Your neighbors a pain? Move! (also, sharing ideas for enjoying retirement)

Friday, January 6

It’s dump station time!

The Perfect Tow Vehicle rumbles across Midland LTVA with the Best Little Trailer bopping behind.

Dump ditty, dump ditty, dump ditty-do . . .

I complete the task without incident.  Heh.

Reg and I return to our campsite by the ironwood tree.

Gee, this would be a good time to move to another campsite.  We’re hitched up.  The inside of the BLT is secured . . . .

I do really like our site.  We’ve camped here two winters.  It makes a pleasant home.  And that’s what it was until recently when a “situation” came up . . .

Up out of the ground.

Ants are creating sand sculptures in our campsite!

At first it was big, red ants.

Not the crazed battalions of fire ants that attack in places like Florida and Georgia.  These red ants are relatively friendly.  At least they don’t go OUT OF THEIR WAY to attack.

If  I should be kicked back in the lounger, happily reading and enjoying the sunshine, minding my own business, and one of these ants living at Midland LTVA should meander up my leg, let me tell you, one such ant would have NO reservations about inflicting pain.

I’m wondering what to do about the situation when good ol’ Nature takes care of it.

The big rains came and washed the big, red ants away!

And then . . . and then . . .

Along come the smaller, black ants who sit down beside me and commence building their little sand castles and underground mazes.

They remind me of neighbors when I lived in a regular house.  Busy, busy, busy and yet they always had plenty of time to cause me pain.

Anyway . . .

Like with those neighbors of long ago, I don’t want to engage in warfare.

I don’t even want a few, brief skirmishes.  That’s why I toss aside any solutions involving death and destruction.  I’d rather avoid confrontation and move away, which is what I did long ago with those other neighbors and what I shall do now with these.

I pack up the outdoor stuff, and Reg and I pull out.

This next photo is supposed to be an action shot illustrating our departure from the Ironwood Tree Camp.  Of course, the photo doesn’t quite pull that off, because, well, if we’re leaving the campsite, who’s standing there taking the photo?

Golly, RVSue.  Sometimes I wonder about you . . . .

The BLT being towed away from the Ironwood Tree Camp . . . Yeah, right.

I drive our house around this section of Midland LTVA.

No one is camped over here so I have lots of choices.  Many of the sites are near a deep wash.  I don’t choose any of those because washes are coyote highways and that’s kind of creepy when I let Reggie out during the night to go potty.  Yes, I keep him on a tether.  Even so.  Creepy.

I find a level, clean site next to a scraggly tree and a few creosote bushes.

This looks good.  No ant sand sculptures.  We’re far enough away from the other camp.  It’ll take at least a week for the ants to get organized, load up their wagons, and make the long, arduous journey across the desert to settle here . . . .

I position the BLT to take advantage of the warmth of the sun and to put the Big Maria Mountains in view from my camp chair.  What wind there is right now is coming from the west and the BLT is angled with her nose toward it, somewhat.  Not perfectly.  Good enough.

How many times have I put out my blue mat, a chair, and doggie beds?  And I still get a kick out of it, making an ordinary piece of ground into our home, set up how I like. 

Let’s see . . . Where shall I place the table?

I fuss around our new camp with giggles of contentment just under the surface.

I sweep the interior of the BLT and shake out the rugs.  This time I shake them far away from our campsite.  Kibble crumbs may have attracted the ants.  The inside and outside of our home is tidy.

The BLT being backed into our new campsite . . . Yeah, sure.

I plop down into the camp chair and Reggie jumps on my lap.

Got ants?  Move!  No need to go down to the hardware store for some treatment to kill them or to make THEM move. 

Here we are with a nice, new home. I like this spot.  Thanks, ants!  I appreciate it.  Not that I want you to come over for a visit. . . .

~ ~ ~

More desert wash sand art!

These photos were taken shortly before sunset a few days ago.  While going through the pics, let’s talk about other stuff.

In comments under the previous post, readers wrote about their hobbies and activities.  If you’re wondering how you will occupy yourself during retirement, other than (or while) camping all over the place like I do, here are some ideas, many from blogorinos!

You can fool around with photography, for instance.  Or you can paint, draw, make “found objects” creations, knit, crochet, quilt, make jewelry, make online or offline scrapbooks, woodwork, repair stuff, or other handiwork.

Lots of us enjoy reading or writing blogs.  Some do puzzles like Sudoku or crosswords.  Others relax with an adult coloring book and markers, or they play games and cards.

How about becoming an amateur radio operator?  Or a rockhound?  You can meet up with other RVers who share your interest.

Maybe you’d like to improve your skills with technology or learn the history or geology of areas you visit.  You could take up camp cooking (or learn to handle your rig and do stuff like dump tanks) and give your spouse/partner a break!

Some folks volunteer their services with people-helping organizations.  Maybe helping animals appeals to you.  Often wildlife sanctuaries provide campsites for volunteers.

A couple years ago I met a woman in Pt. Angeles, Washington, who was retired and loved showing people around the marine center, explaining the displays of ocean creatures and answering questions.

Feel welcome to share your interests, hobbies, and activities in the comment section.  Have any money-making ideas?  As always, other topics are welcome, too!



When you follow any of the links or ads you see on my blog to go shopping at Amazon, anything you purchase sends a commission to “RVSue and her canine crew.”

Every order, large or small, is appreciated!  Here are a few of the items readers recently ordered from Amazon:

Columbia Men’s Evaporation Jacket
Renogy 100 Watts 12 Volts Solar Panel
Handheld Wind Speed Measuring Device
Vivobarefoot Women’s Ultra II Water Shoe
Heartfelt Creations Accessories – Flower Shaping
Lenovo Yoga Book with WiFi 10.1″ 2-in-1 Touchscreen Tablet

No caption necessary.


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93 Responses to Your neighbors a pain? Move! (also, sharing ideas for enjoying retirement)

  1. Happy belated New Years (just got back in town).

  2. Lori S says:


  3. Number 1? Nah, not me I read the post first. 😉 Anyway, I don’t blame you for moving. Those little black ants can get into everything in an RV and are hard to get rid of – so I’ve been told. I love the pictures of the desert sand washes. They show your artistic side (not that your normal pictures don’t).
    My hobby is Birding and bird photography. Haven’t done a lot lately as I have been in the doldrums. Do plan to start again. If anyone would like to see they can be found at

    • Deena in Phoenix, AZ says:

      Beautiful photos; had lots of Hummers in my former home and I’ve only seen one in this apt complex since July move in…waiting for spring and hoping my new patio garden will be inviting to them. You have a keen eye and a great camera for these speedy little wonders! Thanks for sharing.

      Deena and Miss Mollie

    • Mick'nTN says:

      Nice pictures Lisa, I like how your album encourages growth and the 400 mm Canon. 🙂

    • Denise - Richmond VA says:

      Gorgeous photos, Lisa! 🙂

    • AZ Jim says:

      That’s why I am not ever gonna see first place either, Lisa.

    • Virginia620 (AL) says:

      Beautiful birds. Thanks for link to view.

    • Geri, Florida panhandle! says:

      Lisa, these photographs are beautiful! I never realized there were do many hummingbird species in AZ. Thank you for enlightening me! I think I better get my hummingbird feeders cleaned up and ready for the winter hummers to come visiting. Thank you for sharing! Now get out of the doldrums and grab your camera!

  4. Kevin in CO says:

    Your sand photos are working nice for my eye!

    When I read the title, I was thinking a bunch of kids with boom boxes and ATVs had decided to camp nearby. About the only thing worse than that are insects.

  5. Cat Lady in Central City, La (bedroom community of Baton Rouge) says:

    Hi Sue and Reggie. It’s colder than a well digger’s butt here. We’re definitely not use to this. One more too cold night then it will start warming back up to the 60s and 70s, thank God. I’m getting too old for this.

  6. Linda-NC says:


  7. Marysia says:

    I enjoy reading your posts. Every single one. I enjoy them all a lot! I wonder if you plan to return to Colorado this summer?

    Regarding hobbies. I have one you did not mention. I do not live in RV full time. I actually have a house in the middle of nowhere in an incredibly beautiful place just outside one of the National Parks. I am surrounded by the National Forest on three sides and have the Wilderness Area just across the road. I am retired and I hike with my dogs every day. I do not do anything else. I hike, take photos, edit photos, and then recover and plan my hike for the next day. We also have RV – Itasca Navion and we spend two weeks at each time (few times a year) in the Colorado mountains. What do I do in Colorado? I hike. Every day. We almost never stay in RV parks. I do not like anything about them. Instead we find boondocking sites in the mountains. We also never stay in the same place two nights in the row. We get up, hike, and, at the end of the day travel to another location, so, I can hike again. This is full time activity. Planning, hiking, recovery, sleep. Every day. This is my hobby.

    • eliza says:

      this sounds like heaven on earth.

      • Cynthia from San Clemente says:

        LOL – it made me tired!!!

        • Well ,,, I truly think that is neat that you and yours is hiking all the time, i used to hike but mostly walking , bout 2500 to 3800 miles a year, it all ended in December 2005 over a broken leg in 2 places at my right ankle and what did the damage was all the time from July the 28th, 2005 till December I thought it was just a bad sprain and was walking on it,,, now I just walk a mile a day or just around the block,,, lol

          • Dave in Missouri. says:

            Your story here reminds me about a story about my brother in law. He had a feed store in Whitman. Knowing that you have spent a lot of time here. Does any of this ring a bell to you. Hi name was Fred McGarity.
            By the way I am in Peoria right now, for the month.

  8. Pat Hall (Now in Tucson ) says:

    Hi Sue, great pics of the sand in the wash. But then all of your pics are great!!!!

    I was told a few years ago at a rv park to sprinkle any type of talcum power around your rig to keep the desert ants away. I haven’t tried it, if you do let me know how it works.

    I’m heading to western Arizona next week. I need some quiet desert time….lol

  9. Linda-NC says:

    Now if I worked at one of those drive through windows and Reggie was looking at me out of the window, I believe it would have to be two free hamburgers! I mean, how could you not? The driver might get a free fry just for bringing him by. Smile payment don’t you know?
    Even ants are good for something:)
    The sand photos are mesmerizing…
    Now my rv has 6 inches of snow on it! 2 degrees tonight. Now that is just insulting. That is just so WRONG! I am still waiting on my title and organizing. I am just so slow anymore.:( It shall be done soon! Temps up to 60 by next weekend. Now that is promising!
    Thanks for all!

    • Jolene/Iowa says:

      Linda, you have all that snow and we up here in Iowa, southwest Iowa is where I am at, we have no snow. The snowmobilers who love the snow are crying, snow is north of us, snow is south of us and as one said, ” I am stuck in the middle with nothing to do.” lol.

      I am fine with no snow at the moment. I like one good blizzard a winter but I want it closer to spring so it will melt away fast.

      • Linda-NC says:

        Hi Jolene- I would love to send you some! I like snow sometimes just not right now. This will melt by the weekend so I will deal with it.

  10. Vicky Mendez says:


  11. Hey Sue, coming to you from beautiful Green Valley, AZ where the temperature is a balmy 69! SO much better than snowy old Oregon.

    As usual, I enjoy reading your posts and eagerly await the next one. You have a real knack for making us want to read about the most mundane things you do. Buy Reggie a burger? Funny. Ants crawling up your leg? Hilarious. Setting up your blue mat and table? Side-splitting. OK, so I exaggerate but I do look forward to where you are camping and what you are doing.

    My hobby is (and has been since I did my first booktalk during first grade show ‘n tell for the classic “Don’t Count Your Chicks”) books. I pretty live and breathe books. I was a librarian for 41 years and still keep my nose in the book world by keeping up on everything that is coming out from the publishers and commiserating with fellow librarians as to what’s worth reading. It has also given me a way to earn a little extra money each month by writing a column for a website called EarlyWord. Love to do other stuff to (camp, walk, sightsee, go to Las Vegas) but my first love is books and reading.

    Have fun!

    • Karen from Ft. Wayne says:

      Reading is my 1st love too Robin. Books are my passion and a great escape.

    • Barbara (Nashville) says:

      Robin, I have a question for you being a long term librarian and sounding like you are retired. When I was a small child (around 4-5?) my parents purchased a set of 8 “Child’s World” Books, it may have been Word, not World. They would have been purchased in the early 1950″s. I so loved these as a child. The first book was nursery rhymes, the second was early reading and they progressed advancement in reading through the 8 books. Have you ever heard of either name? I often wonder if they were still around, changed names or went by the wayside. I believe these are what started my love of reading. I was very introverted as a child and this was how my mom got me interested in so many other things. She often told people that I always had my nose stuck in a book.

      • Barbara, sorry for the delay in answering.

        You know, I vaguely remember those books and it sounds like something I would have loved, but not sure I had access to the complete set (my family didn’t buy books and the library was small). However, I don’t remember ever seeing new editions in the children’s area. You might do a Google search for something like 1950s vintage children’s book sets or Child’s World or Word, and click on images so you just see photos. Maybe something will ring a bell. Good luck!

        Me, I remember the one book we owned called The Bible Story, a blue book with stuff like Adam and Eve, Noah and the Ark, and the really scary part (to me at age 5 anyway), the Rapture. Chances are you had a copy around somewhere too, even it was at the doctor’s office. 🙂

        • Barbara (Nashville) says:

          Thanks for the info, I will try that. I looked once before, but didn’t find what I was looking for.

  12. Denise - Richmond VA says:

    First? I don’t see any other comments… 🙂

    • Denise - Richmond VA says:

      Hi, Sue,

      Ha! Not even close to #1! I thought that one of the big red ants 🐜 grabbed the camera and snapped the BLT departing and arrival pictures! 🙂

      I love the photo, 3rd from the bottom of your blog. Once again, the patterns in the wash, shadows, and the shrub are pleasing to my eye – thank you! 🙂

      The snow storm started around midnight last night and ended around 3 P.M. today. Seven+ inches of powdery snow. If is beautiful, but bitter cold. The next couple nights the temps will be in the single digits or below zero. I shoveled a path for Gracie, but she feels more comfortable doing her business on the patio. Not a problem….it isn’t in the house! 🙂 Tomorrow, I plan to make a pot of homemade chicken noodle soup. Warmth for the soul!

      I am glad that you are in a camp that seems sheltered from the storms rolling across our nation. According to the weather info you have posted, your nights are getting downright chilly. Please stay warm! Add another blanket, wear another layer, and keep Reggie close!

      Reggie looks like he is not happy that his burger order is taking so long! Ha! 🙂

      Have a good night, Sue! Sending you and Reggie love and hugs from me and Gracie pup! 🙂

  13. Linda Sand (Minnesota) says:

    Geocaching took us to sites we wouldn’t have found otherwise. All you need is a handheld GPS device (often a smart phone nowadays) and an internet connection to download the data. Since a lot of caches offer trinket trading I carried a hip pouch with small items I could trade and a pair of gloves for reaching into places I otherwise wouldn’t want to stick my hands. 🙂

    Details at

  14. Pauline in Mississippi says:

    I love the sand pictures! and the last one…of Reggie…is so cute!! Glad you are now in an ant free zone. For such little things they can sure make life miserable.

    It was 12° with the wind chill 2° here in the heart of Dixie this morning!!! Looks a little warmer where you are.

    Enjoy you blue rug and chair. I agree…looks more homey
    Love to you and Reggie

  15. Elizabeth says:

    Isn’t it lovely to be able to QUICKLY and easily move away from what BUGS ya??? I am happy for you, Sue…meanwhile, we, back at the apt, with the crazy shrink below (who must not have a home…she is there nearly everyday…sometimes 12 hours at a time or more…and not many patients…but maybe hope springs eternal? Wow…will be happy when we find a more normal place to live!!) We have begun gathering boxes and some sorting…I caught cold so my part is much slowed down…but after all the stress of this past year, I think I have done quite well to avoid one until now!! So no complaints…just gotta get me some garlicky, oniony, chicken soup going… Heh, meanwhile, Hubby is happily watching some old Combat shows online!!

    • Combat.? I haven’t seen those tv shows in a long time, 60s.? I made sure my homework was done just in time to watch “Combat”,, the blond staff Sargent was a cool dude in the tv series, i think his name was Vic,,, 😂

      • Elizabeth says:

        Hehee…Rusty, you and my hubby could have some fun watching all those shows!! He has been watching them most all day today…in between packing an organizing for our move, coming ere too long…though we are not sure when yet!!

    • Denise - Richmond VA says:

      Hi, Elizabeth,

      I am sorry that you have a nasty cold. I am making some homemade chicken soup tomorrow….if I was in the neighborhood, I would drop you a care package. Feel better soon!

      • Elizabeth says:

        Ah you are a sweetie, Denise…and thinking of you in ALL that snow too!! Guess you will be sticking close to home for a few days eh??

  16. Reggieman are you waiting for the patty of meat,? You look so sweet looking in the drive up window, you are looking so patient and in Sue’s lap too,,,,, 🐾 Piper

  17. Rover Ronda (WA) says:

    Always fun to see my shopping make the list. I like to get men’s rain coats to get a little extra length in the waist with out going to a style that’s actually long. And this one happens to come in a really pretty color too. It came prime so I already have it. It’s great!

  18. I guess the ants didn’t get the memo about your No Visitors policy. Ant Stalkers, the worst kind!

  19. Karen from Ft. Wayne says:

    Hi Sue. Every time you mention the Big Maria mountains I can’t help but think of the book by Johnny Shaw. That was a fun read you shared with us. I am now 145 days away from retirement and believe it or not people at work are always asking me “what are you going to do, I would be so bored”. I always answer “anything I please”. I love to read and learn and there are millions of books to discover. One doesn’t always have to be doing something at all times, retirement to me means to take life at a slower pace. Thanks for sharing your life style with us, it’s motivational. Take care.

  20. Lori says:

    I am always amazed how you see the beauty in everything around you, even ants.

  21. Jolene/Iowa says:

    Hi Sue,

    Happy New Year! Between working and trying to get over a bad cold, I have not been around much.

    As far as interests and hobbies. I love to fish and hike. I enjoy spending time in the Bible and doing Bible studies. I quilt and I have recently taken up metal stamping for tag necklaces and I also am making pom pom wreaths.

    I read, and enjoy some games on my Kindle Fire. I just am not one to sit and do nothing. I don’t typically just sit and watch TV. I am doing things while I watch.

    So that is a little bit about what I like to do.

    Always great to see you and Reggie show up in my notifications!

    • Denise - Richmond VA says:

      Feel better, Jolene!

    • beach boomer says:

      Jolene/Iowa, Wow, you have a cold AND go to work?!!! I think I’ve got the same “heavy cold” that keeps Queen Elizabeth inside her palace. It’s day 14 of coughing so forceful that I should have 6-pack abs by now. What amazes me is how bad I feel, totally no energy, but how little I care! Netflix and frozen dinners! It’s a good life and all else can just wait. First time in my life I’ve not been antsy (sorry RVSue about that reference) about getting on with things. Things can wait. Now back to “The Crown.” Prince Phillip is such a cad! I will be checking the news at 1:30 am/9:30 am tomorrow when the queen is scheduled to attend church. I’m sure she will get well faster than I due to having a palace staff . My palace staff “don’t do sh*t!”

      • cc and canine ( now in Clackamas, Oregon) says:

        Yikes….I thought I had a bad cold with painful coughing…when I coughed it felt like someone was sticking the bottom of my lungs with knitting needles. I finally went to the doctor, and after a chest x-ray found out that I had pneumonia. You might want to go get checked out.

        Just finished episode 10 of “The Crown” on Netflix….hopefully they’ll do another season. It’s very addicting!

  22. Jeff Billingsley says:

    First??? Next

  23. Joyce Sutton says:

    I carry the ants with me it seems. I have decided they may be in the walls. Jake dog prefers his burgers without catsup. If it inadvertently gets on there he buries that half of the bum somewhere. I have some new thoughts. How do you handle healthcare for the dogs. Do you have their teeth cleaned and where do you get your annual shots.

    • A Gal and a Cat in Fl. says:

      Annual shots for dogs and cats went out years ago. Since they basically last the life of the pet, the AVMA and conceded to once every 3 yrs after they are a year old. Sue is right on top of Reggie and would spot any needs for medical treatment. Plenty of vets out there. 🙂

      • Joyce Sutton says:

        Going into Canada this summer and have already been warned to have the shots current. Many small rodents carry rabies. We have always lived remotely. Locally free rabies clinics every summer. Fleas are rampant in the south and local vets won’t give you flea meds without the whole shebang. I’m aware that lots aren’t getting them but we have been refused entry to campgrounds if we aren’t carrying a certificate. But vet care is very expensive and we do our own stuff with meds we buy at our local farm supply for all but the dog we take with us in the rv. We use a local vet but on the road who do we use. Not every one can get away with no vet service

        • weather says:

          Each county in states I’ve lived in had a few free rabies shots clinics every year. They may ask for a small($5-$10)donation per pet but it isn’t ordinarily mandatory. I do a web search for rabies clinics using the name of whatever county I’m in. They usually have vets or their staff giving the shots. Finding and using them, then asking them for a recommendation of an office with reasonable fees for whatever else your pets need may help.

  24. Pam and Maya, Still in NY says:

    Hi Sue, Reggie and all you Blogarinos! Love, love, love the sand photos. I’m an artist, which keeps me busy but for hobbies I love to sew, read, hike, kayak and most of all garden. I thought I would miss gardening when I went on the road but I had so much fun identifying and learning about all the new trees and wild flora I was seeing that I found I didn’t miss it at all. In fact it’s much easier to let nature do the gardening for you! Stay warm everyone!
    P.S. I have a date for my knee surgery, mid-February. I’ll be hiking by spring!

    • Linda-NC says:

      Pam and Maya- I am avid master gardener and I will miss my garden, but I like your comment about letting nature do it for you. I will still enjoy all that nature has to offer, but not work as hard. Sounds good to me.
      Good luck on the knee surgery.

      • Dawn in Asheville says:

        I’ve been trying to figure out how to take some garden “with me” – have you come up with any ideas? Just herbs, a favorite flowering potted plant like a geranium, and maybe if I knew I was going to be in a place for a bit a hanging cherry tomato and lettuce in those shoe sleeves….? I have to have something green with me!

        • Linda-NC says:

          Hi Dawn- I am also going to take some plants with me. Well, probably one. I though hanging basket of herbs, as I like to cook and am leaving my herb garden. I think that I can hang it outside when I stop or I have a small 3 piece planter that I could putty down in front of the kitchen window. I think it will be an experiment to see what works. Someone suggested sticking it in the shower on something when going down the road. I don’t live far from you-Bakersville. We could compare ideas!

          • Dawn in Asheville says:

            I know when we full-timed before and moved the plants went into the bathtub and the sink. Because the Bounder had a huge dash, it made an excellent place to put a few houseplants, I also had a couple of baskets and stands of herbs…but that was 37 foot! Juno is 21 feet and every jot, tiddle and iota counted for so I’m going to have to be more creative. I’m definitely with you – herbs. Not just for cooking but for the scent (that’s why I liked the geranium). And, medicinal teas. The problem is I already have a bunch on my list, and some don’t play so nice potted together. What are your must have herbs? I was thinking basil, oregano (anti-viral), sage (excellent medicinal tea for sore throats), mint (tea for upset stomach), rosemary, dill (a miniature?), catnip (a natural relaxing tea), chives and thyme (anti-fungal). I also love chamomile but that can be hard to grow. Lemon balm is supposed to keep away mosquitos…

          • Dawn in Asheville says:

            Oh and lavender…how could I forget that?!

            • Linda-NC says:

              I am going to start with basil, oregano, parsley, chives maybe. My RV is 23 feet, so limited space also. I really would like to take more but think I will wait until I am on the road and see where I can fit things. I am sorting things to load up and I don’t know yet if they will all fit. So we shall see. I didn’t even go outside today it was cold and windy. Tomorrow I get out in the RV and figure things out. My poor Rv has snow on it. Now there is something wrong with that picture!

            • Geri, Florida panhandle! says:

              My lavender plant would never fit, even in our MotherShip a 32 foot 5th wheel! It is HUGE with flower spikes reaching out stretching the dimensions even further! I never expected it to be this big, easily 3′ tall and not counting the flower spikes, 2 feet wide around!

            • Dawn in Asheville says:

              I ran out of ability to reply to thread so I’ll reply here – oh, Geri, I envy your lavender – and your place in the panhandle. I have my eye south of you in the Ocala National Forest I want to winter in when Juno is all fixed up.

              And dadgum it Linda, I’m envious of you, too as Juno is still not here. I’ll update the latest woes and misadventures on RVSue’s next post!

  25. Lee J in northern California says:

    This is so much fun, So many interesting people with interesting hobbies!
    Let’s see…I knit, crochet, spin my own fiber, weave, read, volunteer at Columbia historic state park where I dress in 1850 period clothing that I make, including my corset, silk bonnets, warm shawls from my own hand spun fiber. I cook over an outdoor fire in period attire, using period recipes that I research and implement…
    I have a Haflinger mare that I ride and drive even though I am 70 years old. I care for her daily, buck my own hundred pound bales of hay that I can still stack in the barn three high !
    I camp in my Casita alone, wherever I want to go. I am planning a train trip with my granddaughter in April…..
    Guess what? I am never bored! I am married fifty two years to my best buddy and he just tells me “go for it,.have fun”, so I do!

  26. Biz Crate - No longer 40m south of Chicago says:

    Love, love, love all of the hobby comments. Blogerinos are VERY interesting people. Since going full time about 6 months go I have found that I don’t miss my garden as much as I thought I would. I did think that I would miss having at least a few houseplants but not my TV – so I put the TV in my little motorhome in a box under the sofa and use the shelf for my plants.
    I find that I keep busy with my 2 dogs, hiking, reading, corresponding with friends and, when I really need a dose of human company, I volunteer with Habitat for Humanity through their Care-A-Vanner program. Great program. Met a lot of really nice people and came away each time feeling like I’ve really contributed something.

  27. AZ Jim says:

    I love the entire post including your blow by blow of the ant situation but by far the best thing in this post is the photo of our little Reggie eagerly awaiting what is coming out of the fast food window. He is a little doll. I keep thinking how lucky for him and you that you found one another.

  28. Glinda says:

    What fun it is to hear about others hobbies. Mine is metal detecting. It gets me outside enjoying the weather and away from the couch….and you never know what you might find.
    Love your new camp, Sue. Good luck with the new fridge.

    • Linda-NC says:

      Glinda- I am taking my metal detector too. Good exercise and an element of surprise is always a good thing.

  29. Mike says:

    If anyone is good at conversational sales like me, you can make extra money if you find a product with a significant benefit to sell over the phone. I sell advertising space on a website for the trucking industry, its simple and if your lonely you get to talk to people. The RV industry has the same need otherwise how would anyone in need of something for their RV find them. Try to find a no pressure position, no quotas, or demanding supervision, commission only. Work remotely, sharpen your conversational skills, thru gabbing,, maybe even make some extra money. Tools??? . internet/phone/insouciance. Good luck.

  30. Dianne Day says:

    I retired from teaching. Quilt, genealogy research, and go to mountains of Colorado and northern New Mexico in the summer.

  31. Virginia620 (AL) says:

    OMGoodness!, Love your sand photos. You have the eye. Bet you could publish a beautiful SW photo book.

    Thanks for your love of all your blogorinos. I feel the love. 🙄

  32. ApplegirlNY says:

    Great post, as usual. Reggie at the window – LOL. I know how he feels, waiting for a scrumptious morsel.

    Thanks again to all who expressed their condolences over my mom’s passing. It’s now been over 2 weeks, and all formalities are behind us. Made it a couple of days in a row without tears.

    Settling into mid winter and planning our trip to Florida. Yeah!!!! Getting the Casita ready. We’re just about a month from take-off. We’ll be down there for a bit over a month. Can’t wait to get outside with our bikes and toes in the sand.

    Sue, once again your blog has brightened my days, when I needed it. Thanks.

  33. Another great post, except for my envy problem. “Giggles of contentment” are a worthwhile life goal. This plain desert scenery is where I feel content, the sand pictures are nice, and Reggie awaiting his meal is cute. Okay, the ant picture isn’t so pretty to me, but that’s because I know what ants do in camp.

    Here in Ohio, we got less snow than usual, but we have bitter cold “bottled up” by the snowy storm burying the Southeast and East Coast. We have been having high temperatures that are twenty or more degrees below average in January. Yuck!

    My plan to escape this is very slow due to my extreme budget and some timing issues. I guess my health issues are basically a reminder of what I need to do and why. This stuff reacts to climate, and the only way around it is the road. (Not that health is the only fine feature of becoming a nomad, but it matters.)

  34. Dawn in Asheville says:

    You know, ants, frustrations, meeting interesting people, meeting people willing to help, seeing pretty country and just having to adapt to nothing going as planned…it just all seems alive, somehow. If that makes sense? I remember so much about the two years we full-timed, but then the last six, have all just sort of slid into each other. Except as I get older I get more anxious. More holed up, and doing things out of the ordinary become harder and harder. This is the kind of challenge that makes the fear worth facing – imho!!

    Quick Juno update – she made Memphis last night but for about ten minutes left Rick stranded on the shoulder within sight of his hotel. Almost called roadside but then she cranked again and he was able to get checked in and get another safe and warm night sleep. She’s doing better this morning (we appear to be dealing with the same accelerator pump issue -affects giving it gas from a stop- and that it gets worse when the temps dip) and since it’s Sunday, anyway and no mechanics open, so he’s going to try to get a little further down the road. Knoxville is five and a half hours. By then it’ll be getting dark and so frigid here that even though that’s just two hours over the mountain I’m hoping he doesn’t get a wild hair and try to take her over. Have a nice cozy hotel picked out and he can pick his way across Monday when the temperatures are warmer – heck our driveway isn’t even cleared of snow yet.

    Hope everyone is staying warm and safe wherever home is!

    • Barbara (Nashville) says:

      We have been very cold here also. Yesterday when I took Angel out at 7:00am, ther was a wind chill of -3 degrees. The actual temperature was 9 degrees. Dang it was cold out there!

  35. Well, if you have a laptop and some imagination, you can write. Short stories, novels or both. If you prefer non-fiction, there is a large market in so called “industry’ magazines.

    While suffering a bit of unemployment – no, make that self-employment, I wrote several novels. I sell them on Amazon. Did a bit of promotion on a few boards.

    Amazon pays monthly. You do not need to purchase a ISBN number if you plan to only sell on Amazon.

    I also have a static website that allows contact by readers that screens my email addr from Bots.

    All in all, great fun and now that I’m nearing that jump-off point, I have a ‘hobby’ that pays me! Low to zero cost and I even get the tax documents mailed to me.

    Best of luck on your travels.

  36. Joyce sutton says:

    Nother question. Do you use water filters. I just priced a berkey recommended and caught my breath. Where would you store it. Looks large. I put extra water bottles under dining room bench

    • Linda-NC says:

      Joyce-I have a berkey and they are great! But alas it is too big for my RV. So compromise is an outside filter and a PUR pitcher. I will miss my mountain water!

    • We have two Berkeys. One the travel size which is I think 1.5 gallons and we carry in sink of our 22 ft class B and set on counter at destination. It’s just right size. Our Big Berkey is I think 3.5 gallons and sits on counter at home. We have used the small one intermittently and the big continuously. Neither needs a filter change after 5 or 6 years use. Granted we aren’t dumping pond water through them, but we drink a lot of water because we know it’s safe and it tastes better than chlorine residue in city water. After researching what actually makes safe drinking water and realizing filter pitchers are mainly for taste and not certified for most contaminants and looking at how often we were replacing Pur water cartridges, we realized Berkey was well worth it. We never worry about water from our fresh tank as long as its been thorough Berkey, which we use for drinking and cooking. Two people should be drinking at least a half gallon a day each . At from .25 to .99 cents a gallon for water in plastic jugs, multiply that times one year and you may find a Berkey not as pricey as you think when looking at is as a one time expense.

  37. Enjoyable post as always. Loved the sand sculpture photos.
    Third night out after picking up our Casita in Rice, Texas, I awoke in the night brushing tiny Argentinian ants off my face. We were told about the ants when we arrived. When the camp host found out we didn’t have any spray, she gave us the last of a bottle of ant spray to spray around anything touching the ground including jacks, tires, etc. We were good for one night, but the next day it rained, and we forgot to respray. In the morning, we found tiny ants all over the floor, under the cushions, and in the cabinets. I put tea tree oil and lemon eucalyptus essential oil on cotton balls. I may have used something else as well. We also used a little poison, but I didn’t want much of that in the trailer. What we also noticed the vultures sitting in the trees around the camp and no other campers, we moved.

    • I like Terro gel for ants. It’s a boric acid solution and you use bait stations and they eat and carry back to nest. Safe as long as you don’t have a puppy that tries to chew a station.

  38. Lori S says:

    Haha. Thought I had sent a reply but it was still sitting there. Not surprising. It was my birthday weekend and I was quite busy treating myself. If there’s no one to treat you, do it yourself! I showed myself a wonderful time.

    Ya know, if ol’ Reggie would get his license or learn how to use a camera, you could get those action shots. But then he’d be using the PTV to chase down dogs he wants to befriend and using all the camera storage to take their pictures and it could all get so messy! So we will use our imaginations and behold your action shots as being exactly that.

    That wash you took a picture of almost looked like sand snake sculptures.

  39. Rattlesnake Joe says:

    Take up Metal Detecting. If you want to know the history of an area, there is no better way than digging up the past right under your feet. When you find something unusual or valuable do your own research and find out why it was there, who may have dropped it, lost it or thrown it away. It don’t take long to become somewhat of an expert at reading things that you find. Years ago a friend of mine found an Old Spanish Brass Breast Plate out in the desert with his detector.

  40. Karla in Kentucky says:

    It has been such fun reading about your camping experiences and hobbies. It is so cold here that all we want to do is stay inside. I enjoy crafting with gourds and natural materials that I find or purchase. Have also been making fairy gardens too. Some made with live plants and some with preserved plants. Have recently taken up wood carving. This will be a great craft for when I go camping this summer. It is not easy for me to make a sculpture that looks good. I need lots of instruction and practice as I started a few weeks ago. Blessings to you all in 2017!!!

  41. Sharon Cullen says:

    Hi Sue and Mr. Reggie
    Just love your photos!
    I recently saw an art work sculpture (YouTube, I think) of liquid aluminum that was pored into an abandoned ant hill. When it was cooled, dug up and cleaned, it was pretty amazing.
    I have become somewhat discouraged with pastel painting lately (will return I am sure)
    so needed some instant gratification. Tried my hand at alcohol ink art and am having fun with this medium.
    Looking forward as always to more of your adventures!

  42. BadgerRickInWis says:

    I was going to say that the sand art photos were the best work you’ve ever done.

    But then you go and best all of them with that final doggie in the window pic. Really well done, thanks.

  43. weather says:

    Leaving the ants undisturbed and behind, good move! I hope Pink Piggy moved with you this time 🙂

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