Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Happy Merry Christmas to you all!!

I hope you all had a very Merry Christmas and were able to enjoy it with those that you love, eating food that you crave and making the absolute best memories.
Usually around this time of year, we aren't around our tribe due to different circumstances, but this year we were able to celebrate the Holidays with our road family.
About a week before the big day, our friend Bryce (Papi) and I went shopping for small little gifts we could hand out on Christmas day. We think it is important for all people to feel loved. I know this year there are a lot of new people to the life and/or maybe to our group so this was important for us to do for them.
We shopped and had a great time, as we usually do when we're together, and when we got back to camp, started putting our gifts together.

Our gifts contained a package of Huggies Wet Wipes (one & done), some peppermint candies, Hershey's chocolate kisses, a handmade 'love' note and a bow. 

We put all of them together and stashed the bag of goodies in Santa's sleigh until Christmas morning.

On Christmas morning, Papi & I drove around to everyone's camp and handed them out, Chili Moon came along too, she was my lil' black nosed Reindeer!! It was awesome to see everyone's faces light up! I received tons of smiles, laughter and hugs! 

 Later that day, we gathered up on the hill for a quaint dinner. Papi sure knows how to cook up one helluva Pot Roast...with Ellen's help of course! Fred brought a great salad. Thanks to Colvin, we had rolls with (lots of) butter! We brought homemade cookies my mom made in Florida that I decorated once I got them here in the desert. Everyone had a full plate of food with drinks in their hands and smiles on their faces....it was awesome!

Oh and we can't forget about Jenn bringing the Rum & Colvin bringing ice cream to make Rum floats!!!

It was a really nice, relaxing day. The wind stayed away all day, the sun was shining bright, we were surrounded by some of the best people I know and awesome food in our bellies...you really can't beat that out here in the desert!
 I hope your day was just as special.
This will probably be the last post of 2015...crazy how time flies!
We wish you a very happy New Year and will see you in 2016!

Frocky, the Rock Man!!


Monday, December 21, 2015

Life is Ruff! The dogs of the van life

Even though I already have two of the BEST dogs in the world...I could take on one, two or twelve more! haha
My Chili Moon is a Deer Chihuahua with the sweetest temperament you'll ever see in a Chi. She loves to sit with you and feel the warmth of your love...and your lap. If you're ever in our camp, she'll be greeting you with a wagging tail and sandy paw prints on your pants...don't say I didn't warn ya!

My Savannah Butterscotch is a Doxle; Dachshund/Beagle mix and thee most beautiful dog I've ever had. She is super smart, a big weirdo and loves the boys! The love of her life is Jamie, she melts like butter when she's with him. 

In this life, we are always surrounded by dogs, most are just awesome and amazing and then, of course there are a couple that I could never be around again and be just fine...but let's get back to those other ones!

We always joke around about "stealing" our friends' dogs! 
"If you can't find your dog and our rig is gone...we probably have them." 
Of course this would never happen but it's still fun to joke around and to let our friends know their furry lil' animal spirits are safe with us.
It's also fun to see what kind of dog we like and could have in our rig without the "investment"...and we can always give them back! 
This year it's a toss-up between a few and this post is about them. Anyone who knows me, knows I love my girls like my own children, well... because they are, so I'm always posting pics of them and talking about them. This post is about the dogs that run the van-life, plus, it's always fun to look at pictures of cute dogs!
Enjoy looking at and reading about some of the coolest dogs we have around camp!

Our first beautiful girl is Miss Rain Barrels, a 1/2 Australian Cattle Dog/ 1/2 Border Collie mix. The first time I met her was in 2012 and I fell instantly in love, she reminded me sooo much of my beloved Roxy Love, that I lost unexpectedly a couple of years prior.

We try to camp with Rain and her family a couple of times a year but you know how it goes out here. Rain is probably one of the smartest dogs I've ever met and also one of the most emphatic when it comes to sticks, you could throw a stick for her all day and she would chase it...all...day...long!!

  She watches over my girls, as if she is their mother...another thing I love about her.
She loves long walks and is a much better hiker and climber than I am!

She definitely lives her life to the fullest!

Next up, we have Rain's 'brodder' Snowden.

Handsome. Smart. Cuddly. Playful.
And the perfect size to sleep right in my arms every night...haha
His color and markings are amazing, he is an Australian Cattle Dog.

Every time Jamie gears up for a ride, it's like he knows he can get rough and for Snowden, it's Go Time...they will play rough for a few minutes, he gets so into it. He loves to chase balls, sticks, frisbees and he can do these small little flips, it's the cutest thing.
Snowden is much harder to get pictures of because he's always on the move, although I manage to snap a couple here and there. He and Rain have the greatest lives, they get to live freely and are very loved.

The next dog we're going to kidnap...I mean love on 😉
is Cody, Bob Wells dog.
I don't have many pictures of Cody because he, too is always on the move.
I believe Cody is an Australian Shepherd and pint size! 
He is one of the sweetest, lovable dogs in the community.
When we camp with Bob, Cody makes a point to come over and say, Hello, every morning. We hug and have a small cuddle session and sometimes, if I'm cooking, he'll get a piece of chicken or sausage. Some mornings I wake up and he's laying on our mat waiting for us and the girls to get up...he's a lover! He is always keeping us company.

Cody and Snowden are new besties and love to play!

These two babies are the newest, sweetest and probably oldest of the group. They belong to my darling friend, Debra. You can read her blog here:

Miss Nonni, a ten year old Rhodesian Ridgeback. She loves her momma and is a really well-mannered dog. Food can be a little bit of a tease for her but she's just 'so hungry'...haha

and Bentley, the softest, sweetest, cutest, 13 year old Wheatable~ a soft-coated Wheaten Terrier mix!
He doesn't hear or see too good but he LOVES to swim, be with his momma and lay around being cute! I snuggle with him every single chance I get. Debra knows I would take him in a heartbeat if she needed me to.

The 3 Amigos. Nonni, Bentley & Bear

I'm sure I'm missing some amazing dogs, but these are the dogs that have stolen my heart over the past 3 1/2 years.
The last one, that I have for sure not forgotten, is our dear Bear. Bear left us way too early but was able to live an amazing last part of his life out here on the road; meeting new fluff-friends, taking long walks with his daddy, Roger every morning and getting chicken surprises in the mornings from me. Bear was so soft and fluffy, it was hard not to hug and hold him for as long as possible when you saw him. His heart was pure gold and he loved everyone that came into his camp. Bear you are very missed but not forgotten. I hope my Roxy girl is showing you the ropes and you're getting to play to your hearts content. 
We love you.

These dogs live the best life possible. They are never stuck in a house, crate or small space for hours upon hours of the day. They get to spend all day with the people that love them most as well as other fur-babies. They get all kinds of treats, cookies, biscuits, what have you, from all of our friends, even the ones without dogs. I couldn't imagine any better life for my girls than the ones they're living right now.

We hope to meet you and your dogs some day.
I'd love to see pics of your fur-babies in the comments.
Maybe I'll fall in love with your dog next!


(**Dang it...as soon as I posted this I remembered many others...guess there's going to have to be another post!
Miss Cheri and Tony, you're the first ones!
We need to camp together more often! Love you**)

Friday, December 18, 2015

Exploring Parker

Although we stay in and around Quartzsite for a few weeks, we usually don't do too much shopping there due to the higher prices. In Quartzsite, there is a Dollar General and a Family Dollar that has pretty good prices compared to the main Markets...but in the busy season, they tend to sell out of food items pretty quickly as well as not having very many healthy options. 
So when we need to buy "bigger" items, such as meat, veggies, paper towels, dog food, etc. We make a list and will either travel to Blythe (20 miles) to shop at the Smart & Final or a little bit bigger trek to Parker (38 miles) to shop at Walmart. When we go to Parker, we make sure to spend enough time there to do everything we need to do..."Big City" wise! The town has a bigger hardware store, water for better prices per gallon, DMV, more options for fast food if that's your thing, a casino, and among other things a Super Walmart with Red Box...that you can park overnight at as well.

This last time while in Parker, we decided to take a side trip to see if there was any better overnight parking than the Walmart, so we checked out the Blue Water Casino. The casino does have big rig parking, probably due to their entertainment venue, although not too level if you don't have levelers. They hold different concerts and shows along with lounge entertainment and a couple of full service bars. Even though we have never stayed around for much longer than a half an hour or so, my favorite part is to walk through and go towards the back where the pool is. Being a swimmer most of my life, I always have to go see the pool, even if I don't partake! The pool area is huge and very nice, it has play areas for kids with shallow pools along with big water slides for both children and adults. In three years, every time we go in to look at the pool there's never anyone there...must be the winter time hours or something I'm not aware of because it looks like way too much fun to be closed...that's where I'd spend all of my time if we stayed there! 
Here is a link to Blue Water Casino in Parker, AZ

One lap around the casino and back out in the parking lot we stood, so we hopped back in the van and decided to drive down the road a bit further and venture where we've never gone. We drove North, towards Lake Havasu and arrived at a stoplight...you can turn right, left or go straight...we turned left on Riverside Dr. The road curves and winds, up and down through some really beautiful houses that we never even knew were back there. The houses sit right on the Colorado River and look super cool, even though they are right on top of their neighbors, it might not be that bad of a place to live if you had a boat! I'm sure they paid a small fortune to live there but it's just beautiful back there.
There are a couple of spots to park once you get back far enough but they are just right off the main road, not a lot of room to spread out and I didn't feel 'safe' there, due to my girls (dogs), plus we like to tuck into a spot where we can be at peace and not worry about the dogs getting hit or anything of the sort. We drove to the end of the road and turned around heading back through the homes.

We noticed a few fun looking bars and restaurants, one~ The Sundance Saloon, looked like might be under renovation or maybe just getting ready for the Snow Birds to come in. The few things we took away from that place; the palm trees are awesome and Macho Man & Wet T-shirt contests start at 3 p.m.!

A few blocks down, we saw big signs for a place called Fox's, since we were just discovering anyway, we took the right to the bar.
Fox's was open but wasn't really hoppin', although I could totally see all the parties and good times that could be had here! I'm sure if you lived around there this is thee place during the right times of year.

H.O.G. parking

My kind of trees...Laughing!!!

Ghost town??

Dolla' Dolla' Bills y'all!
Come and go by boat! How fun!

And I had to make sure the swings worked, of course!!!

We didn't stay to eat or drink but it's good to know that place is there...for next time!

We had to go to the DMV the next morning, so we stayed overnight in the Walmart parking lot. Parking here several times over the years, we know it's safe, there's always a great spot for the van and trailer and since we can never get a TV signal anywhere in Parker, the Red Box serves as a great way to end the night...any movie you want to rent for $1.60 or so, you can't really beat that. 


Sunday, December 13, 2015

Pizza. Quartz. Sunset

I know! I found this whole "new" way of writing, then left again!
To be honest, we have been really busy lately. How we get so busy out in the desert, people don't seem to understand....but we are at a "high call volume" for business, right now.
Jamie, mostly has been working on van, mechanical stuff and I have been doing hair cuts and finding time for peace and serenity...which I've needed more than ever. 

Today, though....feels like our first break in a long time (a week and a half!) 
We found time to go over for a pizza lunch that Bob was hosting.
There were a ton of people that we hadn't met yet, but we were able to meet some...and sure we'll meet more at the RTR.
Here are some pics of our gathering. 

12 pizzas, 4 breadsticks and a lot of good eating!

It was fun...It always is. 
The pizza didn't last long, as it usually doesn't! haha
When we left, we went home through the desert and Jamie showed me a Quartz out-cropping that is just too cool and only a few hundred steps away from our camp!!

We had a beautiful sunset along with the best dogs in the world!!!
They are just way too cute and great lil' babies!

Hope you enjoyed our day today! I know I have much to catch up on but I'm trying! 
This desert life, can get a little crazy around this time of year...we hope that it starts to settle down a bit in the next few months!