Photo Essay: A look back and a plan for the future

Wednesday, December 18

Ajo, Arizona

Ajo, Arizona

I’m online most of the day, which is a travesty because the weather is balmy here on Sidewinder Road west of Yuma.  Except for the time I sit outside washing dishes in a basin, I’m inside the Best Little Trailer.

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San Rafael Reef near Goblin Valley, Utah

I pay bills, answer comments, clean up files, transfer photos to a memory card, write emails, etc. and, best of all, buy stuff through Amazon!

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Eagle Lake, California

What do I order?

I take a huge gamble and order curtains and curtain rods.  Anyone who has ever bought curtains knows what a crap-shoot it is in the best of circumstances.  Buying curtains online?  Insane!

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Badger Mountain, Ephraim, Utah

No, I’m not showing you the curtains.

If they’re totally wrong, you don’t need to see my mistake.  If they’re everything I hope and imagine, you can bet I’ll splash photos of them all over this blog.

The mini-blinds that come with a Casita are okay.

They’re bright and new and NOT BENT.  However, that doesn’t last.  Mine have suffered much battering and they look awful.

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Congress, Arizona

Now you know why I haven’t posted many interior shots lately. These piggy blinds have got to go!

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Snake River near Yellowstone NP, Wyoming

What else did I order?

A 12-volt car vacuum, a SONY memory card, and . . . drumroll please . . . a Kindle paperwhite!  What a Christmas this year!  SiriusXM radio and a brand new Kindle . . . sweet.

I ruminate on the future.

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Brooks Lake, Wyoming

I can see a pattern that will serve me and the crew well.  Spring, summer, and fall are the seasons for travel and adventure.  Winter is the time for maintenance, repairs, shopping, catching up on blog pages, reading, rest, relaxation, and reflection.

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McKenzie River, Oregon

Yuma is the best place I’ve found for a winter hiatus. 

It’s warm, services are available, and I can boondock for free as long as I want in the area off Ogilby Road.   For a change of scenery, Mittry Lake and Kofa Wildlife Refuge are alternate places to camp.  It’s a good plan that suits me.

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Goosenecks State Park, Utah

I hope you’ve enjoyed wandering down memory lane through these old photos.

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Gifford-Pinchot National Forest near Randle, Washington

rvsue

THANK YOU, RVSUE SHOPPERS!

These links show a sample of recent Amazon purchases:

AeroBed Extra Bed with Built-In Pump, Twin
Clarisonic Sonic Skin Cleansing System
DeoxIT® DN5 Mini-Spray
Hamilton Beach Large Cordless Kettle
Flojet Waste Water Pump
iRobot Floor Mopping Robot

“REAR VIEW MIRROR”

This July 2013 post features the antics of the inimitable Spike.

“What is it now? Yawn”

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120 Responses to Photo Essay: A look back and a plan for the future

  1. Phil Kelley says:

    Woo Hoo! I’m #1!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Congratulations, Phil! Now go back and read the post and gaze at the photos like a good RVSue follower.

    • Phil Kelley says:

      Oh yeah, I’m commenting from sunny south Florida.

      Congrats on the new Kindle PaperWhite, my wife seldom puts hers down.

      • rvsueandcrew says:

        I love hearing where people are commenting from. Oh yeah, that new Kindle has been on my wish list for a long time. They’re cheaper than what I paid for my old, first generation Kindle several years ago (which keeps dying on me).

      • Chuck Hajek says:

        Hi Phil Kelley!
        We’re currently at Highlands Hammock, are we north of you? We welcome visitors, espescially from RVSues blog!
        Chuck n Geri n K9Kids

  2. Marcia GB in MA says:

    Sounds like a great life plan! Yuma in the winter and exploring the rest of the time.
    I put up curtains in our Casita because I couldn’t stand the blinds that got beat up right away. They’re cheap red and beige checked cafe curtains that I backed with blackout lining. Used drapery hooks to hang the rods on. They look fine and don’t make any noise when we accidentally hit them. Life is good!

    • Marcia GB in MA says:

      PS: my hubby got a Paperwhite for Christmas last year and he loves it! Hardly ever puts it down 😉

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Marcia,

      These are cafe curtains, too… inexpensive. They’re white which should look well with all the white fiberglass inside the BLT. White is impractical, I know, but they are washable. Lightweight, providing no insulation at all. They have grommets to slide on the rod.

      If a miracle occurs and the size is right, I may use them as a pattern for heavier curtains for cold weather.

    • Dedra says:

      How do you hang curtains in a Casita?
      I haven’t figure that out.
      I really dislike the cheap blinds they put in them.
      Boy, are they noisy when you hit it while sleeping.
      Thanks,

      • rvsueandcrew says:

        Hi, Dedra,

        I’ll be putting up curtain rods the usual way. If the curtains swish and sway too much, I may also put rods at the bottom of the windows to keep the curtain taut. If these curtains work, I may come up with a decorative way to tie them back.

        Ha! You’re right about the noise. I now have the habit of raising the blind above our bed before settling in to sleep.

  3. Bob says:

    Well the Amazon connection worked perfectly and I got my irobot to clean floors and the added bonus of entertaining the pups who are fascinated by it and you get a credit. Love it when things work out. Merry Christmas Sue and companions and may the years to come bring joy and above all let there be peace on earth.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Bob,

      Warm wishes to you, too, Bob, whichever Bob you may be. LOL!

      Your iRobot brought me a very nice commission. I thank you for that. I imagine the pups are fascinated by their new housemate, which is okay as long as they don’t kill it!

      • Bob says:

        They don’t get close enough. I am the Bob from the frozen tundra. A week of kids filling the house and then escape to warmer climates.

  4. Brian says:

    I have to say this is probably my favorite posting! It’s got it all … great copy, nice insights to full time living, beautiful photos, remembering past places visited, and my favorite, a Spike soaking photo.

    Happiest of holidays to you Sue and best wishes for the new year!

    Brian and Carolyn
    coolcampcreations.com

  5. janis harrison says:

    Merry Christmas to you RV Sue . I love my paper white Kindle BUT my battery does not last as long as the old fashioned type (the kind that has no back light.) Hope yours stays charged !! I got a new camper for Christmas ….but alas I did not buy through Amazon. Sorry about that LOL
    Grandjan

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Janis,

      I will read my Kindle with it plugged into a 12v outlet a large percentage of the time (nighttime reading), so I hope a depleted battery won’t be a problem for me. I wonder if your battery is okay.

      I think there are a lot of folks reading my blog who would love to find a new camper on Christmas morning . . .

      • Cari in North Texas says:

        Oh, Santa, I would love to see a new Casita (or used, even, I’m not proud) sitting in my driveway on Christmas morning (batting eyelashes and smiling sweetly).

  6. Jane Onken says:

    72*! We’re having a heat wave in Il –it’s 30!
    You are indeed getting some nice Christmas gifts, Sue! Lucky lady livin’ large. (alliteration–had to look it up to confirm. Yay, I was right! Shocking.) Anyway.
    Curious, why didn’t you just make some curtains? You’re in your 60’s so probably had Home Ec and know how to sew, right? Apparently you do, since you might use these for a pattern.
    I have a question about your choice of TV, also. I’ll be in the market next spring so am researching all possibilities. Obviously, it’s wonderfully spacious, but I’m concerned about mpg? If you’ve answered these questions earlier, just point me to the month, would you please?
    Thanks!
    Jane

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Jane,

      I used to sew, many, many years ago when I had a sewing machine, making my own clothes. I really hate hand-sewing. There’s too much fun stuff I’d rather be doing. When I wrote that I’ll use these curtains for a pattern… I really don’t need them for a pattern. I could measure and cut the fabric and hem and blah, blah.

      What I should’ve written in the reply to a comment (above) is I’ll see if the grommet-type curtain works well for my windows. If it does, I may get a grommet-maker and create curtains/insulation panels that will slide on the rod, based on the white curtain dimensions. Then I’ll use these lightweight, white curtains most of the time, since we usually follow the sun.

      The PTV gets about 12-15 mpg in mixed conditions (while towing in city, interstate, long upward grade, cross wind, etc.). That’s not a reliable figure based on the mixed conditions, but I sense that it’s close to accurate. Of course it’s probably higher in optimum conditions. I’m happy with the mileage.

  7. Jane Onken says:

    PS Don’t tell Spike that picture makes his nose look big. Very cute though.
    Jane

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Well, it wouldn’t matter, Jane. One thing you can count on is Spike not caring about his appearance!

  8. Ron says:

    5 oclock yesterday I switched over to Casita time . Loaded today and leaving in the morning for 3 weeks .
    Ye hawwwwwwwwwwwwwww ( is that a verb or an adverb?)
    Ron

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      HOORAY FOR RON! Tow that Casita on down the road, baby! Would you share where you’re going?

      • Ron says:

        Leaving Waco going to Shreveport Lousiania then to Jackson Miss .
        Up the Trace to Nashville.
        Spend a little time there fishing for smallmouth and teaching grandson how to sight in a rifle, hopefully get him his first deer.
        I build custom knives and he wants to learn ,so I will help him build one.
        Then on to Ark. then Oklahoma then home.
        Ron

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          That sounds great, Ron. Your grandson is fortunate to have you ready, willing, and able to teach him. Have a fantastic time!

  9. Barbara says:

    Merry Christmas to you Sue.
    I’m sure you will love your new Paperwhite. My sister-in-law has one and loves it. She does not keep it plugged in. She and I both run them down to various percentages and then recharge. If you leave them plugged in, the battery eventually remembers and then when you need the battery it won’t work. I received a Kindle Fire HD as a gift for recuperating after my cancer surgery and play games and read a lot. I recharge when it is down anywhere from 5% to 30% depending on what I have going on or coming up.

    Have you heard from Rusty? I haven’t noticed many comments from him lately.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Barbara,

      Thanks for the advice on the Kindle battery. No, Rusty hasn’t emailed me lately. He did comment a few days ago. I’ll email him.

  10. Dear Santa, I have been a very good girl all year! Honest! All I want for CHRISTmas this year is a Kindle paperwhite just like RVSue’s…… and maybe a 12V bedwarmer too! I will even be good all next year too! hahahahaha! Wow $119 is a great price on the paperwhite and my old kindle is about ready to take a nosedive!
    I loved you going back and reminding us of all the wonderful places we have been lucky enough to follow you two via your blog! Love the photo of the BLT camped up on The Goosenecks! Wasn’t that an amazing place? This is such a wonderful world we live in! Having Gypsy Feet is a good thing…. I love finding new places and re-discovering old places! Merry Christmas Sue! Give Spikey and Bridget a special hug from us! Merry Christmas to all the commenters here also, what a wonderful bunch!We love you all!!!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Geri,

      I had quite a time deciding which photos to post. They represent a small percentage of the places we’ve visited and camped. I’m amazed every time I browse my collection of photos. Yes, it is a wonderful world indeed!

      Hugs to you, Chuck, DoogieBowser and Radar . . . Merry Christmas! I hope Santa brings you what you wish for . . .

  11. Marcia in PA says:

    Love the photos Sue. Such a blessed life you have to wake up and spend the day in those glorious places with your pups. But I must say the one of Spikey taking a soak brought tears to my eyes. Such happiness and love!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Marcia,

      Yes, I am blessed and very grateful for this life.

      My sweet Spikey. . . I can’t measure the happiness he’s given me.

  12. Glenda in OZ! says:

    Well Sue from me in OZ on a 43 degree day (C) trying to keep me and my crew cool……….wonderful catch up photos…..thanks for posting them! I may not post often but I do check in every day to see what is new and going in the world of Sue and her canine crew. Seriously Sue, I love your blog, so well written, humorous, educational and above all Human. Love to you at Xmas and all the very best for 2014!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Glenda,

      And I love hearing from you, but I know you and the rest of my readers do have your own lives to live!

      Good for me to know that you check in with us every day. Love and warm wishes to you, too… Merry Christmas!

    • Connie & Mugsy (MN/AZ) says:

      43C… Yikes… that is nearly 110F. Stay cool!!

  13. Renee (from Datil) says:

    Glad to hear you’re somewhere relatively warm! We’re not doing so good on that front this year — finally left Montana (before the -29 & -39 wind chills moved in!), & are now at Lake Texoma. We were hit with an ice/sleet storm a couple weeks ago, where the ice stayed on the ground for OVER A WEEK! Come on, now… Numerous times I almost landed on my rear; activities severely limited. Agree on your assessment of Yuma being a great place to sit out the winter..relaxing & getting projecgs done. Won’t make it there this year, though. You have a very merry Christmas, Sue.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You have a merry Christmas, too, Renee.

      I guess you’ve had your fill of winter cold, snow, sleet, and ice! Who needs a white Christmas? I don’t!

      • Renee (from Datil) says:

        You’re right — I’ve had enough winter to tide me over now. I wouldn’t mind being in the warm for the rest of the winter. Envying you in the desert!

  14. Sherry says:

    Well that does sound like a Merry Christmas. Did you get the paper white with 3G or no?? That may end your need for thrift shop books although I just love the feel of the book in my hands.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Sherry,

      No, I didn’t get the one with 3G. I can give up holding a book in my hand. . . I can also give up having to tote around a bunch of books. I missed browsing through all the free and 99-cent books that Kindle offers. I like that one can enlarge the font of the print for easy reading.

  15. Gerri Jones says:

    You HAVE been a good girl!! Like your Christmas list!!
    Thanks for the trip down memory lane via pics!!! I am sure there are many many more!
    Good luck with the curtains!! When we bought our Casita the previous owners had ordered the curtains from Little House. So glad cause I am not a big fan of those blinds.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Gerri,

      I don’t think I’ve ever heard anyone say they like those blinds. Thanks for the good luck wish. I need it. I’ve never done well picking out curtains and curtain rods, even when in a store.

  16. Ilse says:

    Hi Sue,
    Question: you went into Yuma on Monday; was the Ag Inspection station open on your way back? I need to do laundry soon, but I live on fruits and vegetables and can’t afford to lose my entire food supply, which btw. came mostly from stores in CA. Are they always closed on Sunday? There is a farmers market in Yuma on Sunday, so I may just wait till then. I guess they would let me turn around and go back to AZ and I could sit over there somewhere for a few weeks until my new glasses arrive.
    If you like your curtains, but need to make some changes let me know. I’m crazy enough to have a sewing machine on board.:)
    Ilse

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Ilse,

      Yes, the inspection station was open on Monday and they were checking big trucks. Cars, vans, pickups and such were waved through. I don’t know if it’s always closed on Sundays. It was closed the one Sunday I went through there.

      Would you be driving a personal vehicle or an RV? I don’t know if they’d stop an RV, but I’m pretty sure you’d get through okay otherwise. I’m basing this on two instances of being waved through.

      Thanks for the sewing machine offer. I don’t know if I have the patience for that any more.

      • Ilse Werdermann says:

        I would be in my RV. …and I would gladly do the sewing:)

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          Hi, Ilse,

          I hope someone who winters in an RV in Yuma reads this and takes the time to write here about what to expect at the inspection station.

          You are a dear for offering to sew. I’ll probably take one of the suggestions offered by readers… one that doesn’t involve sewing. I need to remind myself that I am, after all, camping!

          Hey, what’s with this chilly morning!

    • kgdan says:

      We recently had to stop at the inspection station near Blythe. They were only interested in examining our port-a-bote and firewood for insects and barnacles–no questions about produce.

  17. Ladybug says:

    I thought about getting a Kindle of some kind during the Black Friday sales but…..I just can’t do it. I’m a book kinda person. I can certainly understand the convenience of it especially in a RV. Maybe it’s because it depends on power, or a server, or the whims of a company. I’m more of a non-fiction reader than fiction, so maybe it’s because I’ve never gotten into paperbacks! When I do read fiction, I prefer mysteries, but it’s hard to find any fiction to read without gratuitous sex….

    In regards to the curtains, if you find the ones you bought work for you, you could get some fleece (yardage or those cheap throws that are $5 at Walmart). Cut them a bit smaller than the curtains, less the grommet area, and either baste them or safety-pin them behind the curtains. That way the fleece will be to the outside. Fleece doesn’t require any type of treatment on the cut edges to keep them from raveling.

    And I wouldn’t mind finding even an old trailer under my Christmas tree….

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      That’s a great idea about the fleece lining, Ladybug. No sewing the edges, yay!

      If these white curtains are too flimsy to be lined and still hang right, I might use your idea on an alternate set of curtains, ones designed for keeping the cold out. I don’t have a plan, as you may have guessed (LOL!) but at least I’m jumping into this project by trying these curtains.

      Santa needs to give you a Kindle so you can fall in love with it!

      • Ladybug, Sue is right! Santa needs to get you a Kindle! I love mine for so many reasons. I have over 900 books stored on mine! A recharge of my kindle lasts several weeks of reading and I read a lot! So when you do need to charge the battery, you don’t use much in the way of power, 3 hours fully charges it!

        You are not at the whim of a server or a company. The very few times I have had a problem, I called Amazon Kindle help line and they had me fixed up in no time. I have had my kindle for almost 6 years and can’t imagine not having one. I got one for Chuck 2 years ago and he loves his also as much as I love mine! Try it, you will love it! I promise!

  18. Timber n' Rusty says:

    Well that’s what we did in the winter, Timber and I would camp between Parker and Lake Havasu City from mid October to the end of March, saving money and doing repairs on the truck for our trip abound the next trip. now not going far at all, just to the P.O. and the store.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Rusty,

      Good to hear from you! Hope you are enjoying your retirement from the full-time vagabonding life . . . This will be your first Christmas in your new home. I hope it is a happy one for you and Timber!

  19. Jool says:

    Hi Sue,
    It’s Jool from N. Texas. I loved today’s blog, but then I enjoy them all! I’d love to see a post just full of the Spike Soaking pictures. Well, that would have to cover many days. And then blogs of Bridget staring at the camera suspiciously…. I remember in the beginning all the Bridget photos were of her getting away from the camera. LOL!
    Two questions, please: do you ever use your slow cooker, or would that drain the solar too much? Also, I take it you are not a TV kinda person? I do like to pop in a DVD now and then, or watch a movie on TV but not sure you can even find anything boondocking like you are…. but hey, I can live without TV if I had Real Life outside my door. 🙂
    –Jool

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Jool,

      I haven’t used my slow cooker, although I’ve been told by Mick, my technical adviser, that I could probably use it without a problem if I didn’t run it for several hours on high. (Correct me if I’m wrong, please, Mick.)

      I have a television that relies on the built-in antenna of the BLT. Right now I can pick up 2 clear channels and 1 fuzzy one, all of them in Spanish which is Greek to me (LOL!).

      Gil and Kathy (dinner at Mittry Lake) have a new antenna that sits on their roof and it serves them well.

      Your affection for Bridget and Spike caused me to smile. I need to organize my photos to include the albums, “Spike Soaks,” and “Bridget Makes Faces and Hides.”

      • kgdan says:

        Our new addition for this winter is a Dish receiver and Tailgater antenna. After we finally learned how it works we have really enjoyed having access to our favorite programs. One major thing we learned was that in order to receive the major networks (ABC, CBS, NBC) we have to let Dish know where we are so they can tune us in to the nearest large city for local channels. The Tailgater is really nice because it finds the satellites for us. We have a pay-as-you-go RV pkg.

        • Chuck Hajek says:

          At Highlinds Hammock State Park in FL with old oaks, tall pines and lotsa Spanish Moss. 3 folks we have talked to here LOVE the Tailgator and swear it’s the best they’ve had! One has a fancy smachy thing on his motor home and says it gets a better picture even when the motorhome is open to the heavens! JMHO.

          • rvsueandcrew says:

            Oh no, now I’m gonna’ get sucked into wanting one, too. . .

            Satellite radio, Kindle PaperWhite, Tailgator . . . Where does it all end? Bwahaha!

            • Jool says:

              Kgdan, Chuck, and Sue, thank you for this info. This could make life more than perfect – while boondocking! I mean, what else is there to life: Food, Reading, Television, great radio, a dog (or two) to love, and best of all the great outdoors right outside your door.
              (not necessarily in that order).
              –Jool

            • rvsueandcrew says:

              . . . and a good camera . . .

  20. Elizabeth says:

    Fun hearing your traveling ideas…sounds good…I am tired of all this coming and going and getting downsized, etc…but at least the downsizing will be at an end more or less, ere too long maybe…well, when we end up with almost nothing, it will be anyway…ha! Looks like we are headed west again soon…daughter needs help as she has to have surgery, plus maybe other troubles that perhaps we can be of use…meanwhile, hubby is somewhat anxious about our other plans getting put on hold again…but I reminded him life is not about us, necessarily…we must be of help if we can…I have not sewn in a long time either, nor even crocheted much and my hands need that therapy!! Have a good time relaxing and reading…FUN!!
    Elizabeth currently in NC

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi Elizabeth,

      You certainly have moved around a lot this past year! The cliched phrase, “chapters of our lives,” probably comes from the way our lives seem to go through periods of similar happenings. You are definitely in a “travel-to-family chapter.”

      I’ve had my “work to survive” chapter and my “work to save” chapter and now it’s the “living on less and enjoying life more” chapter!

      I can understand your husband becoming anxious about the plans on hold. It will all work out, as my mother used to say. 🙂 Have a good trip. Your daughter is fortunate to have you. Best wishes for her quick recovery.

  21. Reine in Plano says:

    I’ll chime in so you know that there’s at least one person who likes the blinds in the Casita…with one caveat. We pull the blinds all the way up and put up blackout shades at night so no problems if we touch a window area. Our blackout/privacy shades are made of Reflectix with fabric on the cabin side so they provide insulation also. I like the blinds because they allow me to regulate the amount of light that’s coming in during the day.
    The photos are beautiful as usual. Glad you’re getting some fun stuff for Christmas. Our splurge is a receiver hitch for the Casita and a bike rack to go in it so we can carry our bikes on the back. We have a trip to Little House Customs planned for after Christmas.
    Hope everyone has a blessed and joyful Christmas.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Reine,

      I liked the blinds for a while. It is nice to be able to filter the light. Then Spike kept sticking his nose through them and the bottom slats bent while going down the road. The desert dust keeps them dirty, too.

      I ordered these white curtains not only because they’re inexpensive, but also because I like filtered light coming through a light curtain. Sunrise in the desert often sends a warm glow through the windows. Love that!

      Along with the great suggestions from readers, I am considering fabricating something with Reflectix for hanging behind the curtains or for replacing the curtains when we get caught in cold weather.

      Good for you, splurging on a way to take your bikes with you! Fun and good health . . .

      Merry Christmas to you, Paul, and family.

  22. Dorothy says:

    Hi Sue,

    You are going to love your Paperwhite. Mine is never far from me. I can read it all day for days on end and I think it lasts a couple of weeks before I need to charge it.

    I just spent a lot of money at Amazon (through your site, of course) so you should be able to have another Christmas next year when that money comes in. I am staying at my brothers house south of Tucson and we ordered the FloJet macerator and lots of hose so we can dump our tanks at his house. Should make life easier.

    Hope you have a wonderful Christmas.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Dorothy,

      Cute picture of your feet in your swinging chair! (Readers: Click on Dorothy’s name to view her blog.) Great to hear from you again . . .

      Thanks for buying your toilet equipment through my blog! May the macerating go well. 🙂

      You have a wonderful Christmas, too.

  23. Laura says:

    Hey Sue!

    If you find that you need lining for your curtains you can get some black-out fabric at a fabric store (the stuff I found is white) and use velcro to attach it to your hanging curtains. It’s pretty thick so it would help with insulation, too. And it doesn’t seem to fray, so you could just cut it to size and call it good.

    Just another idea … 🙂

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Laura,

      I appreciate the suggestion… It’s a good one! I noticed a fabrics-and-shades business on the same street as Starlight Solar in Yuma. I may go there.
      First I need to see how these summer-weight curtains look. Amazon says they will arrive Friday.

      BTW, the radio is working flawlessly. I have the speakers set up near the window on the patio-mat side of the BLT. I enjoy taking breaks from my busy schedule 🙂 , by sitting outside by the window listening to it. The nights used to be too long. Now I’m up too late listening to radio!

  24. Beverly says:

    Merry Christmas, a week early!

    Your pictures and blog bring me such joy.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Sweet comments like this one make me happy to work on my blog. Have a wonderful Christmas, Beverly.

  25. Lee J says:

    Sue..did you know you can borrow books from your friends that have Kindles? I loan books to my son often, the lender just has to put in the information on their Amazon page and the loan is good for two weeks, it disappears from my Kindle and appears on his, then two weeks later it reappears on mine!

    I am a reader..love mysteries and old cookbooks and old novels…anything you want to read and I have, I would be happy to loan it to you! Make a wish list and I will check my stash!

    A question, can you read your Paperwhite in the outdoors? My Kindle Fire is not readable outside..grr…

    Lee J

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thanks, Lee, for the offer to loan me books. It’s been my experience that it’s so easy to acquire books on a kindle that I can hardly keep up with my supply!

      Yes, you can read a PaperWhite outside. I wouldn’t have bought it otherwise. I love settling into my lounge chair on a balmy day with something good to read. Oh well, the Kindle Fire has other great features that the PaperWhite doesn’t have.

  26. Rattlesnake Joe says:

    I still have my dented beat up blinds too. I kind of like the day-night shades that some RV’s have in them. Perhaps curtains and day-night shades would be the way to go. Hope Spikes fur coat is doing better now? Yuma has a couple of Walmarts it is so big and that BIG flea market south and east of down town is great for finding stuff you didn’t have on your shopping list ha. I marvel at all the stuff.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Joe,

      Spike’s coat is slightly improved, softer and more filled in around his torso. The fur over his shoulders and neck is still rough. Overall the fur is dull and coarse. Perhaps his fur will continue to show improvement from the diet change and salmon oil, although it is slow.

      I forgot about the flea market. I saw signs for it last winter. Like I need more stuff, right?

  27. Shelley in California says:

    Congratulations on your purchases Sue, have fun! You really need to get a library card so you can get the ebooks for free, it great I get a few books a week. The library where you are should be willing to give you one its not like you wouldn’t return an ebook. My library has overdrive and I download via amazon to my kindle, its great.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Shelley,

      Now that I plan to slow down while I visit Yuma every winter, a library card for ebooks from the Yuma library makes sense. Thanks for reminding me!

  28. Rose Cluett says:

    Hi, Sue. I’ve been following you a long time. Don’t remember if I’ve commented before. Do appreciate the job you do taking us all along. Great pictures.
    Want to talk about the Kindle. I was worried when you began to mention that yours was broken? Not a good thing! We had 2 Kindles, mine a keyboard, my husband’s a low tech first edition. I ordered the Kindle Paperwhite for him. Thought he would really like the backlight. To my surprise, though, we found that there are quite a few differences in the KP besides the light. The touch screen to turn pages, the different set up to find the menu, archives, etc. Very touch sensitive! My husband did not like it at all; he found it much more difficult to work with. So. Now I use the KP, he likes the Keyboard. I do not use mine plugged in; have had no battery issues. You can adjust the light intensity to fit where you are reading. Also, I would think that would affect battery life. I love the paperwhite. I think you will, too. Keep up the good work you do!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Rose,

      No need for alarm when reading about my “broken” kindle. It’s not actually broken. The cover page keeps freezing up. It’s an old kindle and my erratic charging probably wasn’t good for it. I admit I liked having an excuse to get a new PaperWhite.

      Thanks for the kindle information and for the encouraging words about my blog. Great to see you here!

      Adjusting the light intensity… cool! I like the back light. Bridget and Spike won’t have to sleep with the overhead light shining on them while I read in bed.

  29. Colleen says:

    Love your year in review! Merry Christmas to you and the crew! I read using the Kindle app on my IPad most of the time. I also use the library when I can’t find what I want free or cheap on Amazon. The IPad is hard to read in the bright light, but I am a shade person so I can usually work it out. I always have a few real books around just in case.

    I too travel with a sewing machine, you just never know when inspiration might hit! I bought an inexpensive lightweight machine that has been working out extremely well, I even use it while at home now. Enjoy your new curtains, I can’t wait to see them!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Colleen,

      Great to hear that you liked the photos from the past. It was my solution for photos after a day inside with my face in my laptop.

      This camp is probably the least photogenic of all our camps, although we’re loving it here . . . the privacy, the warmth, the convenience, the unlimited time for free.

      I almost bought a sewing machine when I was preparing for life in the BLT. However, I associate sewing with work, rather than an enjoyable and creative activity/hobby. I decided against the machine because I didn’t want to work any more!

      I’ll be amazed if these curtains turn out to be right. Don’t want to get my hopes up… Time will tell!

  30. Gray in NY says:

    Re Casita curtains – I put curtains in mine. I don’t like the “grommet” kind or the “slide the rod through a hem” kind of curtains – I sewed cheap white plastic rings on the back of mine so they would slide open and closed easily. I made tiebacks out of a piece of string tied to the elastic thing-y at the bottom of each window to hold the blinds in – string is then attached with loops to a drapery hook put in at the side of the window – very low tech, works great! The curtains do not swing out too much – not an issue.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Gray,

      I do have doubts about the grommets. I don’t know if I’ll like them or not. I know I don’t want the pleated curtains with drapery hooks. And the gather-on-the-rod type often (not always) look slip-shod. There isn’t room at the top of the window for tab-type curtains. So I went with grommets. Your solution is interesting and may be the best of all.

      I’m imagining permanent holders screwed into the wall on both sides instead of tie-backs. I don’t know how to describe them. You pull the curtain open and tuck each panel behind a decorative c-shaped holder.

      Dream on, RVSue… You’ll be lucky, ol’ girl, to figure out how to install the rods. LOL!

  31. Cari in North Texas says:

    I wanted to give your readers another TV Alert. Charlie Brown Christmas will be rebroadcast tonight (Thursday Dec. 19) at 8 Eastern/7 Central and Pacific. Amazing how this community helps each other out, isn’t it? I haven’t had a chance to read this post yet, or the comments, but in view of my last TV show comment, I though this one might be appreciated as well. Now back to the top to read everything. 🙂

  32. Sue. loved the retrospective photos. you guys hit a lot of really fun places this year. Great idea to winter in Yuma. Been following your posts. We are in Tucson area this winter because I have wanted to live in a more urban area for little while since we lived in rural area past 15 years. But next winter, Yuma area might be the best place for all the reasons you mention.
    Have fun with your Kindle. I love mine. But still enjoy the occasional free paperback.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Kent,

      Reading your comment I can see we think a lot alike. Good to hear you’re keeping up with my blog. Enjoy the city life and then come back to the creosote and coyotes. 🙂

  33. Judi says:

    I can’t seem to see your old post with Spike’s picture. Am I the only one having trouble?

  34. Cinandjules (back in CA) says:

    Greetings Sue and the crew,

    Curtains eh? Whatever it takes to make the BLT comfy works! The only one you have to satisfy is………..Spike. Besides a nose thru the blinds tends to bend them. So curtains will look softer and last longer ! And if they get dirty…..take me down and to the laundromat!

    Love the close up pic of Spike!

  35. Cinandjules (back in CA) says:

    Ruggedly handsome!

  36. Connie & Mugsy (MN/AZ) says:

    hahahaha… hadn’t noticed the little mustache!! I love it!! Just wanted to add that I really enjoyed the picture retrospective… good choices.

  37. Cherylyn (eastern Oregon) says:

    Nice to relax and “putts around the house.” A friend of mine who has never sewed made the cutiest curtains using fabric glue for the seams. They have held up very well.
    I’m enjoying the pictures they look so warm. Thought I had found my trailer a Nash 17C only 18′ long but they decided not to sell at the last minute. Darn, still looking.
    Wishing you a Merry Christmas.

  38. Edie says:

    Merry Christmas Sue, Spike, Bridget, Rusty, Timber and the whole RVSue community!

    Love the post as always.

    Still shopping amazon as my meager Christmas gift to you for all you do for all of us readers. 🙂

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thank you, Edie, for the Christmas gift. It’s just what I wanted!

      Merry Christmas to you, too!

  39. AZ Jim says:

    I’m losing sleep trying to figure out how to be poster number UNO. It’s not so much that I want the honor as it is I don’t want anyone else to get it. You know what they say about 2nd place don’t ya, it’s the first loser. Got my old track shoes on, running shorts and tank top, limbering up and standing near the starting line…….Hopin the starters pistol doesn’t scare Bridget (I know Spike probably won’t hear it). On your mark, get set……….*wink

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Jim, you are hilarious!! I can see it! Oh, me . . . My sides are aching!! You got me with “first loser” and then the track shoes, running shorts, and tank top — too much!!! You’re killing me!!!

  40. Roger in SoCal. says:

    Hi Sue,

    I was just wondering how happy you are with you antenna setup for internet access?
    Finally ready to get a rig and I will need internet access…
    Course the banks have put a hold on funds for 7 working days :(.

    Thanks Sue!!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Roger,

      I’m very pleased with my Wilson antenna set-up! Rarely do I find myself without internet signal. Of course, I imagine there are more towers than when I first began vagabonding, but the Wilson certainly improves my chances for a strong and steady connection.

      I don’t bother with precise adjustments of the antenna (too lazy, too impatient). I put the thing up there, connect it, and it works… increasing one bar to three or three bars to five. I’m sure you know it doesn’t produce a signal, only strengthens a signal.

      As for the bumper-mounted pole… It’s easy to put up and take down. I slide it onto the floor in the BLT when we’re going down the road.

      How thrilling to purchase your rig! Quite a “gift” for you this holiday season!

      • Roger in SoCal. says:

        Thanks for the Info. Sue, I hope to give back in a small way to you by ordering thru your link to Amazon when I need something for the rig I get.
        I ordered a Benchmark Atlas for Arizona thru your link, no way to know if you get credit…it would be great if Amazon set up some kind of a notification to buyers that you were credited.

        Roger

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          I agree with you, Roger. The customer is left wondering. I hope you like the Benchmark. The more I use it, the more I see what it offers. I study mine all the time.

          I did get credit for the Arizona Benchmark. Thanks!

          Thank you in advance for any orders you place through my blog for your new home-on-wheels and the wonderful life that goes with it.

  41. Donna in W. Texas says:

    Congratulations on becoming a white paper Kindle reader. I love mine. I especially love being able to read it anywhere, even if it is dark outside (or inside). I could have really used it when I was young and sneaking in reading after I went to bed. I didn’t see anyone mentioning it but the literature says that the battery will remain charged for eight weeks…IF…YOU READ 30 MINUTES A DAY. Like that will ever happen. I have been happy with my battery which stays charged longer than my first Kindle did.
    I haven’t commented for a while but I remain a loyal reader and avid Amazon shopper.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hello, dear Donna! Good to see you here again!

      I’m tracking the shipment of my new PaperWhite. The rest of my order is arriving at Yuma today. I have to wait until Monday for the PaperWhite! I know I’m going to love it . . . I’m glad you don’t experience any battery issues with yours.

      Thanks for your loyalty to my blog and my Amazon effort. Don’t lurk too long! Love to hear from you . . . 🙂

  42. AZ Jim says:

    Ok…Here is a neat site I wanna share with all the readers. It is a site that you can put in the address of a site you like, maybe music or movies or whatever and if it’s in their database they will give you a list of sites similar sites. It works great.
    http://www.javascriptstyle.com/find-your-best-match-with-top-similar-sites

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