Monday, November 25, 2013

Traveling with a second vehicle

     We sure do like driving the HHR. On the highways she averages 38-40 mpg. In town we are averaging 28-32 mpg. It is also a whole lot easier getting around in town with it, then with the big truck. Also the ride is a lot smoother. Although this truck is a lot smoother then our old truck. The truck does ride a lot smoother with the 5th wheel in tow. We find we are spending more time in one area then we did in the passed. We are doing a lot more touring with the car, traveling greater distances to tour an area.  If need be the car does offer use a little more storage. We are in contact with each other with walkie-talkies. We also both have cell phones should we get separated and out of walkie- talkie range. Linda is usually following. Many times she has helped me with lane changes in busy areas. She has also helped by going ahead and finding something we  have been looking for, like an RV park. Also when we get to an RV park we sometimes use the car to look for a site rather then drive around with the RV in tow. Another big thing is the 50,000 + miles on the car are not on the truck. Of course some of that is following the truck and RV to get to our destination. We also have the high clearance 4 wheel drive truck should we want to do some off road exploring.

    Our biggest dislike is not traveling together in the same vehicle. Linda especially dislikes this ever since we lost Blazer. She would tell him all the things I was doing wrong, now she tells me. So we may have to get her another traveling companion to talk to while traveling. But along these lines we are trying to travel shorter distances between stops. Another disadvantage is the extra cost shown in our last post.  Only once did we have to pay for an extra vehicle in an RV Park. Sometimes it is difficult to park both vehicles at our site in an RV park. But like I said above, everything is a trade off. In the passed we did own a class A motor home and towed a Jeep. But we like the livability of our 5th wheel more them the motor home we had. This is a topic that can be discussed longer then some of the debates in congress. One of the big decisions for us owing a 5th wheel is when we can't travel anymore, it is a better unit to leave on a permanent site somewhere to live in.. This is just our opinion, and there are as many opinions as there are RV's.

    Thanks for following along.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Chevy HHR 54,000 miles +, time for some maintenance

                          PA temp low 20*w/35 mph winds, gust to 45 mph.

We try to maintain all equipment on schedule set by the manufactures. So it is  time for some maintenance on our HHR. We have a little over 54,000 miles on the odometer.  #1 Time to flush the transmission and replace the fluid. #2  Time to replace 4 tires. #3  Time for an alignment  #4 time for and oil change. An unexpected item was new brakes and rotors and two filters. Wow that's a lot of maintenance all at once, but I believe in preventive maintenance.  Sure puts a big dent in our budget. The total  cost was over $1100. We have to weigh the expense of traveling with a second vehicle. Everything is a trade off. Does it pay us to travel with an extra vehicle?  We have been asked that question many times.  We will continue this topic in another post.

                     Tonight lows in the teens with 20-25 mph winds

Saturday, November 16, 2013

An Amish Wedding

     While traveling through  Lancaster county we came across this large gathering of Amish buggies. See the large tent set up in the background. This was a Thursday afternoon. Of course being naturally curious we had to get a closer look. There was car parking in the field across the street. We saw folks carrying gifts. So we pulled in and asked what was taking place. They told us it was a wedding.

My buggy is the one with the grey top and the red triangle in the back.

We think we saw Levi and the crew from the TV show "The Amish Mafia" at the wedding keeping out unwanted folks like us.

Thanks for following along.

Friday, November 15, 2013

More Pictures from Lancaster County

     We truly enjoy Lancaster County. I believe if God had 8 or 9 days there would be more areas like this.  While driving around I  believe we did see the gang from the reality show "Amish Mafia". In many of the stores they are selling "t" shirts with "Amish Mafia" printed on them. Nothing is safe any more from the TV producers. So sit back and enjoy the pictures.

This is pig heaven, did you ever see a pig this big

That is a women driving the team of horses

Kids waving

Beautiful sun colored sky

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

9-10-11-12-13 What do these number mean

    What were you doing at 9-hour,10- minute, 11-mouth, 12-day, 13-year.  So what were you doing at 10 after 9 on the 12th of November 2013, hence 9-10-11-12-13. It was a time to celebrate. Not sure if all the planets aligned at this  time but many folks thought it was a good time to get married. Well for us it was a special time, we sheared a kiss, because we won't be around for the next 9-10-11-12-13.

    That's all folks.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Beautiful Lancaster County Pennsylvain

   We can never get enough of Lancaster county. We enjoy this area so much that upon our demise, we may have our ashes spread throughout the county. We have had so much joy visiting this area we feel to be part of it. Here are just a few photo's. We have many, many more

This picture looks so great it almost looks fake.

School is out

Check out the colors and all the geese on the pond. Way to many geese to be healthy on the land or in the water. And there are more out of the picture.

Another one of those super great photo's that look to good to be true. But they are, we don't even know how to find or use some of those sites to make fake photo's.

Fall colors.

Thanks for following along

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Vanity Fair Reading PA - Free RV parking

     Free RV parking with 20 amp electric. 5 sites with electric but large area for dry camping for many more.  This is located behind the bus parking area. This is the original Vanity Fair outlets.  This facility opened some time in the late 50's or early 60's. At times we have seen 40-50 buses bringing happy shoppers. This was when "outlets" were "outlets".  There are still many different stores here.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Super Super Video of God's creatures

Below is a super, super, super link. It is a video, about 4 minutes long. I hope I copied the link properly so it works. It was posted on another bloggers blog. That blog was   Travels with Emma   We had followed her blog for a number of years. And this summer we had the privilege of meeting her. She is Judy and Emma is her dog.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Linda got a new Nook HD

      Linda wanted a new Nook HD. So we went to Barnes and Noble and checked them out. Very impressed with the Nook HD. So we priced them and the cover for it. We then decided to buy one. The total price was about $220. So we went home and ordered Barnes and Noble discounted gift cards for $225.  See yesterdays blog.  We order $225. in discount cards with a 12% discount. The cost was $198., a $27 discount. The cards arrived in 3 days. The following  day we went to Barnes and Noble and purchased a Nook with a cover. Linda is very happy with her Nook and has already subscribe to some magazines. She has also been sending some emails and getting use to using it. It is an amazing little device. All her books were transfer to her new Nook. Now she has to decide what to do with her old Nook. I'm for selling it, but someone else may have other thoughts. But the full timers policy is something in something out. So something has to go and I hope its nothing of mine.
     She can connect to the internet through our Jetpac/mifi or wherever we have Wifi.   Our Jetpac can handle up to 10 devices. O boy! we can now be like a modern family and both be on the internet at the same time. We can even email each other and not have to talk to one another.  I know there may be times when she doesn't want to speak to me, but can these devices give that "look". You know what I mean. The look is a lot more intimidating then the silence.
     Boy o boy are we becoming high tech or what. Last month new smart phones, and texting became a new word in are vocabulary. Now a new Nook HD which is a lot more then an electronic reader. , what's next. I see outer space as a possibility, but can we get there in our RV.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

A new way to shop -- discounted Gift Cards

   Thanks to our daughter in law Dawn we have discovered discount gift cards. We heard of these cards but never paid any attention about them. These are cards sold to a discount gift card buying site at a discount from folks who do not want them for various reasons. The number one reason is they receive them as a gift and do not want them. They sell them at a lesser discount then they are resold  to buyers like us.Then the discount site resells them at a discount price. The discounts range from 1 to 15%.  The site I like best is cardpool . There are many more sites.
     We signed up and purchased several different cards so far. We have purchased a Darden Restaurants card (Red Lobster - Olive Garden + several others) at a 12% discount. So upon using the card we saved 12% on the total bill. Plus we used a credit card when we purchased the discounted card, were we received a 1% rebate, so our total savings was 13%  . We also purchased and used a Wal-Mart card, 2% discount, Barnes and Noble card, 12% discount,  Lowe's, 10%, plus several others. So now we are hooked.
     The only disadvantage to these cards is you have to buy them in advance. So you need to plan ahead. But if you know sometime in the future you are going to eat at Red lobster or shop at Kohl's you have to buy  the card ahead of time. Some cards you can get electronically, so you can use them instantly. The cards change daily or quicker. The discounts vary. Not every store or restaurant is available. But by buying the cards that we use, we hope we can safe 3 to 5% overall on our spending for the year. That doesn't sound like much, but figure how much you spend in a year and discount it by 3-5% all see how much you can save. That's 2 or 3 times the interest you receive on bank CD's.
   A PS, if you sign up with cardpool give them our email address and we will receive a $5.  credit on our account the first time you order something from them.
   Thanks for following along. I know I used the word discount so many times that this blog may be a little confusing.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Beautiful View out our window in Lancaster county

We are in beautiful Lancaster county PA. This is the view out our dinning room window.

The last time we were here these sites were full.  Many RVer's move on to warner climates.
How would you like to live in this farm?  Enlarge from the photo below, its in the center of the  picture behind those trees.

From our dinning room window.

Thanks for following along. Last night it was 28* here, A little to cold for us, but we hope to move to a warner climate sooooon.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

The Upper Mill in Milford PA

   While in Milford PA we found this old mill on one of the side streets. It is know as The Upper Mill. There were six mills along this stretch of Sawmill Creek. This was one of the upper mills along the creek. The mill is located in the Shops at Jervis Gorden Historic Upper Mill District. There are a number of shop in the mill house. We did not find any signs telling of the mill. We found it while going through one of the shops.

Part of the gear work

Large gear in front of the 24 foot water wheel

Looking down at the water wheel, see the water running onto the wheel, into the "buckets".

Amazing what you can find in some small town.

Thanks for following along.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

How to plan were to go and were to stay

     A couple of question we are often ask as full time RVer's are, "how do you plan were to travel' and "how do you plan on were to stay". Also how do you find some of the neat places and events in your travels. These questions are usually from part time RVer's, but many times from none RVer's.  Well the short answers are, travel to a warn climate in winter and a cool climate in summer. We try to stay in membership parks along our travel route and at our destination. But and that's a large but there is a lot of planning on our part to make those simple answers work.
    For example in the summer we choose a place were we plan on spending the winter. Take last winter, we planned on being in Florida for our winter destination. We had a rally schedule in Myrtle Beach SC. So we planned our time to arrive there a week before the rally started. On the way we stopped at a Passport America membership park. Then before the rally started we stayed at a Coast To Coast membership park for a week in North Myrtle Beach. After the rally we wanted to visit the cities of Charleston and Savannah. We choose two Passport America membership parks by each city and stayed a week in each.  Then we went to Florida and stayed at two other membership parks. In between we stopped at a few non membership parks. The reason we try to stay at membership parks is because of a reduced rate.
   The routes we usually travel on have become more interstates highway then in the pass.  In the passed we usually choose secondary routes, to see more small towns and interesting things.  But since we have purchased our larger RV we are traveling larger roads.  Also since we now travel with a car, we use the car to do a lot more touring of the areas we are traveling through. Another note about our route. If we have no firm schedule we seek out other interesting things along the way, even if it is a slight detour. We also try to travel without reservations. This is difficult in the summertime. We like the shoulder seasons, Spring and Fall, but even these seasons are getting crowed. One spring season we found out a new word in our travel vocabulary, "spring break". In Texas we found all schools from elementary school to college have spring break. We had to scramble to get a site at a Corp of Engineers Park.
      Another note about were we stay. We have pretty much gave up a lot of boondocking. For our none RVing friends, that is RVing without hookups to water, electric and sewage. These locations are usually in super areas in National parks or forests etc. Then there is "blacktop camping". These are places like Wal-Mart's or Home depots that allow overnight stays. We don't do Wal-Mart's or other similar stores unless in an emergency. We will do Casino's, as they do have good security overall. Many casino's also have RV parking area's or RV parks. This is especially true of Indian Casino's in the Midwest and West. Boondocking is roughing it.  For us anymore, roughing it is 30 amp electric without sewer hook ups. Our RVing friends will know what I'm talking about.
    This sure got a lot longer then I thought. But if you were here I could sit down with you and go over all this in more detail.  If anyone has any question about how we get from point A to point B just email us and we will try to give you our answers to your question. Many RVer's have many different way to travel. We also welcome their comments.
   On another blog, and I can't find the blog again, I guess you should put things like this in your favorites, there was information about a mosquitoes alert site.  The site is found on the Weather Channel web site. You can put in the date and area your are traveling through and get the mosquito forecast. Now if they only had something like that for "stink bugs".