Saturday, June 20, 2020

Good Morning, World!

So the big news is that as much as loved our RV, almost 2 years of living in a 33 ft space was just a bit too much for us, especially as this Pandemic started. "Crab-walking" between table and couch became very old very fast and the lack of preparation space made being creative turn from a challenge to a horror very quickly. We loved our trip to Utah last summer and relish the memories, but the day-to-day reality hit a bit hard especially when trapped in a tin box with the forthcoming hot dry Vegas summer looming, in an RV park. In short, we needed out. 

So we went searching for apartments because house prices here are ridiculous. After looking at 6 or 7 'meh' places, I finally contacted a 55+ place in town - one of the MH communities that Mike found which are usually quite attractive. They said "Why not come down and take a look. We have a brand new home that you might love." We talked specs on the phone, then Mike and I went to look at it, masks on face, and fell in love. It is our gingerbread house - 3 BR, 1200 sq ft, 2 baths, nice big yard with 'desert landscaping' (aka rocks). In our eyes it was perfect, it was home and it was less than a lot of places we had explored. Totally unlike us, we went to the office, signed the lease for immediate possession and started moving in the next day. What a whirlwind!

So here we sit, 5 weeks later, waiting for some furniture to be delivered but loving the sheer space. Slowly hanging pictures, getting stuff out of storage to put in our shed, talking about what we need vs what we want after selling, giving away or donating all our furniture prior to moving into our Lyda, our RV. She sits on a space on the hill above her for now so we can keep an eye on her. Charlie is happy to have roaming room and many windows to his world. We are still pinching ourselves. Some struggles with getting services established during this difficult COVID time but so happy to have home. Voila:

         
       
         











Sunday, March 29, 2020

Taco (shepherd's pie) Meatloaf

Here is a recipe that is adaptable as to ingredients and prepares easily in an RV with minimal clean-up or sink/counter room necessary. Please note - the light in here wasn't great so they look twice as dark as they really are. Ooops. 

Taco (shepherd's pie) Meatloaf
Image may contain: food

Ingredients

* About 1.3 to 1.5 lbs of lean ground beef
* 1 pkg of taco seasoning (I used McCormick)

* 2 large eggs
* 1/2 lb grated sharp cheddar cheese
* 1 small bunch of green onions (finely chopped)
* 1 pepper (red or green) cored and finely chopped
* 2 Roma (or other small) tomatoes, chopped
* about 1 tbsp butter

Prep


1. Place butter, onion and pepper in microwave safe bowl and let heat in microwave for about 10 min. on high to sautee
2. Remove bowl from microwave and add the rest of the ingredients, mixing thoroughly with your hands.
3. Grease 1 large or 2 med loaf pans (I used foil for easier clean-up afterward). Divide mixture in pans (or put in large pan) pressing down gently.

Bake in preheated oven at 350 for 30 min, pour out excess liquid carefully (not quite set yet) then raise heat to 375 for an extra 15 min or so. I have a convection/ countertop oven so always bake/cook things 15 degrees lower than directed. I large meatloaf would probably be 375 degrees for a hour or so.

Note: I was going to top with mashed potatoes sprinkled with cheese (hence the Shepherd's Pie title) for the last 10-15 min (after draining) to make a taco shepherd's pie but since I didn't get potatoes in my food order we will have rice on the side. Also sorry about that dang dark photo! Best I could do for now :)

Has it really been that long?

Hello, friends. I have been neglecting you!

We are winding down our time in the RV slowly but with this coronavirus decided to stay put in our current location in Las Vegas until things look up. Scary times but always hope ahead. I hope you all are well and doing ok in self-imposed isolation. I am actually enjoying it but am an old bird, so that's not surprising.

I will post a recipe or 2 of RV-appropriate messages in another post but just wanted to let you know I haven't forgotten you all and thank you for whenever you have the chance to read this blog. Just a few more current photos than last October, including Christmas and our trip to Disney World in January (jeepers have I been lax!) The first one is my little RV Park garden :) Love as always.














Wednesday, October 23, 2019

A Year of Life on the Road and Home Again

It's been a year now since we moved into our motor home, Lida, to enjoy a life of freedom and choice. It's not all been roses and sunshine. Things like restricted storage space, cramped quarters and repairs have taken a toll on our patience and tolerance at times. The reality of 2 people and 2 dogs, one a very active pup, has also meant a lot of adjusting. Traveling this summer to Utah and living near Zion for 2 1/2 months was blissful, but we had to literally work for it as workampers so we didn't get the full Monty where that was concerned. It was such a nice change from Las Vegas summers and the scenery was lovely! We miss campfires and the brilliant stars in Utah along with the clear high desert air. But the trip home showed our beastie's age as it lurched down the highway, hitching and hiccuping. I think that may be the old girl's big trip. We are nicely settled in a comfy RV park SO much better than the first one we spent 6 months at ('nuff said about that) and the location is great. Mike got a good job and I am going back to work part time for the City after almost 5 months off and am grateful for that. I miss 'my' work kids and friends.

There are a few things we really miss, though, living in a tin can: I miss a real kitchen. It's not easy preparing meals on a 12'x16" surface. The sinks are fit for a dollhouse. We don't use the stove top even though it's a wonderful gas grill because let's face it, the cost of propane is phenomenal and we aren't willing to put out $75 every month or less for the convenience of using a stove. We would rather use the furnace. I miss a stove, full-size fridge and my little freezer. Those who know me know that I absolutely love cooking and baking. Mike says we are getting a good convection oven as soon as we can afford it. That will help but it's still not the same! I like my electric slow cooker, grill, sandwich press, electric fry pan and other appliances that we have crammed into our little storage cupboards but I miss a stove! I miss a real bathroom, with a tub and shower we can use. Ours leaks, so we use the lovely bath house here, which is one of our favorite features of this place. Cuts back on propane but also cuts back on convenience. I miss having a real kitchen/dining room table to decorate for the holidays and having room to put up a real tree in here. BUT we make the best of it with decorations inside and out and this year we can do even more.

We don't miss property management that won't work with you or who are disrespectful when you are tied in to a year long lease. We don't miss constant apartment inspections and intrusion. We don't miss relying on others for our accommodations. We like the freedom to travel if we like, even though now it won't be far, and the ability to pull up and go elsewhere if that's what we want to do. The build-in electricity and cable costs still leave us with a rent that is far less - almost half the cost - of the ridiculous rent of $1000-$1200 that is the average for 1-2 bedroom apts in the LV/Henderson area. One day we will end up in an apartment but unfortunately, it will probably not be in this area anymore. But we will have the freedom to make that choice when the time comes.

We are grateful for what we have and that includes the wonderful neighbors here. Full-timers are a breed unto themselves and we are happy to be part of that community. Having gotten rid of lots of our clutter - yes, a bunch is crammed into our storage unit but you wouldn't believe the down-sizing we have done! - will make any changes easier in future. So we are thankful for that as well.

Life is good and we forge ever onward, much like gypsies or pioneers who knew the general direction in which they wanted to head but had no clue the obstacles that lay in their way. May the roads be fair, the path be smooth toward our next destination. I wish that for all of you as well.

[Sorry the photos taken - present to past - don't align properly. A bit of a glitch with the system}
Waiting for dad
Our new home
Oh the places we saw
Stunning scenery in Utal
The evening at our campground

My marigolds

First pic of baby Mellie with Charlie

One of our favorite activities at camp

On the way to Utah
On the road