Monday, December 31, 2012

Now in Northern California

Leaving Seven Feathers RV Resort, southern Oregon
We were closed up and ready to roll near 8:30 am. Following a stop for much needed diesel, we continued our drive southward.

As we approach the passes - at the lower elevations - signs of frost and snow are evident.
Although there were several inches of snow on the sides, the roads were bare but damp.  Sure beats iced up roads though.
We had checked the weather to see how the passes fared and the prognosis was really good for a go!  It was an absolutely beautiful drive through the high elevations.

Mt. Shasta looked regal with its snow cover.
This mountain so reminds us of Mt. Baker in northwestern Washington state.  
Shasta Lakes in northern California
Yea!  By 2:00 pm we rolled into Red Bluff, CA, and into another wonderful RV park. It has long pull through sites - level and even - and best of all, we are allowed to wash our rigs.  And that's just what we did once we were hooked up.

Hmm....there is a familiar Class 'A' motorhome.
Not 15 minutes after our arrival and other Vancouver Island RV friends were checking in.  Hector and Diane are long time RV friends form the Nanaimo, BC, area. Hector is also my winter golfing buddy.  We have several games planned for the days ahead.
Heading for the RV space next to ours.
Waiting for them to park......then we exchanged our hellos....and we left them to continue their set up.

Busy washing the rig, truck and motorcycle.
Motorcycle gets a nice detailing.
Almost done!
So, that covers our third day on the road since leaving home.  It's all good.  We are hosting dinner this evening....and we look forward to catching up with Hector and Diane's news and views.

A VERY HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL.  Our sincere best wishes for a prosperous, healthy and most rewarding 2013.

Thanks for dropping by.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Meeting 5 Star RV/Blogging Friends at a 5 Star Resort

Day two in our journey south and the weather presented intermittent sun between clouds.  It was a good drive from northern to southern Oregon and our next stop at the 5 Star, Seven Feathers RV Resort.  
Typical morning weather - wet and drizzly
By the time we stopped for a brief lunch break, the skies were beginning to clear.
Pleasant break at one of many Oregon rest stops.
Blue sky in sight
When approaching our overnight RV spot, we were thrilled to see bright blue sky and sunshine.  Yea!
The attendant (golf cart guy) will guide us to our spot.
What a place.  It is our fourth or fifth visit here and it's a real treat to be back.  The service and facilities are first class.  Seven Feathers RV Resort deserves its rightful spot in being rated one of the top RV resorts in the US of A.

We made quick time setting up on perfectly level pull through sites. We were looking forward to a nice walk along the creek side and down and around the entire RV park.
All settled in.
Jeanette is sorting some stuff out....and I had to take this photo to prove to us both that there was truly sun shinning in.  Natural vitamin D.  What's not to like

Now, this is a familiar rig!
Just about to leave on our walk and we see Rick and Paulette's 5th wheel pulling in.Rick & Paulette's RV Travels We had both made previous reservations, knowing full well that with New Years Eve in full swing, this park would sell out quickly.  And it did.  There are no spaces available tonight nor tomorrow night.

We dropped by to say hi then left them to complete their set up.  We met a bit later and continued our walk with them and the mutzos.  It was nice to catch up on news and views before returning to our respective fivers to change up and prepare to shuttle to the resort casino for dinner.    
Jeanette was walking with Paulette and the mutzos ahead when she took this photo. Rick and I seem to be deep in thought or....we're watching our footsteps to avoid falling down!  Could be both of those things too!  You know......'multitasking!   LOL
Once settled in at our restaurant table, we kept busy with chatter before our meals arrived.  And good meals they too.  We all had the steak special for $8.  What's not to like?
The customary blog photo, taken by our wonderfully engaging waitress with a great sense of humour.
Hey, why not take one more photo while waiting for the shuttle bus to return us to the RV park!
With plans to meet up again - possibly in a day or two at Orange Grove RV park, east of Bakersfield, or in the months ahead in Desert Hot Springs - we said our good byes and wished each other a Happy New Year with best wishes for a successful and fun RV journey.

We do look forward to our next visit with these two wonderful folks. 

Thanks for dropping by.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Good Trip to Hee Hee Ilahee...

Yes, Hee Hee Ilahee is a real place.  It's a modern (but poorly managed) RV park, nestled about a half mile east off I-5, in Salem, Oregon.  We arrived near 2:45 this afternoon- Saturday.  Other than torrential rains, between Bellingham, WA, and Vancouver, WA, it was an OK day on the road.
Typical rain forest winter weather.
This type of weather is exactly why we Pacific Coast snow birds head south for some sun and heat.  It's not that it is cold, but the wet weather can be trying.  Hey, it does keep things clean and green.  That said, it's nice to break away in search blue skies and shorts weather .
A rest stop check.  It's all good.
We pulled off at one rest stop for a rig check and some lunch.  We had never seen so many vehicles at one time in one Washington State rest stop, in the past.  We believe the high traffic volume has something to do with New Years get togethers.  The traffic was heavy....but it moved well. 
The swivel wheel is performing as it should.
We drove through Seattle, WA near 10:30 am.  The rain was coming down hard.
Although a Saturday, the traffic was endless.
One fool tried a stupid human trick with his car and almost rammed the back end of our  fiver while averting a semi trailer truck in the next lane.  It was a close call.  I saw it all on the rear view camera and my side view mirror. He was close to losing complete control of his small car.
Portland, Oregon.
The rain had stopped before we crossed into Oregon.  The sun did try to peek through the clouds though.  The weather forecasters, on local Portland TV, predict a somewhat sunny day tomorrow.   We'll see.  We were told the very same thing the day before we left our home in Langley.

Only one exit away from our overnight RV park and the break lights lit up like Christmas trees.  "Oh no", said I. There must be an incident ahead.  And there was!  One car and a van somehow collided and ended up in the median.  The traffic came to a complete halt but, luckily, it didn't last more than about 20 minutes and we were through the mess.
Our spot at Hee Hee Ilahee RV Park in Salem, Oregon.
Our plan was to arrive at the RV park early, set up, unhitch and head off to do a major grocery run.  The office attendant was a nice man - in his mid 70's - who was at a complete loss when operating the computer.  We waited and waited and waited and he kept apologizing for his keyboard finger problems and supposed software issues.  I finally asked if he could assign us a spot and I would return, after our set up, to settle the bill.  I returned, not once, but twice, and each occasion brought no positive result.  I finally paid in cash and asked if he could drop off the change and a receipt once he could figure out the computer.

Jeanette and I then drove off to complete our grocery run. We stopped into a Target store to purchase some wine and beer and, believe this, I was asked, by a young fella, to produce ID.  I laughed....thinking he was joking.  He was serious!  I had to produce ID.  What has happened to good old 'common sense'.  How ridiculous!  No more Target shopping for for me.

Once back at the RV park , we found an envelope that was left at our 5th wheel, with a note offering regrets and an apology.  Earlier, I had also asked to have a propane tank filled and was told that the fella who does this work decided to go home early.  Why?  He just felt like it!  When the office called him on his cell, he said he would not return to the RV park.  Hmmmmm!  I'm told the RV Park is facing its own 'fiscal cliff' and I found out why today.  There is no system, no training of staff and awful customer service.  As a matter of fact, there is no effective management - pure and simple. This is a living example of how 'not to run a proper business 101 class' !

We do like the park for its geographic offerings; long pull through sites, 50 amp electrical service, level concrete pads, easily accessible, strong WiFi, closeness to a large assortment of stores, etc. For one night stops, it's OK for us.  With effective management, this could be a 3.5 or 4  STAR park. We may well look at alternative RV parks on our return trip and with future trips.

Other than that we sorted out the food stuffs, watched the local TV news, made some dinner and ended the evening watching a NetFlix movie.  All is well!

First day complete, we look forward to the road ahead. Tomorrow we will overnight at a 5 Star RV park.  Seven Feathers RV Resort, in southern Oregon,  is a gem.  We look forward to meeting up with Rick and Paulette, from  Rick & Paulette's RV Travels who have reservations there too.  More on that in our next blog.

Thanks for dropping by.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Ready To Roll....

Alright!  The big wheels are ready to roll south.  We finished loading, testing everything, checking everything twice and, only a few minutes ago, I loaded and strapped down the motorcycle to the swivel wheel.  All systems are GO!
Only the motorcycle to load....
Jeanette still has to clear out the refrigerator in the house but that will not take much effort.  I'll run the vacuum and, with the house all tidied up, we'll be ready for tomorrow morning.

We handed the keys over to our house guardians......and the very last of stuff to leave the house will be our laptop computers and golf clubs.  As with the motorcycle, they're a must on this - or any - trip!
L-R  Courtney, Jeanette, Trevor, Easton, Ginette and Deni
The morning began with our household waking up from a good night's sleep.  Our entire family slept over.  What a treat.  Deni and Courtney's flight was late on arriving last evening, due to plane delays in Eastern Canada.  A severe snow storm there meant that their aircraft could not leave its eastern airfield on time to arrive in Edmonton to collect them and other passengers. Their arrival was delayed by about 90 minutes or so.

We let Easton open the first present
Easton was quick to fiddle with the wrapping paper and cardboard - so typical of little kids. He did like his new cell phone (toy) though.
It's a neat little gizmo that makes noise when the numbers are pushed.
The others got involved too. Wrapping paper was shredded off the gifts and - customary in our home - our two kids (and now their spouses) throw the crushed paper at each other.  Some habits are simply too tough to break.
Trevor was thrilled with this radio, iPod player, and tool battery charger combo.
Deni liked his too.
When I purchased these for the boys, I almost got one for my garage too....but, I resisted.  The old boom box in the garage works well....and it simply has to do!
Easton went hunting for more presents and........
....he found this little John Deere beauty. 
When we stopped into the implement dealer, looking for one of these, the salesman was quick to ask which tractor would suit my needs.  I pointed to Jeanette, who was in the kids' toy section, and he was pleasantly happy for us but disappointed that he would not get a nice 'big boy' tractor sale.
"Come on Mom....push faster....."
Courtney's opened her gift...and now Ginette works on hers.
So with good breakfast type foods ingested, presents opened,  a few pots of coffee brewed, Courtney's mom showed up to collect Deni and Courtney to head over to more family dinner engagements.
Courtney's mom, Barb.....having some face time with Easton
Once they had left our house, this early afternoon, Jeanette and I began taking care of the required work to clean up the house, get more laundry done, and complete hauling the final stuff to the 5th wheel.  I retrieved the step ladder and removed all outdoor Christmas lights.  They are back in their rightful storage place.  Jeanette worked indoors to remove and store all Christmas decorations.

It's nearly 6:00 pm, as I approach the completion of writing this blog.  Our home is only five minutes from the Canada/USA border and we plan to roll out early tomorrow morning. When the border crossing opens @ 8:00 am, we hope to be through customs in little time.
Easton's uncle Deni - Nice photo.  Deni and Courtney fly off to Hawaii in a couple of days.
So...we'll next post a blog from our resting place, south of the medicine line....more likely from northern Oregon.  Looking forward to the journey.
Thanks for dropping by.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Ho, Ho, Ho,...Oh What Fun!

We trust all of our blog readers enjoyed a wonderful Christmas?  We did!
Vancouver Island friends, Gwen and Steve, and Ione from Langley, joined us for a nice lunch this past Christmas eve.
It was great to host a visit with our former White Rock, BC, neighbours and friends who made the trip from Ladysmith, Vancouver Island.  They are spending the Christmas holidays with their two sons who live here in Metro Vancouver.
We enjoyed nice lunch, courtesy of Jeanette's culinary prowess!  Trevor, Easton and Ginette joined us too.
Our friends enjoyed seeing Easton too....and he sure had himself a fun time!
Playing with Dad, Trevor.
Christmas morning saw Jeanette and I over at Trevor, Ginette and Easton's home for breakfast and the opening of Christmas gifts.  They chose to host and we were thrilled to oblige.
Christmas morning. Mom and daughter had to change into the very same pajamas that Trevor had gifted for them.  Cute....cute!
Our son, Deni from Edmonton, 'face timed' with us (on iPhones) as we opened gifts and shared some banter and laughter.  He, and wife  Courtney, are flying into the BC coast this Thursday evening.  We will get to celebrate the season with them.....all over again.  Oh what fun!
I'm pointing the iPhone so that Deni got to see Easton opening his presents.
Near mid-morning, Trevor's family arrived to do their gift opening. It was a great opportunity to share some Christmas time with them too.
L-R  Trevor, his dad Warren, brother Wes and Easton.
L-R  Trevor's brother in law Mark and sister Tracey....
We left Ginette and Trevor's home back for our home to prepare a desert for our next visit on Christmas day; dinner with our long time friends in North Delta.  

Not far from our home is the house below - set on an acreage -  that is the home of a young family.  The mom and dad have really great Christmas spirit!  They placed a comfy wing chair on the roof of the house to welcome Santa and to offer him a brief resting spot.

Can you imagine the young kids waking up, running outdoors to find a nice chair waiting for Santa?  Can you imagine a plate of cookies gone and a glass of milk empty?  What a fun thing to do! Good on them!
It took some doing, on the dad's part, to get that chair up on the roof....but we're sure glad he did.  We got a big chuckle out of that!

Dinner @ Lorne and Mariett'e home.
We enjoyed a lovely evening with our friends and one of their sons, Justin who is leaving within a few days for a one year work and travel experience to Australia.
L-R  Lorne, Mariette, Justin and Cloe, the family dog.
Today - Boxing Day - is a day to focus on loading up our RV while readying to receive more family visitors tomorrow.  Deni and Courtney will arrive from Edmonton.  Ginette, Trevor and Easton will join us as the whole family visits, overnights together at our home, and we enjoy a delayed Christmas breakfast gift opening on Friday morning.  Following that, Deni and Courtney will head to her side of the family to enjoy more Christmas fun before they jet off to Hawaii for their official honeymoon. Trevor, Ginette and Easton will head back home too.

Jeanette and I will clean up the house, complete the required laundry, and complete the RV packing.  We plan to be at the US border by 8:00 am. Saturday morning, December 29th, to begin our winter snow-birding holiday.

So much fun!

Thanks for dropping by.