Full moon rising over the desert

Did you see the full moon last night?

The sun is setting behind the Little Marias while I’m going in and out of the Best Little Trailer, putting things away from my outdoor kitchen.   I’m about to step inside when something catches my eye.   Something over by the Big Marias.

Oh my gosh.  A full moon rising . . . .

I love the desert for many reasons, one of them being things like this. The unexpected, exquisite, quiet beauty.

Desert things I love . . . 

Crimson cactus blooms bursting forth from the thorns.

Pristine, white, desert lilies sticking straight up out of bare, desert gravel.

A sudden cool breeze on a hot day (Gee, where did that come from?).

The rush of water through a wash.

Ooh, a jack rabbit!  Or a roadrunner running across the road (I always laugh.)

The swoop and caw of a raven over camp.

Finding a mosaic of colored rocks under my feet.

Mysterious canyon “rooms” and mountains aglow in the golden hour.

A flock of bighorn sheep — there all the time but I didn’t see them ’til this very moment when, oh, there they are!

And, of course, awe-inspiring sunrises and glorious sunsets.

It’s not only that these things exist, that surprises happen; it’s the way the surprises grab you by the shoulders, turn you around, and insist that you stop, hold still, be awed.


Full moon rising over the desert . . . .

Okay, so I’m sentimental about the desert.  I concede, on the other hand, if you turn your back, if you aren’t prepared for the desert and make stupid decisions, it will throw you to the ground, kick you in the ribs and stomp on your head.

(Thought I’d add that last part for balance.)

~ ~  ~

The weather has warmed again at our camp.

We had a few mornings with lows in the high 30s.  That was enough to remind me how fortunate I am to live in a snug home, to have warm clothes, a warm bed, and warm companions, and to have a well-functioning heater!

The lows are back in the 40s again.

Daytime temperatures are in the 70s.

Funny thing, as I type this an unexpected wind arrives, one of the “surprises” I mentioned above. I can hear it whistling as it makes its way around the Perfect Tow Vehicle and past my window.

Roger whimpers at the door.

I get up and let him in with Reggie and me. Roger likes being outdoors. When the three of us return from morning walk, Reggie insists on going inside while Roger insists on staying out.

I’m proud of us.

The crew and I are consistent with our exercise these days. We’ve extended the length of our walks to where we are pushing ourselves by the time we return to camp.

I’m trying to remember to stand tall and make long strides as we walk. I think holding good posture aids good health. Something I could do more of.

  ~ ~ ~   

Oh, the griddle!

I am loving it! I realize now why I never cared much for cooking.

It’s not fun when you can’t afford the right equipment and tools and you don’t have the money to experiment with unfamiliar and/or high quality foods.

Most of all, for me, the reason I never had much interest in anything culinary is the fact that cooking meant standing indoors.

I love cooking outside!

Blogorinos gave me many suggestions for the griddle. I plan to try them. These days I’m sticking with Mexican foods. Blythe is The Place for cooking Mexican. It would take me years to sample and learn how to cook all the hispanic products at the local Smart and Final store.

~ ~ ~

New Year’s eve and day passed quietly.

I enjoyed a day with the crew at our campsite.

Everyone at the Long Term Visitor Area was invited to a pig-in-a-pit roast at a nearby ranch for New Year’s eve.  I didn’t go.

If you’re the sociable type and you’re concerned about feeling lonely camping in the desert, don’t be.  When RVing, I don’t think it matters where you camp, there are always people wanting to get together.  If you’re a loner, you may want to brush up on saying, “No, thank you.”




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79 Responses to Full moon rising over the desert

  1. Joy says:

    Beautiful moon!

  2. Mary in CO says:

    Sue, thanks for the insightful reminders about the desert. You could write one for the mountains, too, I bet. Best wishes for health and stamina for 2018. And happy days for Roger and Reggie to explore in their “doggy” ways.

  3. Linda in NC says:


  4. Helen says:

    I love the moon. We could not see it here.

  5. Deena in Phoenix says:

    WOW! Beautiful sequential photography. Ya done good. I must also comment highly on your griddling photo…looks yummy and could belong in a fancy cooking magazine.

    Love sleeping Dogs, so sweet.

    Have a great evening and Take Care

  6. Gorgeous photos and a wonderful description of the desert. Couldn’t agree more.

  7. Diann in MT says:

    Great post, Sue! Love the full moon shot, and of course the crew being “crew”. The wispy clouds across the moon are actually ice crystals turned clouds. Heard about that on the radio last night!

  8. Airstreaming Pagey says:

    Beautiful photos! I particularly like your header of the boys.

    I couldn’t agree more about the desert. It has grown on this east coast gal, as well.

    Happy New Year, Sue and crew, and readers!

  9. Linda in NC says:

    Ah-beautiful pic of the moon! I have been taking some pics of that big fat moon myself! Tonight I have to get my tripod out as I still don’t have a clear shot. I am trying to get better with my photography. Practice shall prevail! Reggie and Roger crack me up with their antics. Hannah has charmed every person and dog that she meets. She is such a happy girl! Have a wonderful year and I look forward to your future excursions.

  10. Barbara from Camano Island says:

    Gosh!!! What gorgeous pictures of the moon! You had a perfect spot for being awed. It came up behind some trees where I am and it was too cold to stay out and watch it rise. Thanks for your view.

  11. Calvin Rittenhouse says:

    Those are nice pictures of the moon rise. I like the daylight picture, too. That’s my kind of scenery. Edward Abbey talks about people being drawn to specific types of places in Desert Solitaire and concludes, “I am a desert rat.” Me too. I’ll note the summer heat. I visited El Centro, California, one day at the end of June, 1995, in temperatures over one hundred degrees. I found myself getting used to it in a few hours, but I’ll include a warning to always know what you’re doing in those conditions. I love Mother Nature dearly, but always respect her requirements.

    I love your list of desert things to love. I’ll add “temps below freezing are uncommon.” (I saw the super-moon this morning in three degrees Fahrenheit. It’s been below freezing here for over a week. I’m glad I saw it, but I didn’t stay out there long.)

  12. Elizabeth in WA says:

    Friends can be a great thing…but with all I/we have gone through the past couple years, we are feeling good about being mostly hermits frankly…so I do understand your saying “no thank you”. Maybe one day things will be different…but for me, my trust center is quite damaged plus I do not mind being mostly alone either…and of course, one on one is always easier than a crowd…

    • Calvin Rittenhouse says:

      I also understand that. I have been through changes in my attitudes about people, but I’m still very much an introvert.

      • Elizabeth in WA says:

        My closest friends keep dying off…lost another one about 2 weeks ago…but tis true I too am an introvert mostly…and with all that has happened to me, tis likely a good thing!!

        • Calvin Rittenhouse says:

          I have also reached the age or stage where people I know have passed on. I have learned to grieve and then go on. I still “recharge” my spirit in solitude, not in company. I understand that’s the definition of an introvert. Despite my love of solitude, I still have enough friends to suit me.

  13. Kathy (NC) says:

    Beautiful pics of the moon! And your list of desert ‘loves’ is inspiring. I have got to get out west to experience some of these! Maybe this year.

  14. Alice says:

    Thank you for the beautiful pictures of the moon but my favorite is Reggie sticking his tongue out in the header.

  15. Pat McClain says:

    The boys sleeping is so sweet. Peaceful and quiet!

  16. Marilyn Dennison says:

    Great post today. The two R’s are so interesting and nice heaters at night. The moon images were extraordinary. Your art is in framing the shot. Well done.

    How is the bark collar working? Our friend who is a dog trainer uses it to make her dogs come when she calls. I don’t know how she teaches that to them but they are so obedient. I also met a group of folks walking their dogs off leash and when I ride by on my bike they buzz them and they return to their masters. It doesn’t shock them which is good.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Marilyn, and thank you.

      I’m not using the bark collar because there isn’t a reason for it, since we’re alone almost all the time. When we return to campgrounds, he will wear it and I’ll report on the results.

  17. Joe in TN says:

    Great pictures of good food, cute canines, and a full moon over the mountains. Splendid way to start another year of RV Sue and her canine crew!! Thanks for sharing.

  18. weather says:

    Wow,what great shots of the Super Moon! Funny, I really, really hoped you would capture it and post your photos, I didn’t want to ask though(except through E.S.P). And here they are, you did it, thank you ever so! It was too cloudy and frigid for me to see it here. They called it the Wolf Moon, and told when the best times to see it would be. For me that best time is as I read another wonderful post you’ve written, Yippee!

    The second Super moon(and last one this year) will be on January 31st, that will also be a blue moon. Interesting tidbit of info- the expression “once in a blue moon” comes from the fact that a blue moon is rare. It must be the second full moon in one month, of course, most months only have one full moon. So this month we have a blue moon and two super moons(when the moon’s orbit brings it nearest the earth that month, and that coincides with it’s being a full moon). January 31st we’ll also have a lunar eclipse.

    There’s a lot to love about the desert, your list is a good one, and it’s so refreshing that you are joyfully taken by surprise by it all. I’m glad you realized cooking outdoors is actually enjoyable. I’m also glad you can now afford better equipment and higher quality food. All of that makes preparing meals a much better experience than what we had years ago.

    Congratulations for practicing good posture and taking longer walks regularly. Your adorable crew will need you strong and healthy for many years.You’re taking strides in the right direction to be here for them, and for those of us that care for you very much 🙂

    • Elizabeth in WA says:

      We were so amazed at the moon here last night…guess it is normal this time of year…but it was DRY and not raining or stormy as is per usual this time of year…so guess that explains it!! Like a harvest moon, but not orange/red…just a beautiful blue (and what a great color blue is!!)

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, weather!

      Love all the kind comments that appear on my blog, but yours are a special pleasure, as I’m sure fellow blogorinos would agree. 🙂

      • Barb in Florida says:

        Yes, I would agree+++. Thanks for the information about the full, blue moons and eclipse, Weather. I’ll mark my calendar.

        Sue, your caption on the third picture said “WOW”. I said Whoa, outloud. It looks like the mountains are giving the moon a spot to rest for a few seconds on its long journey across the sky. Thanks so much for the great post and fantastic moon pictures. It’s been cloudy, cold, windy and rainy here. No sky to see except gray. We need the rain though & even FL gets it’s week or two of winter. Sorry everybody, I know you’d trade my 30’s @ night and 50’s for a high. Wish I could blow some warm air up there.

        I just want to tell Roger to move over on that pillow bed and let me lay down in that desert sun for a just a little bit. Think he’d mind? He looks so comfy. I promise I won’t take all the bed. Is he a snuggler? Cheddels will tolerate a little snuggle while she lays on the floor, but you will get “Cheddeled” and need to brush off:)

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          Hi, Barb,

          Roger would welcome you! Both he and Reg are snugglers, although Reggie is the chief snuggler. Cheddels? That’s one I’ve never heard before. 🙂

          • Barb in Florida says:

            My boys were making salads for dinner. They were using a fork to break off pieces of cheddar cheese. One son said they looked like flower petals made of cheddar. One fell on the floor and unnamed dog gobbled up the cheddar petal. In the rush to pick it up his words mixed together to say’ give me that cheddal. We hadn’t agreed on a name and Cheddles stuck. When we took her to a new vet, they asked about it but laughed and told us his dogs were named Cheddar, Brie & Colby (Jack for short).

      • weather says:

        What a nice note, thank you, Sue 🙂 .

  19. Marcia GB in MA says:

    Gorgeous moon! With those mountains as the backdrop, it is truly magical. Your happiness with your way of life shines through in your pictures and your words. You have everything you need. All is well.

  20. Rhodium in Va says:

    It’s so great you are having a wonderful time in all respects. I loved the creative challenge of making good vegan, gluten free food when we were on the road. One fun recipe was Mexican Lasagna, which you may be able to use your dome with. Cook some corn tortillas then layer, for example, shredded chicken, salsa and cheese, maybe refried beans or what strikes your fancy. Top with enchilada sauce or sour cream if you dare. Of course the above is not vegan, but substitutions can make it so.

    • Barb in Florida says:

      Hi Rhodium in VA! I’m interested to know how traveling gluten-free was. I’m pretty sure I’d need an oven and now a griddle;) I only trust my own cooking which is not always fun, especially when turning down something that looks absolutely delicious. Do/did you have a blog of your adventures that I could read?

  21. Paula in Indiana says:

    Oh Sue, your poetical words about the desert and moon photos are so lovely. I saw that gorgeous moon rising above the White River here. I live on the river, so think of myself as a river rat lol, but I sure do think I could fall in love with the desert too, especially after reading your descriptions!

  22. ValGal (westernWA) says:

    What stunning moon photos! Just glorious!

    Looks like the boys are getting well rested this winter in preparation for spring migration.

    Yes, I’ll take a burrito, too, please. It’s supper time. Yum.

  23. Love your moon shots. We’ve had snow every day and every night so no moon to see here. 🙁 I love your griddle too…I think even us non RVers could use this. After all we use grills…so the griddle would just be another outside cooking tool.

    Keep walking! I am trying to get myself out to start walking again…but it will be -14 tomorrow morning….today we had a high of 10. And wind. It’s just a lot.

  24. Jolene/Iowa says:

    Beautiful, beautiful pictures! This post makes my heart happy. I think about Roger and his life before he became part of your crew. I think of him wandering about trying to find food and stay out of the elements. I think of him with no one to love him.

    My how his life has changed and how wonderful of a brother he appears to be to Reggie and how much both of them love you and bring love and joy to your life.

  25. Rob, on I-10 in Mississippi...west bound! says:

    The moon & the mountain, just great!

  26. Kevin in CO says:

    Sue, the moon photos are nicely taken and well presented here. I sense a great deal of pride and love in your posts and am always happy to see a reminder pop up with your post address. It’s a pleasure. I wish you safe travels, and hope you wish me the same. My dear wife and I will leave next week to begin our tour of the southwest winter. We love how it is some much different than our home area, especially the lack of snow!!

  27. Diann in MT says:

    Just re-read your observations, Sue. A tribute to the desert. How insightful. Been there. Seen and felt that. Good work, good woman.

  28. chas anderson says:

    We had a moonlight snow shower last might when it was Minus 3 degrees.Very strange,
    like a summer sun shower only with snow.We live 1700 feet above town and we will get a snow dusting when it is clear below.Wish I had my camera handy.

  29. Gumo says:

    Since you love the desert, you may really enjoy the classic book by Edward Abbey, Desert Solitaire. I think it is on Amazon Kindle. Try a sample. Enjoy!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I may have read that one, Gumo. Is that the one where he shares his cabin with a snake because the snake is harmless, keeps the rattlesnakes out, and controls the rodent population?

  30. Amazing pics and detail about the desert! I’m still stuck in the frozen hellscape of Michigan.

  31. AZ Jim says:

    Beautifully crafted words to describe the deserts young lady!! You are a real desert fan and I am too. I am glad you are enjoying your griddle and the goodies it’s yielding. Here we go into a new year, here’s hoping it brings good things for us all. Hi to the boys!! *Hug*

  32. Denise - Richmond VA says:

    Hi, Sue,

    Thank you for sharing your gorgeous moon pictures! **sigh** I felt like I was there… Like many parts of the country, it has been bitter cold here….single digit this morning! I admired the moon from the warmth of my home last night. 🙂

    This post is brimming with happiness, contentment, and thankfulness. It makes my heart smile to see that your cup is running over with goodness!! 🙂

    Did the boys get a new blue pillow/bed? It looks really comfy! Two happy little pups, tuckered out from a long walk or some wrestling matches…

    Have a wonderful evening, Sue! I am glad your new griddle has inspired you to try new recipes, and actually enjoy cooking. Oh, the wonderful, tasty dishes to be created! 🙂 Sending you, Reggie, and Roger love and hugs from me and Gracie pup! N’nite! 🙂

  33. Susan says:

    Beautiful photos of the moon rising Sue. I don’t know how I missed it. I usually notice when the moon is getting full. Especially that night when it comes up early right before the actual full moon night. I guess the house I am at is not condusive to seeing it. I am house sitting.

  34. Don in Alaska says:

    Thank you! for the moon photos – we haven’t sen the moon here for some time – clouds and all that.

    We did get 88 MPH winds and +50F temps for the day, so in the whole, not too bad. At least the auto is thawed out.

    Best of luck with your new grill, looks like it is getting a real workout.

    We enjoy making green chili quesadillas – scrambled eggs, cooked with green chilis and then placed in a tortilla, add lots of cheese (jack or cheddar) – fold, heat till cheese melts. Fast, hot breakfast that’s cheap and easy.

    We often cook our hash browns for a bit, than break a couple of eggs into the middle and cook like hash. Fast, cheap and filling. Perfect for the grill.

    Have fun!

    • Geri in the FL panhandle! says:

      This sounds really good! That is what I am fixing for our breakfast right now. One thing we do for our hash browns is use leftover French fries! They always serve mountains of FF with all the seafood restaurants around here. We always take the leftovers home. Chop up some onion and fry until almost clear and add chopped up FF. it really is good!

    • Chuck says:

      Geri made up your quesidillas and they are delicious! Might add some chorizo or breakfast sausage next time. Thanks for sharing!!!!

    • Geri in the FL panhandle! says:

      Both Chuck and I loved these! Yum! Thank you for sharing.

  35. MelindaK (Central TX) says:

    I love the photos! I may try to paint one of them.

    Happy New Year, Sue & crew!

  36. The moon! Oh my. People rant and rave about sunrises and sunsets … but moonrises and moonsets can be absolutely gorgeous just like your photos show here, Sue. Thank you! I keep forgetting about Mexican food tho I love it … thanks for that reminder too. yum yum. 🙂

  37. Geri in the FL panhandle! says:

    Beautiful moon photos! It was bright here also! I was hoping to surprise you with a snow report. Weather had predicted a rain/sleet/snow morning for us. Instead I wake up to pretty blue sky and lacy white clouds. Don’t know if I am disappointed or relieved that it missed us and straight to Tallahassee!
    tpThe news says I-10 is an icy mess! So I guess should be relieved with all the bridges here!
    Your description of the desert was perfect. I read it twice, remembering all those same things. I am fortunate to have had time well spent in the desert!
    Hug the fur babies for us! Thank you for this wonderful post! 😁👍💗

  38. Jean in Southaven, MS says:

    I love the pictures of the moon, it’s so beautiful. I heard on the radio that it is the largest the moon will be for the entire year. We were cloudy and I did not get to see it. I probably would not have seen it anyway. I stayed inside all weekend. It never got out of the teens here until yesterday afternoon. It is dry here, just cold. This is the last winter I have to drive to work and I do not wanting to fight ice and snow to try and get here. Love the pups and the blue pillow. I am going to order the heated pet bed that is listed in your post above when it becomes available again. I have a 14 year old lab that would sure appreciate it in this weather. She lays in front of the fireplace close to the fire all the time. I had to move her away from the fire because she kept getting her tail to close to it. Thank you for sharing.

  39. suzicruzi from Van, WA. says:

    “Ear buds and walking while texting…” from a post or so back, escaped me. But, OMG.. 😉 🙂

    I laughed out loud!

    G’morning Sue!!! Had my coffee with you, and now it’s time for a walk. Ciao!

  40. Texas Sue says:

    Sue, I’m longing for the desert! Thank you for the full moon rising. You gave us all the wonders & beauty of the desert, what did you mean about if you’re not prepared or make stupid decisions?
    Love your blog & wish you & the crew all of God’s richest blessings for 2018

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You’re welcome, Texas Sue…. To answer your question about “if you’re not prepared or make stupid decisions”:

      I was referring to people who have died because they ran out of gas and water while crossing the desert or they went on a long hike without adequate water, became lost, bit by rattlesnake, that sort of thing. . . .

  41. Sharon in MO says:

    Sue, what gorgeous full moon photos! Thanks for sharing.

  42. Carl Hartup says:

    As usual Sue you have made my day. Thank you for all the most interesting posts over the years. I have never commented before, but I read your post every morning, Sad ones along with the happy ones .

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thank you, Carl, for giving me a big smile. Your message this morning makes MY day. 🙂

      I’m always delighted to hear from my readers, and especially from those who’ve stuck with me and the crew since the early days of this blog. Best wishes to you for 2018!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Oh, I almost forgot….

      Congratulations, Carl, on your new status as a blogorino!

  43. rvsueandcrew says:


    Gee, the moon photos were a big hit! I’m delighted with the responses to this post’s photos. Thank you.

    I may be a loner but I do enjoy sharing the things I love, like a full moon rising over the Big Marias as viewed from my doorstep. What a wonderful world we’ve been given to enjoy, eh?

    Okay, that last statement…. I realize it’s easy for me to say that when I’m not freezing my butt off in below-zero temps while on my way to work, leaving home before dark, driving on icy roads. I’ve done that and haven’t forgotten what it’s like, so know that I am NOT gloating.

    Reg and Rog are sleeping late this morning. I see no movement of the two mounds of covers beside me on this bed. Kind of nice to linger over coffee in the quiet of a desert morning…. Uh-oh, Reggie’s comin’ alive! Gotta’ go!

    May your day be free of pain and worry while bringing you lovely surprises,

  44. Betty-Shea /AZ says:

    Sue, your post today really got to my heart!!! I love being a “desert rat” too!!! And to top it off — beautiful photos!!!
    Thank you!!💕✌

  45. Cinandjules🌵 says:

    Great shots of the moon!
    The beauty of the desert….and ones respect of Mother Nature. Rock on desert woman!

    In general…Loner, hermit, introvert (that one is kind of rude 😳) or what ever word people use to describe someone else’s behavior. All that matters is….YOU are happy and content living YOUR life how YOU choose. No one knows the situation, or wears the same shoe….

    Some folks rather be………and what determines “normalcy”……… no such thing.

    Have a marvelous day!

  46. Rover Ronda (WA) says:

    Hi 😃

  47. Mndreamer says:

    Sue- That photo of the rising moon is one of the most beautiful I’ve ever seen, and thank you for the reminder to appreciate nature’s blessings!
    Best to you and the crew in the New Year!

  48. Jim and Barb says:

    The moon was incredible again last night! You description of the wonder of the desert was right on point. So many things like those make the desert a special place.

  49. Lee says:

    That is a beautiful shot of the moon. And, I haven’t visited in awhile so the new header photo of the boys is too cute! Have a great new year!

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