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Monday, June 25, 2012

CAMPING- Ottawa Lake in the U.P. of Michigan

We made it the rest of the way to our planned campground destination without any more tire mishaps.  Whew!   (read last blog about our flat tire on the Tracker)

I gave our Hopkins Tire Pressure Monitor a kiss goodnight for doing such a good job.  It hangs over our bed to better reach the signals from the rear of the rig, closer to the Tracker as it's being towed.  Steve had wired in an extra 12 volt DC receptacle for it's operation.  I also use the same receptacle for plugging in the laptop or cell phone when using them in the bedroom area.  I can still hear the warning beeps of the monitor unit from up front in the passenger seat, or with a turn of my head, I can see that reassuring green light, saying all is good to go!

We got up to Ottawa Lake in the Ottawa National Forest about 4pm. My folks were there ahead of us and saved our sites.  They pay for the site, put the money in the post and set a lawnchair up or park a car to hold it till we get there.  Otherwise this park fills up too fast and we can't ever get a site, much less a long enough or level enough site for us to fit on.  There were only 3 other empty sites when we got there.  This is rustic camping without hookups, and the park is usually pretty quiet.  It seems the other types of campgrounds with power attract noisy families, booming music lovers, and lots of partiers.  We enjoy the quieter places, plus the guys like this lake for fishing walleyes. 

We have camped on every one of these sites in this campground many times, 
starting when I was 10 years old.  

My folks were set up on the site next to us since earlier in the day, and were waiting through the morning rain to quit.  By mid-afternoon is was all sunny and bright. Yayyyy camping! 

A very good camping friend (who is just like family) joined us by the nickname of Bob Senior.  Yes, there is a Bob Junior.  We sometimes just call him Senior and we all know who we mean.  LOL 

A long time ago, when Senior got his newest camping trailer, my sister and I bought him some "party lights" or known as "awning lights" and snuck them over and clipped them on his awning as a Trailer Warming Present.  The park we happened to be camping at had electric hookups that time.   He never forgot that we did that for him.

Senior knows we most often camp at places without any electrical hookups, so we never get to put out the "Party Lights" on our own awnings.  One day he was looking at a catalog and found some SOLAR POWERED Party Lights!!! Whee heeeeeeee!!!!!   

He bought a set for both me and my sister as a surprise!   What a neato idea!  They are about 20 feet long, and have 25 LED bulbs in pearlescent glass globes.   They come with a small solar panel that can set right on the edge of the awning to catch the rays, or be staked out on the included stake to reach the rays.   They are not blazing bright or bothersome to others, and emit just enough of a nice glow to see your way around outside, but not attract bugs.

Now, how cute are these?   They can also be used with the regular AC type household current too. 

The lights can be found at http://www.plowhearth.com  and they have other shapes and styles available.

Senior always has along his constant companion, Shadow.  The dog also has a nickname of "Federal Express"  ... due to the zoom zoom zoom frantic running he would do as a puppy when we started camping with them 15 years ago.  We have watched this dog grow up and now he's also in his Senior Years.   We love you, Shadow! 

We relaxed around the campground and enjoyed visiting and telling stories and just plain old being together.  Tossed a few brats and hot dogs on the grill, hauled out a potato salad I had made, and we were comfortable and happy.  The sun was shining, we were in our lawn chairs, what more could we want? 

Friday night my sister and brother-in-law went out in their boat to do some walleye fishing. (best done after dark)   They weren't gone more than half an hour and we saw them coming back up the hill to the campfire again!  ACK!!!!  HE hooked HER!     Turns out that he caught a nice walleye, and while she was helping him get it in the net, she got hooked by a treble hook on the fingers!

I must say, what a brave woman!!! She didn't cry, yelp or swear (much) as Surgeon Steveio went to work with a tin snips to get the ends off the hooks to slide out. There wasn't any room to do the "press down" technique, so they had to cut off the hooks to remove them.  ACK!   I could not watch, so I ran to my camper for antibacterial ointment and medicated bandages to seal it up once they were done preforming surgery.  What a tough gal!  .... and they went right back down to the boat and continued fishing~~~~

On Saturday, we had some rain spurts here and there.  So they put up some tarps over the table and cooking area on my sister's site.  It was just enough to keep the rain off, but still allow us to sit outside for our cooking and meals.  Steve prepared his fishing gear to go out in brother-in-law Fuzz's boat, but the rain kinda kept them back in the campsite instead.  No hooks for him!  LOL

We had met some nearby camping neighbors who had a darling little gal named Jaydon (sp?)   She was a hoot and enjoyed some time by our campfire.  Check out the umbrella hat!  LOL    Later her older brother came back to purchase some of my wool socks for his mother's birthday. Awwww so they came and "shopped" in my stash of finished products, and I made some $$ for the weekend. 

Even with a throbbing hand from fishing hook punctures, my sister was working on weaving lawn chairs for some friends.  You can see from the pics that we all have our woven lawn chairs and cherish each one.  My sister is still able to do them, but they hurt my hands too much anymore.
Here is a previous blog post with more information on how to make these chairs:

The weather was so beautiful on Sunday, we sure didn't want to go home!  Mom and I ran into town and got some country ribs to do up over the campfire.  We first simmer them in onion soup mix in the pressure cooker on the stove, and then later put them on the grill over the campfire to brown them up and put on some Sweet Baby Rays BBQ sauce.  Added some ears of roasted sweet corn.  Yummmmmm!   We always eat good when camping!

We didn't pack up and head home till after 5 pm.  Stopped at the dump station and did a good rinse out of the tanks because there wasn't anyone behind us.  Another good reason to wait till later in the day to leave a campground--- the dump station is less crowded. LOL

I am pleased to say we didn't have any more tire mishaps on the way home.  Whew!

I dread coming home to unload and unpack and start laundry and get things done.  Duke of course, doesn't like it either, and pulls a hissy fit about coming in the house.  So I didn't come in either!  I stayed out in the rig doing a few things till almost 9 p.m. before heading into the house for the evening.

Only 35 more days till I NEVER have to unload the motorhome, because it WILL be our HOME~!



  1. yeahhh what a great weekend..sorry your sis had that mishap but glad it wasn't worse...like your idea on the ribs..I must try that...and I love 'shadow'...I just want to kiss his face off...nice that you had some family time....sure looks like a good time was had by all..

  2. Once again Karen is the gopher, this time for medical supplies. Does Steve realize how valuable you are? Looks like a fun weekend for the family.

  3. Thirty-five days! I'm so excited for you. I hope your sister's hand is ok. My dad once had that happen and it was painful.

  4. That hook incident is just one more reminder why I don't fish.
    AND, she kept on fishing! A breed apart from me that's for sure. Must be some Wisconsin thing.
    Then she went on to weave chairs!

    Awesome weekend. Thanks for sharing.

  5. Did your sis ever catch her fish? Thirty five days will go sooo fast. We are at T minus 6!

  6. Sounds like great fun! It reminds me of the way we camped when the boys were young. Everything was done outside. We have gotten lazy in our old age and I'm afraid we dont "camp" much anymore. I didn't even do well with my one time boon dock I don't think I could spend much time without electricity. I don't like to rough it. LOL Counting the days! It will be here before you know it.

  7. Those 35 days will go so fast your head will spin. And you'll find several dozen more things to do before the final day.

    I bet you can't wait. :c)

  8. I just checked my trip log and I see I stayed in 'your' site when I was there in the fall of '09! Thats a real pretty campground and enjoy walking the loop with Maggie on pooch patrol. You are truly blessed to have family and friends to camp with. Your sister is tough! I think it would have been the end of the trip for alot of people.....oh and cool boondocking patio lights!!

  9. As ever, I loved your blog post... and we are excited for you. I recall what a thrill is was when we finally moved out of our house into our 5th wheel, then 18 months later from the 5th wheel into the Safari. What a gleeful day that was!!! Then, at last we hit the road... a life time dream come true! We aren't as well equipped with experience and gadgets as you folks, but we're learning! The Yahoo groups, blogs and in person encounters with patient and friendly RVers just makes it all the more fun.


  10. Man I don't think you could ask for a better weekend outher than not having to go.looking forward to y'all full timing. Enjoying the post!

  11. Howdy K&S,
    Sorry about the 'hook' incident, but that's fishing; it's fun, but can be dangerous..Good thing 'Dr' Stevio was there, with his 'tool' box. We didn't know about these 'new' strategies, back in the old days and just cut'em out; I've got the scars to prove it!! Too bad Steve didn't get to fish, but won't be long before he can fish any time he wants; while Karen makes sox to buy fuel!!

  12. Howdy Karen & The Greatest,
    Karen, I was on Froggi's site and you were fussing about your beautiful, loving, sweet little 'fur-babies', lying in the NARROW aisle.. Well, let me tell you good-looking(gosh that's a great pic)IF y'all had a NEWER MODEL RV
    you would have SLIDES to make it LARGER!! Yes, I know it's just the way Steveio wants it and IT'S PAID FOR, but it has small, little, narrow aisles,
    where you have to step over 'fur-babies'!!! With 'slides' you would still be stepping over g-kids!! ONLY KIDDING!!! Did you notice Stu got his knees fixt, but lost his head?? Kinda like some of Steveio's pics!!!


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