Travels with Bentley

Travels with Bentley
Bentley - our Heartland Bighorn

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

February 23, 2016 - Our First RV Trip of 2016 is in two days! We're ready --- almost!

Just a note to start checking your emails for updates on "Travels with Bentley".  We will take a 2 day trip later this month to celebrate our 22nd anniversary.  It will be a combination get away and trial run before we take off for a 3 week trip.  We always like to do a short trip before a big one.  It's amazing what you can forget to pack on the first trip of the year and we'd rather be able to come home and add things than buy them on the road.

If we need to after the short trip, we'll regroup and then we plan to leave March 7 for almost 3 weeks traveling to Florida, attending a 1 week boondocking (dry-camping) rally, and then several days traveling back home.  We've got lots of fun things planned so we'll have much to share with you.

We are ready to go!  See you again real soon!

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

February 3, 2016 - Winter Update & Travel Plans for Spring

February 3, 2016 - Winter Update & Travel Plans for Spring

It's been a while since I've posted.  January was a hard month for me in some ways and yet again it was a great month.  I do not like the cold weather and while it was relatively mild I just can't seem to warm up when the air changes.  While I had every intention of getting lots of things done I did not do so well and began to get in a bit of a funk.  The upside is I have been enjoying weekly Bible studies with some ladies and our church recently started a study of a book called Experiencing God that I am enjoying, and we've enjoyed time with some of the grandkids.

I'm a list maker and I found that prior to the holidays having that list made me accountable to making sure I got certain things done in order to be prepared for the festivities, meals, etc.  I failed to do this in January (I've always been a list maker - comes with the old job, I guess) and I have to tell you I think that is why I have been in such a funk.  Between cold weather and not feeling like I accomplished much around the house just got me down, I decided February will be better.  Even though I have been fighting a sinus cold for about a week I have been making a list for the day and so far have been getting things accomplished.  Yea!

Misti's kids, Haleigh & Logan, spent a week with us in January while mom was in Las Vegas with her boyfriend while he attended a conference.  We enjoyed getting to spend time with them.  Logan is learning to play the piano.  Prior to Christmas we moved the piano into the guest bedroom and that worked perfect while he was here.  He is getting quite good and I believe some real talent in picking it up.  I'm very excited about that!  Haleigh is a bookworm, much like her Nana was at her age.  She spent a good bit of time with her nose in one while here.  Books can take you anywhere and I always loved that.

Dean and Tucker (Brett & Renae's son) have been playing some golf when the weather has been warm enough.  Tucker is going to play on the school golf team this spring.  Dean has really enjoyed the one on one time with him.

We've been enjoying basketball games, Logan plays on the JV team for Oswego; Kamron is in the 4th grade at St. Pat's in Parsons and plays most Saturdays.  Marc is her coach.  Dacy is a cheerleader for Columbus Middle School and we made a trip there last week to watch her cheer and to perform a dance at half time.  The girl's basketball game that night was very good and we really got into the excitement of it.  Brett has been refereeing ballgames in the area and we've been able to watch him a couple of times - one of Logan's games and the game in Columbus.  After Kamron's game last Saturday in Parsons, we had chili at St. Pat's annual chili dinner with Marc, Jennifer and the kids and then Kamron came home with us to spend the night.  We had a good time.  We started a puzzle which I am still working on now and then, played cards and just hung out together.  We both were sniffling a lot and ended up getting worse before we got better but for me it's not near as bad as last year when I went 3-4 months fighting the stuff.  I talked to Marc last night and Kamron is doing better too.

I think we have finally received all of our tax information and I'll be getting that compiled today so we can get our taxes done.  I'll be glad when it's done and out of the way for another year.

Heath & Casey's boys will be here in a couple of weeks to spend the day with us and we are looking forward to seeing them.  We plan to make it out to Wichita the end of February so we can see Miss Em and the boys again, along with their parents, of course.

We are awaiting news on whether the next Peine baby will be a boy or girl and hope to hear that news this week.  Matt & Megan are due in July so we will probably be heading east at some point late summer to meet the new grandbaby.

We have several RV trips coming up.   In March we will be heading to Florida to attend an RV-Dreams Boondocking Rally.  It will be held in Tallahassee at the Fairgrounds.  We are really excited about it as we hope to learn a lot more about camping without electric service when we choose to. We've stayed at several campsites now where we did not have water or sewer hookups and know we can go at least a full week without these services due to the size of our holding tanks, but we've never tried without electric before.  It will be a bit of an adjustment but we have a generator to keep our batteries full and will learn how to adjust using electric to our benefit.  I am excited about attending one of the RV-Dreams Rallies.  Howard and Linda Payne are full-time RV'ers, giving up their corporate jobs and hitting the road 8 or 9 years ago.  They are both in their 50's and have built their RV-Dreams into a business they do on the road.  They provide seminars at many RV shows, and three rallies a year where they invite folks to learn about the RV life.  While it is mostly centered around full-time living all RV'ers can benefit.  I started following their blog about six months before we retired, and really got hooked.  The week after we retired we took off for Kentucky to attend the big RV show there in order to attend some of their seminars.  They were great and we've wanted to attend one of their rallies ever since but there has always been a conflict until now.

We plan to take 4 nights getting to Florida and the same on the way home with 2 night stopovers in Memphis and Nashville.  While in Nashville we are going to attend the Grand Old Opry, something I've always wanted to do.  Rascall Flatts will perform the night we have tickets but no others have been announced yet, so who knows who else might show up. I'm hoping for Vince Gill!

In April we will meet some good friends in Branson for a weekend, then travel to Southern Oklahoma for an Escapees Casual Campout.  We will return to Branson for the Heartland District Rally, then on to Carthage, MO for the Escapees District Rally.  All in all we'll be out about 3 weeks or so.

In May it looks like we will be headed west to Colorado with our two 14 year old granddaughters. We will be mostly in the Colorado Springs, Canon City area for about 5 days with 3 days on the road out and back.  We enjoy short stops (200 miles +/-) so we can explore the towns we stay in overnight. All of our stops getting to Colorado and back will be in Kansas on this trip, and Dean and I are looking forward to seeing more of the western part of the state.  Hopefully the girls will enjoy that too!

Yesterday Dean worked on Bentley.  One thing I have been unhappy with is the way the bathroom door opens, so he changed it yesterday so it opens from the opposite direction, and he installed a 12 volt plug-in so we can charge our cell phones without electric hookups. We also made a list of other things we need to get accomplished before leaving in March as it will be here before we know it.

I have not made it far with my picture project.  I was going to go through all of our pictures, sort them and scan the ones I want to keep, sorting them by family member as I go, so I can pass those pictures on. I need to work in an hour or two each day to get this done before the year is out!  

Our lives are really full of good things!  We are blessed with wonderful family, beautiful kids and grandkids that we enjoy!  We feel so fortunate to be able to travel our awesome country. We thank God for the ability to enjoy it all!