Lost mojo

Monday, December 7

The crew and I are outside enjoying a perfectly warm day at our camp at Midland LTVA northwest of Blythe, California.

I look up from my reading.  Bridget contentedly chews on a rawhide bone.

But where’s Reggie?  Where did he go? 

I follow his tether inside the Best Little Trailer and find him sitting on the floor.

“What’s with the sad face, little guy?”

P1080728I pick him up and carry him out to the lounger.

“What’s wrong, Reg?  You don’t seem very happy.”

At that moment from the other side of a distant ridge comes the sound of gun shots.

Oh, now I understand . . . . 

Reggie wiggles, jumps off my lap, and sprints into the BLT.

I go inside and unhook him from the tether. He jumps up on the bed and settles into the covers.  Such an unhappy face!

P1080746I pet him for a few minutes, talking softly.  No more gun shots.

“You rest and come out when you feel better.”

P1080747It’s close to noon and Reggie is still in bed.

Maybe a walk will help.  Reggie loves walks.

“Bridge, we have to take Reg for a walk.  He’s lost his mojo somewhere and maybe we can find it in the desert.  You come with us and help.”

I lift Reggie off the bed and he perks up at the idea of a walk.

The three of us set off on a trek in search of Reggie’s mojo.

Reggie usually runs ahead to be the leader when we walk.  Today he walks right next to me.  Bridget lags behind as is her custom.  For a few moments Reggie forgets his troubles and sniffs a few bushes and even raises his leg on them.  His renewed confidence doesn’t last, however.  He returns to my side and walks in my shadow.

“Well, this isn’t working.  We might as well go back to camp.”

Reggie immediately hops into bed.

P1080745Well, this is troublesome.  Everything checks out okay.  He ate breakfast.  He did his business.  Those gunshots are ruining his day!  We have to shake him out of the blues!

“I know what that boy needs.”

I toss the crew into the Perfect Tow Vehicle and we motor into town.

I’ll get him a Carl’s Jr. hamburger patty.  That’ll fix what ails him!

First we stop at Smart and Final grocery and I pick up a few items.  While in line at check-out, I notice the woman in front of me plops a big cooked chicken onto the conveyor.

“Excuse me, ma’am.  Where did you find that chicken?”

“Oh, it’s over there.”  She points.  “See that warmer?”

I thank her and trot over to pick out a chicken.  The sign says “oven roasted chickens – 3 lbs.”

Gee, these are better looking than the last chicken I bought.  That thing was more like a Cornish game hen.  The price is $5.99.

I load the groceries into the PTV.

“Smells good, doesn’t it, guys.”

Reggie noses around in the bags.  Bridget doesn’t stir.  She knows she’ll have some.

“Get out of there, Reg.  You can have some at home.”

Gosh, he really wants that chicken.  No need to go to Carl’s, Jr.

It works!

The chicken is delicious.

Later we go for another walk along a wash in the desert.  By the time we return it’s almost sunset.  I check the blog and then I go outside to watch the color display with Bridget and Reggie.

Ooh!

P1080721Aah!

P1080723Wow!

P1080730The crew and I walk around to the side of the BLT where there’s more light.

“Look at that!  Everything is pink!  We’re living in a pink world!”

Reggie hops and Bridget wags her tail.

P1080731I stroke Bridget’s face.  “You’re pretty in pink, sweetie.”

Reggie becomes very excited. 

Apparently a day of moping around has stored up a lot of energy and he can’t contain it any longer.  Reggie runs in circles at the end of his tether with me in the center.  I twirl like a top as he goes around and around me.  I laugh to see my boy back to his ol’ self again.

“GO, REGGIE MAN, GO!”

P1080733“Look, Bridgie!  Reggie got his mojo back!”

rvsue

NOTE:  Click this link to find the YouTube video of “La Vie En Rose” (“My Life in Pink”), the English version, sung by Edith Piaf, lyrics by Mack David.

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194 Responses to Lost mojo

  1. Chris(MN) says:

    Hello?

  2. Julie, Molly & gizmo (Idaho) says:

    Beautiful sunset photos. Glad the reginator is back!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Me, too, Julie, Molly & Gizmo. I hated to see him sad.

      • gayle - SO CAL Beach Boomer says:

        Reggie being sad tore my heart out! When I read these special bloggeroo posts, I get the feeling of what it’s like to have a dog. I appreciate that, so guess I’d do some Christmas shopping in the next day or two … yes, I know, I know!

  3. eliza says:

    i slmost got my mojo back. i was almost first…..

  4. Pookie in SE Texas says:

    not bad for just walking thru the door…now to go back
    and read your post…
    chuck

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Yeah, you’re right, chuck. Maybe we need a Just Walked In The Door category. 🙂

    • Pookie in SE Texas says:

      what great pictures…ya done it again young lady
      glad to see Reg back to his ole self….I guess dogs
      can get moody like us huh?
      chuck

      • rvsueandcrew says:

        It seems so. At first he was scared. Then depressed.

        • Don in Okla. says:

          If only Reggie could talk. I wonder what kind of trials and tribulations he went thru as a pup. When I found my border collie and brought him home, I couldn’t pick up a shovel or hoe or anything with a handle without him going to the far corner of the yard and cowering in fear. I can imagine what he went thru as a young dog. He is over all that now and a very happy and fearless friend.
          Thanks for your great blog.

  5. Poor Reggie! My Roxie goes into full-blown panic mode when she hears a gun or fireworks. Never thought of using chicken to change her mood, but glad it worked! The last time I went to buy a roasted chicken, they looked more like teenage Easter chicks! Those poor things must only be a month old or so, they’re so small. Beautiful sunset pics!

  6. Linda in TX says:

    Oh, man that was a sad little face. That’s how gunfire makes me feel, too. And I’ve always absolutely loved the pink time of the evening…sometimes lavender! So special.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Linda in TX,

      Having our world turn pink was an appropriate ending for Reggie being happy again. It’s a beautiful world.

  7. David Ainley in Fulton, KY (for now) says:

    Great story and even better pics. Thanks. Glad Reggie found his mojo.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thanks, David. I think I’m going to look up where Fulton, Kentucky is. I’ve never heard of it (which doesn’t mean much).

      LATER…. It’s way over in the western corner of the state and it used to be called “The Banana Capital of the World.” I didn’t see that coming!

  8. Sharon in MO says:

    So glad to see Reggie got his mojo back! He was really a blur in that picture–hope he didn’t make you dizzy going in circles.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Sharon in MO,

      Not only was he twirling me round and round…. I was trying to focus the camera at the same time. It’s a wonder I caught him in the frame. This little boy can move!

  9. Teri LiveOak Fl says:

    You make me laugh picturing you twirling around like a top with Reggie flying in circles around you.

  10. Oh, I was so worried about the Reg man for a while but so glad he’s back to normal.

    And I know it’s impractical for you and your lifestyle, but the main reason we keep up our Costco membership is for the huge $4.99 rotisserie chickens. I can’t remember the last time I bought a raw chicken!

    And the sunsets are stunning.

    Robin

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, robinb (Oregon),

      That’s a good buy at Costco. The trouble with Costco for me anyway . . . they seem to be located near interstate exits or busy highways that I avoid. I’ve never been in a Costco. Not many people can say that! Ha!

      I haven’t bought a whole, raw chicken in many years. Why bother with that, right?

      • Dawn from Camano Island says:

        Forsooth! Why bother with roasting your own chicken? Because it’s absolutely delicious & doesn’t have any of the ‘stuff’ that rotisserie chicken does. Here’s a link to the method I use (I hope it doesn’t eat up a lot of your data): http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/my-favorite-simple-roast-chicken-231348

        So glad Reg found his mojo–you are the ultimate dog whisperer, Sue.

        The color cast from sunset is gorgeous! Can’t wait to get back to the desert. I noticed someone did some rock work in your campsite. I placed white quartz all the way ’round the little mesquite in our campsite in Quartzsite–we hope to return to the same spot. Wonder if it will still be there?

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          Aw, shucks, Dawn…. The chickens from the supermarket are pretty darn good and cost a lot less than homemade, an important consideration for many. I don’t have an oven so I appreciate the availability. Here’s an article comparing pre-cooked chickens from different stores:

          https://washingtonpost.com/blogs/all we can eat/post/how supermarket birds stack up

          If you like to cook, go for it! 🙂

          LATER… Well, the link doesn’t work. Too bad. It was a thorough analysis of chickens from different stores. Yes, some of them are seasoned. We don’t eat the skin.

          Maybe the article can be seen the way I found it… By doing a search for “additives in rotisserie chickens at supermarkets?” I found it reassuring.

        • Sealarkesmiles says:

          Hi Dawn! Heck, I could eat one rotisserie chicken on the way home from the store to the camper, they are so yummy. But if you want to cook them, kudos to you…because I wish I had the facilities to do so. As long as it is yummy and edible, I say.

    • Cinandjules (NY) says:

      I took my mom to Costco once a month…as she didn’t drive. She would always get 2 chickens. (Costco sold 76 million rotisserie chickens last year.) We always made it a point to get a hotdog (Hebrew national) and drink for 1.50 on the way out!

      • rvsueandcrew says:

        Those “little” memories of moments shared with loved ones are precious, seemingly unimportant at the time and later they become treasures.

  11. chas anderson says:

    It is deer season here in PA 750,000 deer hunters which, reportedly, is the 5th largest armed force in the world.Juice and Eddie are both shivering in the corner.It has been a long week for them.Constant shooting.Two more weeks and we start our 4 month snowbird adventure again.First time in a Class C after towing a trailer for years.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Oh, your poor pups. How terrible for them.

      Looking on the bright side . . . .Only two more weeks and away you go! Have a wonderful adventure, chas. I hope you will update us on your travels in the Class C.

  12. Piper n' Rusty / Az says:

    Wow Sue, Those Sunset photos are Fantastic and in Pink Too!,,, I guess the Roasted Chicken recharged the MoJo in Reggie O,,, there’s no getting away from shooters even the ones with those Big Boom Targets,, we’ve had a few of those this past weekend and Lady Piper wanted in,, but I went out to comfort her and as they were far off, she settled down a bit till the boom was louder, she’d go under the truck and hide,, now there’s one way off doing it, but the boom is faint,,,,,,,,,, have a great evening and give them babies a big hug from us , will ya,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, rusty

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Rusty,

      Gunshots seem to bother dogs more than any other sound. These gunshots that spooked Reggie were far away. And then the military activities in the Mojave — which were way louder — didn’t bother Reggie or Bridget at all. I had to go inside to keep my ears from ringing. Fortunately it quit after an hour or so.

      Hug Lady Piper for me… I’m glad you like the sunset photos.

    • Sidewinder Pen says:

      Hi Rusty,

      There sure have been a lot of big booms in the LHC area the past few days. Do you think it’s from the proving ground up off I-40? Or do you know? Just curious.

      • rvsueandcrew says:

        I don’t know. I haven’t heard any “big booms.”

        We heard a constant roar like jet exhaust coming from the direction of the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center west of here and north of Twenty-nine Palms. It was very loud for about an hour, another hour not so loud, and a blue vapor appeared at the base of the mountains.

        ooops! I didn’t see you were talking to Rusty. Sorry about that!

      • Piper n' Rusty / Az says:

        Hi Pen, these big boom targets can be bought at the local Gun Store by anyone over the age of 21 and it’s the loco’s of Havasu or Parker or visitors who like to make like they’re in a battle for they’re personal training for something or they just want to make noise,, It’s like the hunters of today,, drive by Hunting,, “hey thar Jo, Did ya get yer Deer'”? Duh,, “yep”,,, ( that’s hunter talk),,,,,,,, The targets explode with a lot of smoke,, I guess they can’t hear it with ear protection on,,,,,,,,,,,, L.O.L.

        • Piper n' Rusty / Az says:

          Oh Ya,, Havasu City puts on a Fireworks Show every Winter at Sara Park, across from the south City Sign,, Usually starts on a Thursday with Pyrotechnics from all over and ends Sunday,, But it’s neat to see,, poot ,,,,,,,,,, BOOM,,,BOOM,,, OOOO, AHaaaaaaa,, YAaaaa,,,,,,,,, It’s like Forth of July in the Winter,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

        • Sidewinder Pen says:

          Ah okay, thanks for the explanation. I did wonder why suddenly the proving grounds were doing so much “proving.” I guess it’s not them! I do remember the fireworks at SARA park last year. The crowds and RV’s built and built before-hand!

  13. Deena in Peoria AZ says:

    Sue, Bridget and Reggie, thank you for giving us joy, laughter, happiness and mojo for facing the everyday world.
    Sue, we love the way you build a story and love your use of words. Wonderful!

    Deena Spouse and Miss Mollie

  14. Lois (AZ) says:

    Wow–your sunset comments reminded me of listening to people’s reaction to fireworks. Funny how living in AZ, one gets used to the sunsets…have to pay attention cause they go so fast…kinda like Reggie with mojo! My grandson always took pics of AZ sunsets but often had to climb on a roof to avoid the obstacles in the city! I still always think about him when I see a sunset and NOW, will think of you too SUE…did hear it is going to cool off – hope you stay warm…Reggie’s reaction to the gunshots may still be left over from wherever he came from? Love how “chicken warms the soul”!!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Lois (AZ),

      It sounds like your grandson has passed. I hope not.

      I didn’t hear about cooler weather coming. According to the weather widget that is in the sidebar at present which I admit is not very reliable, the temperatures will climb to the mid 70s in a few days and that means close to 80 next to the BLT.

      Whatever the case… Those of us in the Southwest have no reason to complain!

      • Lois (AZ) says:

        No, my grandson is very much alive but moved away from here and I miss him…the weather here is still better than many places…even when the cool down comes! Just saw on the news that Portland was getting flooding…sad…we could use a good rain!

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          Thanks for answering… I felt a stab to the heart when I read your comment. Grandsons are precious.

          Flooding in Portland… That fits. My only experience with Portland was a torrential downpour.

      • rvsueandcrew says:

        I checked the longer-range forecast… I see what you mean about cooler weather coming… It says 68 high/28 low for Dec. 17.

  15. Sherri D says:

    Gorgeous photos!!! So glad Reggie found his mojo too. I finally found my new fur baby !!! Dexter is a wire haired terrier and lab mix. He is adorable. I am smitten. Thanks for keeping on posting.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Sherri D,

      I clicked on your name and saw your adorable Dexter! No wonder you are smitten… He has such a sweet face. I wish you both many happy years together!

      Thanks re the photos.

      Welcome to your new life, Dex!

    • BadgerRickInWis says:

      Awwwww, adorable. Congrats on the new addition.
      And just so ya know I’ve got a soft spot for dogs called Dexter.

    • Dexter looks like he is as much in love with his new life as you are! He looks pretty laid back in the photograph!

  16. Pamelab in Houston says:

    Wow, Wow, and … Wow! Beautiful photos of your sunset. And fun to see the pink glow on everything. I remember when our schnauzer heard fireworks for the first time. She hid behind the toilet and it took us a while to find her. Sensitive ears. Thanks again for the very nice blog and so pleased that Reggie found his mojo! Happy Camping.
    Pamela

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You’re welcome, Pamelab in Houston,

      I think fireworks are worse than gunshots. Your poor dog… She found her safe place behind the toilet. Probably if we could hear with the ears of a dog we’d be behind the toilet, too!

  17. Jolene/Iowa says:

    Hi Sue, I can sure relate with your day with Reggie. Harley is the same way with gunshots, fireworks, thunder. It terrifies him and he wants nothing to do with it. He even equates if it is raining outside with no thunder, to thunder and still goes and hides.

    Glad he got feeling better later. Very pretty spot you have there.

    Take care and I will check in again soon.

  18. Barbara (Nashville) says:

    Gosh, #33 or thereabouts and its only been an hour. The sunset photos are fantastic. So glad Reggie got his mojo back. That’s the first time we have seen him sad or scared, I think. Glad the crew is back.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Barbara (Nashville),

      Reggie isn’t as tough as this blog may make him seem. He flinches at things that move quickly all of a sudden and he’s made very large detours around scary things like a rock in the desert or a piece of trash. 🙂

      You and Angel have a good night!

      • Barbara (Nashville) says:

        Sue, I was just reading this article and thought you might be interested. Kind of scary, I believe.
        http://www.askmen.com/news/power_money/water-in-western-us-is-contaminated-by-uranium.html

      • Barbara (Nashville) says:

        I do understand about the loud noises. I am pretty much a klutz, and poor Angel spends a lot of time ducking out of the way when I’m cooking, or I should say dropping things, vacuuming or anything else that is noisy. I believe I mentioned about the barking at thunder.
        I think she is finally finally feeling “at home” here. Her personality is really coming out. I have resorted to calling her my “Little Stinker” She likes to do this little teasing dance when I am trying to get her harness on to go outside. Also, she sleeps with us and our bed sits kind of high, so if she get out of bed for a midnight snack or water, she brings me a gift so I will put her back in bed. The gift however is a dirty sock, which she gets out of the laundry basket. I know every one wants a dirty sock in the middle of the night. LOL

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          Hilarious, Barbara! You (and Angel) gave me my first laugh of the day! What a cutie Angel is and such a dear one, grateful for her secure and loving home. I love the way you have become a family.

  19. Dawn in MI says:

    Beautiful beautiful sunsets! Glad Reggie feels better. I had a dog once that we think had been abused by a hunter. Evey time we (as kids) played like we were hunting the dog would run away. Reggie might have been scared like that by being around someone with a gun. You never know.

    I have an unrelated question. Is anyone out there doing an extended trip (or full timing) using a tent? If so what are the cons (other than I suppose you can’t boondock without a black tank…but in a campground, anyone doing that?

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Dawn in MI,

      It’s anybody’s guess what is in Reggie’s past, although I think it is common for a dog to hate gunshots.

      BLOGORINOS: Any thoughts about or experiences with tenting on an extended trip? What problems did you encounter? Any tips?

    • Sidewinder Pen says:

      I’m not extended tripping in a tent now, but I have in the past. I wouldn’t say you can’t boondock without a black tank (you may be thinking of the LTVA rules, but that is a tiny percentage of locations and not really boondocking in the “wild” sense). Options are the “old fashioned” way (cat hole; see “leave no trace” ethics for how-tos), carrying a Porta Potti (in the car obviously not if hiking to a tent site), or carrying WAG bags. Not saying you need or want to boondock, but just mentioning that you can.

      If you are “car camping” then your car will be an important part of your camping setup. You may want to remove a seat, fit in tubs, build a platform to maximize storage or etc. (platform can be a simple piece of plywood).

      Campgrounds can make it easy as you then usually have a big table, bathrooms, and even electrical hookup (power strip in the tent, whee!).

      Keep in mind that if you plan to cook you will likely be doing it outside.

      • Sidewinder Pen says:

        Oh I forgot you asked “what are the cons.” Well hmm…

        I guess not being able to cook inside, when it’s cold/rainy/or you are someplace enroute. It can be noisy if neighbors are noisy (I mean, even noisier than in an RV). If summer, can get really hot in the morning if you are in the sun. Having to potentially pack up a wet tent in the rain. Also if the site is crooked, you can’t just use leveling blocks to level the tent. Can be a bit scary in storms.

        A few potential cons can be handled by getting a larger tent (since you’d likely be car camping). This gives you space to, say, take off wet outerwear in one corner and still camp in another, space to stand up, even space for a cot or etc. Also a good tent will not leak, won’t flap incessantly in wind, and will be easy to set up.

        And of course a self-inflating sleeping pad is a plus! (I still use one every night, even not in a tent.)

        And there are lots of other things I really liked too, like being able to hear wildlife and wind, being able to camp in spots that RV’s can’t get to, all the screens around the outside, looking up at the stars if in a dry place and the fly isn’t on. The feeling of all that “floor space,” but still with the snug, angled roof overhead (albeit fabric). Actually, I found it crazy how a microscopically thin layer of nylon could “feel” like such a stout shelter. SO much different than if it’s not there. It’s sort of illogical, but seems to be so, at least for me.

      • Dawn in MI says:

        Thank you. All good points. I camp now in a pretty good, larger tent with my dog at campgrounds around here. I like my 5 person tent because it gives me room for ‘stuff’ and her and me with floor space left over. I even have a self inflating sleeping pad as we sometimes camp at national forests without electricity. I’m just thinking that perhaps it’s a way to start, given husband is not on board with buying a RV. Plus I’m already almost set up to do such a thing. Food for thought.

        • Kerry On (UT) says:

          We have a 10 x 14 Springbar tent (for the two of us and a dog), cots, pads, and sleeping bags, that we’ve used on several outings of 10-12 days, although we could have stayed out much longer. We also have a cabana to house our port-a-pottie and Aqua-Cube (heated, pressurized shower), so boondocking isn’t a problem, and is actually preferable since our dog is easily agitated by people walking their dogs through the campground. You just have to make sure you bring enough water to your boondock and/or know places to refill your jugs as needed. We also bring along our Buddy heater, and a 5 gallon propane tank if it’s suspected that the nights might be chilly. We use the same propane tank for our camp stove and shower, and even with all that use, we’ve never used more than half the tank. We’ve really enjoyed this set-up, we have everything we need, and we can really feel at-one with nature. The only drawbacks we’ve found is if the temps go anywhere near 100, it’s too hot to stay inside the tent during the day, and if the overnight temps drop below freezing, you need to make sure you keep your water inside the tent so it doesn’t freeze. If the temps are chilly at night you also have to make sure the dog has a warm bed and blanket. If you have a set schedule, there may be times you have to set-up or put down the tent in the rain, and that’s not exactly pleasant (we did that once and I don’t recommend it), so a bit of flexibility is a plus. We’ve found we enjoy our time more if we can camp in a sort of central spot for a number of days, then use that as a base camp to take day-excursions, instead of packing up every day or two to move, since it takes a bit of time and effort just to move your camp (that’s the nice thing about a trailer/RV, it’s always ready to go). Oh, one more thing, if you’re camping in a campground, sometimes they have those sand box-looking things you have to put your tent in, and if you have a large tent, those are too small, so it’s good to scope that out ahead of time.

          • Dawn in MI says:

            Thanks for the information. I wonder if I should invest in a cot. The only disadvantage I’ve found of the self inflating pad is that it’s so low to the ground it’s hard to get up! 🙂

            Interesting information about the shower and toilet and propane tank. I think I’d do a short boondock first before I invested in those. I am somewhat concerned that I’d be nervous being alone. In campgrounds I feel like there would always be someone around to help in an emergency. And of course the dog alerts me whenever she thinks there’s someone too close.

            Thank you for the advice and information!

            • Pamela K. says:

              Dawn in MI,
              Getting up from a cot…I hear ya, lol.
              I found hiking poles work wonders, just be certain to put a tennis ball w/hole on the bottom of the poles so they don’t damage the tent floor. That way they serve a double use and the tennis balls are easy to remove for hiking later in the day. 🙂

        • bess from eugene, oregon says:

          hi, we tent camped for 50years, up until a year ago. we have a large “cabin style” tent by Eureka called Copper Canyon. it has straight walls and i can put my chair in there to read at night. all walls have huge screened windows so it is like a screened room in the day. one drawback was finding a level site for the 12 x 13 footprint.

          our age of 65 was not the reason in choosing to switch away from a tent. i wanted a trailer after being rained out on each of our camping trips in 2013. i also wanted to be able to camp in all seasons and be dry. i also like the feeling of safety from bad people and wild bears by having hard walls.

          we are not full-timers. we still pack our tent in our car and sleep in the tent sometimes to see the stars and feel the breeze. and we use the screen room if there are bugs. we also still cook outside almost all the time except in the rain.

          we have a little vintage trailer that has a 4 burner stove, no oven or furnace and a sweet dinette. we like to fix our lunch in there when we stop at a reststop or gas station. so far owning the trailer has been a big improvement over some the hard parts of tent camping.

          we have been on a 3 month long trip in the southwest with a tent and everything worked really well for us. so you can do it and maybe later your husband will see that he would like it too.

          my husband is not mechanical and is usually afraid that something will break. so far he loves the trailer and says repeatedly that it was a very good decision we made. at first neither one of us was totally sure it was the right thing but after a couple of easy trips locally, we enjoy planning and taking our trips.

          • Dawn in MI says:

            I have a Eureka tent as well, like it very much. Not as big as yours though, I don’t think. I think a trailer would be easier…but agree that it is nice to sleep under the stars, at least some of the time! I bet your vintage camper is cute! Thank you for the information and advice. I am hoping to take the tent and the dog and head north for a week or two this summer to test out longer trips. The longest we’ve been out is 3 days so far. She loves it, so do I.

        • Pamela K. says:

          Dawn in MI,
          Here’s a thought since hubby is not on board about the RV thing. Maybe meet him halfway and get a very small enclosed utility trailer ( 4X6 or a little larger). Many have electric already installed and some with a roof vent. People are converting them to RV-like standards over time too. It would get you off the ground with hard sides for protection while not committing to an RV just yet. Most guys have always wanted an enclosed utility trailer to putter around doing projects in. You could maybe *sell him* on that aspect alone. Most do not need any heavy special riggings, a plus, and the hitches are small and the tail lights are small, easy towing. Anyway, it was a thought to think about…tent camping trailer for you/hobby trailer for him. win, win.

    • Jordan says:

      Hi Dawn,

      I’m full-timing in a teardrop camper – tinier than your tent but off the ground with hard walls and ceiling – so not too much different. That might be something your husband might find more to his liking than a tent or big RV to start with. I would recommend you go with a 5 x 10, nothing smaller and there are many designs out there to choose from with a huge variety of amenities added.

      For my bathroom, I have a “pee jug” and made a composting toilet (mostly for the “other”) from a bucket and line it with tall trash bags. After about a week I take out, tie shut tightly and can safely dump in a dumpster. It will continue to compost. Pretty easy and inexpensive. If you are camping in campgrounds mostly, then you’d have access to bathrooms so may only need the “pee jug” at night. I refill jugs for my water always keeping some for drinking and others for “washing” purposes. I also use an old kitty litter jug for my gray water.
      I love the simplicity of living like this, however it is challenging during cold spells as I don’t have a way to heat my teardrop safely without electricity. With your bigger tent you probably could carefully do a Mr. Buddy heater or such. But you have your dog for extra warmth which is a plus! Also, my kitchen is outdoors too so cooking in cold or bad weather is also a challenge. I bought a thermos to keep hot water in inside at night for hot tea or you could add it to an instant meal (i.e. those backpacking freeze-dried meals) for a hot dinner – though those are quite expensive. I am still working some of these issues out since it has been much colder for longer periods of time than I had expected in SW Arizona this winter.

      Everyone else who replied had good suggestions. It’s really just a matter of trial and error and being open minded to creative alternatives. The challenges are fun and it is very nice to have such a simple set-up sometimes. You feel like you are more a part of nature than an intruder.
      I wish you happy times with your camping adventures!

      • Dawn in MI says:

        Thank you for all the information! I have looked at the teardrop campers at camper shows. It is almost like a tent in that it’s really just big enough to sleep, and you have to cook outside. But I don’t mind that. So maybe being up off the ground would be enough to make husband go camping! LOL probably not. He says there are hotels that are designed for people our age! HA! 🙂 I appreciate all your thoughts..and I hope I can get out on the road a little bit this summer.

        • bess from eugene, oregon says:

          i saw a teardrop when we were shopping for a trailer that had a kitchen inside and a big bed. my 5 foot 9 inch husband’s hair brushed the ceiling. too short for us to feel comfortable but would be wonderful to have the amenities that the smaller teardrops have.

          i use a Little Buddy heater in the trailer but am extremely careful with it because i don’t want to tip it over.

          we also checked out A-Line folding trailers. my trailer was about $7000 cheaper, i paid $8000 and i have a ton of storage and room.

          you find what you are looking for and enjoy it, and keep on with the tent camping for now.

  20. Poor Reginator. Gunshots even far away can affect some dogs tremendously. Glad he was back to himself by evening. Chicken, the wonder cure.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Lisa W (currently in San Antonio, NM),

      What’s the weather/temps where you are?

      • carlene from Bosque del Apache, San Antonio, New Mexico says:

        Hey there… weather is going to be very warm the next few days… high 70s but still chilly at night… low 30s. Late in the weekend cooling down again.
        I’m loving it here… when I saw someone else post from here, got my attention.
        Festival of the Crane was entertaining… not as hectic as I thought it would be. Took a couple photography workshops in addition to working extra hours but it all worked out well. The sandhill crane count is down from what history has been. Light geese are in the 12000+ count. See bald eagles and javalina’s. much fun in this different country, different for me anyway.

        New Mexico nailed their Land of Enchantment… I am truly enchanted with this land.

        Take care, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.
        Carlene and Corky

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          Sounds great, Carlene! Thanks for replying… Best wishes for your Christmas and New Year, too!

  21. Oh my gosh, what a spectacular sunset!! Sure glad you shared that one with us! 🙂 Happy to hear that Reggie is perked back up, bless his heart. Here’s hoping it remains peaceful there.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thank you, Linda in Austin,

      It’s peaceful again. All in all this has been a very quiet camp. I can see us camping here for a long time during the winter months. Not this year, maybe in the future. I’m trusting the water situation will be resolved. Everything one needs is close by and there’s room to be by oneself. I couldn’t be happier!

  22. Pam and Maya says:

    Wow, all I an say is that was an amazing post- thank you! I saw the world through Reggies eyes
    !

  23. Cinandjules (NY) says:

    You wrote such a lovely post out of something you have no control of (human behavior) how it was truly disturbing to a crew member and your efforts to find a solution.

    Oh how sad! Poor guy! Something from his past life. At least he knows safety and runs toward the BLT! The trek in search of Regs mojo was cute! You seriously thought of the infamous drive thru?? Hah Angry chihuahua man!

    Thankfully you spied the rotisserie chicken on the conveyor belt! The last group of photos were awesome….love the blur of Reg man! Yep he’s back to normal!

    No worries Reg man…this IS your new life….your forever home! Life is grand!

    Great job Sue and Bridge!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Cinandjules (NY),

      What an uplifting message for me… Thank you!

      I was banking on there not being a line at Carl’s Jr. and we could whip into the drive through and snag a patty for the Reg (before he could become frustrated) to share with Bridge. Instead we had Serendipity Chicken and it worked just as well! 🙂

      I like what you pointed out about Reggie seeking safety in the BLT.

      Have a good night… Hugs to AO!

      • Marilyn, Dania Beach , FL says:

        Sue,

        At least Reggie would rest some during this frightening experience. Our granddog would shake and pace for hours from gunshots, lightening and fireworks. It was almost impossible to get her to settle. We had the same behavior when the coyote was in the area, too.

        It is so sad when they are helplessly frightened.

        As for the Costco chickens, you would probably be eating for 10 days from one as they are huge. My neighbor eats off all the skin on her way home. I found that hilarious.

        They are delicious.

        Marilyn, in DB

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          That is hilarious, Marilyn. We all know texting while driving is a no-no. Eating chicken skin is barely acceptable. Hahaha!

  24. Cynthia from San Clemente, CA says:

    I seem to remember another time when Reggie was upset about some loud noises – can’t remember which of your posts …. makes me wonder if there was something that happened in his “past life” involving loud noises that was scary or negative for him. That’s always a puzzling issue with rescues – they react to certain situations and we never really know why. You seemed to have figured out the right medicine though – lots of love and chicken!!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Cynthia from San Clemente, CA,

      You remember well… Reggie was spooked by the fireworks on the 4th of July while we were camped near one of Oregon’s rivers. That was a national forest and the guy shooting the fireworks was hit with a big fine. Unfortunately Reggie didn’t get the satisfaction of knowing that.

      I don’t know for sure, of course, but I don’t think Reggie’s reaction is due to a bad experience. Some dogs are just gun-shy. You’re right about some rescues having issues due to bad things (or people) in their past. Love and chicken does help. 🙂

  25. Sidewinder Pen says:

    I just love the pink light of the sunsets, and you capture it so well.

    Aw, Reggie looked so dejected! But I did notice his left eye is big and round and wide open (it used to be a bit “closed,” right?). So that’s good. He’s a cute little guy.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Pen,

      Yes, his eye did look smaller shortly after he came to live with Bridget and me. Once in a while the lid on that eye will drop lower than the other. Nothing to worry about, thank heaven.

      That close-up photo has a strange quality about it. It was part of a much larger scene with a lot of clutter. Cropping down to his face enlarged it and made it look a bit odd, if you look closely. I like it though. for the cuteness factor. Don’t like that he looks sad and scared.

  26. Barb from Hoquiam! says:

    Omgosh poor ole ReggieMan! Glad he got his giddy-up back!

    Your sunsets are wonderful. We are again having record rains here. It is frightening after our floods of January. Staying close to home right now. Not much to do–but do the best we can I guess.

    Keeping this short right now, but want to say how much I enjoy your work through the days… it really brightens my day.

    Hugs as always, from Hoquiam,
    Barb

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Barb from Hoquiam!

      Gosh, you’ve had a lot of worry with heavy rain and high water. The January floods were traumatic. It’s good you’re staying at home. Best wishes…

      Thanks for mentioning your enjoyment of my blog. Hugs to you, too, Barb, from the very dry Mohave.

  27. Sealarkesmiles says:

    Perfect post for me to read tonight…appropriate as Lily has been in the dumps and being almost 14 well, you know. What perks her up is TUNA….strange, huh? Hoping it is just a phase but she sleeps ALL the time. Reggie is such a cutie and glad he got his mojo back….he is adorable (as is Bridget, of course). Enjoyed a beautiful sunset as well in NM tonight and really enjoyed yours as well. Gorgeous shots! Special treat to see. Thank you!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Sealarkesmiles,

      You think your Lily is depressed? Of course, we all slow down as we age. Bridget is probably close to Lily’s age (I don’t really know) and I noticed she sleeps more these days and when she’s awake she’s not very active. Dimming vision and poor hearing may be partly to blame.

      When I bring out the chicken, the years fade away and she’s on it! 🙂 Tuna, eh?

      Maybe our girls have aches we don’t know about. I pretty much let Bridget do what she wants, although I do encourage her to walk at least once a day, and when she’s had enough, she lets me know. It’s tough when our pets get old, tough on them and on us.

      Wishing you and Lily a good night!

      • Sealarkesmiles says:

        Well, when I walk out of the camper she can all of a sudden “see” and when I say “Tuna” she can hear as clear as a bell. All ‘systems’ (eating, drinking, and all that other stuff) check out and possibly she is just getting lazy which I can somewhat relate to with all this fresh air out here. She just hasn’t been smiling at me as much lately. Hard to think of life without her, though. Smiles for how much more wonderful life is with a special pup!

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          Where is “out here” where there’s “all this fresh air”? If you don’t mind me asking…

          • Sealarkesmiles says:

            Of course I don’t mind! Presently at Caballo Lake, NM and just making my leisurely way around New Mexico. The weather has been wonderful, chilly at night but warms up during the daytime and you know the views…beautiful. Waiting until springtime to hit the northern part of the state again. Just pretty much ‘following the weather’. I love it here.

    • Pamela K. says:

      Sealarkesmiles,
      I couldn’t help but read about the TUNA perking her up. I used to do that until our Golden got up in years. Our Vet told us to quit feeding it to her once she got up in years! It seems that TUNA acts like an “upper” for cats and dogs. Once they ingest it fully then they have a hard “downer” just like a drug does in humans! That may be playing some small part in her sleeping patterns. I know it did for our dog before we stopped it. Give your Vet a call and see what he/she says about it. Even a small amount can be too much depending on the dog’s size. Just passing this info on for good measure. Our Vet said she has had so many dogs and cats with real problems because of TUNA toxin build-up in their systems, hip and bladder issues or body ticks. Who knew?! I sure didn’t.

  28. Dasher - Tampa Bay says:

    Beautiful sunset photos. I was oohing and ahhing right along with you. The pink light is enchanting.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Dasher – Tampa Bay… These sunsets make a spectacular close of each day…

      BTW, a long time ago I lived in Clearwater. I loved that drive across the causeway at Tampa Bay.

  29. The sunsets were gorgeous! Yummy colors! God does good work on sky canvas!
    Poor Reggie! Such a sad face! Funny how dogs react to noise! Nothing seems to bother Radar, thunder, fireworks, gunshots, he just takes it all in stride! DoogieBowser is just the opposite! He has to find a lap to crawl to where he shivers and shakes until the noise stops!
    Loved the blur of Reggie running circles around you!

  30. Susan in Dallas says:

    Great story! So glad Reggie is his happy self. Is the first picture a photo of Reggie or a painting? It’s beautiful.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Susan in Dallas…. I like that pic, too. You’re seeing the effect caused by me cropping his face out of a much larger scene.

      I think Reggie is very photogenic. Bridget is, too. Very easy subjects for the camera when they allow me to take a photo.

      Reggie was being silly the other day. I’d point the camera at him and he’d run inside the BLT and then run back out again, like “ha-ha! Can’t get me!”

      Thank you for liking the story.

  31. Pamela K. says:

    Sue,
    So HAPPY to hear Reg is scootin’ with his mojo again…was worried for that little guy!
    Chicken, I can take it or leave it most of the time. I am a turkey gal, love them…well…except for tonight’s turkey!!! Klemper picked one up on the way home around 8:30PM. I fixed steamed green beans, Stove Top stuffing and opened up a can of cranberries. All enough for our dinner and some for lunches tomorrow, right? The turkey was AWFUL! On the tag it had been cooked since 10:30AM and had no doubt sat under the heat lamp until we bought it at 8:30PM !!! It looked good but was bone-dry, hard as a rock. I called the store, they will refund my money tomorrow but that didn’t help much for tonight’s dinner. Just a few pennies shy of $9:00 too! Ouch! So that’s why I stay clear of store roasted products unless I can get there really early once they put them out freshly cooked. Just think, 10:30AM – 8:30PM it was under that heat lamp – nasty! You would think there would be some kind of health code law for that. It should have seem a garbage can long before Klemper even brought it home…then it did. HA!
    *Calling-Out* our local Ingle’s Store now.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Pamela,

      What a disappointment. I’m sorry that happened. I urge you to click the link the Sidewinder Pen posted for us about rotisserie chickens. Stores have a system for putting out the cooked chickens for customers and after a predetermined time period, the chickens are removed and made into chicken salad and other items sold at the deli. It’s a surprisingly short period of time. Probably, like you say, there’s a health code to be followed.

      If you click on that link, you can scroll down and easily pick out the information. In other words, you don’t have to wade through a lengthy analysis.

      As for the turkey you bought… something isn’t right… an employee screw-up, something. It’s good you called so that it can be prevented from happening again.

  32. mockturtle says:

    🙂

  33. Mike Leonard says:

    So glad Reggie recovered! The Bichon Brothers hate gunfire too. I like to target practice, but won’t do it anywhere near the boys.
    I finally got out of Dodge and am a RV park in Parump, NV while I buy a few things and get things sorted out. Very tired, but satisfied.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Mike,

      Have a safe and happy journey! Great photo of the Bichon Brothers at the top of your Nov. 22 post. 🙂

    • AlanOutandAbout - Pahrump, Pahrunp, Pahrump says:

      Hi Mike, Which RV Park. I am at the north end of town in the Nevada Treasures resort.

      • Mike Leonard says:

        Alan, I am at the Seven Palms RV park. It just says Pahrump RV Park in front. It is on Linda Street.

        • AlanOutandAbout - Pahrump, Pahrunp, Pahrump says:

          That is the first park I stayed at when I got here. I will be there this Sunday to visit a couple I met while there. He is the parks maintenance man. If you like we could meet let me know your site number.

  34. Lisa, Tommie and Buddy in SoFlo (for now) says:

    Sue, those sunset colors are unbelievable; so gorgeous! I look forward to seeing one in person, only God knows when that will happen.

    I am having some fun enjoying my bright red percolator. I enjoy seeing that little “burp” of color develop as the coffee perks. Oh the simple pleasures, LOL.

    Tommie was startled by gunfire once on our last trip, actually I think it was a mortar or something large. It was LOUD, but to his credit he only jumped at the first round. The second report got a long look and the third was ignored. I was so proud of how he handled it, especially since the campground was full. Often onlookers doubt that he is a bona fide service dog, since he resembles a Pitbull. He proved himself on that trip many times. I was glad to read that Reggie’s upset was over by sundown, or I am sure neither of you would have slept well. Hmmmm, probably Bridgette would, if she got her fair share of the warm blankets.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Lisa… That red percolator is a pretty item. I know exactly what you mean about the “burp.” 🙂

      Your Tommie is a well-trained professional! Way to go, Tommie!

      As for Bridget sleeping well…. as long as she receives her fair share of the chicken! She’s not much of a blanket hog. She has Bridget Thermal Units (BTUs) to keep her and us warm. 🙂

      Enjoy South Florida… You were having a lot of rain not long ago…

  35. weather says:

    All of nature joined you and crews arrival into happiness. Heaven expressing it’s delight with how loving you are to those entrusted into your care. To match the lengths you went to for Bridget to wag her tail and Reggie to run with sheer glee it turned the very world around you pink!

    Reading this post reminded me of a music box my father gave to my mother. It played the tune of La Vie En Rose. In English some of it’s lyrics are …a great joy takes place, trouble removed, I see life as if rose tinted…Thank you, Sue, for starting my day with a smile and a song.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You’re welcome, weather… and thank you for starting my day with this exquisite song. I looked up the English version on YouTube and listened to it, tears in my eyes by the time it was over.

      What a lovely gift to your mother.

      BLOGORINOS: I edited this post for you to listen to the song also. See NOTE at the end of post. It will take you to a search results page. Scroll down to the YouTubes. I listened to the first one. –Sue

      • weather says:

        Being privy to the love story between my parents was a special part of my life. I’m so pleased that you took the time for a glimpse of that…and then shared it and the link.

    • Good Morning Weather, one of your best messages to Sue…good things come in small packages… Thank you and Sue for a great morning package. 🙂

    • weather says:

      Hi, Sue, it’s nice to share things remembered that still matter because they had such a strong influence in our lives. One of yours being Tioga George’s blog, I wondered if you’d kept up with his most recent posts. He’d said a fond farewell to folks and replies convinced him to keep posting, thank goodness. I’d felt awful reading his good bye because it felt as though a chain was being broken. I’ve often thought that without him you may have had a different path.

      If that were true, so would the path of many that are now travelers because of your encouragement. I don’t suppose you’ve counted the people that have written saying that your blog gave them they needed to reach for their dreams. George probably didn’t either. The number, however great, doesn’t matter perhaps, I think you would have done it for a handful of folks. Another thing I wonder is what their lives would have been like without that. Would they have lives similar to the one you’d pictured for yourself in Georgia before you’d left it’s gates behind you? Walking the mall for exercise instead of finding new trails for the crew, for yourself…

      In case you hesitate to show your campsite’s environment or mention an average task, I just thought I’d remind you. Readers may be seeing the same desk, kitchen or street that they have for years. Opening your blog is an inspiration and breathe of fresh air and hope, for many the one spot in a dull day and life that helps them through it. I know you are aware of all of this, still a cheering section might feel good sometimes. I am so proud of you, and hope you are of yourself.

      • Back at full stride Weather, wonderful comment to Sue, I know she is proud to know you. 🙂

      • rvsueandcrew says:

        Your comments deserve a thoughtful reply… I can’t do that right now. Full day ahead! Be back later… Until then, thank you! 🙂

        LATER: Today I expected some friends and their two dogs over to our campsite — a play date for Reggie and Bridget! — but they had to cancel. Whenever I expect company I get an urge to clean. You know how it is when you look at your house, imagining how it looks to someone else. Suddenly the dirt and clutter are intolerable! I had fallen behind on cleaning, trying to conserve water. Once I get the urge to clean, I go with it… Lord knows when it will appear again. 🙂

        Anyway…. I’m back to being lazy. The crew is asleep. I’ll get together with the friends some other day.

        About what you said, the “what ifs”… What if I hadn’t seen Tioga George’s blog? What if I stayed at my house in Georgia? What if I never ditched it all, took up this life, and blogged about it? As I was cleaning today, I thought about the people who have thanked me, calling me their inspiration, reporting on their new dream for a life on the road, excited about the future, renewed hope, and all the rest. This really is bigger than me obviously. A greater force is at work in all our lives. Isn’t that humbling to consider? And fantastic beyond words! 🙂

        Yes, I still read George’s posts. What an amazing man… He’s gone through some very deep valleys and yet he still can smile and share with others.

        Thank you again, weather. Your writing is beautiful; your insights even more so.

        • Barbara (Nashville) says:

          Weather, what a sweet tribute to Sue. She is definitely my hope and inspiration. Since I am pretty much stuck, right now. I also enjoy all the comments. This blog is the first thing I look at and read when I logon each day.

        • weather says:

          Sometimes I fall behind on everything so things pile up, I do know what how it is. The pups don’t know they missed a play date, and you got a bit done, spent time thinking about lovely things-how nice! I really enjoyed your response and agree , a greater force is at work. Amazing to consider such things …for all involved sakes. Great note from you below to everyone here, wondrous indeed.

  36. Diann in MT says:

    Thank for the good ending to a puzzling story. You write so well, Sue. Your blog seems like a series of inspiring short stories.
    The photography is exquisite!

  37. Tara from Pac NW says:

    Oh man, the sky is beautiful beyond belief!!

    The very last one reminds me of the children’s book, “The Rainbow Goblins”.

    So glad that Reggie is back in business! And I agree, Bridget is pretty in pink!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I agree, Tara… These sunset skies are hard to believe. The photos don’t really capture the full impact because the colors reach out beyond the frame and wrap around. Exhilarating! I think that’s what Reggie felt and caused him to zoom around. I felt like twirling in the pink world, too!

  38. Renee Galligher says:

    Wow, an all time high for me – no. 37 +

    Oh well, next time, right?

    I loved this post. Poor Reggie. I’m sure glad he got his mojo back and in a flash it appears! My little Mica, when she gets all excited loses her mojo. I wonder if it has something to do with adrenalin. For Reggie, it must’ve been the fear of hearing those gun shots. We’ve had many dogs and some of ours would shake to the sounds of it.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Renee . . . You’re probably right about the adrenalin. Reggie had to rest to recuperate. I’m pleased that you “loved this post.”

  39. Anne - in GA says:

    Morning Everyone, I have been following this blog for about 2 years now. I retired in June to find myself homeless despite having been gainfully employed ( $60,000+ per year salaries ) but the Wall Street kafuffle in 2008 zeroed me out. My mother had a piece of property in Georgia so I packed the moving truck and relocated. However, her home there is totally unlivable (Mother passed away 2 years ago after quite a few years in a nursing home).

    I have been living in my 8’x10′ tent since the middle of august of this year. I guess that would count as extended trip, right? On arrival at my Mother’s place, I found 2 little kittens, littermates, who were beginning to show signs of starving. So they are healthy, happy and spoiled beyond anything you can imagine. They share the tent with me. The temps now in Georgia frequently hit mid-30’s. During the day, it is in 60’s-70’s.

    Shorts and t-shirts during day. At night, I found some active wear at Wally World that is the best ever. It is Hanes comfort wear, ecosmart. The fabric is 5% plastic (bottles, I think) but is so soft I cannot believe it. So I wear top and bottom at night and though my bed is made, I only sleep in the sleeping bag with my fleecewear when the temps are in 40’s or below. And sleep soundly all night, warm and snug.

    I creatively fashioned 8 blackout draperies over the tent when I first put it up and that helps to keep it warmer inside. The rain fly is also in use on the tent underneath the draperies. When the temps dropped into the 30’s, I bought a roll of Reflectix (the kind with bubble wrap in the center) and unrolled it inside around my bed against the tent wall.

    The kittens prefer sleeping outdoors most of the time (5 deer spend many night time hours in the yard grazing) but do come in and hop onto the bed with me when temps are in low 40’s. That seems to be their cutoff point. That addresses the “living in tent” question. But I have to say, I’ve never been fearful or lost in wondering what should I do as I have read this blog from the beginning, 90% of comments in archived entries and I feel I now have the equivalent of a Master’s Degree in Eco-Survival, Supreme Professor Sue, Adjuncts Spike (bless him), Bridget and Reggie, plus all the assistants – all Blogarinos (i thnk i just spelled that incorrectly) who have generously shared their experiences, information, internet links and are just so supportive of each other.

    So, this extended living of my current situation is what I consider defending my Doctoral Thesis – “I Can Survive”. And just for the heck of saying this, I really and truly dislike the terms “lurker” and “lurkerdom”. I prefer “observer of fellow humans” as I do at parties, the airport, train station, city parks. Sue, I do apologize as I did not mean for this to be this length. But I thoroughly enjoy(as do millions of others around the world) your words, the “kids” antics and the photos plus the information about where you travel (for reference).
    Anne (I did the typing)
    Calvin and Hobbs (who supervised closely)

    • Tara from Pac NW says:

      Anne, thanks for sharing your story. I’m very impressed with your eco-survival and your general tone sounds very upbeat, like this is a grand adventure. I think you are right, Sue and our fellow blogorinos have definitely shared how to lead a life outside of the box, and that it can be more rewarding than the norm–tied to jobs and mortgages.

      • Anne - in GA says:

        Tara, Thank you so much. I’m 71 (a week ag0) and it is a grand adventure. Things get a bit dicey when it rains here but the kittens and I manage to have so much fun through it all. I lived in Eugene and Portland, OR for many years then moved to Seattle, WA then to NY for a few years, to PA for a few more years and am now in GA til spring. My only child lives in Kingston, WA now. In the spring, I will hopefully pick up my custom-built travel trailer and take off for the west, Pac NW and parts unknown out there. Go Huskies!!! Go Beavs!!! Miss being out there so much. kayaking on Lake Union, bike riding on the trails in Seattle, picking blackberries in the country for pies, flying kites at GasWorks Park in Seattle and Westport, WA on the coast, camping in all of the states out there. So much beauty and fun to be outside.

        • Karen LeMoinel says:

          Anne will the cats go with you? I’m asking because I trap the ferals where we are presently located. Two went to a rescue in Sedona Az today! Good luck and safe travels!

          • Anne - in GA says:

            Karen, first I’d like to thank Sue and everyone for such sweet, welcoming and supportive comments to my first “comment”. As for the “kids” with fur, I’m not certain if they will travel with me or not. I let them get into the truck and clamber around in the front and back seats to their hearts’ contenty while I am cleaning it out or unloading groceries, etc. Calvin seems to have it in his head that he should drive but wants to work the pedals too. I keep telling him it can’t be done. Hobbs wants to sit on the hood as an ornament and I told her that is not what her job is. Neither listen to me at all. They are 6months old now but still lots of energy in their play and they’ve never been kept inside a house. And they didn’t react well to being caged for a couple of days at the vet’s for treatment a couple of months ago. I’m not leaving here until spring (when the snow has melted in Chicago) and will see how energic they are by then. I’m hoping they will tolerate the trip all the way to my daughter’s home on the peninsula near Seattle and we can live there for a time. Time will tell. Thank you for asking. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you, Sue, and all the readers and readers’ kids fur and otherwise and especially that studly Reg Man and Princess Bridgett.
            Anne
            Calvin and Hobbs (outside chasing a possum at the moment, too busy to spell check for me)

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hello Anne and welcome!

      Thank you for your powerful testimony to human resilence, fortitude, and positive attitude! Your story is incredible! I’m honored that you chose to share it here. Wow. No doubt someone (more likely, many) will read what you have shared and, as a result, look at their own situation with a new perspective and with more hope for the future.

      Those kittens — a gift of hope for a new beginning!

      I agree about the words lurker and lurkerdom. They have a negative connotation, like someone about to pounce out of the bushes.

      There’s so much I could say in response to your life story revealed here. I want you to know I appreciate your comments about my blog and the many blogorinos who have contributed to it over the past four years… and who continue to appear here with kindness, helpfulness, and goodness. I’m particularly glad that you appeared and shared your inspiring story with us.

      Best wishes to you, Anne, and to Calvin and Hobbs.

      • I am speechless in what climate the human character can achieve and thrive. Welcome Anne, I think you are a great addition to the loving and caring family that abounds here. Please continue to visit and contribute. Blessings to you Anne.

    • Applegirl NY says:

      You have a great story. Thanks for sharing it. Welcome to the joys of posting!

  40. Marcia GB in MA says:

    Happy that Reggie is back to normal. It sounds like the chicken really perked him up! Your sunsets pics are just gorgeous. I always look forward to them.

  41. Lee J from Northern California says:

    I am home! Julianne was released from the hospital and tolerated the trip home very well….so I am home! Be it ever so humble, no place and I mean this! No place like home!
    We have a new addition to our family, Maggie has rejoined our family after being Julianne’s dog for a couple of years. She is unable to care for her right now.. Maggie fell in love with Julianne and Julianne fell in love with Maggie…but she has fit right back into the group and routine. She didn’t even chase chickens when we walked out back, she stays in the yard when we roll the big gate to get the truck out…
    Maggie is a blond Norfolk terrier, full of terrier spunk! Raggie Maggie
    I love the reminder of the beautiful desert sun sets, love seeing the crew and hearing their adventures, just generally love reading your blog…it was a lovely soft spot to land after a day of grandson minding..to read the blogorinos comments..to be reminded there is a whole world out there just waiting to be sampled..thank you all!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Lee J.,

      Congratulations on the addition of Maggie to your home! I enjoyed reading your “happy ending” — Julianne is home, you are home, Maggie is home. May all of you be strong, healthy, and happy!

    • Applegirl NY says:

      So glad everyone is back home. Now you can catch your breath.

  42. Pauline in Mississippi says:

    Oh how very cute!!! Little Reggie looked so forlorn so was glad to see he got his mojo back. Our Charlie is that way when gunshots are heard. He will jump into Jerold’s lap in the recliner and hunker down underneath his arm. These poor fella’s must have something in their past that really scared them
    The pictures of the sunset are beautiful and yes, Bridget is pretty in pink!!
    Sending lots of love and big hugs

  43. AZ Jim says:

    Missy, You are one of the sweetest people I know. Pardon me for say “I know” but having followed you as long as I have, I DO know ya. Your post about Reggie losing his Mojo is so typical of you, willing to drop all else to take care of one of your babies. I love ya for that. Keep being you….

  44. Cheryl O. (WA state) says:

    That’s such a cute story about your pooch. He’s got quite the personality. I want to get a small dog (don’t know what kind yet) when I start on my journey. I have a cat and am not sure how that will go with her, going in and out of a trailer. She runs when someone comes to the front door.

    Really love the colorful sky. I haven’t seen a sunrise or sunset in awhile, but I saw the sun this morning for almost an hour. lol Hopefully, somewhere else got the rain while we had a short reprieve. Have a great day to you and your kids.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Cheryl O,

      Lots of folks RV with cats. I don’t know how they do it, but they make it work. I guess a lot depends upon the cat, too.

      Now dogs… That’s something I know a little about! 🙂 There are so many wonderful, small breeds from which to choose. And you know? If I were a one-dog person, I would consider a larger dog, probably short-haired. Larger dogs can be such wonderful companions, without the yippity-yipping.

      Right now, for me, small is best. I love that I can pick up Bridget or Reggie and put them where I want them. Haha!

      Oh well, have fun researching all the canine possibilities! I’m glad you have some sunshine after the rain.

  45. AZ Jim says:

    My new desktop photo is the first pic of little Reggie. It looks almost like a painting.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Jim..

      Gee, I’m late answering comments! After I read your comment, I put Reggie on my desktop, too. Boy, those eyes get your attention when the computer boots up!

  46. Applegirl NY says:

    Awesome sunsets, again, Sue. And that Reggie – from being down and out to being the Flash! He is something else. I know a nice chicken dinner can change my mood and perk me up from a bad day. Hopefully it will be the end of the gunshots in your area, and he will be able to relax.

  47. bess from eugene, oregon says:

    hi sue, i love the pink light in your photos. that time of the day is called the”magic” hour in the art world.

    i have some questions: when you started out on your journey in 2011, you purchased a year long pass to the state parks in New Mexico. did you find it useful and cost effective? did you explore New Mexico enough that you don’t go back there during the winter? or maybe you do….

    this is prompted by the person who is currently at Lake Caballo, NM. his writing made it sound good for December.

    i haven’t finished reading all your blog from the beginning so maybe you answered these questions already. i am still working on reading the whole thing. i send love and good cheer to you and the crew.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, bess..

      To answer your questions: Yes, I found the New Mexico pass for $225 (good for one year at state parks, electric hook-ups with showers, etc. only $4) was cost effective even though I only used it for a couple of months. I didn’t have solar power then — Electric for $4 was great.

      I don’t go back to NM in the winter because it is, on average, colder than southern Arizona due to the higher elevation. It was this time of year (or maybe earlier) that we experienced a snowstorm in the Caballo area.

      Thanks for reading my old posts. Best wishes to you!

  48. Glenda in OZ! says:

    So pleased to hear and see that Reggie was back to his usual self by the end of the day. Hey we all have our off days and Reggie can’t be an exception. Its always a worry when our loved pets don’t look like they are well or not enjoying their lives as they usually do. SO love the sunsets shots………….must be unbelievable to see that splendour at the end of the day……thanks for sharing Sue!

  49. Denise - Richmond VA says:

    Hi, Sue,

    So glad that Reggie was feeling better by the end of the day. Bridget looked pleased and relieved to see Reggie happy and zooming around you. Good chicken has magical, healing powers…be it rotisserie, soup or such. I was in need of some calming, soothing comfort last night, so I stopped by Cracker Barrel to get an order of Chicken and Dumplings to go. Rounded out with some veggies and corn muffins, my comfort meal was complete. Comfort food – hugs for the soul!

    Loved the pictures of the spectacular pink sunset. We had a reddish sunset here last night….very pretty! Sending you and the adorable Crew hugs from me and Gracie pup! Have a good evening! 🙂

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Denise and Gracie pup,

      Chicken and dumplings… Ah, that’s a soothing meal.

      You have a good evening, too, and I hope the comfort of today extends into your tomorrow.

  50. Linda says:

    My dog that looks a little like Reggie is named Mojo!!

  51. Pamela K. says:

    Dawn,
    About tent camping for an extended stay option…
    My husband and I have tent camped for many years, even as far back as the 1960s with parents and kids and pets. Later, just with the kids, the two of us and our dogs. We, hubby and I still tent camp with our motorcycles now, lol. While tents and tent style of camping changes over the decades some things stands out as pretty universal over time. Here is my short list to consider:
    1. Buy the best tent you can afford, not always the most trendy brand or style but one that fits your needs best.
    2. Always buy a 4 season tent! Even if you think you will never camp in Winter, it doesn’t matter. They are stronger in storms and offer the higher protection from outside forces. I have always tried to buy a tent made in England! That’s right England! Their weather conditions are such that their tents are made for all the hard-hitting conditions – all of which you will experience if you tent camp over any extended period of time.
    3. Always use a seam sealant on all seams, windows and doorways. ALWAYS. Even a cheap tent from a discount store can handle the rains better with sealant than a costly tent without sealants. Seal your tent before you leave to camp out.
    4. Buy tent locks. They are almost certainly useless BUT if your insurance company asks if you locked up your stuff (if it goes missing) you have a fighting chance to recover your claim if you had tent locks on your tent.
    5. Keep as much stuff as possible off the floor of the tent, use folding tables, upside down tubs, etc. Especially if you are using and kind of electrical plug-ins inside your tent.
    6. Buy a folding rake. It is great for sweeping the camp site before setting up your tent and helps to level it out for sleeping.
    7. Do not rely on your dog to alert you if something is amiss or if someone or animal is lurking around your tent. Counter to the norm, pets get scared too. Often they will be silent during those times if fear is a factor.
    8. Buy good dry bags for your sleeping gear and your electronics. Over time dirt and the elements will set into even the best of tents, also take several size tarps for shade, for storms and for tent ground/floor covers.
    9. Set up camp near but not under a tree. Trees and storms are not your tent’s friend.
    10. Canned air horns are your friend for sending an S-O-S is needed.
    11. Bedding, more rather than less…you can always take away extra bedding but not having it with you if you need it is a real pain…rain/damp/cold/dirty from sand/mud, etc.
    12. Always take a good Weather/Short Wave Radio that takes both AC and batteries.
    13. Always pack waterproof boots and rain gear (Togs). The first time you think you will not need them is the time you wished you had them…Murphy’s Law.
    Well, there ya have it. Some of the less thought about considerations…Baker’s Dozen.

    Happy camping to you and yours. We still love to tent camp after all these years! 🙂

    • Pat K, Bulverde, Texas says:

      Wow! Thank you Linda, for some great information on tent camping. Will save this for those adult kiddos of ours who are tent owners. We have a 5th wheel, and that is about as far away from the creature comforts that I wish to be.
      The perks we get for free on RV Sue! 🙂 Pat K

    • Sidewinder Pen says:

      I just have a couple of opinion variations on your very good list. I can tell you’ve done a lot of tent camping!

      One is that I prefer to purposely not buy a 4-season tent if I’m going to be using it in warm weather. Reason I say that is that 3-season (or less) tents usually have much more screening and ventilation. This makes sense, as who wants breezes blowing through your tent in winter. Also, if it’s going to be warm, I look for a tent design wherein you can still get ventilation in the rain (so see if fly has any way to not cover screens but still let air in, such as peaked “dormers” or etc. Many four-seasons are dome shaped and sometimes you don’t really have a good way to ventilate if it’s raining (fly covers all screens). This will not work as an Everest base camp, but can be much more comfortable in summer.

      Also, most good tents are factory seam-sealed these days, and if so, no need (or purpose) in applying seam sealer over that. You can tell if it looks like it has a band of clear “tape” over the seams on the inside.

      I wholeheartedly agree on buying a good tent. When I see someone with a Wal-Mart tent, I see someone who is not going to be a happy camper if all isn’t perfect in the weather department. Fine if you can just pack up and go home; a bit wearing if you are “full timing it” in a tent.

      For a decent ratio of value to dollar, I have been happy with L.L. Bean tents. Otherwise, I’d go to someplace like REI, where you can either see the whole tent setup, or sometimes they have little scale models you can look at. Tug on the mesh, make SURE the zipper is not a pain to use, envision ventilation in the rain, etc. If it’s an REI with similar conditions, so much the better (for example the folks at the REI in Las Vegas know about tents that will stand up to desert wind!)

      When you lay out a ground cloth, somewhat counterintuitively, don’t let the edges poke out from under the tent – that will funnel water in underneath.

      I spent a good couple of years living in a tent, in rainy/hot summers and cold winters, and never once got wet inside or had any failure. I didn’t have a thousand dollar tent, but did have a “good” tent from L.L. Bean (actually two in series, as I upgraded to one with a little porch type vestibule – very nice for taking off wet gear, sitting out on a buggy evening, even sponge bathing when it was buggy. The “screen porch” section did not have a floor). It would have been torture in a cheap tent.

      Those were good times.

      • Pamela K. in GA says:

        I had to smile when you mentioned your L.L.Bean tents. I, too, have an L.L. Bean, one of their long tube tents. I bought it last Spring used off of Craigslist. It was a few years old but almost new in its condition. We like it a lot and it is very cozy for a larger tent. Your points about air flow are very important! I tend to tent camp in Spring and Fall, some Summer camping but we usually have a planned trip (scooter outings and events) so I don’t think much about air flow in Summer – good you mentioned that. Most all my other tents are tents-within-a-tent so that takes care of the condensation issues by its design and would highly recommend that design style for a long term tent investment (the entire inter tent comes out for use as a bug tent – great for those Summer naps or sleeping under the stars. About that sealant…sorry but I always seal all my seams and all my tents are sealed steams from the factory – I guess I’m old school about that but it hasn’t failed me yet so I continue to do it.

        14. I forget to mention the ever trusty camper’s hatchet!
        A must for drainage ditches around the tent or anything else that might call for using/having one.
        15. Some kind of Bio Fuels wood stove. Even if you are using other cooking and fuel methods a back-up wood/bio fuel stove can literally save your life! temps drops to extremes, no cooking fuels left, need a small fire to keep warm during campfire bans, etc. My wood stove is the SOLO camp store…cooks, heats, small controlled campfire and is built like a Marine Tank! It packs to about 6″ so takes no room at all and it is stainless steel, bonus! Amazon carries them. Google U-tube to see The SOLO stove in action 🙂 They make a great holiday or birthday gift!

  52. rvsueandcrew says:

    BLOGORINOS…. I have to say, you are without a doubt the finest group of people I’ve ever been honored to know. I read your comments and I smile, laugh, giggle, tear up, get a catch in my throat, shake my head in wonder, nod with understanding.

    You share your experience and knowledge freely — so helpful, answering questions in detail. And when someone “new” appears you give them a friendly welcome, writing words that make them feel part of our “community.” You cheer each other over the good things; commiserate and encourage over challenges and setbacks. You express concern and get well wishes when someone is ill. You chat and share anecdotes and life stories. You share when you’re feeling down or on top of the moon. You might be one of those who doesn’t say much, but your faithfulness to my blog and your fellow blogorinos speaks for you. It really is wondrous what I see here!

    I hope each of you who read this message realizes how very much you are appreciated.

    Sue

  53. GypsyPurl says:

    Hi Sue. WHEW!!! Glad That didn’t last long. They are just like babies and when they are quite and just laying around first thing you think is they’re sick. Happy it was nothing serious, but I sure would have like to read the outcome if you had got the burger!!!

  54. Allie says:

    First time commenter here… I’ve only recently read some of your blog, so I hope my input won’t cause any offense and/or offer something you’re already are familiar with or have discussed. I’m not a dog trainer, but have two dogs and have studied a lot about training. And, I’ve found the following to be a pretty solid training idea for things that scare your dog:

    Basically, during the scary event, use all your training tricks to work with your dog. Sit, down, stay, heel, whatever he knows. This teaches him that the event isn’t scary to his alpha and so he doesn’t need to be scared. They say that comforting them can help reinforce the fear.

    My first dog was a great example of this. He was a pup during his first 4th of July. We were with friends watching the fireworks and he started cowering. A well-meaning friend tried to soothe and comfort him (plus he was a roly-poly fluffy puppy that was hard to resist!). I had read about this, so I quickly leashed him up and took him out into an open area and with the fireworks going off and people everywhere we did tons of *puppy pushups” (sit-down-sit) and heel, shake, etc. Whatever else he knew at that time. It was amazing to see how effective this was! He didn’t care at all about the fireworks and never cared again (nor of any other loud noise).

    This method isn’t fool-proof, but I think unless you have a mis-wired dog (I have one of those that this didn’t work on) or one with a fear that is too deeply rooted already it is probably pretty effective. I have a dog with significant anxiety and nothing helped him until I found the right med to take the edge off. Now other training mechanisms are effective. 🙂

    • Denise - Richmond VA says:

      Hi, Allie,

      By posting a first comment, you are now an official blogorino! Welcome! 🙂

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