Wednesday, June 30, 2010

I Really am Blonde Even Though my Hair is Getting Darker....

I know that if I am driving the van, it is my responsibility to know how to take care of it and what to do
in certain emergencies. Shae does all of the oil and maintenance, so I just rely on him for most things
to do with our vehicles. I rarely even put in gas. When I am out driving around, I have to purposely
look at the gas level, because sometimes I just forget to; I have gotten so used to Shae just filling it!

I don’t believe in blame or excuses, so I take total responsibility for what I am about to tell you. We
knew our van had an overheating problem. This was going to be my first big mountain pass to drive
over. I was hauling the flatbed with all of our toys on it. I should have researched overheating.

BUT I DID NOT

I DID NOT RESEARCH ANYTHING

Well, I know you know where this is going...

We began going up Hwy 16, from Buffalo to Ten Sleep, over Powder River Pass, in Wyoming. I hadn’t been climbing the mountain long when I noticed my water heat gauge rising. It was just a little at first. I tried to slow down a little, but that didn’t help.

I called Shae on the walkie talkie and he said to slow down
and .....what?

Oh no! We lost signal.

I hurried and tried him on the cell phone....

Oh No! No signal!

I really didn’t know what to do. I had Hanna dial Shae’s number over and over, but no answer.

The gauge kept rising.

I knew I needed to pull over. I found a spot and got off the road. My father passed away in 04’, so I
couldn’t call him,

WHO ELSE?

I tried my father-in-law. He said to turn off the air.

BIG OOPS ON MY PART!

Never turn on the air if your vehicle is over heating. My mother-in-law shouted from the background...”I just read in a travel book to turn your heat on high if you are overheating!” So, I cranked the heat.
After a few minutes, the temperature began to go down. I got back on the road and drove ahead to
where Shae had finally found a spot to pull over. He couldn’t believe I had the air on. It was pretty
dumb of me. I should have known better.

I did learn a lot that day...

•First, be prepared for what situation I am in. Shae may not be there to help me.

•Second, do not turn on the air when we are driving up a mountain.

•Third, my mother-in-law knows random facts that she doesn’t need to know living in flat Florida.


Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Sorting the camper and taking a break

Thank goodness the worst is over.  I can't believe how much stuff we had crammed in 42 feet.  Bad news is that we filled our storage trailer.  We have had to stuff boxes in my mom's attic.  She has been so great to let us do that.

Traveling full time can get exhausting.  We have hardly gone anywhere the last five weeks.  It is nice to just park it for a while. 

We have decided to wait to buy some land for a home base.  We do want to keep traveling, but would like a piece of property to come back to.  But, at this time, we decided it is not right for us.  My husband told me he is concerned about his job.  His company is very successful, but might have to lay some people off this fall if a few things don't change.  He has had two job offers recently and turned them down, so I hope that if he does get layed off, there will still be some opportunity there for him.

Of course, he would love to write about ATVs and ride them for a living.   Cody is doing great with his writing for the ATV Magazine Blog.  We are so proud of him and hope some doors open up there.

We still don't have a clue where we are going next.  We have narrowed it down to North, South, or West. 
Guess that is still pretty vague...ha ha ha

One of the reasons we did this trip was because we felt that our possessions were holding us back from doing the things we needed to.  But, I feel like we may have missed out on visiting some dear people while back in Missouri because we had to sort out so much stuff.  Of course, it takes extra long to do anything with six kids and one being a baby!  After all of this work, we are going to go have some serious fun and do some visiting.

Maybe we'll come see you next!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Almost done sorting....where do we go next?

It is hard to believe it has taken me so long to sort all of this.  I spent last Saturday digging through the front part of our storage trailer.  I had to move a few boxes and then slide my body on top of all of the others to the middle of the camper.  I was looking for some dolls Naomi wanted, our collection of GA Henty books, dinosaur catcher cars, and a box of my christian cds that had been accidentally packed two yrs ago.  Well, I found a lot of things and didn't find others. 

Shae moved the storage trailer to a new parking spot, not in our friend's cow pasture anymore.  He had a bugger of a time getting it around the corner.  He made it, but put a hole in our trailer and ripped part of a gutter in the process.  Now, if you know my husband, you know that he is a motor guy and can drive any vehicle anywhere.  So, I know he did an amazing job getting it in that tight spot.  He fixed the hole and the gutter easily, too.  We are so thankful to park it where we did, it will be much easier to get to.

I have great news, the VA accepted me for health care!  I will have to make a co payment probably, but that is alright.  I'm thankful to have that available to me.

Now, we are not sure where we are going next.  It is always hard to decide.  We have to think pretty long term.  With six kids we tend to travel very short distances and only on the weekends.  Shae has to work during the week on his laptop, so we try to move only on Saturday or Sunday.

We are watching the temperatures and realize our camper only has one air conditioner, so it is really hard to keep cool in blistering heat.  We may have to head north soon, but we'll see.  I don't want to go to far out of Missouri.  I need to slow down our trip a lot.  We need to move less and stay places longer for a while.  I think we are all a little wore out.

I better get to bed.

Sheri