Our journey continues bringing us to a favorite place…

Our second night at Fairview Riverside State Park….

The rains came in the night. All of a sudden the silence of the night interrupted with squalls of rain hitting the roof of the RV. Silence, pounding rain, silence, pounding rain, all night long. Common, these seasonal rains in the south, some violent with their arrival.
We woke to flooded roads,  the river overflowing its bank. We have been at Fairview before and experienced the same seasonal rains and flooding roads.
This road leads to a second campground closer to the river. We walk this road all the time.
This road leads to a second campground closer to the river. We walk this road all the time.
Not long after the rain stopped, the water receded leaving debris behind,  rain drops dripped from tree leaves, and the grass remained marsh like, which deterred us from walking on it.
We were at Fairview for three nights and the sun never fully showed itself, always hiding behind gray clouds.
We still enjoyed our stay, visited with friends, ate seafood, had coffee and beignets, and shopped at our favorite grocery store for Louisiana foods to take with us.


Cafe Du Monde, New Orleans cafe known for cafe au laits, chicory coffee and beignets since 1862.
Cafe Du Monde, New Orleans cafe known for cafe au laits, chicory coffee and beignets since 1862.

Our journey continues bringing us to a favorite place…

A place that brings smiles, makes my heart sing with happiness, and one where loved ones are waiting to embrace us in hugs. A peaceful place with lots of birds, beautiful trees and scrubs, acres of green fields, ponds, and sounds of pounding hoofs racing to relieve their curiosity over whom has come to visit.
Our favorite camping spot
Our favorite camping spot
An early morning visitor
An early morning visitor
There is also sadness with this visit, two hearts no longer with us. Remember Annie, the border collie and Socks the barn cat, sadly not here. I know they are here in spirit walking with us, side by side through these green fields, just as they always did.
Annie. Sweet girl we miss you.
Annie. Sweet girl we miss you so much.
Socks. Pretty eyes we miss you. I miss seeing you follow my brother around like a dog.


Dining Room window view
Our view out the dining room window of the coach
Our visit is short, but memories are being created that will last forever. We will return in March with plans to stay longer.
Front pond
Canada Geese enjoying the front pond
An old barn sits out in the country
My brother thinks this barn is over 100 years old. Coming to visit grandparents when I was little, from home in New Orleans, I remember seeing this barn. A left turn at the intersection where the old barn sits leads to Granddaddy’s farm. The roof has recently been repaired.
Knowing there are fun times ahead, we still leave our favorite spot with heavy hearts. With one last embrace that has to last until we return, our journey continues. On Tuesday we head east.


~Our Ride Today, 11/17/2015

To my RV friends…

If you are ever traveling down Highway 49 near Alexandria, Louisiana, consider stopping at River Cities RV Park in Boyce, LA. It is new, it is nice and clean, it is convenient. Notice the security gate in and out.

River Cities RV Park, Boyce, LA (Sie 20)
River Cities RV Park, Boyce, LA (Sie 20)
The only building, laundry, restroom/shoewer.
The only building on the property, laundry, restroom/shoewer.
River Cities RV Park, Boyce, LA
River Cities RV Park, Boyce, LA

After leaving Boyce, Louisiana we traveled Highway 49 to I10 heading toward Madisonville, Louisiana (all interstate travel today) .

We crossed the Atchafalaya Basin, traveling on the Atchafalaya Basin Bridge. A little information about this unique area taken from the web.

The Atchafalaya Basin, or Atchafalaya Swamp, is the largest wetland and swamp in the United States. Located in south central Louisiana, it is a combination of wetlands and river delta area where the Atchafalaya River and the Gulf of Mexico converge. The river stretches from near Simmesport in the north through parts of eight parishes to the Morgan City area in the south. The Atchafalaya is unique among Louisiana basins because it has a growing delta system with nearly stable wetlands. The basin contains about 70% forest habitat and about 30% marsh and open water. It contains the largest contiguous block of forested wetlands remaining in the lower Mississippi River valley and the largest block of floodplain forest in the United States. Best known for its iconic cypress-tupelo swamps, at 260,000 acres, this block of forest represents the largest remaining contiguous tract of coastal cypress in the US.

The Atchafalaya Basin Bridge, also known as the Louisiana Airborne Memorial Bridge, is a pair of parallel bridges in the U.S. state of Louisiana between Baton Rouge and Lafayette which carries Interstate 10 over the Atchafalaya Basin. With a total length of 96,095 feet or 18.2 miles, it is the second-longest bridge in the US and fourteenth-longest in the world by total length.

A few photos, I took,  out the window of the RV….
Atchafalaya Basin


Atchafalaya Basin


After exiting the Atchafalaya Basin Bridge we crossed the Mississippi River in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

Bridge over Mississippi River in Baton Rouge, LA
Bridge over Mississippi River in Baton Rouge, LA
Port of Baton Rouge, Mississippi River in the background
Port of Baton Rouge, Mississippi River in the background
Tug Boat on the Mississippi River
Tug Boat on the Mississippi River


We arrived this afternoon, under cloudy skies, at Fairview Riverside State Park in Madisonville, LA. We have enjoyed visiting this state park many times. Here is our site for the next three nights.

Site 41, Fairview Riverside State Parl. Madisonville, LA
Site 41, Fairview Riverside State Parl. Madisonville, LA


The Tchefuncte River is high, flowing into the state park.
The Tchefuncte River is high, flowing into the state park.


Fairview Riverside State Park, Madisonville, LA
Fairview Riverside State Park, Madisonville, LA


Beautiful old, Oak Ttee
Beautiful old, Oak Tree



Howard and I enjoyed a late lunch today at a New Orleans style restaurant here in Madisonville. Howard had a Shrimp Po-Boy and I enjoyed what is called a Southern Thing, which includes green-fried tomatoes, shrimp and coleslaw with special sauce, all on french bread (a Po-Boy). Yummy!


Southern Thing from New Orleans Hamburger and Seafood Company

What’s for lunch tomorrow?






~I am going crazy, four days of cloudy, rainy weather

Sunday, Traveling the back roads of Texas…

Leaving Copper Breaks State Park we traveled on state highways under cloudy skies to Cooper Lake State Park. It was a nice ride. We drove through small towns and in between, as far as the eye could see, hilly, pastoral, acres filled with cattle and horses.

White rail fences and cleverly designed entryways surrounded huge ranch houses proudly displaying their ranch name, something like the Lazy R Ranch,  dotted the landscape. Some of these ranches had even larger Show Horse Barns. Gorgeous!

Unfortunately, we were at Cooper Lake State Park for only one night. Under cloudy skies we walked around some of the park and what we saw we liked. We felt we were the only campers in the park, which is filled with lots of trees and scrubs. This park is also designated as a Dark Skies park and believe me it was dark.  Just after our walk it began raining and it poured all night.

Monday, We traveled in the rain……

Again choosing to travel down the back roads we made our way to Boyce, Louisiana. We drove through eye pleasing towns with American flags proudly flying, beautiful murals covering the sides of buildings, and well taken care of landscaped city parks on corners.

Every once in a while a truck would pass us with deer legs sticking out of truck beds. Not cute. Hunting season is in full force.

We are stopped tonight in a town near Alexandria, Louisiana, called Boyce at River Cities RV Park.

They are very efficient, I called them on the phone this morning to make a reservation, they sent me a text with the security gate code and our site number, we pulled in, entered the gate code, drove to our site and settled in for the evening. Perfect! But, still raining.

We are heading to Madisonville, Louisiana to visit with friends for two days, then to visit family in Purvis, Mississippi. While in Madisonville we plan to indulge in greatly missed, delicious, cajun food! Grilled Oysters on a half-shell with butter and parmesan cheese just to mention one. C’est Si Bon!

Still raining, missing my sunshine, going crazy…

El Nino is going to be a bummer.

~Horns as in Long and Beep, Beeps as in Fast

November, 14, 2015
Copper Breaks State Park
Quanah, TX
2 nights, Site 22
View this Texas State Park here: Copper Breaks

Cloudy skies all day.

You just have to go with what you are given and that is what we did, several walks around Copper Breaks State Park with the doggies for a total of 4.5 miles.

During our walks we saw some interesting sights….

It was early evening when we saw this fellow hunting bugs in the grass.

Roadrunner - Beep, Beep!
Roadrunner – Beep, Beep

A Texas Longhorn from the herd at Copper Breaks.

Texas Longhorn

Perhaps it is the vintage look of these Windmills that I like so much.

Windmill Pump

Well past its blooming season, but still lovely with a splash of color.

Dry arid land
Dry arid land

It is always interesting to walk along a river bank. The Pease River, a tributary of the Red River which runs through West Texas, meanders its way through Copper Breaks State Park.

Pease River in Copper Breaks State Park
Pease River in Copper Breaks State Park

Tall reeds, protection for wildlife.

Grasses surrounding a pond
Grasses surrounding a pond

One of the small ponds in the park.

A small pond
A small pond

Now for the fun part ` seeing the Texas Longhorns at Copper Breaks.

A little Texas Longhorn

If you are interested you may read about these handsome fellows by clicking on this link Longhorns


“What you looking at sister?”


The end of our day, enjoyed and treasured.

Looking forward to what tomorrow will bring. We will be on our way to Cooper Lakes State Park.

~”When that sun is high in that Texas Sky” – It is time to leave Amarillo

November, 13, 2015
Copper Breaks State Park
Quanah, TX
2 nights, Site 22

How many country and western songs would you guess have been written about Amarillo? I don’t know, but there are several. One of the most famous is Amarillo by Morning, which has been recorded by many artists including George Strait.  And, why is it stuck in my head? Read these lyrics and it will be stuck in yours!

Amarillo by Morning

By George Strait

Amarillo by mornin’
Up from San Antone
Everything that I got
Is just what I’ve got on

When that sun is high in that Texas sky
I’ll be buckin’ at the county fair
Amarillo by mornin’
Amarillo, I’ll be there

They took my saddle in Houston
Broke my leg in Santa Fe
I lost my wife and a girlfriend
Somewhere along the way

But I’ll be lookin’ for 8 when they pull that gate
And I hope that judge ain’t blind
Amarillo by mornin’
Amarillo’s on my mind

Amarillo by mornin’
Up from San Antone
Everything that I got
Is just what I’ve got on

I ain’t got a dime but what I got is mine
I ain’t rich but Lord I’m free
Amarillo by mornin’
Amarillo’s where I’ll be

Amarillo by mornin’
Amarillo’s where I’ll be

Thursday evening we receive a phone call from the Ford Dealership in Canyon, TX letting us know our car is ready. Just like that our plans change; we will have to visit the Amarillo Botanical Gardens and see the Christmas lights another time.

Friday morning was hectic, up early, on the road to Canyon with the rental car to pick up our car, back to Amarillo to drop off the rental car, and then back to the RV Park to get the coach ready to pull out before eleven o’clock. We made it!

We decided to travel to Copper Breaks State Park in Quanta, TX and stay Friday and Saturday night. We visited this park once before and enjoyed staying here. We arrived at Copper Breaks early in the afternoon and after getting settled in our site we enjoyed a walk and a sunset.

Copper Breaks State Park
Sun starting to set


The sounds of Amarillo…..trains, planes, helicopters and eighteen wheelers, were becoming unpleasant. All sounds we could hear from our site at Amarillo Ranch RV Park.

Perhaps this is why so many country songs have been written about Amarillo, to simply drown out the noise with music.

Or it could be Amarillo rhymes with a lot of words!

Today was peaceful, quite, un-crowded, with dark (I mean dark) skies.

Wonderful, Beautiful, We are happy!

Hope your day was grand.

~Amarillo will be our home for a few days


It has been a long day….

The Ford Dealer in Canyon is telling us the parts to fix the power steering need to be ordered. It will be Friday before they receive them. We might just be in Amarillo through the weekend. Who knows!

Today, we rented a car so we could go to the grocery and hopefully tomorrow do some sightseeing of the area. Today, the weather wasn’t good for being outside too long, extremely breeze.

A few photos from yesterday….

I stood in one area yesterday taking photos as we waited for the tow truck. Breathing in fresh air I tried to relax, and to remind myself that we only lost steering wheel fluid, nothing else. Inconvenience, lost time, a missed opportunity and perhaps a little frustration are all part of experiencing everyday life.

Nature has a way of calming…

Gazing across this beautiful landscape helped put things into perspective. As I walked a short distance down a path, a covey of quail flew into the air trying to escape, to them, an unknown intrusion. This common occurrence, made me smile.

It was getting late in the day and the light was changing; it must be gorgeous to watch the setting sun with its soft light play across these red rocks. It would have been fun to capture a few photos from the ridge top looking down into the canyon. Sights we wouldn’t see nor capture this time..




There isn’t much variety in these photos, but it was fun taking them.

~Road Trip: “Would you girls like to go on a road trip?”

They both turn to look at me with “deer-in-the-headlights” stares. “But, but Mom, we just were on a road trip for the past two days!”

After talking them into riding along with a treat once we got there, Howard and I loaded the car with snacks, water, doggie treats, binoculars, cameras and jackets. Who knows when one might need a jacket.
We were headed to Palo Duro Canyon State Park near Amarillo, Texas. We have never visited this beautiful state park before and were looking forward to this side trip. I invite you to read about this gorgeous area here: Palo Duro
As our way of enjoying an area, we took “the back way” traveling farm-to-market roads, which twisted and turned through agriculture and cattle country. It was a pleasant and scenic drive.
Upon arriving at the state park, we stopped at the visitor center to check on the status of our annual Texas State Park pass. Our pass had expired so I renewed for another year. We love staying in and visiting Texas State parks. The friendly rangers processed my request and we were on our way – traveling the ridge of the canyon to its base. I was driving while Howard was navigating.
We passed many pullouts, hiking trailheads, another visitor center, the beautiful amphitheater where the musical “Texas” is performed, thinking we would stop at some of these places on our way back.
Please check out the web- site for the musical. We have heard it is spectacular!  “Texas”
We finally reached a parking lot with a restroom and because of construction, this was as far as we could go. We pulled into the lot, thinking we would walk the girls and just enjoy the beauty of the area. As we pulled up and shut the engine off we smelled a strong, burning scent. I said to Howard, “someone must be cooking lunch”. One of the parks RV campgrounds was near by. Well, no one was cooking lunch; we noticed smoke coming out from under our car.

“Oh my gosh what is going on?”

Upon further inspection we noticed a pool of liquid under the front hood, which turned out to be the power steering fluid. It was spattered all over the ground. The power steering reservoir was empty.
Power Steering fluid
Power Steering fluid
Let me just back track a bit here. Before we left Loveland we had our car at the Loveland Ford dealership to fix what Howard thought was a small leak in the power steering system. They also fixed the brakes, again leaking fluid. We paid them a good sum of money for their service!
As we stood by the car, probably looking at it as if it has just landed from outer space, a very nice couple, David and Nancy, stopped to see if they could assist. They provided us with friendly conversation, smiling faces, RV stories, tools, and finally a ride to the entrance of the Canyon visitor center. No cell service where we were, nada.
They also loved the girls stating that they left their two labs at home for their four day trip. They are from the Dallas area and were missing their “boys” terribly. They had just purchased their first RV back in July and were trying to make at least one trip out a month. They were staying in the campground near where we were parked. “Thanks so much for your assistance, it was truly appreciated.”
At the visitor center Howard spoke with the rangers asking them if they could recommended a towing company; they gave him a phone book and he selected Canyon Towing. Nice name and how appropriate. Canyon Towing told us that a tow truck would be along in an hour. True to their word the tow truck showed up right at an hour.
Waiting some more
Waiting some more
It didn’t take long before our car was loaded onto the flat bed truck. The girls had to ride in the back of our car, which was on top of the flat bed tow truck. We made sure all four windows were rolled down enough to give them plenty of air. I hope their experience wasn’t to0 traumatic.
Here comes help
Here comes help
Getting her loaded
“Is he doing that correctly babe?”
Up she goes
There's Poncho!
There’s Poncho!
Howard and I rode up front in the cab with Chip, a very nice young man originally from a town on the Idaho/Utah border and his cute little doggie Poncho. Chip drove us to a Ford Dealer between Canyon and Amarillo, where we left the car, received a courtesy ride back to the RV park, made an additional reservation for Wednesday night, and de-stressed by eating what was left of the chocolate cake from our dinner last night at The Big Texan.
Unloading in the back lot at the Ford Dealer
Unloading in the back lot at the Ford Dealer
I did manage to take a few photos from the parking lot while waiting for the tow truck. I hope one day we get to return to Palo Duro Canyon State Park to enjoy its unique beauty.

Enjoying retirement: On The Road & At Home


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