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View From the Trail to Mount Colvin

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Sunday, January 20, 2019

Getting the RV Ready!

For company and selling!

A couple weeks ago we brought the rig over to the resort for its last official outing. My mother and stepfather have come down to Florida for a few weeks and will be staying in the fifth wheel. We took advantage of having it close by to get it mostly cleaned out and ready for viewing. We hope to sell it this spring once our guests head back north.

I started taking pictures of the various areas for posting in our listing. (I had to use Blogger instead of Live Writer so the placement of the pictures is not coming out exactly as I wanted.)

Living room...


Kitchen...


















Bathroom...

















Bedroom...































Tons of storage space! These are only a few pictures of the many storage places in this rv.




Thursday, January 3, 2019

Big BIG Changes Ahead in 2019!

Well. Happy New Year everyone!! Once again it’s been another two months plus since I last wrote and it is definitely time for an update.

The big news will be coming up below, but first a general catch-up.

Things are going really well. We are both settled in to work at Home Depot and Harry is enjoying his part-time work in the hardware department. 49297355_323456921600256_1702705420465864704_nIt hasn’t been all work and no play though. We have had several card sessions with our friends. We play a game called Pegs and Jokers, and play guys against girls. So far the girls are 2 games ahead!

We have also been going to our usual card night at the club house as much as we can. Sometimes we have to work, but we’ve still managed to make it quite a few times. We have also started going to Card Bingo. So far it’s been typical bingo, with lots of fun and close calls, but no wins. haha

45091301_10218715916195802_8915945909963980800_nWe have also been to Disney a few times. So far our favorite continues to be Epcot. We love going when they are having the different festivals and we can sample all the international food offerings. Harry always enjoys his dark beer in “Germany”.

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One day when Harry was working, I went with a couple of my friends to Disney Springs and we had a girls’ day out.

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We had a lot of fun, enjoyed the festive decorations…

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…and a wonderful lunch. It was a great day with a lot of laughs and conversation.



Our days have been full. Between get togethers with friends, work, and just normal life, the time has flown, and here we are, heading into another new year. And is this year ever going to be a new one!

On to our big news. We are hanging up the RV keys. We don’t expect that it will be forever, as we do hope to buy a smaller rig someday and do some more traveling. But for the foreseeable future. I have accepted a fulltime position at Home Depot. I’ll be doing the same work I’ve been doing, which I really enjoy. It’s the typical fulltime job with paid vacation, so I won’t be able to take months off as we have been doing. It’s a bittersweet decision for us, because we have enjoyed our RV travels. And we are very much going to miss our summers up north – seeing family and doing all that awesome hiking. BUT. Financially it is the best and most realistic decision for us. So we are looking on the bright side and forward to the opportunities that this decision is going to bring. And looking forward to sharing the Florida experience with our little guys this summer. “Papa” will be flying up to Ohio to bring them down here for their visit this year.

So if you hear of anyone who is getting ready to start out on their rv life, we will be putting our whole setup on sale in a couple months. We are hoping to sell the whole package – fifth wheel, truck and we will be including the majority of our rv “stuff” – awning screens, chocks etc. 20729757_10214691812915735_5733382936313319894_n (1)Anyone who has been following our blog knows what good care Harry has taken of our fifth wheel, and all of the modifications we’ve done to improve it. If anyone out there is interested in more information, drop me an email. I am working on the official ad that we will be putting up, so when it officially goes up for sale, I’ll post it here on the blog.

Friday, October 19, 2018

Great Birthday Celebration

Today marks one week since Harry started work at Home Depot. The first day was orientation, and the next days after that mainly entailed completing all of the computer training. So yesterday was his first actual day on the floor. It went well and he is enjoying the job so far. I told him it will only get more comfortable as he learns the department and doesn’t have to try and remember where everything is located.

44350390_10218613262629527_8865553131694456832_nOther than work, the main event this week was my birthday on Wednesday. I hadn’t asked for the day off, but just luckily I wasn’t scheduled. I had a really nice day. 44288458_10218613262349520_5481299407037005824_nFor the third year in a row, I started off the day by running my age – this year 5.2 miles to represent 52 years. Every year on this run, I reflect on how lucky and blessed I am to be healthy and in relatively good shape.

Later in the day, we took a ride over to Lakeland in our new ride. On a side note, I am so enjoying having a car again. And what a difference it’s already made in our fuel bill. We would be burning up quite a bit of our profits going back and forth to work in the truck for sure. For my birthday, I looked for a new restaurant to go try and I didn’t even have to look on google maps to see if we would be able to park the beast there. haha

44333008_10156837714544766_432292989532897280_nWe went to a restaurant called Harry’s that has a New Orleans theme. I forgot to take a picture of the outside, but I did get this one from our booth. It had a really cool atmosphere. We went for lunch around 2 in the afternoon so it wasn’t busy at the time.


 

Wow, the food was SO good.

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Our appetizer of crab cakes…

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My Chicken Jolie Blonde with Corn Maque Choux (which was like a corn succotash)


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Harry’s Cajun Seared Tuna


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I also enjoyed a Rhythm and Blues Margarita.





It was a really wonderful birthday meal. Harry’s has locations in several other Florida cities, including Tallahassee and St. Augustine. If you happen to find yourself near one, check it out!

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Rig Repair Results and Back to Work

Every summer when we have gone back up to NY, we have made it a point to get the yearly maintenance done, as well as any repairs that have cropped up. This past summer on our way back from Florida, we noticed that one of the back landing jacks was wet. So we decided to have the guys at the repair place take a look at it. And in addition to that, one of the back windows came open a bit as we were traveling and when I went in to close it, we discovered that the adhesive in between the panes had given way, and the window was actually coming apart. Big thing #2 on the list!

We had purchased an extended warranty, which was going to be UP on June 21st. Our appointment at Deiderich’s was on June 14th. Talk about just squeaking under the wire! After they evaluated the situation, we found out that both back hydraulic jacks had to be replaced, and the entire window as well. When they called the warranty company, we were told that glass wasn’t covered but the jacks were. Both good and bad news at the same time.

The window and jacks had to be ordered, but since the claim had been placed while we were still in our warranty period, we were fine waiting a bit for the repairs to be done. That was right before the boys were due to arrive, so we decided to wait until the boys went home and then just drive the rig back to Coxsackie from our seasonal site in Peru, about a 2.5 hour trip.

Since that was a bit much to do in one day, we decided that I would stay at my mother’s house with the cats while Harry drove back with the rig. He had an uneventful trip (first time driving the rig by himself) and dropped it off at the repair place right around 9 am. Then he drove over to my sister’s for the rest of the day. 44098168_2215963841979120_6965330029370671104_nThe repairs were completed successfully, and then the next morning he went back over and picked the fiver up for the trip back to Peru.

I got a nice shot of him coming in with the rig, as my mother had driven me over to our site so I could be there for the backing up.

So. The numbers. Our normal maintenance type stuff and the small repairs that we needed done in June, like a replacement of the fan in the fridge – $327.70. The portion of the repair that was covered by the warranty company was $1,809.00. The window replacement that we had to pay for came out to $1651.49. We are so glad that the hydraulic jack replacement happened while we were still under warranty. Phew!



44048584_10218582555581870_8685591661234880512_oOn a happier note, Harry is right now at his third day of work. We had the same shift yesterday so I was able to get this picture of him while we were both on our lunch break. He is really excited to be working at Home Depot. He has seriously been saying for as long as I’ve known him that his long-term goal was to retire from his job for the State of NY and work part-time at Home Depot. It took a few years after his retirement, but he’s finally achieved his goal!

Meanwhile, I am almost at the one year point! I had my interview last year on my birthday, which is coming up this week, so that’s really easy to remember. I have to say, I really love my job. I like what I’m doing and I like the people I work with. I am so lucky.

Friday, October 12, 2018

Where Do I Begin?

I think one of the hardest parts about getting back to blogging after a break is figuring out where to begin! I’ve thought about settling down to the computer and doing a post several times in recent weeks, but it just seems so overwhelming trying to figure out where to start.

So I guess I’ll just jump right in where we are and then hopefully will get some blog posts in over the next weeks about our summer – which was completely awesome, by the way.

ferrypicWhen I left off, we were just finding out about the warranty results for our rig repairs and getting ready for the boys’ summer visit. I’ll say more later about both, but just for this post, I’ll say we got the rig repaired and had a great five weeks with the boys. I wasn’t sure how easy it would be to have a 4 year old and a 9 year old for five weeks in an rv, but it really went very well. I’m already looking forward to our next summer visit next year.

43762246_1566633393440575_2743485513657745408_nSo, to jump to more recent events, in mid-September we were getting ready to leave Peru to head back home to Florida.

(This picture shows our seasonal site. We really loved it. We had enough trees around us that we had hardly any direct sunshine on us at all. Even though it was the warmest July and August they had ever had in that area, we didn’t have to turn the a/c on once!)

Right at the same time we were getting ready to leave, Florence was heading for the 42276203_10218400465029720_1334895596741328896_nCarolina area. We had intended to head down our usual route to Charlotte to visit Harry’s son and daughter-in-law and then down to Jacksonville for another family visit on the way home. But given the storm, we decided to go on a more westerly route past Atlanta instead. Because of this, we actually got home almost a whole week earlier than we had expected.  We were pretty lucky. There was one day when we were going through Virginia where we were passing along the outskirts of rain from Florence, but for the most part we were able to avoid the storm with our adjusted route.

42279801_10218403311540881_4990206395371487232_oIt was really good to get home. I had called Home Depot in late August and given the HR person my return date. Wow, how easy that all was. She reactivated me Sept. 1st so she could get me back on the schedule right away (they schedule 3 weeks out), and last Thursday I went back to work. I’ve already worked several days, and I got back into the routine like  I had never been gone. I’ve even been back on the forklift. And, in other exciting news, shortly after we got back, Harry had an interview at Home Depot also. He had a little bit of a wait while they were doing a few more hires, and as I type this, he is at Home Depot for his first day. So now we are both employed which will make our  bank account very happy.

42825738_10218475907755741_3047584350859165696_oThe other most exciting news is that we have bought a car! We’ve been thinking about it for a couple years. Using the truck all the time costs a decent amount in diesel, given that it takes about $75 to $80 per fill up. On top of that, there have been at least 1 or 2 times a year that we have needed to rent a car, so that is another added expense. Last year for one of our rentals, we had a Nissan Altima, and we just loved it. So once we knew for sure that Harry had a job, we went off to do some car shopping and came home with this 2018 Nissan Altima. I am so enjoying having a car again.

So it’s been a good start to our winter season in Florida. We’ve settled back in and are enjoying being back. We won’t be doing any big projects this year around the house. We are going to take this winter off from that kind of stuff, and only do any emergency type things for the most part. Hopefully there won’t be many!

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Warranty Results and Preparing for Company

I had mentioned in my last post that Harry and I were apprehensive about the warranty company covering our repair work. Over the past seven years, there have been a handful of t35629312_10217560254024970_940560578982707200_nimes we’ve had a warranty claim. Our first big claim happened on our very first trip down to Florida, right after Harry retired, when our slide topper mechanism suddenly just gave way when we put the slide out. It ended up being a nightmare claim that I won’t go back through now. Suffice to say that they ended up paying, but only after we fought for it, including going through the Better Business Bureau to file a complaint. That just left a sour taste in our mouth, and even though we have end35762291_10217560234144473_7070060504781160448_ned up getting back what we paid for it, we have already decided that we won’t be getting another one when we get our next rv. Just not worth the grief for us. Anyhow, so a few days ago we had to stop back over by Diederich’s to pick up our keys that we forgot there, and we found out that the company is going to cover the refrigerator repair and the replacement of the hydraulic jacks. That was a relief! Apparently windows and glass are not covered, so we have to pay for that part of the repair. But it could have been much worse, so we are looking on the bright side.

It has been two weeks today since we arrived here. It has been a bit hectic with everything going on, but our days have started to slow down this week, and today we actually aren’t going anywhere at all. We have taken advantage of this down day to start getting ready for our next adventure – a five week long visit with our grandsons! This will be our longest summer visit yet. In previous summers, we’ve had a shorter visit with Schaun and then we’ve gone back to Ohio to spend some time with Kenny as well. But Kenny is older now, and wants to come on the summer visit also.

35694790_10217560250344878_3930953570530099200_nOver the winter, we were trying to figure out the best way to work the sleeping arrangements – sleeping on the floor together on one twin bed mattress was not going to cut it. Harry was doing some research online and just by accident stumbled on a portable bunkbed system. We bought it over the winter but hadn’t tried putting it together yet. Today was the day!

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One bed put together…we could actually use it just as one bed if we wanted to.


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The two beds are completely secured together.


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It fits in the space just as well as I hoped it would.



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I have them covered at the moment for the four legged occupants who I’m sure will be using them over the next few days. Each bed has an attachment where the kids can put some of their things. And we also have storage space underneath the bottom bunk.


I can’t wait to see the boys’ faces when they see their sleeping area!

Friday, June 15, 2018

Maintenance on Us and the Fiver

We’ve actually been in NY for almost a week and a half, and it has been such a whirlwind!

35292347_10217512744997274_2708382505429368832_nWe are at a different campground this year, after Earlton Hill Campground (where we had stayed the past few years) cancelled our reservation on us without notifying us last summer. So we decided to try staying at Brook n Wood Campground in Elizaville.



34529058_10217440621554233_7738793200600481792_nWe have a nice large site, maybe the biggest site we’ve ever had.


Basically the only reason this wouldn’t have been our first choice in the first place is that it’s a little bit farther to my sister’s from here.


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Plus we have to go across the Rip Van Winkle Bridge which has a toll of $1.25 for EZ Pass. The only good thing about it is you only have to pay the toll going in one direction!



So, let’s see…what has been going on so far…

35479208_10217512735357033_7293501058754543616_nLast weekend was a fun family weekend since my nephew Matt was graduating from high school!

It is oh so true that they grow up so fast. It does not seem like that long ago that he was this little guy…

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In just a week, my third nephew will be graduating from his high school also. It’s sad that the kids are growing up, but exciting to see them heading off on new adventures though!

35266890_10217512741917197_8927042795491819520_nBecause we are an hour away from Albany, we tried to group our appointments as much as possible. So on Monday, we headed out bright and early to get our bloodwork done. Then after breakfast, we had our annual get together with our financial guy. And we capped our day with Harry’s annual retina checkup. Phew! By that time, we were more than ready to get home.

On Wednesday, we had our physical appointments, where we were happy to find out that we are both in good shape physically. Actually, I am probably in the best shape right now of my entire adult life. All set for another year hopefully!

35303846_10217512727396834_8388606986387718144_nThen yesterday it was our rig’s turn. I have to say that this is the day I least look forward to every summer – packing up for just one day and then going to sit at my sister’s house while the work is being done. Now that we have the house, it would be easier to just have the maintenance done in Florida while we aren’t in the rig. But we just trust the worksmanship of the people at this place so much, we can’t bring ourselves to take the fiver anywhere else.

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I’m sorry to say that our rig didn’t get quite as good a report as we did. We already knew that we had to have the fans in the fridge replaced. We also had our yearly maintenance done on the wheel bearings and u-bolts.

There are two more major repairs that will need to be done. The dual pane window on our largest rear window is coming apart at the seal. So the whole window needs to be replaced. Also our rear hydraulic jacks need to be replaced as they are leaking fluid. This will obviously be a more than few hour job! The only good thing…well, there are two good things about it happening now. The first is that we already planned to be here in NY into September so we will have plenty of time to get the repair done. The second is that we are still (for just a few more days!) under our extended warranty. So we are hoping that some of the repairs will be covered. We have had a horrible experience with this warranty company in the times when we’ve tried to use it, so we are nervous. But as far as we know, the window and jacks should be covered.  I will report more on this when we find out.

This weekend should be much more low-key. We don’t have any major plans. My sister and her husband will be out of town, so we are on “bring the kid to work” duty. haha  Other than that, we plan to relax for a change of pace!