Tuesday, September 30, 2008


The sky is falling, the sky is falling…… or is it? This has certainly been a time of confusion and could surely lead to a lot of uncertainty. Cheryl and I checked our retirement accounts and found that the values overall have dropped over $8,000. Our first inclination was to reduce our investments that come from our paychecks automatically. However I truly believe that the sky is not falling and the markets will recover, so instead I am thinking of increasing my investments before this “sale” ends!! :)

I figure that bailout or no bailout, the markets will recover and the value of my shares will increase even more. The only question is “ How long will it take for the market to resume growth?”. The answer to that question will certainly determine my retirement date and subsequently my fulltiming date. I had originally planned to retire in February 2012, now if the market takes longer to recover, that date may slide a couple of years. It may not effect my retirement date, but how I plan to retire, debt free or having to borrow for my fulltime RV.

Oh well, any way this situation plays out, I still have to work a while longer. I thank God for every day I am able to get out of bed and take myself to work! I thank God even more for those brief excursions into the world of RVing, such as the rallies and RV DREAMS get-togethers!! :)

Till next time……………..

Sunday, September 28, 2008


Well we are back at the ole sticks and bricks after an interesting "vacation". We should have figured the whole trip was going to be different due to how it started. The night before we were to leave we had plumbing problems in our kitchen, wetting our cabinets underneath the sinks. Rather than taking the time to replace the faulty plumbing and disposer, I elected to just cut everything off and leave it until our return. Upon our return the particle board bottoms of our cabinets were swelled and the doors would not shut. Oh well I needed a project to help me pass the time :)

The trip to South Carolina went well..... except for the outrageous price of a hotel room. I don't think I will be traveling without our home on wheels again!! We stayed with Cheryl's sister and it was great to see her again after 3 years. We spent hours talking, laughing and just enjoying each other. Then on Sunday we met with the rest of the family for a short but heartwarming reunion. We saw members of Cheryl's side of the family we had not seen for years. What great fun.

Later in the week, we went to Myrtle Beach to visit with our niece. We started the trip a little late and we rode with Cheryl's sister in her car, therefore we did not get to see all that we wanted. We did not even take time to see the ocean. No big deal though, Cheryl and I used to live there for 7 years. :)

The trip home was uneventful and the overnight stay in a hotel, once again expensive. When we arrived at the house not only did we find the results of the plumbing problem, but we found problems resulting from the power being out for 4 days. It seems that Hurricane Ike wanted us to know he had been here! Food had thawed and ice had melted, ending up on the vinyl floor! Oh well, as said, I needed something to keep me busy......

The highlight of the week came Friday. I was at my desk, slee..oops working and noticed an email that arrived, concerning some free concert tickets available for some of hard working military types. I was quick to respond and as a result, Cheryl and I ended up going to see RASCAL FLATTS on tour!!! What a fantastically great concert! Not only did we get RASCAL FLATTS, but also Taylor Swift was a special guest. Taylor sang for about an hour, then RASCAL FLATTS sang for 2 hours. Any and all frustration we had just melted away as we listened to the extended version of "ME AND MY GANG" and memories of the RV DREAMS rally had us dancing. We will always remember the rally and now we will always remember the concert! :)


Wednesday, September 17, 2008


Hi All... We are safe and sound but completely out of touch as far as the internet is concerned. Our hometown, Lancaster South Carolins, has no wi-fi hotspots and the family we are staying with thinkd the internet is sometning you wear in your hair at night!! I will post again once I get back to civilization!!! Until then...........

Thursday, September 11, 2008


Today we started our trip to South Carolina to visit with Cheryl's sister and attend a small family reunion. I say small because there will only be about a dozen or so family members attending.

Our trip got off to a slow start as we started packing the car at about 0730 (7:30AM). Cheryl was washing a load of dishes in the dishwasher and when she went into the kitchen for something, she found water all over the floor! I seems the dishwasher drains through the garbage disposal and that technical marvel is busted, broke, kaput and leaking like crazy!! We had to postpone loading the car and clean up the floor. I made sure the diposal was finished leaking and posted an "out of order" note on the dishwasher so the kids would not use it if they come over while we are gone (they like to raid the fridge). After all that we finally got on the road about 1030...... :(

We are traveling on I20 and it was going pretty smoothly. I set the cruise on 73mph and we were making pretty good time. We did run into a heavy rain shower on the east side of Birmingham, Alabama. We reached Anniston/Oxford, Alabama around 1800 (6:00PM) and after 3 hours packing, mopping and working on the plumbing; then about 8 hours of driving I was tired to the bone. We decided to do something we have not done in years.... we checked into a Holiday Inn Express! I was shocked at the price, but too tired to squalk..... oh how I miss not having my RV!!

Well I guess I had better get some rest and continue my journey in the morning. Until then........ Happy Trails.

Friday, September 5, 2008


The title may be a bit of a misnomer, those that know me tell me I never have been normal! Well Gustav came and went, we are still here. Other than having to work long hours and being exhausted as a result, Gustav did very little damage to Barksdale AFB and the Shreveport area. After all my work to ensure that FEMA would be able house an operations center for a sustained period, they are packing up and standing ready to head to the east coast! After all the work to ensure that numerous shelters were available and useable on the base, they are no longer needed. Thank God!

Now it seems that after Hanna, there is Ike and the possibility that after hitting the tip of Florida, Ike may head to the gulf. We are scheduled to leave for South Carolina about the time Ike gets to Florida, you better believe we will be keeping an eye on the projected path!

I am curious, those fulltime RVers on the east coast or south Florida, do you plan on hitching up and getting out of the area before the storms hit? I wonder what I would do in that situation…. Hmmm. In my travels around the base today I drove through the FamCamp area. The place is packed with RVs parked in the grass next to regular sites, sharing hookups. These are mostly folks from south Louisiana that hitched up and got the heck out of dodge before Gustav. Most have sticks and bricks, but happened to have RVs also. They are comfortable in our FamCamp, but anxious to get back to survey the damage to their houses. The only thing holding some of them back is reports of no power in their areas.

On to other subjects; I noticed Howard is considering a site in Colorado for the next RV DREAMS rally. I would love to attend a rally in Colorado in June, that would be do cool…. :) I have already been mapping out the trip, it is over 900 miles from Shreveport. I will pass through the Dallas area, so maybe I can join up with Speedy there and have us a convoy…… :)

Tomorrow is a special day, it is Cheryl’s xxth birthday!! I am buying her a new rocking recliner, shhhh.. of course there will be a card, flowers and a special dinner (a gift I can enjoy also).

Until next time….remember, every day is a gift from God..

Monday, September 1, 2008


I know, I barely post once a week and this week I am late! It had been a busy and unusual week on all levels.

Cheryl and I have been planning a trip to South Carolina to attend a family reunion and visit with her sister. We are planning on leaving on the 11th of September and returning on the 20th. We were going to take the travel trailer, but Cheryl's sister really wants us to stay with her so they can spend every minute together. They will probably sit up late at night talking and giggling like little girls!

Amidst all the trip planning, Thursday rolls around and I had the much dreaded dental work that was scheduled. It involved a lot of scary things like needles, noisy grinding and cutting type tools, more needles, a lot of gause and disgusting stuff that I will not talk about here. Anyway as of today, I can just now talk and eat normal, oh and I still have a smile .... :)

So, I am home Friday, trying to recuperate and I keep getting calls from work! It seems that because of Hurricane Gustav, FEMA is setting up a center of operations at Barksdale AFB and it seems that no one but poor old Don is capable of organizing the logistics of getting them set up! I kept receiving calls all weekend, the last call was to notify me that although the base will be closed tomorrow (except for mission essential personnel) due to the hurricane headed straight for us here in Shreveport, I need to come in anyway. All of a sudden I am mission essential personnel, not essential enough for a promotion, just enough to have to head into work through high winds and flooding rains! I am not bitter, I just think it is ironic.... :)

It is now about 7:20pm on Monday night and I am sitting in my recliner and watching the weather channel on tv, while at the same time looking at the increasing winds and clouds out my back window. I think we are going to get wet! I just pray there are no tornados. I will try to post again soon to let everyone know how this plays out. Till then, happy trails...............