Top Ten Pictures of 2015

Get ready for animals and flowers as they seem to dominate 2015 😀 It was also nice to see that half of our top ten pictures this year were from our home province of British Columbia, where beauty knows no bounds!

Surreal sunset at Picacho State Park, Picacho, Arizona. Picture taken 27 February 2014.

Spring blossoms, Carson City, Nevada. Picture taken 20 March 2015.

Marmots, Tunkwa Lake Provincial Park, Logan Lake, British Columbia. Picture taken 22 May 2015.

Chipmunk, Kettle River Provincial Park, Rock Creek, British Columbia. Picture taken 5 June 2015.

Cherries on our daughter’s tree, Kelowna, British Columbia. Picture taken 24 June 2015.

Biking through Stanley Park, Vancouver, British Columbia. Picture taken 21 July 2015.

Sunflower, Nakusp, British Columbia. Picture taken 12 September 2015.

Highway 20 near Sisters, Oregon. Picture taken 20 October 2015.

Walker Creek, Highway 395, California. Picture taken 31 October 2015.

And a great way to spend Halloween … soaking in a natural tub at Whitmore Hotsprings near Bishop, California. Picture taken 31 October 2015.

I appreciate the input of those that voted on their favorite pictures from 2013 and 2014, it sure helped us in picking the favorite for those years. I would love your input on your favorite 2015 photo 🙂

Until next time …

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Top Ten Pictures of 2014

Well 2014 started with forty-four pictures, and I am shedding a lot of tears over eight of those photo’s that didn’t make the cut 😥 However I said I would only choose ten so, with hubby’s help, here are our top ten pictures of 2014.

Hobe Beach, Florida. Picture taken 24 January 2014

Hike Through Alpine Meadow in Manning Park, British Columbia. Picture taken 12 July 2014

Seagull, SR101, Oregon … can you believe I had a hard time choosing which seagull picture to post! Picture taken 23 October 2014

Port of Newport RV Park, Newport, Oregon. Picture taken 23 October 2014

SR101, Oregon. Picture taken 26 October 2014

Avenue of the Giants, Northern California SR101. Picture taken 28 October 2014

Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco, California. Picture taken 01 November 2014

Rancho California RV Resort, Aguanga, California. Picture taken 8 November 2014

Rancho California RV Resort, Aguanga, California. Picture taken 8 November 2014

Rancho California RV Resort, Aguanga, California. Picture taken 8 November 2014

And because I have Irish in my blood I just couldn’t cut this photo so I have to give it an honorable mention.

Shamrock, Trees of Mystery, Klamath, California. Picture taken 26 October 2014

Again I would love your input on your favorite 2014 photo 🙂

Until next time …

It’s Nice To Be Home!!!

We were welcomed by warm squeezy hugs from very excited grandchildren! Of course grandma and grandpa were just as excited 🙂

So I thought I would share how our expenses broke down compared to last year but I also want to share this fact … last year, through out our travels, the price of gas varied by $.57, this year the price of gas varied by $1.64!!!

Over the five months (149 days because we came home for Christmas) that we were away:

  • We covered 9,451 miles (15,211 km) this year, last year we covered 14,093 miles (22,680 km) but last year we went out to the tip of the Florida Keys;
  • Spent $2,350.54 in fuel compared to $5,041.40 last year and $3,546.69 for RV Parks compared to $3,703.34;
  • Averaged 13.01 miles to the gallon compared to 12.74 last year;
  • Spent $151.49 in tolls and parking ($120.00 for parking at the Las Vegas airport when we came home for Christmas) compared to $49.50 in road tolls last year (mostly in Florida and a few in Houston);
  • Cell phone and internet cost us $444.34 compared to $685.19 last year, mainly because we switched to Roam Mobility for our cell phone this year, a move we are glad we made;
  • Last year hubby cleared just over $1,000 in winnings between Las Vegas and his win in Fort Langley, BC on our return trip, this year we spent $36.80 … still not bad for 5 days in Las Vegas at the start of our trip, mainly because we did win several times;
  • This year I probably took another 3,000 pictures but I saved 1,671 versus the well over 3,000 pictures I took last year and the 864 I saved. I guess I need to pare down this years pictures 🙂 ;
  • And again, the most important fact of all …. Hubby and I have now spent eighteen months living full time in Maxx and we still love it and each other!!

Of course the figures above don’t take into account the sad exchange rate on the Canadian dollar but there’s not much I can do about that, although it did cause us to really consider what we were purchasing.

Now that we are home I am going to take some time off from blogging, but will try to post once a week, or more often if we are travelling. Thanks for spending our second snowbird year with us 🙂

Until next time …

Crossing the Border

An incredibly easy border crossing yesterday! We crossed Sunday morning at 9:30 a.m. and drove right up, nobody in front of us. The only questions asked where:

  • How long were you gone?
  • Do you own a lot down south?
  • How much are you brining back?
  • Any alcohol or tobacco?
  • Any chicken, turkey, or eggs? What?? This was a new one and of course I chicken and eggs 😦

Apparently there is Avian Flu in the US so as of two months ago you can no longer bring back any “wing” products. We were told to pull over at the curb on the Canadian side, take our chicken and eggs and dump them in a freezer and then we could be on our way. As a fellow blogger always says “easy, peasy” 🙂

Until next time …

Warm Squeezy Hugs Here We Come :-)

Yesterday we left Chelan, WA and made our way to Omak, WA for the night. Spending the night in Omak gave us a chance to fill up the truck and propane tanks for way less than we will be spending once we cross the border (even with the lousy exchange rate right now!). Hubby also wanted to visit the Omak Big R but sadly it has now changed to North40 and the prices are not nearly as good as they were 😦 .

But now we are filled up, packed up, have put away our US cell phone and wallets, pulled out our Canadian cell phone and wallets along with our passports, and now we are heading home for warm squeezy hugs from our grandchildren … yup there are big smiles on our faces today!

Until next time …

Lady of the Lake

Those of you who know me well will probably know what the words “Lady of the Lake” conjure up in my mind, but this is a different Lady of the Lake 🙂  Yesterday we took the boat called Lady of the Lake up Lake Chelan to Stehekin, with stops in Field’s Point and Lucerne. We have wanted to take this trip many times but up until now it has never worked out, since yesterday was warm and sunny so it seemed like the perfect time to do it.

A perfect day to be on the lake!

These geese entertained us while we waited to board.

Mid air collision!

But they survived 🙂

Lake Chelan is one of Washington’s largest inland bodies of fresh water. The average width of the lake is less than 2 miles but the lake extends 55 miles into the Cascade Mountains, with depths over 1,500 feet. Twenty-seven glaciers and 59 streams feed the lake and the scenery up the lake was beautiful!

   

Many passengers got off at Lucerne where they were headed for Holden Village, a year round Christian retreat.

It was really interesting watching them off load luggage and groceries; they make a human chain up the ramp to a bus, which takes passengers and cargo the 12-mile drive into Holden.

Stehekin and Lucerne are only accessible by boat or seaplane, or by foot if you’re up for a 50-mile hike! The hamlet of Stehekin is located at the head of the Lake Chelan and has approximately 95 full-time residents. Residents order groceries from a store in Chelan by completing an order form and sending it to the store along with a blank cheque. The store fills the order and staff from the Lady of the Lake boat pick up the groceries and deliver them on their next trip up the lake. Mail is also delivered to these communities by the boat.

Arriving in Stehekin

When we arrive in Stehekin we had an hour before the return trip so we enjoyed lunch at the lodge and wandering through the village. There are many hiking trails in this area and you can camp or stay at the Lodge.

There are lots of places to stop and have a picnic.

 

Six hours later we arrived back in Chelan with wonderful memories of a village nestled in nature and almost untouched by modern life!

Until next time …

Chelan, Washington

We are enjoying three days in Chelan, WA where we spent many long weekends before we retired.

Chelan is nestled at the edge of the Cascade Mountains on the shore of Lake Chelan in North Central Washington. We are staying at the Lakeshore RV Park, which is run by the City of Chelan, and are enjoying a beautiful view of the lake from almost every window in the RV.

 

During the winter season the rate is $30.00 a night and we have never had a problem getting a site. During the summer months the rate for our site is $60.00 a night and you better have reserved long in advance! When we come here in the summer months we stay for free at the casino in Mason, about ten minutes from Chelan. We just can’t bring ourselves to spend $60.00 a night and we never plan that far in advance, so the casino has always worked out well 🙂  Plus they have some sites at the front of their parking lot that have power, but we generally stay in the field at the back under the trees.

The big advantage to staying at the RV Park is the fact that you are right in town and can walk to restaurants, shopping, etc. and it’s only forty-five minutes from Wenatchee so we always made a visit to Costco and Fred Myers.

Last night we walked up to our favorite pub BC McDonalds and had another great dinner with awesome service. I have read many terrible reviews on Trip Advisor about this restaurant but hubby and I have been coming here for many years and have never been disappointed … both the service and food are fantastic! We do sit at the bar because we enjoy the interaction so maybe that’s the difference, but we have never had a reason to complain. Last night we noticed the pub had a lot of updating done but fortunately they kept the original bar and the cabinets behind the bar, which the bartender told us, were shipped over from Spain in 1914.

This picture really doesn’t do the bar justice!

When we commented on the new granite countertop he told us that last fall the water pipes from the hotel, which the pub is part of, broke and dumped three feet of water in the pub. Fortunately the flood was discovered about 45 minutes later, the doors where opened to allow the water to disperse, the recovery company was called and the old bar and cabinets where saved! And after four months the pub reopened in time for us to visit 🙂

According to the Chamber of Commerce the Chelan Valley is one of the fastest growing wine regions in the county, with several vineyards producing award winning wines.  We have never visited a winery in this area because the Okanagan Valley of BC, where we live, produces 82% of BC’s vineyard acreage and it’s own fair share of award winning wines and we have no shortages of favorites 🙂  But that sounds like a topic for a summer blog!

For now we will enjoy being back in short sleeves and flip flops and wander the streets of Chelan 🙂

Until next time …