OUR RV ADVENTURE:
April 22, 2021: I am sitting in my new home at Brownwood State Park. It is kind of cold, so I am snuggled up on my couch. My husband has gone to town to get some hose extensions to drain our black water, so I have a few minutes to blog. I want to start at the beginning.
In February my husband wanted to take me somewhere for my birthday. He chose Galveston. That happened to be the week when the entire country froze. That week my husband mentioned ‘TOY HAULER’ for the first time. A Toy Hauler will allow us to take our motorcycle with us as we travel. This is very important to my husband. It makes his soul sing to be on a bike, so every trip we make is made on a motorcycle. RV life had never even crossed my mind or his mind, but as we slid into Brownwood on a sheet of ice, there was a Toy Hauler sitting in the lot across from Commerce Square. We bought that RV the next day. It all happened so fast, but it feels right. I would recommend BIG COUNTRY FORD - RV Sales to any person looking to buy an RV. Jim Coley held our hand and walked us through so much. He is still doing that as we become familiar with what it takes to keep this thing going. I think if we had bought from an individual or from a large dealership, our camping experience would not be so smooth. I still can’t believe that we are about to do what we are about to do!
We bought our RV without knowing anything about anything, and God protected us. From what we understand now, not all RVs are the same. Jim says that the fiberglass sided ones are much better. They are built with metal studs instead of wooden ones. All I know is that what we bought is a quality made RV. It is a 2012 Keystone Raptor. After we looked at the camper for the first time, we went and looked it up on the internet. It had very good reviews, and the price they were asking was good. We paid $17,800. The owner who had it before us kept it in a garage, and you can tell he took pains to maintain it. I would do research before purchasing an RV. Not all are equal.
I have spent the last month or so moving stuff from my house to the camper. I found that it is very important to have a place to put everything. Look at the picture I posted of my living room. I have baskets and crates under the couch for our shoes and drinking water and potatoes/onions. Beside the chair I bought an end table that stores stuff and it acts as a step stool so that I can reach the items in the top cabinets. This end table is where my books/computer/paperwork are stored. Next to the lamp, my husband built me a little pantry. It holds can goods that I can easily get to while the other cans are stored in crates in the cabinets. It also has hooks for our outdoor cooking, and it is a place to put my diffuser - which also acts as a night light. This space works very well for me. If you look at the picture of the hats/coats in our bedroom, you can see that I have a very tall skinny shelf on our end table. This helped SO much! On the shelves you can see plastic containers. I ordered these from Amazon - Chef’s Path. These are the best. I ordered the large package (48?) ($78?), and I have used every one of them - sugar, coffee, flour, medicine, sewing, oils, etc. These are a must! They stack. We move the table to the outside because I like the roominess of the living space without the table, but we needed something to eat on when inside, and the end table is too heavy to use. I went out in my backyard and found the table with the lamp on it. It will do for now. I think we can find something more functional. Then I bought a tapestry for the back wall. This wall is a drop down ramp for the motorcycle to load. When we were in Leakey, I noticed that when the back wall is up, it has tire tracks on it. I thought that I could paint a mural on that wall, but it would still have tire tracks. I found this little wall tapestry on Amazon for $17, and I used bungees to attach it to the wall. This makes me realize that I can get any piece of material - I love color - and change the look of my room. My favorite, though is to have that door open. It is like an outdoor oasis. Then the last thing I did was to bungee some curtains over the couches. They had snap on covers, and I knew that wouldn’t work for me, so I had some odd material and bungees - curtains. Then I made the top bed with a pillow top mattress pad and down filled comforters and pillows just in case we ever have guests. The couch will also make in to a queen bed, and I have comfortable bedding for that one, too. As far as I know, we are set to go.
So far the only problems we have had with our camping experiences are with the black water. Yuck! Jim told us to not dump the black water until it is at least 3/4 full. So we are suppose to dump the black water first, then the gray water. That helps clean it out. While we were in Leakey, the gauges showed 3/4 full, so my husband went to dump it. When he opened the valve, the water came and hit him in the face. Oops! Oh my goodness! I couldn't watch. Come to find out, the gray water (thank you Jesus, it was the gray water) valve was stuck open, so we cannot dump without having to deal with that water first. My husband has been trying to get the parts to replace the valves. He is still trying to get the right parts. So we came to the state park last night because we have to have a place to dump. When we got here, the hose was too short. Oops! So we have been going to the restroom at the park’s facilities because we don’t know what will happen if this stuff gets too full, and our gauges show full. So this morning Lyndyl went to town to buy two extensions and an extra water hose - just in case we are to need these things along the way. He just dumped, and it was easy, but the gauges still show 3/4 full. He just now came in and said that he hooked the water hose to tank flush valve - this worked. Our tanks are empty!
OH, THE PLACES WE GO!
Fabis Primitive Campground
$10 per night - no more than 3 nights
Zubers River Camp On the Frio
2429 CR 350
Concan, TX. 78838
$55 per night?
Our first camping trip was to the hill country. It was glorious! Amazing place! Amazing weather! Amazing family! Look at the pictures. This place is on the Frio River. It is just down from Garner State Park on the opposite side of the bank. You can walk into the state park. I don’t know if you are suppose to or not - probably not. But the hiking! Swimming! Canoeing! Tubing! Cold water!!!! Clear, beautiful, cold water. I would go here again and again and again and again!
6371 Safe Haven Lane
Brownwood, Texas. 76801
$0 per night
We had plans to leave for Cloudcroft, NM on the 20th after we got back from Leakey, but that didn’t work. We are in the middle of closing on a house. We are going to stay in the Brownwood area until the sell is final. Sheri Wells, our realtor, said that could happen next week, so it makes sense to just park our RV on our property and wait. We are in the process of building a cover for our RV. Lyndyl has run the water out to it, and the electricity is close. We could stay there except for two things. First, we have no place to dump our stuff yet, and we have already rented our home to Dustin, my brother Rusty’s son, and his new bride Kelsi. So! This is different. We need to not stay there because I have a tendency to think that I can go get this or that or go use the washer. And besides, we have the black water we needed to get rid of! So now we are at the State Park - but only for two days because it is completely booked on all weekends. You have to call way in advance to get into to the state parks.
Brownwood State Park
200 Park Road 15
$25 per night - It cost us $70 for two nights, but I don’t know why.
Oh my goodness! Brownwood is such an amazing place. We use to come here all the time when we lived in west Texas. We spent many summers on the lake skiing, and we have lived here for over 20 years, but we have not experienced and enjoyed this place like we should. Now we are going to take some time and do that. This morning we hiked and as soon as I finish this, we will go bicycling. Then this afternoon we will go see Cason play baseball in Coleman. I have to post pictures of the hike.
OH THE PEOPLE WE SEE!
Today when we went riding bikes we met Lee from Georgia. He is 73 years old riding his Silver Wing Honda across country. He is staying in a tent at Brownwood State Park. Brrrrr! He left Georgia April 1st, and he is touring until sometime in July. He had an amazing story. Two years ago he spent 5 months in the Philippines. He fell in love with the island and the people, and he put a hefty deposit on a condominium overlooking the ocean. He then came home and sold his house, his Gold Wing, and everything he had. He had a ticket in his hands to leave for the Philippines on July 1st of last year. Covid shut it all down, and that country has still not opened for people to come back in. He had no place to go. He is now waiting. He has to make some sort of choice by July because he said he does not want to tour in the cold. He said that his claim to fame is that he has ridden his Gold Wing through every state except Hawaii and every providence in Canada. WOW! He said his favorite was Nova Scotia and then another place in Canada that is just past Glacier National Park - Banff, Canada. He says that we still can't cross the Canadian border. If possible, I want to go there. Glacier National Park is on our to do list.
WITNESS HIM NOW:
I want to record what I see God doing. This weekend when we were at Leakey, my husband was riding his motorcycle behind our son. A deer ran out and hit him. It killed the deer, but didn’t touch my husband or his motorcycle. This is not the first time this has happened. Lyndyl was riding close to our home a couple of years ago when he spotted a deer on the side of the road. He was watching that one when another deer, a large buck, headed right toward him. He could do nothing. The deer jumped over him. He could smell him. Then there is the time when a turkey hit me in the face. It took off my helmet, but didn’t touch me. The LORD has His hand on us both. It is evident. Nothing is going to happen to us until it is time.
ZUBERS RIVER CAMP ON THE FRIO - CONCAN, TEXAS
FABIS, BROWNWOOD STATE PARK & SHADE'S BIRTHDAY