Boy, has it been a while since my last blog post. I’ve been a number of things these last few months: busy with family, exploring nature, trading in my home on wheels, walking dogs, binge watching, dehydrating food, making pressed flower art, and just relaxing.
My sister Vicky and her family own a travel trailer and they get out and camp when they can. I’ve met them at Franklin D. Roosevelt State Park, GA, Fall Creek Falls State Park, TN, and Lake Guntersville State Park, AL. I camped near them at Red Top Mountain State Park and Sweetwater COE, GA. We’ve gone kayaking, hiking, bowling, swimming, and bbqing together. We also endured over the Labor Day Weekend, a heavy rainfall that flooded the campground at Lake Guntersville. A video of someone kayaking during the storm in one of the campgrounds dry creek beds even went viral.
My brother Kenny got married in May, so I rented a spot close to the wedding venue, near St. Louis, MO. Spent a few days with family, and my mom even came out. Enjoyed seeing nieces and nephews and brothers and sisters that I hadn’t seen in a while.
In August, I swung back up to Missouri to camp with family again. I invited every family member that lived in the area. We camped at Yogi Bear Jellystone Park, near Six Flags over St. Louis.
I had an educational experience when I visited Mousetail Landing State Park, TN. The Naturalist had plenty of activities: a creek walk, sunset float, pressed plant cards, and a night hike. This unlocked my curiosity and even more love for nature and the outdoors. I ended up buying a flower press and collected a few flowers and plants and pressed them. They turned out great.
In mid May, after my brother’s wedding, I headed back to Tennessee to trade in the travel trailer. After living full time in it during the winter and for almost 6 months, I decided that it was just too small for me and the dogs. There wasn’t enough storage, so my dinette became a storage space, taking away from the living area and making it feel too cluttered. I also had been hearing about 5th wheels and how those were better for full time living, safer to pull, and just easier and bigger. I did online searches for a 5th wheels and finally settled on a Grand Design model. I spoke to the online salesperson and worked it all out so that when I got back to Tennessee, it would be ready for me. It took 2 days for everything to happen and then I finally pulled it down the road to Manchester for its maiden voyage. It’s been a learning curve from travel trailer to 5th wheel. But I am very happy with my trade up. I feel like I’m in a little apartment.
Dogs, dogs, and walking them. Daisy hasn’t been very good at walking in the summer heat. She also has hip problems and her rear legs shake. So, because of this and the hot summer heat, I haven’t been on very many hikes. As of today, Daisy has a torn paw pad, so now we’re nursing that. Poor girl. Today, I threw her in the wagon and pulled her around the campground. She seemed to enjoy it and Oliver just enjoys being outside.
Let’s face it, traveling alone does get a little depressing. Sometimes I just don’t want to be outside, so the TV comes on and I get sucked into different shows.
With the world in chaos and uncertainty, I try to stay prepared for the “What ifs.” Prior to selling my house and full-time RV Life, I did start prepping. I was learning food storage and preserving. I had water bath canned and pressure canned some foods, but had not quite figured out dehydrating food. Well, water bath canning and pressure canning is not feasible on the road, so I grabbed my dehydrator out of storage. It’s light and doesn’t take a whole lot of work. So far, I’ve dehydrated fruits and some vegetables. I did dehydrate eggs because of the shortage of eggs scare a few months back. My next dehydrating project will be broth. I also have my vacuum sealer with me.
Pressed flower art
So I mentioned flower pressing earlier and how I saved some flowers. Well, I arrived at Thunder Canyon campground, AL in late summer and saw so many flowers still in bloom. I started collecting them and pressing them. The owners have a 7 year old daughter and allowed me to take her out to pick flowers and press them. Since it was her birthday, I bought her her own little flower pressing kit, I made myself a bigger one, and made the campground one too. I decided to preserve the summer flowers and put them on display. It took many flowers to get the prefect ones to put on display. In the meantime, the girl and I learned names of the flowers and other plants growing on the property. We also made pressed flower cards and hosted an arts and crafts afternoon and made cards with some of the women. I didn’t know I had an artistic bone until now. Just don’t ask me to paint or draw anything.
Upcoming winter months
For the winter months, I was planning on spending it in warmer weather, Florida. I had two places already booked, but then family plans came up. In June, I spent a little time in Northern Georgia and found a church that I felt connected to. I changed my winter plans and decided to book Blue Ridge, Georgia for the winter. I’m planning on volunteering with the church and local community while I’m there. My sister is about an hour away, so I have Thanksgiving plans and a nephew’s football games to watch. I’m not planning on celebrating Christmas, but will check out the festivities and holiday displays that the local community will put on. Towards the end if winter, I’m coming back to Thunder Canyon.
I’ve been looking for remote work as a social worker but it’s harder to find for my level of licensure. I figure if God wants me to work again, He will lead me to it. I want a place to settle, because I just want to belong somewhere, so I’m praying about that. I found Thunder Canyon and feel like this is a good fit for me. Maybe I’ll purchase a small piece of land or rent a small lot here and plant a garden. I’m also interested in taking Alabama’s volunteer naturalist course so I can use that at Thunder Canyon and at other places in Alabama, and also gain some knowledge of some of God’s wonders. With the uncertainty of what tomorrow holds, I honestly don’t want to be on the road when it gets really bad. I trust that the Lord will place me where He needs me to be.
Thanks for reading. I hope this finds you well. God bless.
2 Timothy 1:7
For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.