Monday, July 23, 2012

We’re in La Connor, WA


Sunday, July 22, 2012                                                                                                                                           Lorraine’s Report

It’s raining again, it’s for sure--we are back in Washington. Hello from 1000 Trails in LA Connor, WA. We came a whole 49 miles from that 1000 Trails to this 1000 Trails, and of course we ran into some spotty rain. The temperature outside at 10 am was 64 degrees. We came to attend the Lewis & Clark 1000 Trails Club’s rally this week here in La Connor. It starts Tuesday evening with dinner.

We had a nice cool week back in Birch Bay compared to the rest of the country, being right by the Bay with the constant cooling breeze. But like all the regular people that live here year round, Chuck & I are already tired of the clouds and the gray rainy days. We had enough of the rain while Chuck was working here this past winter.

And what a week it has been again for me. If you recall our blog from last week, Chuck mentioned that I would like a 40th Anniversary Party sometime in mid-August. Well, nothing was decided until last Monday morning. Chuck and I decided to have an anniversary party; it’s not every year you make a milestone anniversary. And while our actual anniversary is September 22, we would like to be headed south to the drier, warmer climate we tend to favor by then; God willing and our health checkups go well.

So the decision was made to go ahead with the party. We had no location, no food, nothing. I am happy to say that since then I have been extremely busy putting together this affair and it is a go!

I arranged to have it at the Moose Lodge in Bellingham on Saturday, August 18, 2012, from 5 to 9 pm, as an open house style party. I got the E-vite Invitations out, if you didn’t get one, it’s because I didn’t have a correct address or whatever, but if you want to attend, I’m extending you a personal invitation. I just ask that you let me know so we can have enough food.

One day Chuck had doctor’s appointments in Mt. Vernon. I think they went well. I was busy with the party stuff while he saw the doctors. I also arranged airline tickets for our daughter, Susy and granddaughter, Kaitlyn to attend this party.  Another day Misty got groomed, but my hair gal moved, left no forwarding work address, so I didn’t get my hair done.  If anyone knows of a great color/cutter hair dresser, let me know..Thanks.

One day was spent lining up the food and the rest of the stuff you need to throw a party. Many thanks to Joe & Alice for watching for our party products that are coming in the mail from the Party Store, they are being sent to their address, thanks again.

Friday was our good friends, Sandy’s birthday, and Richard took the day off and we went to the Buffet at the Silver Reef Casino to celebrate. The food was great, as was the company. We had fun Sandy, again, Happy Birthday. This Monday is Richard’s birthday, but we will have to wait to celebrate with him until he completes the project he is on. Happy Birthday Richard! Hope you have a great day.

I got a note from our Canadian friends, Joy and Rick and she said their invitation wouldn’t open for her; I just wanted her to know I got the note that you guys are coming. In case Rob and Norma and Barb and Dennis couldn’t open their invitations, they are invited also. Hope you can make it, let me know. Thank you.

So it’s Sunday evening and it’s raining hard on the motor home. We have no internet or phone service here at the rig. I’m not used to this and I think I’m spoiled to have it here in the rig, so readily available. We have to go up to the club house to get internet and who knows where for the phone service. We haven’t had to do this since I can’t remember when. We also don’t have 50 amp or sewer, pretty primitive for us.

So that is it for me. Have a great week.



7/22/12                                                                                                                                                                      Chuck’s report

Yesterday, Sunday, was a travel day so we didn’t get our blog written before we left. We only went down about 50 miles from one 1000 Trails to another but we don’t have internet service here except at the lodge so we can’t post this until tomorrow.

We had a quiet week, didn’t do too much. I did manage to see two doctors but nothing to report from either of them except I’m old and out of shape, ha. I did end up making a couple of new appointments that I’ll have to make before we leave, just add those to the others already scheduled.  Late news, just got a phone call from the nurse and she said all my blood test results were in and everything was normal there. 

We did manage to visit with Joe and Alice one afternoon. Seems we see more of them when we are on the road than we were are both back here so it was good spend some time with them. We, of course, said we would get together again this summer but that remains to be seen, good intentions and all.

We also got to celebrate Sandy’s birthday at dinner with her and Richard.  He has been working nights since the 4th of July with only one day off per week but was able to get off on Friday to be with Sandy.  We had a good time with them, can’t say the same about those slot machines, however. 

This year, Lorraine will have put up with me for 40 years; it will be our 40th wedding anniversary on September 22. Lorraine really wants to celebrate this occasion (not sure if I’ll be here for the 50th I guess) so we’re planning on getting together with family and friends at the local Moose Lodge on August 18. Lorraine has been busy planning this, lots of phone calls and visiting food places. And of course, she wants me to wear something other than shorts or blue jeans so that meant a shopping trip for me, bummer.

So if any of you would like to help us celebrate, please stop by the Moose Lodge in Bellingham anytime after 5 pm on August 18th, we’ll be there. We don’t plan on making a big deal out of it, just want to visit with family and friends so please feel free to stop by.  Lorraine has sent out some invites but we hear there has been some trouble with their delivery.  If you didn’t get an invite, come on by anyway, love to see you. 

We are here for a rally with Lewis and Clark Chapter of the FMCA that starts on Tuesday. We first met some of these folks in Seaside, Oregon three years ago. They were having a rally starting right after we were scheduled to leave but we were able to stay over for an extra week so we could attend the rally. We ended up joining the Chapter because the folks we met were so nice and friendly. We’ve gone to meetings with some of the members while we were in Palm Springs and Yuma; they have fun wherever they go. We came down here for a rally last year too; hope to have a good time with them once again. It’s always fun to visit with folks we’ve met before and to meet new members too.

We managed to snag a spot that allows our satellite to acquire TV signal through the trees after setting up three different times. We only have 30 amp electrical power but because the forecast is for highs only getting to the low 70s this week, we should be fine.  And like I said, we can’t get phone or internet service at the site so if you need to call, please leave a message and I’ll check it when we get to a place that has service. 

Plus we are here for the rally and should be spending a lot of time with our chapter buddies. They have one day set aside for a ferry trip over to Friday Harbor, we haven’t been over there for at least 5 years so we are thinking of going with them, if we can find a dog sitter for Misty as we will be gone all day.

The weather has been typical Western Washington, rain one day, nice the next. It happens to be raining pretty hard right now and the forecast if for more tomorrow but should be nice for most of the rest of the week. And by nice I mean highs in the mid 70s, cooling off to mid 60s at night. Way better than the 100F stuff we were in a month or so ago.  The forecast for tonight is for colder temperatures, down to the mid 50s!  Might have to head South earlier than we thought. 

Our plans are to stay here until the end of the month then return back to Blaine for the month of August. Joe and Mike are both trying to find a place for us to stay at Latitude 49 when we get back there, hope that works out otherwise we have to move in two weeks from 1000 Trails to Beachwood.

After that, we aren’t sure of our itinerary but should have time to work on that some this week. I do know we are both leaning towards the Oregon Coast once again, that is one of our favorite places, especially in September. There are other ways of traveling down to our daughter’s place, that’s our next firm destination but that’s not until Halloween so lots to see/do before that.

Lorraine hasn’t taken too many pictures this week so I won’t add many either. I’ll get them added and post this in the morning when we go over to the lodge.

Blaine Harbor

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That’s the Peace Arch at the US/Canadian Border crossing.

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Guess that’s all until next time.

Thanks   Chuck

Sunday, July 15, 2012

We’re In Birch Bay, WA


Monday, July 16, 2012                                                                                                                                         Lorraine’s report

I could tell we were home, we had that welcoming Washington rain when we hit Seattle, just enough to get the coach all dirty after we washed it on Friday.

Hello from 1000 Trails in Birch Bay Washington. Yes, we are back in the Great Pacific Northwest. We came into Birch Bay yesterday after spending Friday night and all day Saturday with our granddaughter, Kaitlyn. The temperature was 63, and the wind was blowing. Just your typical Washington summer, the rest of the country is burning up, lots of high temperatures and humidity, and its nice and cool here, days will be in the 70’s during the day, nights in the 50’s, so that you need a light jacked or sweater.

If you recall we last posted from Columbia Falls, MT. We spend two more days there, going back up to Glacier National Park on Sunday, hoping to see more wild animals, but alas, no luck that day. Those last two days there in CF were hot, 97 degrees each day. We truly enjoyed Going to the Sun Road, it was well worth the time. We also made it to Many Glaciers, and St. Mary’s; I think I enjoyed the west side of Glacier over the east, to me the west was more dramatic.

During our time there, we had a call from Mark, our son in law. He asked if we could pick him & our granddaughter Kaitlyn up from SeaTac the following Friday. They were coming up for his brother’s wedding next Saturday, July 21, in Seattle. Both he and Kaitlyn are in the wedding party, with Kaitlyn as a flower girl along with her cousin; Rebecca; Mark is a groomsman. Seems his brother getting married was taking his mother to the Beach Boys Concert there in the Seattle area; his mother had just gotten back from her Peace Corps station in Azerbaijan, and they had no one to pick them up from the airport. Mark said we could keep her through Sunday, since Saturday night was the Bachelor’s Party.

Of course we jumped at the chance to see Kaitlyn. We spent Monday morning changing our plans, countless phone calls to try to find a place to park the rig in the Seattle area for the weekend, you know, the whole domino effect.

We left Columbia Falls on Tuesday morning, headed west. About an hour out we saw a momma black bear and her two cubs, so cute, but no pictures.  We stopped in Cheney, WA, set up and went to the Northern Quest Casino to eat. We played the machines for a bit; both of us were up, and found Fat Burger”s where we ate dinner.

The next day we left Cheney and went over to Moses Lake. After setting up, I fell asleep, as did Chuck. I wasn’t feeling very well. It was in the mid 90’s, sunny and nice.

We were off the next day going into Puyallup, WA, the Western Washington Fair grounds to be precise, parking across the wooden roller coaster in the grass; it was $20. with 50 amp, water and sewer.

We got in, set up- same old stuff. After washing the bugs and car, Chuck took us up to Auburn, WA to the Muckleshoot Casino. We played around a bit, went to dinner, the casino gave us $20. each towards dinner; we decided on the Prime Rib Buffet with salmon and shrimp. Dinner cost us $1.80 total, with what they gave us plus the tip. The food was delicious.

We decided to play for another hour. The first machine I sat down at after dinner was very good to me with its bonus. I cashed out and moved to another machine and that machine liked me a lot also. I tried to find Chuck in that huge casino, finally found an area where I had cell service and called him. He was looking for me he said; I left the Muckleshoot Casino with a lot more than I went in with. Chuck wasn’t as fortunate.

Friday, Chuck was out washing the rig first thing, even though I told him it was suppose to rain on Sunday. I got my stuff done and went and helped him.

We got the call that Mark and Kaitlyn were on the plane headed to Seattle at 4:45, so we waited until 6 before we left to pick them up at SeaTac Airport. We took Mark to his mom’s house in north Seattle, then back to Puyallup.

Saturday Kaitlyn was up bright and early, ready to go. She had to teach me her new game Puppyoply, which she proceeded to win. We did art work, all her normal things she likes to do with me; we had a fun day. Papa took us to see the new Ice Age movie in the afternoon. We all really liked that movie.

I had made Kaitlyn her favorite macaroni and cheese dish, a gallon freezer bag full. She had to eat some of it on Friday night after we got home from the airport with her. I asked her how she liked it; her reply was that it was “Nanalicious”, the best ever! When we dropped her off, there was only half a bag left for the rest of her time here.

All too soon our time together was over. We dropped her off at the parking lot in the back of Northgate and headed up here. That was when it rained on us, weather to match my mood.

Hopefully, it warms up a bit here and stays in the mid 70’s, without the rain, after being in the mid 90’s, it’s kind of cool for me.

Until next time,




7/16/12                                                                                                                                                                        Chuck’s report

We pulled into 1000 Trails here yesterday afternoon, found a spot with shared utilities that has a first come/first owns 50 amp hookup and satellite view plus afternoon shade, nice spot. 

Last Sunday we toured Glacier National Park once again, what a scenic drive.  The weather cooperated too, slight breeze to keep the bugs down, sunny and warm.  There was a bit more water in the streams and through the rapids from all the rain they’ve had and the melting snow in the upper elevations.   Of course, I’ll have to add some pictures of this drive even if they look very similar to the one’s in last weeks blog.

Tuesday our time was up in Columbia Falls and Glacier National Park.  We really like the area but once again, it doesn’t meet our criteria for long term living, location is too remote, it gets too hot in the summer and WAY to cold in the winter.  But I’ll bet we will return again, it’s sure a nice place. 

So Tuesday we went to Cheney, Washington, home of Easter Washington University.  We thought about stopping in Coeur d’Alene but knew we would only be there one night and that wouldn’t be enough time to see all the sights in the area.  Cheney, however, is not that big and we’ve never stopped there before.  We found a a small RV park, Peaceful Pines, not a resort by any stretch but full hookups so we could run the air conditioners. 

There is a casino nearby that we’ve stopped at once before so we decided to return there for dinner.  They had a Fat Burger place inside so that’s what we had plus the casino was nice enough to let us both win some on the slots. 

Next morning we headed out, this time it would be a sort trip, we stopped at Moses Lake.  We’ve driven by here lots of time but never stopped.  I have a friend who was staying in the area but he left the day we got there, bummer but we’ll catch up with you somewhere Tom.  So once again we were able to tour a portion of the state we’ve lived in for over 35 years and never toured before.  Someday we may be able to say we’ve seen all of a one state that we want to see but so far can’t say that about any state, even Washington. 

Then on to Western Washington, this time to Puyallup, home of the Puyallup State Fair later in September.  They have a fairly large area set aside for RVs with full hookups.  It wasn’t too busy so we were able to pick out a spot, spread out our stuff and get ready to pick up our grand daughter Kaitlyn the next day.  They said we could wash the rig and the car if we wanted so I washed the car the first day before we took of exploring the area.  Of course, there are Indian Casinos in the area so we picked one we’ve never been to before, Muckleshoot Casino.  They gave us points and with the ones we earned, we were able to have a very nice buffet for $1.80, that was for both of us.  Plus Lorraine hit a couple of nice jackpots, enough to replace all she and I have lost this trip at all the casinos we’ve stopped at. 

Next morning I washed the bugs off the windshield and decided to go ahead and wash the rig.  Lorraine came out to help and it wasn’t too bad of a job and it looked clean once again.  We don’t get a chance to wash it very often so it was nice to have it done once again.  Lorraine needed to go to a grocery store and it’s been awhile since we’ve been to a Fred Meyer so that’s where she wanted to stop.  She seemed to enjoy shopping there, even found a few items she’s been looking for. 

Later we headed out to pick up Mark and Kaitlyn at SeaTac Airport.  We waited in the cell phone waiting area after they landed and gave them enough time to get their luggage.  We timed it just about right, they were waiting at the curb, we pulled up and loaded with minimal waiting time for them.  Boy was Kaitlyn and Lorraine glad to see each other, lots of hugging, laughing and talking. 

We were to drop Mark off at his mother’s house in North Seattle, about 30 minutes away and we were going to find a quick place to eat.  What place is quicker than McDonald’s?  So a couple of hamburgers, a chicken burger and chicken nuggets we on tap for our dinner.  We then dropped Mark off with a promise we would come back on Sunday morning and he could pick up his daughter for the remainder of his time in Seattle.  Thanks for letting us have her for Friday night and Saturday, it was good for us and I think for her too. 

So with Kaitlyn with us, Lorraine went into Nana mode fulltime.  That meant feeding her every 10 minutes, can’t let her get to hungry you know, playing games and coloring pictures.  They played a game Kaitlyn brought with her, Doggy Monopoly, I think Kaitlyn won but they sure had fun.  Later we went to the movies, they wanted to see the new Ice Age movie.  Then back to our place for more games, food and coloring, it’s fun to see them together. 

Sunday morning we got things ready to get on the road, headed to North Seattle to drop Kaitlyn off with her dad and his family.  The day before we had found a spot where we could pull into a parking lot so that’s where we met Mark.  He had Kaitlyn’s cousin, Christopher, with him when they got there.  After a short time, Lorraine and I said our so longs and headed back on the road to here in Birch Bay.  Mark said there might be a chance we could see Kaitlyn once again before they leave in a week, otherwise we are staying in the area and taking it easy. 

The weather has been getting a bit cooler as we traveled West.  We we at 107F in Garryowen, Mt, high 90’s throughout Idaho and Eastern Washington but much nicer here in Western Washington.  It got into the low high 70 while we were in Puyallup and was in the low 70s yesterday.  We do have unusual weather here, thunderstorms.  It isn’t normal to have thunder/lightening in Western Washington, we get our rain but not by thunderstorms.  We did have some rain in during our travels yesterday and a good rain last night but it’s back to sunny with slight clouds today.  The forecast is for good weather for the next few days too, yea. 

I have two doctor visits this week then next week we are thinking of attending a FMCA chapter rally in La Connor, about 45 miles South of here at a different 1000 Trails park.  After that, it will be back here to finish up our annual doctor visits and enjoy the area.  This area may be the best place in the US during August, weather wise.  Like I said, we don’t usually get thunderstorms, the temperature rarely get above 80F and most of the days will be sunny and clear.  Along with family and friends in the area, this makes it a nice place to be for a month or so. 

This year will be our 40th wedding anniversary and Lorraine would like to have some of our friends and family get together in late August before we leave.  We haven’t made plans for this yet, it’s still in the talking stage but sometime in late August sounds most likely.  Lorraine’s sister and her husband, Thelma and John, stood up for us 40 years ago and I hope are glad they did.  But more on that later. 

By the end of August or early September, we will be getting itchy feet and wanting to get back on the road.  We don’t have an itinerary or route planed yet but will work on that while we are here.  With all the places to see, it sometimes takes awhile to make our plans, tough life, huh!!  But for now, we plan on taking it easy and enjoying our time here. 

And now for some pictures and then get this posted. 

More Glacier National Park. 

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Back on the road.

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The first view of the  Columbia River on the right. 

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Must be close to home, trees!

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The Cascade Mountains. 

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Kaitlyn time. 

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She wrote a song as we traveled on Sunday. 

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Ok, that’s our week, hope you had a good one one too. 

Thanks   Chuck