Wednesday, July 20, 2011

The final post....

This has been a; slice, ball, blast, delight, enjoyment, pleasure, get the idea...I have had so much fun writing in this blog!!

I have enjoyed going back and re-reading my posts and also from hearing from all of you on how much you enjoyed reading our posts of the big adventure.  As of today there are 8392 views on it, which is amazing!  

I was going to continue to write some reviews of campsites but after thinking about it, I don't want to influence others with our opinion on what is "good" or especially "bad" ...they are all good, if the weather is right, the company is right etc...

I was also going to detail out the expense of going on an extended road trip, lots of people ask me how much it costs to do this sort of thing, again, that is subjective. 

Do you have income while you are gone?  
Do you have bills at home to pay while you are gone? 
Do you have your house rented out? 
Is your RV paid for?  
How far will you travel each day? 
What kind of RV parks/campsites will you stay in?
What is the price of fuel? 
How is the Canadian dollar? 
Will you do lots of sight seeing?  
Will you eat out lots?  
Are you towing a vehicle or will you use your bikes? 

As you can see there are so many variants to the costs....

We had a budget of $800 per months for fuel and $800 per month for RV/campsites. Some of our months we spent $1500 on fuel but other months we only spent a few hundred dollars...some months we spent a fortune on campsites, other months we had free places to stay.  

Over the year our average was just below budget...fuel came in at $6600 for the year or $600 per month...camping came in at $7010 for the year or $637 per month.  

Our food expense was all over the board...some months we had huge costs...some months we ate cheaply...we only ate out a few times a month, mostly when we were visiting company.  

The entire year away from home ended up being cheaper for us to live in the RV than to live at home.  We only had to worry about the 3 costs: food, fuel, camping. 

At home we have a mortgage to pay, taxes, insurance, phone bills, cable bills, internet bills, hydro bills, gas bills, maintenance on the vehicles, maintenance on the house...we have only been back home for 7 weeks now and are already feeling the debt load going higher and higher...

If any of you are considering doing an extended journey, just do it!  You don't need to be a millionaire, you don't need to be mortgage free, you don't have to be retired, you don't have to wait until the kids are out of school.... if the time is right for you, just do it...we have no regrets now that we have done it but we had a million concerns before we actually left!

So, in closing, I want to thank every one of you for reading this blog, for making it worth my while, I hope that it will be up and running again one day in the never knows...maybe, just maybe!

Bye for now, ciao, farewell, adios, cheerio, arrivederci, sayonara, so long, au revoir, see ya!


Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Our favourite places to stay in the USA! part two!!

here is the finale for the "good"places that we stayed at in the USA...

Grand Canyon RV park, Williams, Arizona.  If you are planning a trip to the Grand Canyon, consider taking the train instead of driving from Williams....this RV park is RIGHT at the train station, so convenient!!  Nice facilities, the town is on Route 66,  very neat!

Las Vegas KOA, Las Vegas, Nevada.  If you are traveling to Vegas in an RV then you MUST stay here!! This park is at the Circus Circus, very close to to the bus stop to get to all the attractions etc.  Nice pool area and dog park, decent bathrooms.

Pomo RV Park, Fort Bragg, California. A nicely wooded area on Highway 1 that is popular with divers.  Nice facilites, private sites and very friendly owners.

Bandon KOA, Bandon,Oregon.  A wonderful little hideaway on the HWY 101.  Beautiful little spot to camp, nicely kept and looked after, friendly owner.

update:  here are 2 articles in our local news:

The Terrace Standard

The Terrace Daily

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Our favourite places to stay in the USA! part one

This is a list of our favourite campsites that we stayed at in the USA.

Fish Creek campsite,  Adirondack Park, New York.  Private waterfront lake sites, very woodsy, nice setting.

Fort Wilderness Resort, Disneyworld, Florida.  This campsite is on Disney property, extremely clean private sites, (bathrooms as nice as the Marriot), woodsy, nice setting, tons of activities, pool and hot tub, music, dancing, shows, fireworks, parade, decorations, free boat ride or busses to the Magic Kingdom, a wonderful experience!  We had just as much fun staying at the campsite as we did visiting all the theme parks!

Lake Rousseau, Crystal River, Florida.  Extremely friendly family run RV park, lots of activities, potlucks, bingo, dances, pool, lake, canoe rentals, great location.  We stayed here the longest amount of time and made many friends, Terry's dad liked it so much that he is going back in October for 6 months to be a "snowbird".

Pioneer Beach Resort, Port Aransas, Texas.  Nice beach front RV park, lots of activities, potlucks, dances, bingo, etc.  Free bus into downtown, friendly people, beautiful beach on the Gulf of Mexico.

Bentsen Palm Village RV Resort, Mission, Texas.  Beautifully landscaped RV park in the Rio Grande Valley, right beside the Rio Grande river, bordering to Mexico.  Extremely friendly people, tons of activities, bingo, potlucks, Margaritia nights, woodshop (I made a bowl), pool and hot tub, dog park, right beside the World Birding Headquarters.  ATV rentals, free bikes and kayaks, pontoon boats.

Oliver Lee State Park,  Alamogordo, New Mexico.   A wonderful oasis located in the Chihuahuan desert,  full of birds, lizards, rabbits, coyotes, and lots of different plants ( Mesquite trees, creosote trees, agave plants and cacti).  Nice campsites including water and electric for only $14 per night!

Rock Hound State Park, Deming, New Mexico.  Located at the base of the Flo-rida Mountains in the Chihuahuan desert.  A great spot to find geodes, thunder eggs, agates, jasper and many other rocks.  Great campsites serviced for $14 per night.  Star party at the visitors center, hiking, lots of wildlife and plants.  Great place!

Wells Fargo RV park, Tombstone, Arizona.  Located right downtown Tombstone, right beside the OK Corral!

Rest stop on Hwy 191, Apache National Forest, Arizona.  We took the winding twisting route on 191 through the Apache Forest and spent the night at the summit of 10,000 ft at a large pull out rest stop.  Spectacular views, road not advised for vehicles over 40 ft long!

stay tuned for part two with more of our favourite camping spots in the USA...

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Favourite places to stay - Canada

Now that we are back in the house and have our internet turned on I can go through my notes and list off some details of the trip:

Here are our favourite campsites in Canada that we stayed at:  (click on the name to view the website)

Brae Island Regional Park in Langley, BC.  Close to town, a 5 minute walk into Fort Langley, lots of wildlife (rabbits, owls, birds, frogs).  Kayak and bike rentals available.

Beachcomber RV Park in Saanich, BC.  Right on the water, lots of driftwood to have bonfires on the beach, very private setting away from the city.

Kettle River Provincial Park, Rock Creek, BC.  Dry Ponderosa Pine forest, very nice setting.  Great spot to tube down the river from one end of the campsite to the other, a short walk back.  Lots of bike riding trails.

Rainbow Falls Provincial Park (Rossport), Terrace Bay, ON.  Right on Lake Superior, a nice setting.

Pancake Bay Provincial Park, Batchawana Bay, ON.  Beautiful white sandy beach right on Lake Superior.  Each site is very private and most sites are beachfront.

Twin Shores, Darnley, PEI.  A beautiful red-sand beach on the North side of PEI.  Private sites, lots of fun activities (hay rides, free movies, music and mussels on the beach).  Beach fires permitted.

Brudenell River Provincial Park, Georgetown, PEI.  On the East side of PEI, swimming pool, horseback riding, $5 golf at the Devine Nine for registered campers, private sites.

Kouchibouguac National Park, NB.  Board walk over the tidal flats to the ocean, many different seabirds, kayak and bike rentals.  Lots of bike trails.

MacLeod's Beach, Dunvegan, Cape Breton Island, NS.  Beautiful white sand beach hidden away from the campsite, hiking trails.

Green Cove, Neil's Harbour, Cape Breton Island, NS.  Not a campsite but a rest stop right beside the surf on the rocks, a beautiful place to spend one night tucked away in a very private corner.

Lunenburg Board of Trade campsite, Lunenburg, NS.  Up on the hill above downtown Lunenburg, a 5 minute walk to downtown, spectacular view of the bay.

**Next Post will be our favourite places that we stayed in the USA**

Tuesday, June 7, 2011 is good to be back home!

We moved back into our house on June 3rd.  we still haven't set up all of our stuff yet...there are boxes everywhere and I just finished painting our bedroom today...phew I am glad that is done with!

It is hard to believe that we managed okay in the RV with such little room...the space that we have in the house is crazy for just the 3 of us.

Mike is excited to have a separate lego room, a Magic card room, a TV room and of course his own bedroom...I am happy to have my laundry facilities and a full size fridge, oh and of course my comfy couch...Terry is happy to have the shop and his big TV... and Sampson is happy to have his yard and to run free without the rope attached to his collar!

Friday, May 20, 2011

2 more weeks

We move back into our house in 2 weeks!!

I will be updating the blog with summaries of the road trip at that time... Stay tuned!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Then What?

We have been home for a week now.  We are homeless for the time being until we can move back into our house on June 1st.  We have re-insured our vehicles that were parked while we were gone, cleaned up the boat, re-actived our cell phone with our Canadian number, arranged for the internet, cable and phone to be re-connected.  We have seen most of our friends and family, had a couple dinners out etc...  Where are we going next?  Where is the next destination that I can plug into our Nuvi GPS of look up in our road atlas......we will get to move into our house in 3 weeks, that will be entertaining for the 1st month...Then What?  

Michael and I are flying to Prince Edward Island tomorrow to see Jennifer, it has been 10 months since Mike has seen his big sister!  We will spend the week with her in PEI then Mike and I are flying to Vancouver Island to see everyone else!  Once I get back from there it will only be 10 days until we move back into our house...Then What?

Then What? = getting back to a normal life,  getting Michael back to school in the fall, getting him back into his Ju-jitsu, skiing etc.
Then What? = Kelly going back to work in August and finally having a pay cheque again, re-joining the photography club and ladies golf club.
Then What? = Terry going fishing to his favorite river, getting the boat in the water, going golfing, learning how to be patient and sit still..

Then What? = realizing that what we did for the past 333 days was an unbelievable, extraordinary thing that most people will never experience, that we were lucky enough to be able to pull it off without too many hardships, and the hope that maybe, just maybe we will be able to do it again one day...maybe 10 or 20 years down the road...but maybe it will just happen again...then what?