Saturday, May 14, 2011

trailer backing 101 for dummies

As you know from Thursday's post about my incident with the utility pole, I have completed a project that I've been wanting to do for some time and now just seemed like the right time.  I have always placed our driveway on the drivers side of our truck so I can watch the wheels on that side of the trailer as they turn into our drive.  The problem has been that I didn't have any reference marks for progress until most of the trailer was already in the driveway.  Thursday afternoon I did some surveying, measuring, marking, and painting of a line to follow.  Here is the result and now I just have to follow the yellow (brown) brick road.

Thursday, May 12, 2011


We took Wilma home yesterday morning and she seems to be doing quite well.  It will just take time for her stomach to accept anything but the soft foods she is working on now.

We went back to the trailer, had lunch, hitched up, and traveled back home.  The reason for the title of this posting is that during my attempt to back the trailer into our driveway, like I've done so many times in the past 12 years, the utility pole at the south side of our driveway jumped out and caught the side of our trailer.  I believe that the only thing that needs to be fixed is the "roll-up" awning attached to that side.  I pulled the trailer into our local RV service shop this morning and left it for the necessary repair and also called our insurance company.  The shop manager said that he believed he can get it all repaired before our June trip but if not at least he can remove the damaged one and we can get a new one installed when we have time to take it back in later.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

one more night

When we got to the hospital this morning we found Wilma sitting up in a chair and saying that she was going to get released sometime today.  Just before noon they were taking her for some tests so Jo and I went to lunch and then afterward we stopped by the Arbors to visit Jo's mom for a few minutes.  When we got back to the hospital she was telling us that when they ask her to swallow some chalky liquid for some x-rays she choked and spit up.  They brought her some soft foods a little later and she did eat a bit of them and then her nurse came back, re-connected her IV and said she was staying the night again.  If she can keep some soft foods down I'm sure she will be released tomorrow.

Monday, May 09, 2011

All went well

All went well with Wilma's surgery today and now it is just recovery time.  Jo and I will visit tomorrow and see what the forecast is for her release, the doctor today said a couple of days.  It was an early morning to get her to the hospital by 5:00 am so I'm sure it will be an early-to-bed this evening.

Sunday, May 08, 2011

a beautiful Mother's day

It was a very nice day with plenty of sunshine and temperatures up into the 80s.  We had an early lunch and made it down to Ozark, MO by around 2:00 pm.  After a visit with Jo's mom we then went for an early steak dinner at Texas Road House for JoAnn's mother's day outing.  After the early lunch and early dinner we will head to bed early because of a 4:00 alarm, Wilma is due in St. Johns by 5:30 in the morning.

Thursday, May 05, 2011

short trip next week

We have decided that next week when we need to be in Springfield to help Jo's sister with her hospital stay we will pull the trailer down to use instead of getting a motel room.  The motel that we used last week was nice but so is our trailer and the RV park in Ozark is only $20/night.  We don't know at this time how long we will need to be there but at least it will be 3+ nights.


I just finished updating our web pages with the latest information for both our June and July trip plans.  Campgrounds in June have all been reserved except for the last one in Lynnville, IN which is a nice little local park in mid week so reservations aren't necessary.

Check out the planning calendar page for these updates.

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

still working on it

I've been going through several looks for this blog page and even stole Martha's template for a short while, sorry Martha. I'll try to find the background that I really like and hope to keep it readable.

Sunday, May 01, 2011

Home again (posted 04/30)

We made it home a little after noon and our GWF was right here with us. The forecast was for a 30% chance of thunder storms today but we haven’t seen anything other than some cloudy overcast skies. It was nice to spend last night in our trailer with ALL facilities functioning as they are supposed to.

After we arrived, Jo spent some time going around her yard and here is what she came home to:

the purple azelia

the gold azelia and bleeding heart

the big snowball bush beginning to open up

the yellow thornless rose

pretty white flowers that you will have to ask Jo

our red flowering buckeye

the little snowball bush

and the "I'll bloom whenever I want to" cactus was pretty for our return. The red center flowers are silk.

good news - bad news (posted 04/29)

First the very small bit of bad news and that is that we got up at 4:00 am in order to get Wilma to the hospital by 5:30 only to find that her procedure had been canceled.

Now the rest is good news beginning with getting her rescheduled for Monday May 9 which will work much better for Jo and I to be able to be with her whatever her needs may be.

We also were able to get back to Chanute, KS and pick up our repaired trailer shortly after noon and are in the local Chanute campground where the first two nights are free, can’t beat the price. Tomorrow morning we will head back to the Martin Manor RV Park (also free with limited hook-ups) and will be able to relax knowing that our trailer problems are fixed by factory technicians and should now be better than new. This way we won’t have to make the drive back from Holts Summit to retrieve our trailer sometime in a couple of weeks. We are much more comfortable tonight in our own surroundings instead of the motel (which was very nice) that we were in last night.

a long day (posted 04/28)

Since we were about an hour west of OKC last night we decided to get up early and get through before the “worker bees” clogged up the traffic lanes. We were out of bed by 4:00 am and on the road before 6. That all worked well for OKC but then we were heading into Tulsa with all the rush hour folks and there was major highway construction that really made the Tulsa crossing a rough go. At one time there was a little red piece of tin on four wheels that jumped right in front of us forcing a major stop on our part and getting them a long blast of our horn and almost a big push from our front bumper.

By leaving that early we made it to the Nu-Wa factory in Chanute, KS around 10:30, dropped our trailer with them to make the necessary repairs and then headed to Springfield. It has been a long day of driving

Wilma has to be to the hospital early in the morning so it will be another early rising for us. She is having laparoscopic surgery to repair her esophageal valve into her stomach. She apparently has had major problems with reflux that we weren’t aware of. We will be there with her tomorrow and Saturday but we will need to head back toward the Martin Manor on Sunday to make my appointment on Monday morning.

The service manager at Nu-Wa told us that they would work on our trailer tomorrow but I will just have to go pick it up when I am able to drive again. With my surgery being on my upper back I won’t be able to lift anything for a while and will have to find out whether or not my driving will be curtailed for a while. I want this to heal properly so we will be able to make the next trip that for now is planned to begin in early June.

change in plans (posted 04/27)

We are back into our familiar time zone about 50 miles west of Oklahoma City. I wonder about the morning rush as we travel through but we’re big enough to take whatever lane that we want. ;-)

We do have a change in the original travel schedule. Originally we had planned to spend two nights in Tucumcari because we like to break up a long stretch of driving days with a day of rest. While we were in California we had a call from Wilma to tell us that she was to have some outpatient surgery on the 29th and she would like to have her sister to be there. We also would like to be there with her so we changed the stay in Tucumcari to one night and will continue our travels to get to Springfield by tomorrow afternoon. Tomorrow we will not take the straight path but instead will go by Chanute, KS and drop off the trailer so they can take care of our holding tank problem and then we will have to come back when they are done to pick up the trailer and get it home for the refreshing necessary for our next outing. This is working out better than finding another repair service as I’m sure the factory repair will make it as good as, or hopefully better than, new.

continue the eastward migration (posted 04/26)

Today we continued our eastward trek across New Mexico and tonight we are in Tucumcari. The good news today was the wind . . . it was 30+/- mph with gusts and most of the drive it was directly behind us pushing us to probably the best fuel economy towing @ 11.3 mpg. The bad news today is the wind . . . last night it rocked us to sleep and woke us up a few times during the night and tonight it feels and sounds like another night of the same rock and roll.

It was a nice drive today with fairly good road conditions and light traffic. Jo is convinced that the sign painter that put up the “watch for elk” signs is the very same one that lies about the “end of road work” but we did see a small herd of antelope today.

crossed Arizona (posted 04/25)

Today we crossed the top of Arizona on I-40. The signs kept saying to “watch for elk” and Jo had that to watch for as well as ice on the bridges and falling rock but so far she hasn’t seen any of the above. Tomorrow’s trip is across New Mexico with the night’s stop in Tucumcari.