Monday, April 25, 2016

Wandering With The Wrights


 4/25/2016

One of our last nights in Benson, AZ a neighbor asked me to go with her to bingo.  As you can see I was a big winner :-)


Beautiful red and yellow blooms on a cactus in Benson, AZ

Have been driving a little to get some practice - not my favorite thing but feel I need to know how.
We are on our way to Las Cruces, NM.  The beginning of our trip back to Illinois.

Went by the exit for the town of Truth or Consequences, NM.  Also saw the exit for Elephant Butte!
On our way to Albuquerque we crossed the Rio Grande River.  We normally don't travel on Sunday's but we were held up a day because of high winds so Sunday became a travel day.  We listened to 3 of our home pastor's sermons so felt like we did okay.  When we got into Albuquerque and plugged into the electric on our sight we had no power.  Jerry tested the pole and it was fine.  The problem was in our coach.  I am never ceased to be amazed at how Jerry figures out was in wrong, goes to the store and gets something to fix the problem and fixes it in no time-this time he even had to jury-rig the part he needed.  Amazing!!   
The weather in Albuquerque was pretty overcast, windy and damp, even had some rain - we have seen very little of those items this past winter.  We went to the shops at Old Town Albuquerque and visited a cute store called The Wild Rose.  Jerry's daughter's nickname is Rose so had to take a picture and send it to her.

Had fun looking around in all the stores

Also played around a bit

Our next stop was Raton, NM with a very high elevation - almost 8,000 feet.  We didn't think about the fact that our new coach has a sleep number bed and when we went to bed that night the bed was as hard as a rock!  We were very fortunate it didn't explode!!  We read the directions then and learned we should have deflated the mattress before ascending to such high elevations!  The day before we arrived in Raton they still had snow on the ground but we keep being blessed - seems like we are avoiding the bad weather and just follow right behind it.
Arrived in Colorado Springs (that is Pikes Peak in the distance) on Thursday the 21st and will be leaving in the morning the 26th.  The weekend before we arrived they had 14" of snow.  Like I said we just keep following along behind the bad weather.
Our neighbors have a dog almost the same size as Teddy and they have a ball playing together  Teddy will miss Jo Jo

We came to Colorado Springs to visit our grandson.  The 21st was his 10th birthday and we just kind of extended the celebration right through the week-end.  Adrian lives with his mom, step-dad and half-siblings.  We really enjoyed all of them!
Adrian watching them cook his dinner

He told them it was his birthday so they added a little excitement for us to watch

Adrian opening gifts at his kids party on Saturday

Sunday morning went to the Elks Lodge for breakfast with two awesome couples that are parked near us and then joined Adrian and his family at church

After church we set out for pizza, ice cream and just more fun times. 
The Flynt's - Adrian, his mom, step-dad and siblings.  A really great family raising well behaved children - a joy to be around.  After lunch everyone came back to see the motorhome.  We had planned on leaving this morning, Monday, but after three days of Adrian's birthday celebration and some high winds we decided to stay in Colorado Springs one more night and relax.  We will leave in the morning for Kansas, Iowa and Illinois.  There are storms ahead of us and behind us so we will watch the weather and travel when it is safe and stay put and enjoy wherever we are if we can't move on.  Still plan to get to Illinois State Beach Park on Monday the 2nd.  It is hard to believe that we have been out 6 months.  We have seen so many interesting places and met so many amazing people - can't wait to see what the future holds!!  

For all of our family and friends in and around Zion, Gurnee, etc.  Can't wait to see you - lots of hugging next week!


Sunday, April 10, 2016

Wandering With The Wrights

4/10/2016

We spent a few more nights boon-docking outside of Tucson at Snyder Hill.  During those days we visited the Pima Space & Air Museum.  Jerry had been through the museum years ago.  We went this time to take what they call the Boneyard Tour at the Davis-Monthan Air Force Base.  It was conducted in a beautiful air-conditioned coach and was very interesting.  We saw hundreds and hundreds of planes not used anymore.  They are mainly kept around for parts.  The docent was very good and Jerry and I both found the tour very interesting.  That evening we drove a short distance to another RV park and had dinner with an old high school buddy of Jerry's and his wife, Don & Janet Dart.  I had never met them but we all hit it off and had a wonderful dinner and evening together.  They also live full-time in their RV.

Our last day in that area we visited Mission San Xavier Del Bac.  It was another wonderful and interesting day.  We had another great docent and learned so much about the history of the mission.

Mission San Xavier Del Bac.  You may notice that the right side does not look as pristine as the left which has been recently renovated and painted.  They are currently raising funds to do the right side.

The main alter

The ceiling was magnificient
Many people bring statues and light candles


 We drove a short distance to a KOA campground still in Tucson.  Right next to the KOA is a motorhome driving school.  Jerry and I and several other couples spent the morning in the classroom and any of us who did not have much experience driving then drove for as long as we wanted until we felt comfortable.  Once again learned a lot and got to where I was pretty comfortable behind the wheel.  Now I will need to practice!!  Incase of some type of an emergency at least I have some idea as to how to drive our home.  One of the men in our driving class did not have his wife with him.  We offered him a ride back to the campground and learned they were parked right across from us.  His wife has very severe MS and her dream has always been to live in a motorhome so they had recently sold everything, bought a motorhome, and had just started traveling.  We enjoyed dinner with them at the little restaurant on the campground.  What a delightful couple and she is determined to see as much as she can for as long as she can.  A true inspirtation.  Part of what we enjoy so much about this life-style is all the wonderful people we meet.  So many of their stories are inspirational.

We then headed southeast to Benson, AZ - less than an hour from Tucson - our home for two weeks.  We are at the SKP Escapees Saguaro Park and loving it.  Every Escapee park we have ever been at we have found friendly people, great parking sights and lots of activities going on right in the park.


Our spot #74 at Saguaro Park
View of the mountains at sunset

Our first night at the park they had a wonderful Barbershop group entertain us followed by free root beer floats.

The following night the entertainment was the Elliot's - a local family that plays and sings.  

Some mornings Teddy is just not anxious to get up and get going

Our welcome bag from the Methodist church we attended in Benson.  Every afternoon there is Happy Hour at 4:00.  You bring your beverage of choice and several people always bring a snack to share.  It is a great way to meet people and to learn what is going on around the area.  The first night there you have to stand and introduce yourself and say a little about yourself.  Jerry mentioned that we had just worked a NOMAD project in Buckeye and after Happy Hour John & Kitty Drake, also NOMADS, came over and invited us to attend church with them Sunday.  They even picked us up.  Sunday afternoon they had an Ice Cream social instead of Happy Hour - worked for us :-).

When we arrived in Benson we had a list of places in the area we wanted to visit.  We have been here more than half of our two weeks and haven't done any sightseeing but have had a wonderful time just relaxing and enjoying all the park has to offer.  We will be back - God willing.

On our 7th day here we experienced something we had almost forgotten existed - it rained!!!   We haven't seen any rain, and then not much, for over 3 months.  Yesterday however was 80 and sunny again.  Today it is raining again.  It starts and stops a lot.  I am sure the locals are thrilled and we aren't complaining - our weather has been for the most part outstanding all winter.  Plus that gives a reason to stay inside and do paperwork, clean, laundry, etc.

We spent the better part of two days this week planning our trip back to Illinois.  When we leave Benson on Friday we will slowly be heading north and east.  We are praying the weather holds so we can visit Carson City, CO where our grandson Adrian will be having his 10th birthday party.  We are so excited to see him!!  Then we will travel through Topeka, KS and visit another high school friend of Jerry's and then to Davenport, Iowa to visit a lady I worked with for years!!

With weather and motorcoach cooperation we will be arriving at Illinois Beach State Park May 2nd or 3rd.  We will be camp hosting for the month of May.  We are getting excited about seeing our friends and family in Illinois.
On the hill out the back of our coach.