Sunday, March 27, 2016

Wandering With The Wrights 3/27/2016

Since our last blog we have been in Congress, AZ for a week and now in Tucson.  Have been here 5 days and will be here at least 5 more.  The main reason we traveled to Congress, about 70 miles the wrong direction, was because we wanted to get our new coach weighed with all of our "stuff" in it.  It is very important that the weight be equally distributed along all the wheels for safety as well as having the tires last as long as possible.  There are only a few places across the US where all wheels can be done individually and since we were so close we wanted to have it done.  There is a nice Escapee campground in Congress and we always enjoy being around other Escapee members.

Arriving at Escapee North Ranch in Congress, AZ

The members of North Ranch maintain a beautiful Cactus Garden that was just beginning to bloom - everyday it was more beautiful.

We took a day trip up to Prescott, AZ

Prescott Courthouse.  Beautiful building and plaza.

On the north side of the Courthouse there is a timeline embossed and painted into the concrete walk.  The timeline is laid out in an elongated U-shape and features events from the history of the county.  We found it extremely interesting.

We were caught with one entry in-particular - Wm. "Bucky" O'Neill, Sheriff as my dad, Wm. O'Neill was a policeman in Lake Forest, IL


After a week in Congress we had to return to Phoenix for one day for the hitch to be put on the new coach.  It had been ordered weeks before but the wrong one arrived and had to be re-ordered.  The stop over allowed us to have a picnic lunch with an old friend Dave Vanhook and his friend Susan and their dachshund Lana.
In January we spent 10 days boon-docking in Quartzite, AZ but that was in the old motorhome so decided while in Tucson we would check on a boon-docking area we had heard a lot about, Snyder Hill, and try boon-docking in the new coach.  In the old coach we had a small refrigerator that ran off of electricity or propane.  In the new coach we have a large residential refrigerator and were wondering how hard it would be on the generator.  We have been pleasantly surprised that it has all worked very well.  The picture above shows us off to the left.  There are about a dozen other campers here on Snyder Hill but we are very far apart which can be a nice change from some public campgrounds.
One of the things that has amazed us as we travel is how God guides us every Sunday to a church.  We look on line or see several on our drives and just seem to get a feeling as to where He wants us to go.  Today, Easter Sunday was no exception.  We have been to Non-Denominational, Lutheran, Methodist, Baptist but today was our first Presbyterian.  It was a wonderful Easter Service.  We really had a great experience.

This is the gift bag we were presented at church this morning for being first time visitors.
 We spent last Thursday with a couple we met last winter in Texas.  We actually traveled with them for several weeks last year and have stayed in touch just waiting until our paths would cross again.  We spent a great morning with Warren & Dee Dee Eoff at Sonora Desert Museum.  We then came back to the RV, had lunch, and visited well into the evening.  We had a wonderful time seeing them again and can't wait until our paths cross again!!

In between blogs I write a note if there is something I want to add to the blog that I think I might forget and in the last blog I forgot to check my notes so this story is old but I think you might enjoy it.  The shower in our new motorhome has a very different closure than in our last RV.  What I learned, the hard way, as you have to make sure that the lock is totally open before closing the door or it locks.    Yes, I locked myself in the first morning I took a shower.  Fortunately Jerry was here and not out walking Teddy or I would have had to wait for his return.  It was pretty funny and of course at first he said he wasn't going to let me out :-) :-).

We plan to do some sightseeing while in Tucson however it is Spring-break time and things are very busy.  We had gone to take a tram ride yesterday up in the mountains.  One look at the lines and the cars waiting to go in and we just kept going.  Will try a few more places.  The main reason we are here as I am taking a motor coach driving class on Thursday.  I have driven a little, very little, but only in wide open spaces.  Jerry is a very patient man and could teach me more about turning, etc. but we decided the best thing for our marriage was for me to take lessons.  I don't plan on driving often but once I learn I will drive occasionally to keep my skill level up but think it makes sense for me to know just incase of an emergency.  So appreciate any prayers you might want to offer up on Thursday :-).

We will depart Tucson on Fri. or Sat. and head for Benson, AZ.  We will be there a week or two and then will start our slow trip back to Illinois - we plan to be home the first week in May in time for Mother's Day.  I am blessed to still have my wonderful mother and want to be with her that day.  Would appreciate prayers for her as she has Shingles and they are having a hard time finding something to help her with the pain.

So I want to end this on this Holy Easter Sunday evening letting you know that we have wonderful family and friends - if you are reading this you fall into that category.  So we send Easter greetings to each of you and pray that you know how much we love and care about you.  Hugs and Blessings, Carol & Jerry

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Wandering With The Wrights 3/16/2016

Last blog we had just arrived in Mesa, AZ for a two week stay.  Here are some of our adventures:

Last summer we met the Sparks from Gurnee.  They had just sold their home, bought a motorhome and were starting out just as we were.  They have spent the winter in Apache Junction, AZ.  We spent the day with them and had a wonderful time.
The views from Canyon Lake were beautiful!

Dollar bills from all over cover the walls inside the main building.
They took us to Tortilla Flat for lunch.  Talk about being in the middle of the desert!

Have no idea who this lady is but she was a good sport and posed so I could get a picture of the women's stalls :-)

Next we visited a Ghost Town
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We had a wonderful day with Frenchie and Jimmy.

Took Scott (Jerry's nephew) and his bride Sara (of one month) out for dinner.  We had a wonderful evening.  Two young adults who have their heads on straight - can't wait to see where the future takes them.

With all this time in the desert Teddy requires baths in-between monthly grooming - Jerry combing him out.

Ken knew we were in the area and made arrangements to surprise Cheryl while at lunch at the BBQ Heaven Restaurant.    Ken & Cheryl attend church with us at GCC in Illinois

Jerry couldn't stand how all the wires were tangled around the TV in the new motorhome so straightened them all out.

Our neighbors in Mesa were very friendly and invited us to a potluck.

My cousin's husband, Jimmy Peddle, took us out into the desert in his ATV.  We had a great time.  The desert is just starting to bloom - should be fabulous in the next few weeks.  Had a great time - saw one snake.  It has been so warm they are out earlier than usual - lucky us!!

My cousin Mary in the ATV we went to the desert in.
My beautiful cousin with some beautiful flowers

Had lunch the next day at Mary's daughter Heather's in Gilbert.  She has a beautiful HUGE home.   The water was still to cool for us humans but the dogs had a ball.

Jerry, Mary's Uncle Van and Jim Peddle
Heather and her son Cameron - two wonderful people!!

The day before leaving Mesa we had breakfast with Bob & Diane Leonard (also from our church in Illinois).  We had a wonderful visit - think the waitress was happy when we finally left - she got an extra big tip.

We spent an evening with an old friend, David VanHook, forgot to take a picture but will be having lunch with him next week so hope to remember then.

We specifically came to Mesa to visit with friends and family and we are so glad that we did.

We then headed to the west side of Phoenix to have some work done on the RV.  They were items we had requested be done when we purchased it and parts had to be ordered.

After dropping the RV off took the Jeep to get a new tire - picked up a huge screw somewhere in our travels.

Teddy waiting patiently as they changed the tire.

The first day they had the RV we got the tire changed, Jerry & I got hair cuts, Teddy got groomed, took him to a dog park and we visited the people we had stayed with while working the NOMADS project in Buckeye.  So the first day of repair went quickly.  The second day we were at the RV dealer's from 8:15 to 3:15.  They had a very nice lounge for us to wait in and we met another couple who had just bought their first RV had had an estate sale and were going full-time.  The time passed quickly as we chatted.  They had lots of questions and we were more than happy to answer them - we had so many people help us get started and we are still learning.

We could not ask for a better dog than Teddy to have on this adventure with us.  He just takes everything in stride.  

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Wandering With The Wrights 3/2/2016

In the last blog we had finished the first two weeks of our three week NOMAD Mission Project.  We finished up the last week with more caulking, painting and general repairs.  The last day of the project the pastor came for devotion time and served us communion.  This was our first NOMAD project.  We are signed up for two more this summer in Illinois.  It was a great experience and we are looking forward to working more with the NOMADS.

The NOMADS team and several other church members including the pastor and his wife at Cracker Barrel
The six NOMAD team members: Jerry & I, Steve, Sandi & Gabriel, Phyllis & Len
Jim & Shirley are the couple that allowed us to stay on their ten acres in Buckeye while we worked on the NOMADS team.  All three couples were their guests for three weeks and they were wonderful hosts.  We even had a potluck with them at the end of our time there.  It was hard to say goodbye to the other two couples - we had become close in those 3 weeks of working together - we know we will see them again down the road.  I mentioned in the last blog that we had found a new to us coach to buy.  It needed some work so Jim & Shirley offered to let us stay on while we waited.  So we had the privilege of staying an extra 10 days.  We became great friends and shared more meals together.  They are a wonderful loving couple that we feel very blessed to have met.

George - lives on Jim & Shirley's farm and is like a watch dog.  He is really funny and when you call him and he sees you have bread he comes a running.

While waiting for the coach we had some free time so Jerry did some shooting out in the desert.

His aim was really good especially considering how long it had been since he had done any shooting.

Jim and his really cool hot rod

Finally on Thursday 2/25 we got to pick up the new 2010 Tiffin Allegro Bus 40' with 4 slides 

We spent two days moving from our 2003 Dutch Star 38' with 2 slides into our new Bus.  We drove her to the dealer and said good-bye.  We have had her 6 years and have lots of good memories.  Then spent Sunday unpacking boxes and getting settled enough so that we could continue on our journey.  We said good-bye to Jim and Shirley and headed for Mesa on Monday.

We arrived in Mesa exhausted from all the moving and the heat.  They have had had record breaking heat in Phoenix all through February.  I know it is dry heat but when you are moving and the sun is beating on you it is hot!  We still had a lot to do getting settled and lots of paperwork: getting the bus registered and warranty work, etc.  By Tuesday lunch we were feeling more relaxed and started making plans to visit with some of our friends and family that are in the area.  Made arrangements to see my cousin and her husband Friday but she surprised us and came for a visit yesterday - it was so great to see her.

My cousin Mary and her dog Sadie - and of course our Teddy.

We have two weeks in Mesa and our looking forward to meeting up with friends and family that are in this area.