Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Yea!!! NO Snow!

I am doing a happy dance right now.  Woke up this morning to NO white stuff on the ground and the rain moving on outta here!  The sun is coming out and it is supposed to be in the mid-40s today.  Windy, but I'll take it...  This weekend the predictions are for sun and temps in the mid-50s!!  Yeah Baby... that's what I'm talking about!  Bring it on...

I want to say THANKS!! to Froggi Donna for the info on posting links and pictures.  That was so very kind of you to take the time to do that!  I am going to practice at the first available opportunity, so maybe in a few days my blog won't be so boring any more!  Well... at least you will have something to look at and maybe a link to click on, anyway.   Doubt it will improve the content any..........  :-P

We are making plans to visit the RV Super Show in Huntsville, AL again this year.  Although I have SO much more to learn, I definitely know more than I did at this time last year when we attended.  I hope to get ideas on floor plans, furniture, and storage, specifically.    We really enjoyed it last year and are looking forward to returning.  It is scheduled for February 18th - 20th at the Von Braun Center in Huntsville, if anyone is close by... they have wonderful parking and the area is not so large that you are totally exhausted when finished.   I'm not sure I would call it a "Super" show, but it is quite nice.

Hope everyone has a great day!

Stay safe....

Kerri in (NO SNOW!!!!) AL  :-)

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

No, No, NO More Snow!!!

Welcome to my newest followers Craig and Karin! (I have GOT to learn how to do links in my posts!  AND post pictures!) I just discovered their blogs and really enjoyed reading about their first year as FTers! Thanks for becoming followers of my blog!

I am thinking of changing the name of my blog.  Although I would love to have lots of homeschooler/roadschoolers "following" me, I also hope to be writing about FT RVing soon, plus lots of other subjects.   I feel that some people see the title and feel they couldn't possibly find anything of interest here.   How about "... And the Kitchen Sink"??  You know, as in "they brought everything AND the kitchen sink".  My Mammow used to say that all the time when one of us grandkids would be dragging stuff around with us!   :-).......  Or how about "A Little Bit of Everything". Or "No, There Is Nothing Interesing Here But I'm Bored"  :-)...  I don't know..............  Something will smack me in the forehead soon, I'm sure!

MORE ???!!!****### snow is predicted for us tonight and tomorrow. You know -----  I live in A-L-A-B-A-M-A.  It is NOT supposed to snow this much here! It is supposed to snow ONCE a year so we can watch it fall and all the kids (both big and little:-) can play in it and build a little snowman and have a snowball fight and we can make snow cream. Then it is supposed to MELT AND GO AWAY!!   I guess the weatherman didn't get the memo...... I pray that we are on the road next winter so we (hopefully) won't have to deal with this. Of course, if I leave, Alabama will have 60 degree sunny days with NO snow all winter!! :-)  And southern Florida or Texas or Arizona or wherever we happen to be will have the coldest winter in history...  I have such *good* luck.   (BIG grin)

Thank you to everyone who left a comment the other day.  I truly do love reading your blogs! 

@ Judy... I am in NW Alabama in The Shoals area, so I'm about 380 miles away.  Let me know if you head further north at any point... would love to meet you!

@ Froggi Donna...  Your blog STILL helps me.  I love reading about the adventures you and your handsome hubby and sweet puppy have...  You seem so happy together!

@ Randy and Pam...  You're welcome!  I am trying to write more often on this thing, but *life* gets in the way sometimes.  Since I'm not on the road, I doubt anyone is very interested in my boring life here!!  ;-)

@ Mike... You are very welcome and I truly meant them.  I really hope that I get to meet you and Heidi "down the road" someday! 

Hope you are all warm and dry!  January is almost over!!  Yea!

Stay safe......

Kerri in AL  :-)

Sunday, January 23, 2011

"Thank You!" to my followers...

I have decided to steal an idea from Randy and Pam Warner (Roadrunner Chronicles) and thank each of my followers as they arrive.  While I am sure other bloggers acknowledge newcomers, Randy and Pam were the first ones which I noticed doing it.  I just thought it was so very nice of them to say hello to the new additions that I decided to do it, too!

Since I have some "catch-up" to do, I thought I would thank my current followers now.  If you are reading this and not a follower, I would love to add your name to my list! 

So....  Thank You to Deb, Intense Lives, Heidi, Randy and Pam, Judy and Emma, Tonya, Freely Living Life, Sheri, Visionquest, Wild Blue Yonder, and Froggi Donna. 

Deb at One Single Minute has been a good friend for many years.  We met when she began homeschooling her children and soon felt like old friends.  She and her husband have a wonderful marriage and have done an amazing job raising two great young people. 

I must relate that when I began researching the RV lifestyle, Froggi Donna's blogs were some of the first I discovered.  She answered so many questions for me, questions which I didn't even know enough to ask!!  She is an amazingly strong lady who persevered through heart-break and came out triumphantly on the other side. 

Judy of Travels with Emma is an inspiration to everyone who reads her blog, and I look forward to her posts every day.  She has a seemingly unending amount of knowledge about most subjects in general, and birding in particular, and shoots breathtaking photographs!

Randy and Pam (Roadrunner Chronicles) are wonderful people who enjoy each other and life to the fullest.  Their family has had it's share of heartache too, but they have been an inspiration to their readers throughout it all.  We *almost* got to meet when they were in Red Bay, AL having some work done at Tiffin.  It was definitely my loss.   Maybe next time, guys!

Tonya at Live the Adventure  is a wonderful homeschooling mom who writes with honesty and candor about their adventures.  She and her family have experienced life in a S&Bs in Ohio, hotel rooms around the country, their RV, and now back to a S&Bs here in AL.  Thought you were getting away from snow and cold weather, didn't you??  ;-)

Heidi (Vansteaders) and her sweet husband Mike (Visionquest) are my go-to blogs for innovative and creative ideas for renovations and for delicious food!   Keep those recipes coming, Heidi!  And yes, the stir-fry was amazing!   You and I must be soul-sisters...  :-)

I would love to read Wild Blue Yonder's blog.  If you'll send me an invitation, I would be happy to become a follower!  ;-)

Sheri at SmittysInfo is the mom of six beautiful children and an inspiration to all of us who are roadschoolers (or wannabees!:-).   I really enjoy reading her posts about her family's adventures.

Freely Living Life has wonderful posts about their adventures, written in a warm and pleasant way, supplemented with beautiful photographs!  I love reading about families who are experiencing the full-time lifestyle.

I have lost my link to Intense Lives, so if you are reading this, please get me back on track!  I am sure that it is something I did... :-)

I so look forward to meeting as many of you as I can someday.  Until then I hope you stay safe, happy, and content.    Thanks again!

Kerri in AL  :-)

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Snow, snow, go away...

... DON'T come back another day!  I live in A-L-A-B-A-M-A.  What is up with this???  Bama fans are saying that it is hell freezing over because Auburn won the National Championship.  I won't go there, although I do consider myself a Bama fan all the way... :-)

We had about 8 inches of snow where we live.  Other areas here in The Shoals had from 7 - 12.  I know that is not a lot to those of you in/from the North, but here it is a MAJOR deal!!  We just aren't equipped to deal with it.  We still have about 6 inches in most places in our yard.  The streets are slowly clearing up, which is good.  The Little One has played in the snow and built snowmen until she is tired of it.  Hasn't even asked to go out today!  Which is good, since the temp is 22 and the wind chill is 12!!  Brrrrrr....  I looked at the national map a few minutes ago and it is chilly, cold, or downright frigid almost everywhere!!!  I am picturing all of the wonderful people who are RVing out there with their rigs circled up like covered wagons in the half-dozen or so warm spots in the country!!  Hope I am there with you next year...

So.... yeah.  It is cold.  That is about all that is happening here.  I am VERY thankful that we didn't lose electricity, water, nor DSL.  I am shocked and amazed that we didn't lose DSL (see earlier posts :-) but very grateful!  It kind of comes and goes, but as long as it comes back, I can deal with it.  Plenty of food in the kitchen.  Everyone safe and sound.   Just wish it was warmer! 

The dog (who lives outside) is in the laundry room, making a mess.  She is SO funny when I let her out... she has no desire whatsoever to get out in that white stuff, but she has to "go" so she goes.   But Miss-Usually-Sniffs-Everything-In-Her-Path wastes NO time getting back in the house!  

I watched a squirrel skate across the yard yesterday, and it was as though he is thinking "ifIjustdon'ttouchthegroundmaybeI'llbeallright"!!!  He was moving-on and wasted no time going up the first available tree.   Didn't look like he even left a mark in the snow!

So cabin fever has definitely set in... We've watched movies and played games.  Cooked and eaten too much food.  Read books and cleaned house.  Surfed the 'net and chilled out.  I'm ready to get out and about.  Take a long walk.  Go out to eat.  Go for a drive.  I might even enjoy a Walmart visit....  Nah, I'm not THAT desperate!  :-)

Hope everyone is warm, safe, and dry...

Tuesday, January 4, 2011


I am reeling from the price I was just quoted to repair my car!!!!!!!!!!!   Unbelievable!   I think I'm in shock!

Last Wednesday, my Little One and I went to Walmart.  Came out, cranked up, put the car in reverse... and nothing.  Didn't shift.  Didn't move.  Uh-oh....  So I slid the gear shift back into park and tried again.  And again.  And again.  Got out, looked under the car to see if any pertinent parts were on the ground.  Checked the fluid level.  Wiggled and jiggled things for good measure.  Got back in.  Shifted.  Nada.

Double uh-oh.   Waited for a guy to walk by who looked like he might know something about cars.  Two older men saw that I had my hood raised and asked if they could help.  (BTW, they were the 7th and 8th man, respectively who walked by, and were the ONLY ones to ask!)  They tinkered with it and said I would have to call a tow truck. 

So I made a few phone calls.  Couldn't reach my regular mechanic.  Talked with another guy.  Called a third.  Then I called a good friend of mine at work.  He asked if I had a ride home.  Told him yes I could get a ride.   So he told me to meet him in the parking lot when he was finished for the day and he would try to at least get the gears to engage so I could get the car home.

So I called my mom and she came over and picked us up.  I ran in and told a manager that my car wouldn't move and that I would be leaving it there for a few hours and was that ok?  She laughed and said they had cars sit in the parking lot for days, weeks, sometimes months at a time.  A few hours would not be a problem.    So I reluctantly left BamaGirl sitting all alone at Walmart...

Met my friend about 6:30.  It was COLD.  He worked and worked to get the car to go into D, and finally it did!  It also just so happened that the space in front of me was empty, so I could pull through.  Got home safely and tried to put it in gear again.  Nothing.  My friend went home, since it was dark and cold and late and there was nothing he could do...

He came back over on Saturday and worked on it for about 3 hours, trying to find a way to repair it.  Meanwhile, I'd been on the Internet searching forums for answers.  Seems the ONLY solution is to replace the cable from the shifter to the transaxel.  The part is manufactured in such a way that when this little piece breaks off/wears out on the end of the cable, the WHOLE thing must be replaced.  The cable is almost $200.   Have to order it from Atlanta.  It will take 2 or 3 days.   Labor is going to be $500, minimum!!!!!!  Yep, that is what I said. 

They have to pull the axle, remove a huge part of the dash, and remove several components on top of the motor in order to replace it.   He estimated that it will take between 8 and 12 hours of labor to make the repair.  And from my research, I believe it.  I trust this guy - he's been in business for years and has a great reputation.  He has done a lot of work for me and has always been honest and given very accurate estimates.  He was apologizing the whole time.  Good guy.  But $700+ to replace a cable????????!!!!!!!!!!!

Now I know that something on our vehicles has to go "in the middle".  I know that something has to be in an out-of-the-way place.  But it really seems that something which is OH SO VERY DIFFICULT to repair would be made a little better!!  Engineered in such a way that a smaller part could be replaced.  Or so that it would not wear out/break off.  Sheesh!

So here I sit... wheel-less for the next week.  About to be several hundred dollars poorer.  I think I need a nap........  :-)