Our Travel House

Our Travel House

Wednesday, May 29, 2013


In plain black & white- "bad weather sucks". We're kinda stuck here in The Ellis City RV Park. Very crappy weather and so much wind that driving in it is out of the question. 30 to 40 MPH gusty wind. Already had 1 tornado warning siren and a trip up the street to a basement church shelter. I guess being at a church if a tornado hits has it's advantages. The warning only lasted about a 1/2 hour and it IS scary when you think about it. Remind us to never traverse Kansas again in May.
  Managed to get a cookout in yesterday. Tacos on the grill. Sat outside and watched the storm clouds forming in exploding vertical columns.  Beautiful but ominous at the same time. The wind blew so hard last night it knocked the BBQ grill off the table even though the cast iron griddle was on it.  
   The mornings here have been a mixture  of sun & wind. Around about 1PM the wind picks up and by 4PM the clouds roll in. We stay kinda glued to weather via satellite tv and local radio and internet. It looks like a repeat every day so far.
   I notice that some blogs I follow are all commenting on the foul weather we are all getting thru the plains and south of here all the way to Texas. It still beats winter! It can't all be fun & games. Into each life some rain must fall. I hope all this H2O solves some of the drought problems we've seen thruout the South and midwest. There sure have been a lot of resevours almost empty and rivers and streams that've been dry. See?? A bit of good can come out of any situation!  :)
   Been day dreaming about Colorado and Montana with the atlas in my lap. Next on our agenda. Hoping to be in Colorado next week.
  Yesterday we toured the boyhood home of Walter Chrysler, the Chrysler Corp. founder. He was raised here in Ellis. Interesting to see how people survived way back then.
  We did manage to tour the railroad museum here in town this morning. They sure had a lot of train stuff to see. Ellis used to be a main railroad hub til 1970. Kinda impressive to see an old USA map depicting all the RR tracks and depots in small town USA. there were a lot of them. Seeing the mail bag pickup, while on the fly, system was interesting. I wonder if they ever missed the bag?? When we exited the museum the sky was getting darker and a spit of rain was starting. Since we are camped just a few blocks from the museum a rather quick pace was started to keep from getting soaked.
   Watchin' the weather and blogging isn't too bad a way to while away the time, is it?
   We hope your time is fun too !!


by the way-we love comments here on the blog!! So leave some please.


Monday, May 27, 2013

Camp #34 Ellis, Kansas - Ellis City park

   Had a good wind storm last night. Russell,Ks. is sure a windy place at this time of the year. The wind sustained at 30MPH all day and last night it was blustery.
  Heather got to talking with the folks that own the CG and noticed all the flowers they had laying around. Since she misses her gardens so much and has a God given green thumb, she volunteered her services to plant all of them. She stayed pretty busy Saturday afternoon and for 4 hours on Sunday. The owner was impressed enough to try and talk us into staying for awhile longer to practice her skills at her house!! We guessed it'd take a couple weeks to get all she wanted done so we passed on that. Things to see and miles to cover are more of an objective. Some more stormy weather headed here and we aren't sticking around for that!
Here are the end results.

Monday, Memorial Day, pulled up stakes and were rolling by 9:30AM, a bit early for us. Thank goodness the wind has lightened up as I really hate white knuckle driving.
  We had a really short 50 mile drive planned and a stop at Wally world for groceries enrt in Russell, Ks..

Found a unique little City owned park in Ellis, Ks. Only 24 sites and next to a river. Close enough to town to go exploring. This is the hometown of Walter Chrysler.(Started Chrysler Corp.)
 We've been monitoring the weather due to forcasts of bad weather. With only 50 miles behind us today the weather report is much better. Supposed to kick up a bit tonite but nothing too serious.
 Here's the new CG.

Ahh yes, it's Happy Hour time so I'm gonna wrap this blog up!


Friday, May 24, 2013

Triple J Campground, FLOWER GARDEN, Russell Kansas

   Just enjoying a few days of no driving. Sittin' at Triple J Campground doin' nothing. Not necessarily our kinda park but relaxing never the less.

   We're in the middle of Kansas and as one of my friends said, " miles and miles of miles and miles"...and I thought Michigan had some flat spots!


   Have you ever seen Caribu? Now we have !  The owners of the park have a couple of unusual pets.Obviously the mini golf wasn't a success. But these critters are pros! They are very friendly, except during the rut, and will eat out of your hands.
   Had to make a "necessary " trip to town to restock the happy hour supplies. Very old world kinda town with cobblestone streets and angle parking. Saw a few buildings made of limestone bricks. The surrounding area and farms have limestone fenceposts . Due to the lack of wood out here in the "plains" the old timers utilized limestone, which cut easy when they dug it up and it hardened when exposed to air. Amazing what you learn as you travel !
   Happy hour tonite was just up the street and we tried our hand at KENO. Guess we'll just have to keep watching our budget. But it was fun. Tried our luck at powerball yesterday...same kinda luck.
   The park owner told us about a family of ferral kittens. I saw them this evening and tried my skill at approaching them..YEAH, Right!! Fed them some goodies and catnip but NO WAY were they gonna let me or Heather get close to them! Hope I can get some pictures of them this week.
   Tomorrow we plan on checking out the Oil Museum next to the park. Looks like it might be an educational endeavor! LOL.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Camp # 33 , Triple J Camper Park, Russel,Ks

   We pulled out of Cheny State Park in Cheny, Ks. about 1030AM, our usual takeoff time. Dumped the tanks on the way out. No sense in hauling all that weight.
   Got on Hwy 400 to Platt Ks. and went North on 281. What a great road. The wind was gusting to 20MPH so I had to stay on the ball but it wasn't too bad. There was no traffic to speak of so we could take our time. Speed limit was mostly 65MPH but we putzed along about 55MPH. I figured our sign on the rear of the rig would explain to anyone in a hurry what we were up to! ( Retired, go around me).
   Stopped for some gas and enjoyed the scenery. Lots of flat land, farms & oil wells, lots of 'em.
   Rolled into Russell, KS about 1:30 and easily found Triple J Campground. It's just a small park on the South edge of town. The owner was attending the birth of another grandchild and told us, on the phone, to just pick a spot and when she got back she'd catch up with sign in. We got landed in a pull thru and have a bit of shade in the afternoon. Hooked up and popped a beer. Full hookups here & cable tv.
   We did a little walk around and discovered a pen with 2 Caribou in it. ( Deer like ) Kinda friendly male & female. They actually let us pet them. Found some of their food outside the fence so we picked it up and hand fed them. COOL !
   Being the geezer that I am, it was time for a nap. Heather did laundry in the meantime.
   We're checked in for 5 days. That'll be enough time to get relaxed and do some touring. We're close enough to some pubs and eateries to walk to them and the main part of town is only a few blocks North of the park.
   Went to the nearest Pub and hit happy hour and got some grub to go. Yummy! Friendly place too.
   It's always interesting to eavesdrop in all the places we visit. Overheard a local couple guys talking about the storms last week. Lightning hit some of their wells and put some equipment out of service. They were saying how they'd probably lose credit for about 40 barrels of oil. We see oil wells all around this area and the pumps are running. The cows in the fields around them look like they're watching a vertical tennis match. ( maybe they're just shaking their heads in agreement! ???)
   Great day today. Don't you agree??

Camp #31 Ponca City, Ok. & Camp #32 Cheny Ks.

Spent 4 days, May 16th thru 20th, at a COE ( Corps of Engineers )  CG, Osage Cove on Kaw Lake near Ponca City Ok..We originally were planning on Coons Creek CG but it was booked and they recommended going just around the corner to Osage Cove. Like most COE sites or lakes, there are usually more in the district. Trying to get that info off the .gov internet site is like pulling teeth. Typical government BS.
  The park was very pretty and it had 124 sites which filled up on the weekend. The first 2 pictures are there.

The next 3 are in Kansas.

Swimming and fishing was right out the door and the sites were spacious. We had a couple of campfires and even found a little country pub a short distance outside the park entrance. Saturday night we had a storm hit and it was a doozy. Most everyone else headed home Sunday and again Sunday night a severe storm hit. Hail & lightning most of the night. We were planning on leaving Monday, more severe weather was forcast for Monday night so we were up early & outa there !
   Since we didn't have any wi-fi signal or cell phone coverage at the COE, we stopped in Ponca City, ate breakfast, used our wi-fi and researched the next stop. Decision was made to head North and West to get out of the storm zone. Kansas, here we come.I told Heather to put her red shoes on. LOL
  Drove for a few hours and we are now about an hour West of Wichita, KS. This location is supposed to be a way's West of the stormy zone. I verified that with the weather channel net site. We've had enough of that ! We're now setup at Cheney State Park.
$22 a day, seems costly compared to the COE parks at $9 per day.
  First thing we found out here was the showers have no hot water. Another government thing. Oh well, guess we use our RV shower and dump grey water on the ground again as there's no sewer hookups either. It sure seems like we have better luck using Passport America parks. I really don't think any branch of government worries about anyone getting in a nice hot shower. Glad we can be independant in our rig. May as well boondock for free. We'll explore the lakefront tomorrow aand check out the trails that wind around the grounds. 2 days here, then ?????..Let ya know later.
   We have a hard time believing the people here put up with these spring tornados and storms every year. Of course, they think us Michiganders are nuts for putting up with winter. I guess there's no easy answer or place for perfect weather. That's the best part of snowbirding--best of both worlds!
   Hope everyone is enjoying the spring changeover. More reports in the next few days.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Camp #29, Checotah Ok, Camp #30 Edmond Ok

Just a few quick stops as we travel thru Oklahoma.
  2 nights in a sterile RV Park in Checotah Ok. Not impressive enough for pictures. Just a LOT of rigs parked in a row, HO-HUM.
  Got on the road at 1030AM and bee lined for Oklahoma City, OK. Needed to stop at a Verizon store to get an updated phone for me and an update on our wi-fi device, had both for over 2 years, trouble free. This city actually has a corporate  store and it isn't a franchise operation. All the franchises want is for you to bring a fat checkbook in with you, the corporate stores are usually about 1/2 the cost for the same packages. Took about a hour to get all that squared away. We have a new Jet Pack wi-fi device and I've got a new phone, all for about $60 after rebates. The new wi-fi works extremely faster than the old one.
  Made another stop at the toy Camping World store. Bought a new window cleaning bug mop. It's like a scotch bright scrub pad on a 6ft pole. No more ladder needed. (I had to buy Heather "something" for her Birthday! Didn't I ??)
   Heather has another birthday under her belt. I love getting older with her. She was really happy to hear from her kids and friends.
Usually we are home in Michigan this time of the year but since we are fulltiming now we have to keep in touch with everyone via email, Facebook or phone. Nobody writes anymore.
  Pulled in a COE (Corps of Engineer) Parks just NE of Oklahoma City. Ok. about 430PM in the Arcadia Lake district. They have 4 different parks in the area. Kinda tough to decipher on the .gov site, typical gov't thinking.   Have ya ever tried a COE Park? They are definately nice. Usually near water and in the woods. Lots of room between sites and kept up nicely. I like 'em especially because they only cost $6 to $12 per night with my Golden Age Passport (geezer thingy).I took a few late afternoon pictures so the lighting wasn't very good.

Tomorrow we'll be headin' up to Coons Creek COE near Ponca Lake, Ok. It'll probably be our last stop in Oklahoma. About ready for a stop of more than 1 day.

REMEMBER, LIVE YOUR DREAMS AS TIME GOES BY QUICKLY ! Charlie & Heather (she's getting older!!  LOL)

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Camp #28..Ashdown Arkansas, Beards Bluff COE Park

We pulled out of Marthaville,La. @ 10:30AM and headed north.
Planned on a 150ml drive. Weather is great for travelling. Aiming at A COE (Corps of engineers) camp near Ashdown Arkansas.

   Made a few stops enrt. Eat, gas ($3.39/g midgrade) and of course Wally World for grocery restocking.
   Really bad planning on my part causes a 1st class dilemma! NO BEER. Nobody sells alchohol on Sunday in Arkansas! I forget to check up on that little detail cause I'm a yankee! LOL . We shoulda stocked up down in La. (betcha if'n I asked around we could find some "shine" though.)
  Got a great camp site for $6.50 with water and elect using my geezer discount card. ( Golden Age Passport) Hard to beat that!

  Got a nice campfire going after we scrounged up wood from empty sites.  
 We were suprised how much wood people had left behind. Just having a nice quiet afternon and evening sitting at our picnic table and watching the sun slip into the lake.

We sincerely wish all mom's a Happy Mother's Day.
   Only a 1 night stay in this beautiful park and then it's Northbound again.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Camp #27 Marthaville, La.

Ajax Country Living at I-49 RV Park.
   Remember the old saying " Snug as a bug in a rug"? That's be us.
We really like these country setting RV Parks.This one only has 27 sites. It's woodsy and out in the country with no road noise and our neighbors are all friendly.
We discovered there's a little country restaurant across the road. We went there this morning with our neighbors and had a nice breakfast. The place musta been impressive because we ordered dinner from it too. On Thursdays they make BBQ'd ribs and chicken so we put that on our schedule. I'll have to say that all this Louisiana food is really good. Glad we're not staying too long or I might have to let my belt out a bit !
   We learned there's resident gator in the pond. Gonna try our luck fishing tomorrow so we'll have to keep alert. My advice to Heather, should we confront "JAWS", is don't slow me down!
   I got lucky setting up the sat dish. Took about 10 minutes and locked right in! I love it when that happens.
  Spent the day getting Rolling Earthquake's window caulking removed. Gonna reseal them all as we've had a few small leaks pop up. Must be all the rain driving we did the other day. I remember when we had to do that to our last rig, the beloved Tioga. Hope to have that little problem fixed tomorrow. I don't know who caulked the last time but they sure gobbed the caulk on, took some time to remove it. Gonna caulk around the clearance lights too as they were gobbed up too.
   I'll give ya some pictures of the park and restaurant.

 Hope everyone is healthy and happy.

Charlie & Heather 

Saturday, May 4, 2013

More of Ville Platte, La., Chicot State Park. CAJUN TIME !!

Just  a quick post tonite.
  Heather had a hankering for an honest to goodness Cajun foodfest so off we went with suggestions about eateries in the town of Ville Platte.
  It's a small town and doesn't have very many eateries. The place we were told about was closed for the weekend, HMMMM! So we decided to go exploring. That went on for about an hour with no luck. Decided to head outa town to the west. Out of the corner of our collective eyes we saw a little place called Gators about 3PM. Sign out front said "crawdads at 4PM", let's go investigate.
   Just a little local tavern, very small. Had a few of the locals sippin' brews. We were welcomed like we'd been going there for years. They all said stick around if'n ya want real Cajun food. So we did. Sipped a few and ordered what they recommended. One of the guys asked if we'd ever had Boudin.A stuffed Cajun sausage. We hadn't. How 'bout  cracklins? Nope either ! Next thing ya know, out the door he goes. He was back in 15 minutes with a bag full of them! We ate some and passed it around for all to sample.  Oh man, YUMMY stuff. 
   The barmaid came aound  the corner with some crawdad samplers. Tasted awesome ! She took our order which ended up being 5#'s of screaming good crawdads, corn on the cob & red potatoes, all with Cajun seasoning. My goodness it was good!! Gonna put "GATORS" on our list a places to do again.
  We felt at home in this little corner of the world. Everyone got up and shook hands and high fived as we left with a sack of food (of course we sampled a lot of it sittin' at the bar).
 Ya never know where the day might go. Today was a good'n !

Friday, May 3, 2013

Camp #26 Ville Platte, La...Chicot State Park

   Wow, this mornings drive was a shorty, about 1 hour.
   Got on the road at our usual 1030AM after coffee. Straight shot North up I-49..a few miles off the Interstate we drove thru a little town, Ville Platte, population 8000. a jog 7 mls North and we pulled into Chicot State Park, the largest State Park in Louisiana.
   We checked in for 2 days ( we do stop once in awhile) and the park is beautiful ! Winding roads thru grand forest and 3 large camping loops. The site they assigned to us was way too tight to maneuver into with the trailer we tow, they said if it wasn't acceptable to just drive around and when we found a site that was good just call the office (Ashley) and inform them..To quote RV-Dreams.com , "Well, Alrighty !!"
  No sewer here but they have a dump. We'll be just fine for a few days.
  Noticed that the refrigerator is getting iced up. Gonna put that on a list of things to do..Defrost time every 4 months. AWWW, the demands of camping!!  Ha-ha-ha....
   For once the Satellite dish tuned right in the 1st time..Hallelujah !!
Sometimes that can be a test of patience.
   Checking around the area for a good Cajun dinner. Hope we can find a place nearby. It'd be a shame to leave Louisiana without one.
   Has any other blogspot blogger had problems with their fonts and colors changing intermittently ?? I've had to reset a lot lately.
   Thought I'd put a few pictures of our campsite on here.

You can see that's it's a bit cooler than what we're used to if ya notice Heather's hoodie.


Camp #25..Maxies CG..Broussard,La.

   Drove into Louisiana westbound and the roads immediately got bumpy. The drive across the swamps is amazing.

Coming into Bato Rouge,La

 Swamp crossing..amazing engineering!

Just a quick post about a quick overnight stop at Maxies CG in Broussard.La.
   Finally drove far enough West to get out of the rain. Of course that meant a lot of rain driving but there was no wind so it wasn't too bad. Had a few miles of heavy rain that cut visibility down to about 1/8 mile but we just slowed down a bit til it lightened up.
   We decided right near Lafayette, La. to find a CG and ended up 9 miles South in Broussard, La. at Maxies CG...just an overnight place, not much to it but FHU and cbl.  It was too cool out, 55F, to use their bath house so we just used ours in the rig.
  Up early and on the road again at 1030AM. Short trip today to Ville Platt,La.

Camp #24 Bay St Louis, Ms..Hollywood Casino RV park

  Up early today as is usual for a travel day. I'm guessing it's because of the anticipation of new adventures. We dawdled away a few hours over coffee and  finally got packed up and secure and pulled out about 10:30AM..
  Stop & shop at Wally World and gassed up ($3.53/g midgrade). The wind and rain picked up while pumping gas (of course). Got a little wet but not too bad 'cause I had the rain poncho on. Westbound in the wind for about 45 minutes and after a lunch landed at Hollywood Casino in Bay St. Louis, Ms. by 12:15. Been here many times and usually use the laundry and gamble for a few days. Suprised to see the RV park almost empty compared to most years. That's the nice part about pulling in here in the middle of the week and the laundry is empty too.
  This RV park is very nice. Easy to pull into a space and all concrete driveways. Good hookup locations and the grass is kept up nicely. The casino shuttle goes around the park about every 20 minutes. The casino is only a 5 minute walk but not when it's raining. The whole complex is surrounded on 2 sides by the Gulf of Mexico. Nice setup.
   Since rain is in the forcast for a few days  this is a good place to wait it out.   
  Went gamblin' tonite. Not gonna say anymore about that subject!!!LOL
   Decided to pull out in the A.M. and see if we can get West of this storm that's stalled here. Rain, rain and more rain forcasted for 3 days.