso.)  and it is by Janet Groene

North Carolina Apple Cake

North Carolina’s apple orchards are a vision in springtime when they are in bloom. In the fall, apple-laden trees are ripe for the picking, often at you-pick orchards. This interesting cake relies on apples and pecans for its flavor, unlike most apple desserts that call for cinnamon. It’s a boon for motor coach cooks, because it whisks together in one bowl without an electric mixer.

1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
4 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 to 2 cups sugar (more for tart apples, almost none for Golden Delicious) 
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt 
1 teaspoon baking soda
3 cups peeled North Carolina apples cut in small dice
1 cup chopped North Carolina pecans

Optional Glaze:
1 tablespoon butter
1 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup milk
1 teaspoon rum or butter-rum flavoring

In a large bowl, whisk together the vegetable oil, eggs, vanilla, and sugar until light. Add the flour, salt, and baking soda. Fold in the apples and pecans. Pour the batter into a greased 9-inch-by-13-inch pan and bake for approximately one hour or until the cake is firm and springy to the touch. Mix the glaze ingredients (except the rum flavoring) in a small pan and bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Turn off the heat; add the rum flavoring; and pour slowly over the warm cake.

Here it is baked,                                and here it is glazed 

Trust me, it's delicious!    Steve was my guinea pig to test it out on.
Now I can bake it for my HCE meeting on Tuesday night as we need a dish to pass....

We took another nice walk around the park and snapped a few more pics, but nothing much different from what I snapped in the morning.  It was so nice here that we didn't want to go anywhere in the Tracker, just stay put here in the nice quiet sunshiney woods.  One of the other campers had already left, so now the park was down to 2 other campers plus us.  And they were all gone away from their campsites, so we had the whole place to ourselves. 

Steve hauled out the grill for supper, we did up a filet of salmon on the grill, a pan of rice and some salads with our own garden tomatoes.. yummmmmm Add a bottle of wine, a candle, and we are dining in the finest restaurant we would ever want to be in!  

Sounds like all we do is eat, huh?

We built a nice campfire and sat out till the last log was burned down, the moon was almost full, the sky was clear and stars were everywhere.  What a great evening! 

We toddled off to bed, after brushing the leaf-butt doggies where they were laying on the ground.  
All the dried leaves stick to their fur and we have to catch them at the door 
and brush them off as best we can before going it.  
Sometimes I swear we have more leaves INSIDE than outside from these dogs! 


Ahhh, now it's Sunday morning.  The dogs let us sleep in till almost 8 am before wanting to go outside.  It felt soooo good to get out and stretch and reach to the sky, in the middle of this glorious woodsy setting and give Thanks to our God for making such a great world.  I feel closer here than I do in any church.

Chatted with my sister a little on the MSN messenger, and they were headed out to watch the Packer Game at Flatlanders.  We have to satisfy ourselves with listening to it on the radio today, as the nearest CBS station is still 80 some miles away and not pulling in on our digital tv's during the day.  We could get it at night flickering in and out, but during the day the signals fade when so far out.    

Steve made a nice breakfast and we also had another piece of our apple cake with coffee... yummmmmm

The dogs need a lap or two around the campground, so Steve took care of them while I took a nice hot long shower.  Knowing we are going home today, we can *waste* the water and not have to conserve.  So that means letting the water run between shampoo, scrub up, conditioner and rinsing.  Usually we shut it off between each step to save as much water as possible.  Today was *luxurious* to enjoy the shower.  We have a 10 gallon hot water tank and don't run out of hot water even with a longer shower. 

I will post this now, as the Packer game is starting and Steve is tuning in the radio.  I have my spinning to keep the fingers busy while we listen to the Packers (hopefully) beat Buffalo.