Thursday, August 23, 2012

Are we there yet??

Thursday, 8/23/12

Not much to say and no pictures.  Today's trip was uneventful, warm and sunny, but.......there is a lot of smoke from 23 wildfires mostly caused by lightening strikes a few days ago.

We are still on I-90 and staying at my favorite place (not) The Wal-Mart RV Ranch in Bozeman, Montana.  I must say, this is the largest Wal-Mart I have ever seen.  It's about the size of a football field.  And of course I found some food items that we needed, so we paid our dues.

The parking lot is enormous, we counted 27 RV in here.  Unfortunately it looks like there is a squatter staying in the corner lot, a young couple with two little girls.

Tomorrow we will be in Cody Wyoming..  This is a new place for us so we will be staying about three nights.

Safe travels to all and have a blessed day.

Joe and Nancy

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

We're On The Road Again

Wednesday, 8/22/12

We've been sitting in Lacey, Wa too long and Joe has a little "hitch itch" so here we go.  Head em up and move em out.

First a stop at Les Schawb, they open at 0800 so we were there at 0750 to top off the air in the truck and the Stream.  They are so fast and so courteous and on our way to I-5.  Our plan was to pull over after about two hours of driving and have a healthy breakfast of yogurt, apple and walnuts.  But when we left the tire place we were at the traffic light where you turn to go into Panera.  Have you ever had one of their bear claws?  They are to die for.  So we turn into the shopping center, by this time the place was starting to get crowded but we persevered through parked cars until Joe found a place that he could almost fit into.  So in I go, thinking of all those luscious pastries, bagels and bread they have.  I keep telling myself to be brave, just get a sausage egg sandwich and get out.  Easier said that done, there was a line so I had to stare at all those yummy things.  So when I got up to the counter I said:  two sausage egg sandwiches, I was getting ready to pay and then she said; Is there anything else you want.  I caved.  I quickly said ONE BEAR CLAW.  I got my stuff and hurried out to the truck and told Joe we would be splitting a bear claw down the road in a couple of hours.  He kinda gave me a little smirk.

Whenever we bring food into the truck Buddy gets real interested, probably because he is spoiled rotten, so there we was sniffing the air.  We started leaving the parking lot and Joe said; Did you put Buddy's food in?  No, I didn't, That is definitely a "blue" job, "you were suppose to do that".  Luckily we were only a couple of miles from home and it was easy to turn around and go get his food.

I'm sure there are other things we forgot.  So we finally get to I-5 and then take Hwy 18 to I-90 east.  So where are we going.  We are leaving a bit early for the winter and expect to be in Rising Sun, Maryland by Sept 21, then join the Airstream Southeast Coast Spectacular Caravan in Delaware by 10/1.  We will eventually go to Mayport,one of our favorite spots in Florida, just outside Jacksonville; down to Sarasota FL and then maybe a cruise out of Tampa to ????  Eventually be home by May 1st.  So that's it in a nutshell.  We just love Streamin across the Country, so much to see.

There is still a lot of construction on I-90, but they are making progress, I think it's been going on for 4 - 5 years.  Our trip so far has been uneventful, which is the way we like it.  The mountains look inviting and then..... we got to the area of the recent wildfires which was finally just contained a few days ago.  It's a shame that so many homes and buildings were lost.  Our favorite fruit stand is Red Sky Orchards at exit 93, we saw them on the news with lots of fire fighters there.  We stopped for some peaches that were mouth-watering and juice running down my face.  They also had a new crop of apples in, I always look forward to the new apples, they said the Gala's will be out next week which means that fall is just around the corner.     

So continuing east, crossing the mighty  Columbia River and up the hill is a place to view the river and see the Wild Horse Monument.  This is the first time we have ever stopped, the view was spectacular.  The monument is up a steep dirt trail and all I had on was flip-flops.  So next time we will stop and I will have shoes on so I can go up on the Hill.

Columbia River Looking South, 
 From here the water still has to travel about 100 miles to the Pacific Ocean

Metal cut outs of the Wild Horse Monument

There's a big heard of them,
 I was only able to get about half of them

Eastern Washington (aka the other side of the mountain, or "on the east side....")
 is all farming of many different grains plus corn, onions, potatoes,
 alfalfa, vineyards, hops, orchards, etc 

After the wheat is harvested, probably all grains,
 the fields are burned to kill any fungus that may be present

So tonight we are in Haugan, Montana at the 50,000 Casino.  They have free parking with power, on gravel.   There is a restaurant in the casino that serves OK food especially after driving about 400 miles today. We have stopped here many times, you are way off the hwy and behind the casino so it's fairly quiet at night.  A truck stop too with diesel, today $4.15 (no cash discount).  Exit 16 in Montana, on north side of I-90

Safe travels to all, have a blessed day and thanks for stopping by.

Joe and Nancy

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Chop, Chop, Chop

August 19th
Lacey, WA

Yea, the temperature has cooled off, high today about 70, and very balmy.

Not too much going on except trying to get ready for our next BIG trip.  We are scheduled to leave Wednesday, 8/22/12.  Our destination is to Joe's sister, Ellen, in Maryland by Sept 20th.  As some of you may remember we stayed at Ellen's for about two weeks last spring. And, they are letting us come back.  We are really looking forward to another visit.

Friday night we went out to dinner with some friends at a Japanese Restaurant where they chop and cook the food in front of you.  We really had a fantastic evening.  The chef was moving so fast that it was really hard to get decent pictures.

Our friends, Steve, Elaine, Sharon and Art.  Art is 91and has been visiting with Steve and Elaine for a couple of weeks, he lives in Las Vegas and will be leaving in a couple of days,  
So this dinner was in his honor because he is leaving. 
 The chef did not understand this and thought it was Art's birthday, so we just went with it.  

Veggies, shrimp, scallops and calamari 

I thought it was odd to cut up the calamari and scallops but I guess that's the way they do it.

Next he is cutting up the chicken.  Now if I was doing this I would have started with the chicken first, my shrimp was a little over cooked, so I'm sure the calamari and scallops were over cooked too.

And a little flame to make it interesting and fun

We all had a good time, in fact we already made plans to go to dinner again Tuesday night, to celebrate Joe and I leaving on Wednesday.  We don't need much of an excuse to go out to dinner.

Safe travels to all and thanks for stopping by

Have a blessed day

Joe and Nancy

Friday, August 17, 2012

Again, Some Like it Hot (Not Marilyn Monroe)

Friday, August 17, 2012
Still in Lacey, WA

It's hotter today, Some Like it Hot, but not me, a high of 95 and low of 78 and the humidity is up too.  This heat is getting a little old for me.  This is suppose to be the Pacific Northwest, cool at night and warm during the day, by warm I mean 75 to 80.  And, where is our rain, we need rain at least once a week to water my plants and clean the air.  Our air is getting dirty, it was hard to see Mt Rainier today because of the high pressures holding all the fumes and smog down to ground level.  Now I'm rambling too much.

One of our Airstream groups, North Cascade, was having a rally at Hoodsport on Hood Canal which is in the southwest side of Puget Sound.  This is a little cooler especially since they were right on the water.  So we packed up and drove the Jetta over to Hoodsport, a nice drive about 50 miles away.  The weather was clear and a little cooler with a nice light breeze now and then off the water.

It was great to visit with old friends that we had not seen for a while.  We were only there for a few hours in the afternoon, but they had a full day starting with crabbing and then kayaking, knitting and reading, a real laid back rally.

Taken out the car window

Ron checking out the kayak 

Jerry in his kayak

Marilyn modeling the sweater she had just finished knitting
Looks pretty good, eh!

Joe and Rich discussing holding tanks

Kind of bright out, Karen, Marilyn and Marilyn and Gene

Maureen and hubby Ron

 While there I presented Jerry, immediate Past President of the North Cascade Unit, with a ribbon and certificate that I had accepted for him at our Region Rally in Alberta a few weeks ago.

Yesterday, after a visit to the ophthalmologist I had a new prescription for glasses, I went to Costco on the way home to find out if I could order my new glasses here in Lacey and pick them up in Lancaster, PA, since that is where we will be in about 3 - 4 weeks.  NO! that was not possible.  What is the big deal, you would think that this would not be a problem.  I'm going to do some more checking on this.  While in Costco I found some really cute rain boots, just what I had been looking for.

Cute, eh, $22.95 (US funds)

Just heard on the news that it will be cooler tomorrow, Lo of 65' and High of 75' to 80', now that's better.

Have a great day and thanks for stopping by

Joe and Nancy

Mount St, Helens, 32 years later

August 14, 2014
Lacey, WA

We have had more sunny days and more heat than I can ever remember.  Today is suppose to get in the low 90's.  That is really hot for the Seattle area and with all the lakes, rivers and of course the Puget Sound it gets a bit humid, we are not use to this.  

This will be the perfect day to go to the mountains to cool off.  We have not been to Mount St. Helens since 1989, nine years after the eruption.  At that time we lived in Northern California and we were camped at Dillon Beach, just north of Point Reyes National Seashore.  Most people in the Pacific Northwest know exactly where they were and what they were doing that Sunday morning.

A quote from the pamphlet:  "On Sunday morning May 18, 1980, the power of nature came to life as Mount St. Helens erupted, causing the largest landslide in recorded history.  Wind, fire, heat and debris swept down the Toutle River Valley and left a barren, gray landscape behind.  Today,  the gray is turning to green, bright flowers are taking their place amongst ash and mud and seedlings are reaching up from the bottom of barren trees".

Mount St. Helens is only about 85 miles from our house, mostly through beautiful winding mountain roads.  Our destination was Johnson Ridge Observatory.  I'm not sure when they built the road to this lookout but I know it was not here in 1989.

On this route, Hwy 504 off of I-5, there are four visitor centers each one has it's own unique perspective and history lesson.  If you go be sure to plan ahead, there are many hiking trails at each visitor center,  this is an all day trip so take your lunch.  For more information:,,

Inside the first visitor center. timed pictures of eruption, the time is in the lower left corner

This person is at the top of Mount Adams.  I bet that was scary 

Unfortunately there was a haze in the air so none of the pictures are real clear
Toutle River and valley

Herd of elk crossing the river kind of fuzzy, they were a long way off, 
I'm surprised it came out this good after I cropped it. 

 Looks like smoke but is actually dust.  This is a very large steep canyon and rocks and debris are constantly tumbling down into the canyon leaving almost constant dust in the air.

The mountain which is now only 8,365 feet.  
Not sure what the peak was before the eruption

View from one of the hiking trails

 picture of map where we drove to

These signs had to be taken in two pictures

Great displays in every visitor center

I hope you can click on these picture to enlarge them, if not let me know and I will change them to larger.

That's about it.  A very informative trip and wish we had gone sooner which is just a reminder to see what is in your own backyard.

Safe travels to all, thanks for stopping by.

Joe and Nancy