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Saturday, May 23, 2015

A Great Bathroom Mod!

Location: Catskill, NY (High 67, Low 37)


Of all the mods that Harry has done to make this fiver our home, I think this one may be the best so far. It was almost two years ago that Harry put a backsplash up in our kitchen area and since then it’s been on his list to do the same in our bathroom. And yesterday was finally the day!



First Harry cleaned the wall really well, and gathered his supplies.




The only really challenging area was the spot where the plug was, so Harry measured to figure out where to put the hole in the simplemat sheet.




As he applied each sheet, he used a roller to make sure that it was making good contact with the wall.




Then it was time to start putting up the tile sheets.


The tile went up pretty easily. The only part that was a bit tricky was the portion behind the faucet. Between the two of us, we managed to get it back there evenly.



Harry then mixed up the grout according to the instructions and smoothed it in between the tiles.




It had to sit for 15 to 20 minutes before sponging off the excess grout.




The finished product!






My favorite mod so far!

Friday, May 22, 2015

Busy Days Make For a Fast Week

Location: Catskill, NY (High 67, Low 46)

This has been a productive week for appointments. Since all of our doctors are in the Albany area, each time we go entails an hour long trip each way. So we try to cluster appointments on the same day so we get more bang for our travel buck. This week we had four, two on Monday and both of our physicals on Wednesday. That’s it for the month of May. We have a couple more to go, but we will do those when we are back here in July.

Since we had to have blood drawn on Wed, we couldn’t have breakfast or coffee beforehand. So we stopped at IHOP for breakfast. 11282521_10207205013910439_422099624_oI had chocolate chocolate chip pancakes for the first time, and they were SO good. Like eating a warm chocolate cake. Oh my, YUM. I will definitely have the same if/when we stop there again.


11347521_10207215460291592_1136225295_oI’ve mentioned a couple times that one of the main things I’ve been doing is helping out at my sister’s office. Denise and my brother-in-law have had a law office for over ten years and had an overflowing file room to prove it.11303643_10207215460731603_1223779476_o I’ve been working on scanning all of their records so they can go paperless. Last week, she called and scheduled a date with the shredding company for next week, so I spent a couple days this week getting the paper ready for shredding. 11293299_10207217454221439_1740706328_oThese are all the files which we’ve been throwing in this spare room for the past month and a half.


And here they are out in the hall all ready to be picked up by the shredding company next Wednesday!! That’s a good month and a half’s work.




We also enjoyed an outing yesterday with my nephew’s second grade class to a local rock climbing gym.

Here is Harry cinching him into his safety harness.



Way up high!

We had a good time driving for the second grade class trip.

This has also been the summer for mods! Harry is working on another one today, but you’ll have to stop by tomorrow to see what it was. Winking smile

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Scouting Out a New Spot

Location: Catskill, NY (High 77, Low 54)


This week we started in with our first appointments of the summer, dental appointments for both of us. While mine wasn’t quite as good as it was last year, I am happy that at least I don’t have to have any major work done, just a couple filling repairs.


This week Harry has an eye appointment, and we both have our yearly physical appointments on Wednesday. Three more to be checked off our list!


11245224_10207163076502030_2081944726_oThe other big event for this week was finding a new campground in the area. It was a pretty random occurrence, as we just happened to be driving along a country road and saw a small campground turn sign. On a whim, we decided to go check it out and found what looks to be a hidden gem.


We stopped at the office and asked if we could drive around. The people in the office were very friendly and welcoming. They told us that much of the campground was wooded and filled with seasonal campers, however they did have some open sites in a field which would fit a rig our size.


11229533_10207112312712967_1556299281_oOn top of the beautiful site, there is a big plus to this campground… which is that it is closer to Albany and to my sister’s house. So we have decided to give it a try and will stay here later this summer.

The only real disadvantage to this campground is that it doesn’t have a sewer hookup. We have always stayed in full hookup campgrounds, so this is going to be a new experience for us. They do offer a pump-out service on a weekly basis, so we will have a new learning curve for the first couple weeks.

Given that view, we are willing to work with it.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Slide Floor Repair

Location: Catskill, NY (High 92, Low 60)

We have three slides on our rig and after four years of use, for the most part, we have not noticed any damage inside on our floor from the rollers. IMAG0195However, about a year ago, we started finding black flecks, kind of like paint, inside on the floor after we had traveled and put the kitchen slide out. When Harry looked at the underside of the slide, he found that the material coating the floor was flaking off. Last summer, he tried painting the underside with Rustoleum spray paint to protect it from the weather. However the paint was no match for the slide rollers which continued to do damage and eventually started to dig right into the wood itself.

While doing research about the problem, Harry discovered that this is not an isolated issue. There are IMAG0194multiple threads on the Heartland forum about this situation, and almost as many kinds of solutions that people have used to try to repair it. It was clear though, that doing nothing was not an option. After the outer coat flakes off, the rollers continue to dig at the wood and there have been cases of the wood rotting and people having to have the whole slide floor replaced. Luckily, our floor is not at this point, as there is no rot. The worse we have is a section where small bits of wood have started to be chipped away by the rollers.

After Harry read about some of the options, he decided to go the “official” route by using a so-called “Parkland Kit”, which is a repair kit available from Heartland and made by the Parkland Company to repair the plastic coating that is chipping away. Harry called Heartland several weeks ago to order the kit. He waited until today to work on it as we have a period of time when we will not be bringing the slide in so it will have plenty of time to set.




First step was to sand the spots down.



The kit comes with an adhesive material to fill in any gouges. The repaired areas have to set for at least 24 hours before the strip can be added.IMAG0200


Some of the areas didn’t need any of the adhesive patching and Harry just placed the strips over the spots where the rollers have been attacking the wood. These strips are much more substantial than the original thin coating that was over this area.








After attaching the strip, Harry rolled it with a roller to make sure all areas made good contact with the floor.


We will give it several days to set and harden well before we try bringing in the slide to see how it works.

Another item checked off Harry’s list. Smile

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Maintenance Day

Location: Catskill, NY (High 77, Low 47)


There aren’t many things that I don’t love about living in an rv. But there are a few, and today was one of them – the day when we get our yearly maintenance work done. It’s just a bit of a pain to have to pack up the “house” and travel somewhere to get the work done.

11235100_10207110530108403_281716260_oWe always plan annual maintenance work for our time in Catskill because there is a small local dealership (Diederich’s RV Mart in Coxsackie, NY) that we absolutely love dealing with. They are wonderful. We started out with them about six months after we bought our fiver when a freak snowstorm in October brought a tree branch down on our roof, and they were so great that we have gone back to them for everything ever since. 11215429_10207110657351584_1623650434_oThey have done our yearly maintenance work, installed our washer/dryer and our Mor Ryde pin box, and made several repairs, including the roof repair from the tree branch, replacing our water pump, fixing a faulty black tank connection and a leaking propane regulator. They are the best; I just can’t say enough good things about them.

So anyway today was “travel to Coxsackie for our annual service” day. We dropped the rig off a little before nine and before we pulled out of the driveway, one of the service guys was already at work.

We actually had a pretty small list today…having the wheel bearings repacked (which we have done yearly), fixing a broken flange on our toilet (which we have been nursing along since last fall), and checking out a window gasket which has been leaking for quite a while. Harry has tried to fix it by caulking the seals and reattaching the gasket to the frame, among other things, but to no avail. So we finally added it to our annual list.

After we dropped off the rig, we headed to my sister’s house to hang out for a while. I discovered a new panorama function on my phone and played around with it for a while.



This is the view from my sister’s living room.

We had the cats in their carriers and brought our outside thermometer sensor so we could monitor the temperature in the truck while we were waiting. They were really good and slept most of the day, with Harry and I taking turns going out and checking on them.

By early afternoon, we decided to head back and check on the progress, which turned out to be excellent timing as they had just finished up. Everything is done except the window gasket which has to be replaced and will be ordered. We are hoping to coordinate the replacement with one of our trips so we don’t have to make a special trip there on another day.



Happy to be settled back in our spot!

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Visiting, Spring is Sprung, and More Mods

Location: Catskill, NY (High 77, Low 41)

It’s been a busy week! It started out with a trip to see Harry’s daughter and her family. We had a fun time on Sunday but it was too short 11187994_10207040369354428_186874438_owith more time in the truck than we spent actually there. I did get this great selfie of me with our younger little guy. We are looking forward to August when we will be spending several weeks nearby when we will get a lot of time to spend with the kids.


It seems like we have finally turned a corner and the weather has turned for the better. The leaves are finally starting to come out. This is one of my favorite times of year.


My week has been quiet but good. I’ve gotten back to my running after several weeks of relative inactivity. It sure doesn’t take long to start losing the progress. It feels good to be back in business. Other than that, I’ve been spending several hours most weekdays at my sister’s office working to tame their records room.

ATT_1430240986144_imageHarry’s been busy around here ticking things off his list. One of the biggies on his list was completed this week when he relocated the water pump in the basement. He’s never been happy with its location as it was right in the way anytime that any work was needed in the underbody. Harry really noticed it last fall when he had to crawl in there to replace the water heater and accidentally kneeled on the water pump trying to work his way back out. Since then it’s been one of the projects that he really wanted to get accomplished and yesterday was the day.


In order to move the pump, Harry had to reorient the line from the fresh water tank and the line going to the trailer water supply. He also  had to keep them all smooth without kinks so the water would continue to flow easily. There is now a relatively clear path through the center back to the other underbody areas of the rig.ATT_1430241125243_image


The water pump is now out of the way.


Harry’s other project this week wasn’t a mod, but definitely needed. IMAG0179Our pin box has been getting some rust spots on it, so Harry gave a bit of a refresher. This is a before shot, although Harry had already sanded down the rust spot before he took this picture.



All spiffed up!






Looks good as new!

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Another Race, Cool Week

Location: Catskill, NY (High 45, Low 30)

Our first full week back here in upstate NY has been a cool one. The temps over the 11187498_10207025352379013_784669704_opast few days have been in line with usual average temperatures in March instead of April. The cooler weather didn’t keep us from sampling our first soft ice cream of the season – with snow flurries coming down! And it was funny to see the number of people that had the same idea – we counted five other cars stopping for ice cream while we were there eating our cones. Many people were wearing their winter coats as they stood in line for a frozen treat.

11159381_10206985518983203_1020764794_o (1)

We were very lucky last Sunday to have one more gasp of warm weather for the day of the Kingston Classic race. It also helped that the race was at 1 pm in the afternoon. Harry and I were signed up for the 10k and my mother did her first 5k.



We started out more bundled up but were able to take off a layer before it was time to start.


Even though Harry and I have been running pretty 11154842_10206987416510640_1468094383098151285_oconsistently since January, those NY hills were a shock to our system. A 10k is 6.2 miles which is a distance we have run many times, but my muscles were complaining long before the finish line and I ended up having to walk a couple times in the last couple of miles.




I managed to run it in at the finish though!






Do I look as glad to be done as I felt?



Yesterday Harry and I drove in to Albany to do a little shopping and meet up with a friend for 11194733_10207024331113482_2137048847_olunch.


Rose and me posing for a selfie…


It’s been a busy first week, and I’m sure the next five here will speed by just as quickly. Hopefully next week’s pictures won’t have any jackets in them!