I have been enjoying visiting blogs and decided to start my own, even though I don't know what I am doing or if anyone will even be interested in reading what I have to say. I am a 50 year old management consultant who has been married to the the love of my life for 30 years and have two grown daughters and a son-in-law who we are very proud of. We are blessed to live in Scottsdale Arizona and are enjoying getting out and experiencing it in our RV! Thanks for stopping by our blog and please consider joining us, who knows where we will go...Kevin & Tracy.

Friday, March 30, 2012

Big Birthday Weekend!

This is it...the big 50 on Monday.  We will be celebrating with Tracy's brother and his family from Charlottesville Virgina, her parents, and her aunt, uncle and cousin from California this weekend, supposed to be 90 degrees tomorrow and 72 degrees on Sunday, go figure that. Our three nieces and nephew will most likely take a dip in the 70 degree pool water tomorrow I'm sure...Burr!

Tracy turned 50 last month, so I had a whole month to give her the business about being so old...I'm sure I will get mine on Monday.

Went out to get the mail yesterday and found my AARP Card amongst the bills and advertisements.  Tracy mysteriously did not receive hers before her 50th, so I accused her of signed me up for the card and she denied it.

Many of our snowbird friends are heading home this month including our blog friends and we wish them all safe and enjoyable travels.  We especially remember The Bayfield Bunch who leave their new Arizona home in the morning to head north with their little Motormouse who has been ill and is not doing well.  We wish them safe travels and a full recovery for the the Mouse! 

Well I better hit it and get ready for the big party weekend ahead.  I hope you all have a safe and enjoyable weekend and stay cool if you can!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Camping + Relaxing = Weight Gain!

So we spent the weekend relaxing in camp...napping, reading and watching the golf tournament and of course snacking. But in between, we hiked, walked and biked around Usery Mountain Park quit a bit, until we saw the rattlesnake or course.

So when I got home and hit the scale on Monday, it didn't lie, my restful weekend cost me two pounds.  Can't complain too much, doesn't do any good anyway.

I am back in my routine, because now I have seven pounds to lose to hit my goal.  Of course the chicken pot pie dinner, followed by apple pie for dessert at church tonight didn't help, but we won't talk about that. :>)

Hope your week is going well...don't miss the opportunity to hug someone you love!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

We Really Relaxed!

Tracy and I both commented that we really relaxed this weekend on our camping trip.  I think because the weather was a little hot, we spent more time reading, napping and even watching the golf tournament on TV. 

After our close encounter with the rattlesnake, we kept pretty close to our campsite, which I think also contributed to our relaxation.  Although I normally enjoy our time away, it was a little more difficult to head back to the routine this time, so much so that I have to admit that I was a little envious of the fulltimers on either side of us.

Kind of sad that our local outings will be coming to an end very soon and we are hoping to get one or two more trips in before we can fry eggs on the sidewalk here in Arizona.L

I hope you are enjoying your day and I want to take this opportunity to warmly welcome Gail Durham  and Jim and Judy along for the ride.  In reading their blogs, they are some of those fulltimers J that I was a little envious of...welcome aboard!

Daily Quote! “An ant on the move does more than a dozing ox. ” Lao Tzu

Sunday, March 25, 2012


Tracy and I had a great time at Usery Mountain Regional Park this weekend.  This was our first visit to this park, but the spaces were very nice and big and the views were absolutely beautiful as these pictures show.

One of the things that Tracy and I enjoy doing when camping (besides relaxing of course) is hiking and riding our bikes.  The park has several hiking and biking trails and one short trail within the campground has a guided tour with the names and information regarding the natural vegetation that grows along the path.  We enjoyed getting to know the names of these plants that we have seen for years.  Tracy gave me a quiz on several of our walks over the two days and it was obvious that her retention was much better than mine :-).

Following our educational walk, we decided to take a bike ride before it got too much hotter.  So we jumped on our mountain bikes and headed down the road.  About five spaces from ours, I looked down and saw a rattlesnake stretched out across the road sunning itself.  He appeared to me to be about two feet long and he did not make a move.  Tracy was riding beside me and I said "snake, snake..." and veered to my left to avoid running it over.  I'm not sure if I thought the snake would leap through the air and bite my throat or what, but this was the first time in our 18 years of living in Arizona that we saw a rattlesnake that wasn't behind glass.  Tracy swerved to the left and almost went off the road into a ditch, but we both survived the rattler who was probably trying to figure out what the heck we were doing trying to run each other off the road.  Luckily I don't think any other campers observed our encounter and hopefully no videos will mysteriously appear on YouTube!

We headed down to the Visitors Center to share our encounter with the Park Hosts, but they did not seem too impressed.  They asked us if it was dead or alive and if we relocated it off the road or not?  With that response, we certainly didn't share our close encounter with the ditch on the side of the road!

Even with our first rattlesnake encounter, we had a wonderful weekend hiking, biking, reading and napping in the Arizona sunshine.  Unfortunately our weekends away here are numbered as things are starting to heat up!

We have had a number of good people join us this week on our little adventure including Mike Mills, David Schumaker,  Alan McMillan, John and Ellen, and FD5, Retired. Welcome aboard to you all and thanks for joining us!

I hope you had a great weekend and were able to get out and enjoy it.  Have a safe and enjoyable week ahead!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

On The Road Again!

Looking forward to some Arizona camping this weekend while the weather is still perfect.  We are trying Usery Pass Campground for the first time and should have some nice pictures to share next week.  I hope that your upcoming weekend is great and enjoy!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Up and Running....Finally!

I think that I finally have the TST 510 Tire Pressure Monitoring System up and running.  The first challenge was that two of the six sensors would not register, until I figured out that I needed to back out the valve stem core so that it would make contact. Once I did that and it was registering, I found that I actually had a tire that was leaking at the valve stem and needed to be replaced.  So I guess the system has already partially paid for itself. Here are some pictures of the install, the monitor actually fit perfectly on a small ledge next to the steering wheel, like it was made for it.

George commented that he gave up on his TPMS and checks his tires regularly with a tire gauge.  I think he may have the right idea...certainly would have saved me a lot of time and money.  

I am pleased to welcome Al from The Bayfield Bunch as our most recent follower.  Al was a big part of my motivation to start this blog.  He, his wife Kelly and their furry kids Pheebe and Cora's adventures along with his wonderful pictures are something that I look forward to reading each day! Welcome aboard Al and I am glad that you all are now official Arizona residents!

Hope you are all having a great week and be safe out there!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Making Progress...

As many of you know, I have been attempting to install a tire pressure monitoring system on our motorhome and have not had much luck.  I started with the Hopkins System and besides the fact that it looked cheap, it did not register the air pressure on several of the tires, so it went promptly back to Camping World.

The second system that I am attempting to install is the TST System, which came highly recommended on RV.Net.  One of the things that impressed me was the comments regarding their great customer service and ease of installation.  So once the system arrived, I excitedly installed it over the weekend and had high hopes that everything would work well. 

Unfortunately, I was only able to get four of the six tires to register on the system and when I called TST Technical Support, I received a lackluster response from Abby, who said that she didn't know why they weren't registering and she would send out two new sensors.  Thinking that Abby might just be having an off day, I decided to go home and try a couple of things to see if I could get the sensors to register.

So, I decided that because the two sensors that were not registering actually worked on the other tires, that there must be an issue with the valve stem cores not making proper contact.  I found my handy valve stem tool and decided to back the stems out slightly and guess what....the sensors started registering.  My only issue now is that one tire is losing air, so I think I may have backed it off a bit too far.

Because I was a little concerned that I might have other issues as a result of backing out the valve stem cores...like the tire that is going flat right now, I decided to place another call to TST Technical Support to get their opinion of this approach.  Again, Abby answered the phone, sounded less than energized to speak with me and said, Oh yes, we do recommend that approach to our customers when they have a sensor that is not registering.  She went on to say that she didn't tell me that yesterday, because she thought I had bad sensors.  So much for the stellar reviews regarding TST Customer Support.

So when I get home this afternoon, I will attempt to stop the leaking valve stem and hopefully the system will be up and running by later today.  Why is it that I always seem to have the challenging installs rather than the ones that go as advertised?

I hope you are all having a great week...the rain has disappearred here and the temps are starting to go up, so all is good in Arizona!  Have a great day.

Daily Quote! “Success is how high you bounce when you hit bottom.” George S. Patton

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Nice Storm!

Rained pretty heavily most of the night, awoke to dark clouds and lots of puddles on our way into church this morning. Had a nice lunch at our favorite Chinese restaurant with our kids and then home to watch golf with a fire burning in the fireplace.

This afternoon it kept getting darker and darker and then I heard a clap of thunder.  Then the hail started coming down as you might be able to see in the following pictures of our backyard lawn and pool area.

Nice day to do nothing but watch golf and nap.  At one point, Tracy, Sarah and I were all working on our laptops...oh we are such a techie family :-) Hope you all had a fun and enjoyable weekend!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Frustrating Day...

Last week I purchased a Hopkins TPMS and tried to get it up and running but it didn't work, so I returned it to Camping World for a refund.  After putting a post on RV.net about my challenges with the Hopkins product, several people responded saying that TST was a much better product, so I ordered one.  I was surprised that TST offered free shipping, a two-year warranty and their product was the same price as Hopkin's regular price.

Out of the box, the TST looked much more solid with each of the sensors coded and the unit came with two antennas to help with reception. Once I got everything setup, the front sensors registered immediately, but only two of the four rear tires registered.  After trying multiple configurations, I still can't get the two sensors to register.  So, I will have to call TST Technical Support on Monday when they open and hopefully they can walk me through getting those last two sensors up and running.

Windy most of the day today with dark clouds blowing in and out with a rain storm predicted for tomorrow, with snow in the mountains. So we are battening down the hatches and hoping for some much needed rain!

Be safe and I hope you enjoyed your St. Patrick's Day!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

First Level Goal Achieved!

As many of you who have been following our blog know, I have been trying to loose a few pounds prior to my doctor's appointment and annual psysical exam in April.  Because losing weight can be rather boring, I decided to spice it up a bit and use the new technology of my iPhone to help me out. 

So I downloaded "Lose It" which is a free application to help with my Battle of the Bulge! I am happy to report that this application along with eating less and exercising more (I know you didn't want to hear that part... just like I didn't) has helped me to hit my first level goal of 195 pounds ahead of schedule!

So now I move on to the next level which is 190 pounds that will put me right at my BMI and will give me a little room if I decide to go crazy and actually eat once in a while :). 

I wanted welcome Fossildreamer as our 17th follower...welcome aboard and I hope you enjoy the ride! Take care, be safe and have a wonderful rest of the week!

Daily Quote! “When a resolute young fellow steps up to the great bully, the world, and takes him boldly by the beard, he is often surprised to find it comes off in his hand, and that it was only tied on to scare away the timid adventurers. ” Ralph Waldo Emerson

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

R.I.P. My Friend!

I received a call this morning that my friend and colleague Josefina 'Jo' Adams passed away in Kingman, Arizona.  Jo and I have served on boards and committees over the years and Jo was always the type to volunteer who had a smile on her face.  Jo leaves behind her husband David of 30 years and her son Jeremiah.  Although Jo lived in Kingman, we always tried to connect and catch up whenever she was in the Valley for meetings. 

Someone told me that at a certain point you start losing friends who are around your own age and Jo is the fourth friend that I have lost in the last two years.  The last time we spoke we committed to getting together the next time she was in town...I am sure going miss that meeting. 

Jo had a strong Christian faith and I know that she and I will see each other again someday, it just will be a little bit more difficult not having her here.  Rest in Peace Jo and thanks for being my friend!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

My Former Toy!

About 12 years ago I decided that I needed a sports car...specifically a British made convertible. So I set out on Craigslist to find my new toy and I did.  I found a 1972 Triumph Spitfire, which was a lot of fun to work on and take out on the weekends. 

Unfortunately, I had an extremely difficult time getting it through the annual smog checks and my fun turned into frustration with a big expense. So, I decided sadly that it was time to part ways with my toy and I offered it to a gentleman at our church who has collected Triumphs through the years and was thrilled to get it. 

So I got an email from Tracy yesterday to let me know that Tom had brought the Spitfire to work at the church and I should stop by and take a look.  So on the way home I did stop by and there sat my former toy, looking great with new chrome bumpers and no more smog equipment that made it almost impossible to get through emissions, because now the car qualifies as a Historic Vehicle.

It was kind of bitter sweet to see my old toy...but now I have my new toy that takes just about as much time and energy but enables Tracy and I to get away and enjoy Arizona!  So if you happen to see this little Spitfire on the streets of Scottsdale, give Tom a wave!

Daily Quote! “Happiness is a how, not a what; a talent, not an object. ” Hermann Hesse

Monday, March 12, 2012

New Gadget...

Well my recent 40 mile round trip to Camping World was not a total loss with the purchase of the defective TPMS that I returned this morning.  As I was wandering throught the store (which is dangerous for my wallet), I found the following item that I wish I would have invented and was getting a portion of the $5.69 sales price.

I know this will probably sound lazy, but everytime we go in and out of the screen door when camping, we have to side the plastic door back and forth to get to the door release.  So I saw this little item and thought about how I could make my own version and decided that although I probably could, that I would spend more time trying to adapt things from my workshop than it would be worth.  So I took the $5.69 plunge and made the purchase. 

Like with everything that I do with our 19 year old rig, this item was designed for the push down version of the door latch, not the pull version that we have.  So I did have to do a little adapting, but after thinking about it for a few minutes it was installed and works perfectly. If you think I am little crazy enjoying these kinds of projects, you can join my wife who shares your thinking, but next time someone uses the screen door, I am sure they will say Wow, that's a neat gadget, where did you get that? :-)

I want to welcome Me and My Dog as our most recent followers. I have been following their adventures for sometime and would encourage you to do the same.  Welcome aboard!

I hope that your week is off to a great start and get out and enjoy every minute of it.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

I Should've Known Better...

Tracy normally strategically places the Camping World Ad at the bottom of the mail stack and I think she hopes I won't find it.  But amazingly, I have a sense of when it should arrive and I rescue it before it hits the recycling bin.

Well this month was no different than all of the others and I happened to see a Hopkins Tire Pressure Monitoring System on sale for $199.  I have read several articles that talk about the importance of maintaining proper tire pressure and the former owner of our rig said that he had a blow out on their final trip prior to our buying the rig.

So I called Camping World to make sure that they had the item in stock (I always call ahead, especially now with gas at close to $4 per gallon) and they said they had one left and would hold it.  When they brought out the unit, it was not in a box but in a plastic bag, which always causes little alarm bells to go off in my head.  They said that the box was on display and that everything was in the bag and that I should have no problem.  So I reluctantly paid for the unit and headed  the 20 miles home.

When I got home, I opened the bag and found some tell tale signs that this unit had been used and returned.  Instead of 6 tire sensors, there were 10, which if they worked, would have been a nice thing.  But as I plugged everything in and started through the process of connecting with each sensor, I realized that the unit was not working correctly, so the unit will have to be returned next week.

I placed a question on RV.Net and there were several posts about the TST system which not only monitors tire pressure but heat and appears to be a much more solid unit.  The unit was $100 more than Camping World's sale price, but TST does not charge for shipping or tax, so I placed an order and hopefully it will arrive and can be installed before our next trip.  

So, the moral to this story is that I should have listened to the little alarm bells and walked away from the purchase, but the $100 savings got the best of me.

I hope you are all enjoying your weekend, we are sure being spoiled this weekend with perfect weather, a light wind and the smell of orange blossoms in the air.  Take care until next time.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

A Neat AZ Destination...

Saw this article recently regarding a nostalgic Arizona destination called The Shady Dell which looks like a place that I would like to visit someday. Please enjoy the article and numerous pictures, which are a blast from the past!

Hope your week is going great and enjoy the upcoming weekend.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Bright and Shiny!

I know that this topic creates much chatter both pro and con on some of the major RV Forums, but for whatever it is worth, I had a great experience with using Red Max Pro #3 (RMP#3) to restore a shine to our 19 year old rig.

Now I want everyone to know that if I had a new rig or even one that still had any life at all left in the fiberglass exterior, I would not recommend using this product.  I will also say that you have to be ready to put in at least a good day of work, depending on how many coats you are going to apply.

I was a little concerned when I saw posts saying the RMP#3 was no longer going to be available at Lowes and when I went to check one of our Scottsdale Lowes location, the shelf was empty and the shelf tag was gone.  But, I was happy to find at least 6 bottles with a shelf tag at another Lowes location in old Scottsdale.

Here is a before and after shots of our rig after applying four coats of RMP#3.

Side before applying RMP#3

Side after applying RMP#3

Again, not suggesting that this is for everyone and since I only applyed it 6 months ago the jury is still out on how long it will last, but I can say from my perspective, it was worth the time and effort!

Thanks again to everyone who wished Tracy a Happy 50th...she had a great day and there doesn't appear to be any negative affects as of yet!  Have a great rest of the week and be safe out there!

Daily Quote! “Create the highest, grandest vision possible for your life because you become what you believe. ” Oprah Winfrey

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Fun Day!

Even though Tracy was dreading waking up as a 50 year old, she awoke with a smile on her face and she survived.  I told her that waking up as a 50 year old certainly beat the alternative of not waking up at all.

So it was off to church and then dinner with Tracy's parents, our friends John and Candice and our daughter Sarah.  We enjoyed some smoked chicken, baked potatoes, fruit salad, rolls and chocolate cake!

Tracy sends her thanks to all of you who posted Birthday wishes...she had a great day. Thanks for stopping by and have a safe and productive week!

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Computer Recovery and Happy Birthday Tracy!

Well Tracy's computer ended up with a virus a few months ago and a friend helped get it back up and running, unfortunately the laptop's operating system starting popping up with warnings saying that it was not a genuine copy.

Well every time that Tracy logged in and received the message, she was afraid that it sent a direct notification to Bill Gates, so I had to order the recovery discs from Acer.  They finally arrived six days after paying $22 and today was the day to get it up and running again. 

Well about two hours of work later, everything is back on and the laptop is up and running and Tracy is happy again. 

Well tomorrow is the big day...Tracy's 50th Birthday.  I keep telling her that 50 is the new 40, both that doesn't seem to help, so I follow it up with the fact that she can now join AARP and that really doesn't go over well.  Wishing her many more happy and healthy Birthdays.

Welcome to Joe Baker and The Good Luck Duck who are our most recent blog followers, welcome aboard!