Without a home

This year brought a big change with my daughter graduating from LSU in December. I stayed in Louisiana helping to get the house ready for rental and my daughter ready to move to her next destination. I had some work travel during that time including London and Toronto. Toronto brought the joys of travelling to the office in snow and a chance to go AX throwing ūüôā


After her graduation we took off to Cancun for Christmas week and enjoyed some fun in the sun and snorkling!


Sunrise on the beach in Cancun

My daughter decided she wanted to move to the Northwest. But as life goes it was hard to get a job without a place to live and hard to get a place to live without a job. Since my life allows me to go anywhere I decided to help her move up there, letting her crash in my 23′ Airstream. It was quite a trek with 2 people and 2 cats. Along the way we looked at various places to settle and ended up in Port Angeles, Washington. Both of us have wanted to explore the Northwest and Olympic peninsula. While in Port Angeles we stayed at Elwa Dam RV Park. This is a great park with very friendly staff. They have a DVD library, clubhouse with laundry, tv, games and clean bathrooms/showers.

Port Angeles is a neat town. From there we were able to grab the Black Ball Ferry to Victoria, BC for a weekend where we saw the most beautiful winter garden. They have a nice waterfront downtown and many shops and restaurants. Hiking for most areas is a bit of a drive requiring anywhere from 30 minutes to 2.5 hours to get to some of the beaches and rainforest. Hurricane Ridge is only 45 minute drive and offers great snowshoeing and some ski activities. On days when the snow is packed hard you can also just hike in your boots. I am surprised at how much I enjoy snow hiking!

My daughter decided to follow in my footsteps and get a travel trailer of her own rather than pay rent on an apartment. Unfortunately, within a few weeks I noticed leaks in my Airstream and had to take it into the dealer. The dealer claimed freeze damage, so my insurance became involved. In the end it was not freeze damage and Airstream had to cover it, but this didn’t change fact that I have been without my trailer since January 23rd.


Cape Flattery, northern most point in the continuous states, is gorgeous

During that time my daughter moved over to Forks, Washington (Twilight fans should recognize :)). Forks is a very small town with a single shopping center for your food, hardware and general needs.  The nice thing about Forks is you are much closer to all of the beaches and the HOH rainforest. So far we have hiked 2 rain forests and explored many of the beaches and tide pools.

Since I dropped my trailer off I have spent 4 weeks travelling for work, 1 week living in my daughter’s trailer, 3 weeks at a motel and am now at my mom’s until the end of April. Even though my trailer moves around the country and is not stationary, it has become my home. I’ve taken being homeless pretty well but am beginning to feel the strong need to get back.

Bonus, I was able to visit the San Diego Zoo while in Irvine for work!


Mama hippo ‘sits’ on baby hippo while they nap to keep the baby from wandering off. Baby, without waking, automatically pops up head to breath every 1-2 minutes.



Family Time

It’s been awhile since my last post. Since leaving Utah I have traveled up through Colorado, through Laramie, Wyoming (Loved this town!) across South Dakota (stayed outside badlands) to Wisconsin/Michigan (Kayaking and backpacking Isle Royale) to Jackson Center (Airstream work), Florida (family, conference and RV buddy meet) and now sit in Cummings, GA visiting my family in the area.

This Saturday I got to celebrate my grandmother’s birthday. First time we have ever had a celebration with her. Growing up as a Jehovah’s Witness we didn’t celebrate birthdays and just have never had an opportunity to do so as an adult. My grandma turned 79. In April, we will be taking a cruise together along with other family. For her birthday I let her know that I will be taking her to Sicily sometime in 2018/2019. This is where her family is from and she has always wanted to visit. Her health is good and I want to share this special trip with her while I can.

One of the awesome things about this full-time life is the ability for me to set up here in Atlanta for several weeks to have lots of time to spend with family. No rushed weekend or holiday trip but day in day out visits.  It also allowed me to meet my sister, niece and brother-in-law in Florida to camp together for a week. I love that my lifestyle allows me the freedom to spend time doing quality things that give meaning to life.


My niece enjoying time on Navarre beach. We stayed at Santa Rosa RV Park. I didn’t have a waterfront view, but was able to borrow my sister’s!

While here I am staying Twin Lakes RV Park in Cumming, GA. Quiet park with a nice set of ponds with fountains. No amenities like bathhouses or laundry but the spots on the lake are nicely spaced and easy to pull into. They don’t give a discount for weekly stays and at $35 a night that can add up fast.


My spot on the lake. #86.

After this week I head back to Louisiana to sell my house and watch my daughter graduate from LSU. She has been inspired to live the #vanlife and travel herself after graduation.

Here are a few pictures from my travels.


This guy was at Busch Gardens in Tampa. He looked very meditative. Reminds me to pick up my meditation again!


Never miss a chance to enjoy hammock time. Needed a nap so set up my hammock at the rest stop on the way to Florida in a pavilion and enjoyed.


Coming off Isle Royale, all of my backpacking gear was muddy! Used a rest stop with water to wash and dry everything. Unfortunately I forgot my boots sitting on the tire until I ran over run. No worries, the boot was okay ūüôā


Hiking on Isle Royale was beautiful. One of my favorite National Parks now. Each day we were treated to unique and new flora and fauna. Next time I go back I will have a book with me so I can look up. We saw a Moose butt!


On top of the ridge Sunday morning, day 2 of our week long backpack. A bit foggy but still pretty.

Bryce, Briefly

At the end of my Zion area stay I flew out from Las Vegas to Irvine, CA for a work event. I went into Vegas a day early and stayed at the Cortez hotel on Freemont street. Freemont street had some great sites but I think the night life is best enjoyed with some friends. My work event was great as it was the first time I got to meet in person many of the awesome individuals I work with at my company. While I was gone, Mr. Hester (nickname for my RV), sat in Bella Vista storage waiting patiently for my return, slowly having the life drained from his batteries ūüėČ


This guy lights up with fire to music throughout the day and night! It’s located next to a container park which as really neat eateries, outdoor seating and a park for kids. Freemont street was interesting!

So when I flew in on Sunday, I picked up Mr. Hester and traveled to Beaver, UT to stay at a park I found on Passport America for only $13.50 a night! While the reviews stated Beaver Canyon Campground was rustic, I found it charming, peaceful and a great place to stay. There was even a great little Mexican restaurant on site. This is a family run place, moms been cooking in the restaurant for 25 years.


All sites are pull through and have a neat little covered picnic space with shelves and a fire pit.

I ended up staying 2 nights at the campground. I searched the area for a good boondocking spot with internet and¬†came up empty so decided to stay 1 more night at the campground and take a half day to enjoy Bryce Canyon National Park. This place is gorgeous. A half day is NOT enough!! I did a brief hike of Queen’s trail and Sunset/Sunrise trail and drove to all the viewpoints. Can’t wait to come back here again some day.


You get to drive through this!


For you Mom, a picture that includes me!


I only wish my camera could do this place justice. You should check out William Trinkle’s pics – awesome!

I spent the rest of the time charging up the RV and electronics, flushing the tanks, giving a good cleaning to remove the dust from Sheep Bridge road and preparing to head to Moab as soon as my work meetings finished on Tuesday.

Zion National Park – Leeds Canyon

One of my big bucket list items has been visiting the National parks in Utah. After leaving the Lake Mead area I headed to the Zion National Park area. I arrived on a Sunday and set up on Sheep Bridge road. This road is near Virgin,  UT and serves as a connection between Hwy 9 and Hwy 59. This is a well-traveled road by many local bikers and RVers. It is very dusty and I would recommend parking as far away from the road as you can. Other RVers I have spoken to parked near Virgin Dam and other spots in the area. I picked this spot because it had good internet, and my Airstream which has low clearance could easily get to the spot.  It was super convenient to Zion.


Sheep Bridge Road had beautiful views. Just wish there wasn’t sooooo much dust!


Lovely place to relax and have a campfire!

Unfortunately, this spot didn’t last long. First, they set up signs telling us we had to leave by Friday for 2 days due to a bike race. Next, they graded the road pushing up a bunch of dirt and rock at my site entrance. I had to go buy a shovel to dig my way out. Finally, the pushed up rocks led to a sharp rock puncturing my tire as I set up to leave the area to a new spot for the weekend. ¬†In the end, I ended up moving to Leeds Canyon. I never moved back, because honestly I couldn’t take the dust and was still upset over the tire and concerned about going back.


Not sure why, but I didn’t ever capture of front side of my campground shot. But this is from the backside. There was a 2nd campsite above me for tent campers, so I ended up moving my truck was I realized I was blocking the entrance.

Leeds Canyon was a beautiful camping spot with several nearby hikes (See link to read my review on Campendium). It didn’t have great internet and I had to drive into St. George each day to work (not my favorite thing working from my car, libraries, book stores and any random spot I can find quiet and power!).

While in the area I visited Zion National Park to hike the Emerald Pools trail and Angel’s landing. Zion is extremely busy on weekends so I recommend visiting on weekdays. I did Angel’s landing on a Tuesday, early morning and was super glad as it would have been very difficult and a completely less pleasant experience to hike this with more crowds. This was a beautiful and fun hike though, recommend to anyone not scared of heights.


Shots from the top of Angel’s landing. Wouldn’t a zip line here be awesome!?!


Just a short drop!

Emerald pools is a hike that has 3 pools you visit. The pools weren’t spectacular, but the last pool had a small waterfall that reminded me of Clark Creek trail I use to hike back in Louisiana. The last section of the hike to the 3rd pool is by far the most strenuous. Expect lots of people on this hike, many who don’t know basic trail etiquette (bring your patience!).



St. George was a great area to meet new people. While there I learned a new game called Pickleball and met up with 2 different groups in town to play on Thursday. I also met some hiking groups and was able to enjoy a back-country hike in Zion and a hike in Leeds Canyon.


Great group of people I met to hike back country Zion. Would never have found this hike on my own but these guys knew the way!



I also enjoyed some nice paddling at Sand Hollow State Park. The have a steep day use fee of $10, especially considering that you don’t have access to showers or water, just bathrooms. I had to have my boat go through some special hot water wash from the park ranger since it had been in Lake Mead within the last 30 days, but it was free and easy.


Really pretty area to paddle. Spent several hours on the water. There were little inlets in this big rock island that you could paddle into!

For dump, the Maverick in Hurricane, UT will let you dump for free, you just go in and give them your DL and they give you the key to the dump. While here, I needed to store my RV for a work flight out of Vegas. Bella Vista storage offers monthly storage at $35 a month (no pro-rate for partial month) and the parking slots are spacious and well-marked.

So I haven’t spoken about my mindfulness journey in quite a few posts and that’s because I haven’t been doing anything specific other than trying to be present each day. However, I have a new journey I am embarking on starting Monday, May 15. I have been unhappy with my health and have become quite overweight. Anyone who knows me, knows that several years ago I decided to get healthy after my Grandma was hospitilized for heart disease. In fact, most everyone in my family has heart disease and this prompted me to start exercising, eat better¬†and become more active. I did great. Lost 35 pounds, started leading an active lifestyle, was happy, healthy and had energy for life. Unfortunately I started sharing my life with someone who didn’t share the same healthy habits and instead of continuing on, I slowly started adopting old bad eating habits, stopped exercising, drank way too much (that’s not only unhealthy but tons of calories) and not only gained back the weight, but lost that energy and joy for life I had. While I’ve been on the road I have been struggling with how to get back to that lifestyle. I was so use to having a gym with regular exercise classes that helped me. Not really possible in my current set up. Even if I join a national gym, its often a 30 minute drive if one is even nearby. So a friend of a friend (RV communities are great!) reached out to me who is a Beach Body coach. I have decided to join the program in order to have a coach, team and accountability. Doing this on my own is just not working! We kick off our challenge program on May 15.

So where do you come in? As embarassing as this is, I want to share the journey with you. I am hoping you will help me be accountable. Give me encouragement when I am sore and don’t want to exercise and hopefully inspire others to get healthy with lifestyle changes. Below is my before picture. I was hesitant to post this because honestly I’m embarassed. I find it unattractive and not something I would advertise. But I know that it is just not enough for me in life to exist, have a job, raise a kid, see pretty places. I have to know that I am contributing, helping to improve or make something or someone’s life better. So if sharing my journey, helps even 1 person, then it’s worth the discomfort.

Growth demands a temporary surrender of security. It may mean giving up familiar but limiting patterns, safe but unrewarding work, values no longer believed in, and relationships that have lost their meaning.‚ÄĚ ‚Äď John C. Maxwell

So in addition to having progress updates on my blog. I am going to have a YouTube channel (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC6Z_07hxXgG17Z6_uzkZCvw) where I submit a brief daily update of what I’m doing, how I’m feeling and showing a little bit about the program.


My before shot. Because you know every exercise program must have one! 

Paddling Hoover Dam and Enjoying Lake Mead – Government Wash Review

After leaving Lake Havasu I headed to Willow Beach for a weekend to meet up with the BHC Adventures group I found on meetup.com for an overnight kayak from Hoover Dam down Black Canyon. Willow Beach was a pretty campground and area, but had no cellular signal, not even phone calls. They do give you a satellite based WiFi code for 1 device but it was minimally functional. If you are just coming to paddle over night, you could just leave your rig parked in the parking lot without securing a camping spot (P.S. If you are there you can use the dump station at no additional cost). It’s a bit of a steep curvy drive to the campground so take it slow!


Tent camping area is up to the left.


Great little rock wall behind my camp.

From there we had an outfitter drop us off at Hoover Dam (you have to go through an outfitter to have access to this drop site). We all had to have our driver licenses for security and a NV AIS sticker for our boats. The outfitter dropped us off right below the dam.


From the dam, within the first 3 miles there are many areas to stop at and explore. You have Gold Strike Canyon, with warm hot springs and beautiful colors, Boy Scout Canyon, Lone Palm, a few other hidden areas and of course Arizona Hot Springs.


All of this water is warm!


Goldstrike Canyon has awesome colors. My phone doesn’t do it justice, but definitely a must see hike.

There is a lot of thermal activity around and the park service makes available sand bags to allow people to help maintain the hot spring pools. As a group we enjoyed stopping often to hike these canyons and enjoy the hot springs. We originally were going to camp overnight at Arizona hot Springs, but it was quite crowded, so we paddled over, picked up 2 backpackers who were meeting us and paddled them back over, to a little hidden spot with a nice hot spring pool and a pretty camp area. The next day we finished the final miles down the canyon back to our cars. This is a wonderful paddle and I would recommend to anyone in the area. If you don’t want to pay an outfitter, you could paddle up river from Willow Beach. The current isn’t very strong but it would be a workout.

I later went back and hiked Gold Strike Canyon from the top down. If you are short, or have poor upper body strength, this is a difficult hike. I meet both criteria and found myself turning back after a point. We had been warned at the trail head by a local fire volunteer that rescue for an individual a few days back had taken over 6 hours, so please, be safe not sorry. I took this to note and when I reached a point where I couldn’t figure out how to get down without help or injury and knew my strength might be an issue getting back out, I turned around.


A little perspective on the climbing!

I then headed over to Lake Mead and stayed at Government Wash. I really enjoyed this area because the views were great, the area was quiet, they had dumpsters, a free area to dump and fill water at the nearby campgrounds, plenty of local hikes and close by cities with good groceries. I feel this area is versatile enough that I might want to winter here for several months next year, rather than southern Arizona. There is a 15 day limit but we didn’t see this being enforced. I had good AT&T signal here and okay Verizon. We had an easy short drive or walk, from our campsite to access the water, which was refreshing to cool off in! If you like to sail there is a marina with a restaurant and a sailing meetup that does some events in the area.


View from my campsite at Government Wash Road on Lake Mead.

While in the area we visited Valley of Fire State park, paddled Lake Mead and enjoyed some local hikes.


Petroglyphs in Valley of Fire State Park.


An entire family of sheep just hanging out by the side of the road in Valley of Fire.


Valley of Fire visitor center has a short little viewpoint out the back side.

Local area tips:

Fill up with water and dump for free at Las Vegas Bay. There is a closed ranger station there with a filtered water fountain for filling your drinking water bottles. You can also access the camp ground from there to dump your tanks and fill¬†your fresh water tanks. This is also the trail head to the White Owl Canyon hike that I took. Henderson, NV is only about 20 minutes away and of course Las Vegas isn’t too far either. I recommend heading over to Red Rock while there if you’ve never been and enjoying a walk down the strip!


The Las Vegas Bay Marina is closed but there is a water fountain at the Ranger station when you first go in and a campground (follow signs) in the area. Also is the trail head for a really cool hike in White Owl canyon!

Lake Havasu City and the Crack in the Wall

Warning, lots of pictures in this one!

For most of March I stayed north of Lake Havasu City near Topock, AZ off Needles Mountain Road exit with my dad and step-mom. The boondocking area we were at had two major camping areas, up top overlooking the interstate and down below in the wash. We choose to stay up top, not being sure about the road down below and just having recently spent a ‘fun’ time getting me down a bad road without causing further RV damage. Turned out to be a good decision as this is an area heavily trafficked by off-roaders. For the most part they didn’t spend a lot of time near us, but occasionally drove by. Some were polite and slowed down, others kicked up dust or rode by our RVs at midnight. There is a good bit of highway noise here but nothing too overwhelming.



Overlook of our campsite from the hills behind.

For hiking and off-roading, this area is pretty neat. There are tons of OHV roads going all into the washes and towards the mountains. I took my dad’s 4-wheeler for a ride, first time I’ve ever really ridden one of these, and was able to explore pretty deeply into some neat washes in the area. While we were there we also saw humming birds and a pack of burros.

Topock is a really small town on¬†historic route 66 consisting of a family dollar and a few other local stores, so I mostly went to Lake Havasu City for any shopping.¬† Lake Havasu City¬†is a REALLY long city and can take up to 35 minutes to travel from top to bottom. Luckily the Wal-Mart is near the north side. Towards the south side I found a hike on the REI Hiking Project app called the Crack in the Wall a.k.a Sarah’s crack (click link for REI trail details). This was my first slot canyon hiking and it was amazing. I hiked the wash/canyon on the way in and took the ridge on the way back. Along the way I met Shana and J who encouraged me to join them to hike up to the top of Lizard’s peak or Picnic Table Mountain (I keep finding different names for this) and visit the picnic table. At the top there sits a large metal picnic table provided by the¬†The Leaping Lizard Tribe. This was one of my favorite hikes so far.¬†I can’t wait to hike more slot canyons!


Lizard Peak, I think!


Sitting on the picnic table at the top of the mountain.


This is inscribed on the picnic table.


My new friends Shana and J.


Nice pano of the end of the crack hike. There is actually a picnic area with restrooms you can get to from here.


Love walking through this slot canyon.


Fun boulders to climb over, even had one spot I had to repel down a rope.


So neat!

Lake Havasu City is also home to the famous London Bridge. I took a walking tour of this and the island on the other side. There is a pretty neat park and beach area with a nice walking sidewalk that goes by several lighthouses. The city has the most lighthouses of any city with 25 replica lighthouses built throughout the island. They are not full size, about 1/3 the actual size, but are pretty neat and serve as reference points for emergency dispatchers for boats in trouble. I would recommend driving or biking to them as they are pretty spread out and there is little shade on a hot day.


London Bridge.


Split Rock Lighthouse is located on Lake Superior. This replica stands on Lake Havasu.


They have a neat area with London style buildings and even a telephone booth. Now why isn’t this blue?

I didn’t do a great job with my meditation practice lately, only taking a few days during this period to sit and practice a formal meditation, but I have found that¬†mindfulness comes up throughout my day as I am learning to focus on one thing at a time. If¬†you have any suggestions for ways to maintain your practice, I would welcome them in the comments! I did start reading a book I picked up in Montana over a year ago called ‘The Buddha Walks Into the Office’ by Lodro Rinzler. So far it is a great read talking about incorporating mindfulness into our livelihood. If you have read this book, I’d love to know your thoughts.

Next I head to Willow Beach, AZ to join the BHC Adventures Meetup group to paddle Hoover Dam and Black Canyon. Till next time!

EDIT – 3/20/2017 – Boondock Site Important Details

I realized I failed to list the key information about this boondocking spot.

Water: We found no nearby free water officially listed, but my dad did get permission of the hardware store owner in Topock to fill our water bags for free.

Trash: We took small trash to the gas stations about 7 miles down the road at the Hwy 95 exit when we visited them. For larger trash there is Site 6 in Lake Havasu (a boat launch) that has dumpsters for boat clean up you could use.

Propane: I ran out of propane while here, super lucky I have a small extra tank for my grill I was able to use to keep my fridge going. I went to Pilot at the Hwy 95 exit and paid 3.00 a gallon for the propane. Not the cheapest but would have spent the money in gas searching Lake Havasu.

Dumps: I didn’t dump tanks while here as I was heading to Willow Beach FHU for camping with the kayak group so not sure of the options. Although lesson learned, I left the spot with my black tank 100++% full and the road bumps made for a messy toilet bowl. Next time I will at least dump some into my blue boy before travelling if I’m that full!

Internet: I used my AT&T unlimited hotspot I rent from E-bay here and had great internet. Verizon was okay too.

Future Trip Note:

One day at camp a group of kayakers drove up to camp for the night. They were planning on spending a weekend kayaking and camping down the Topock Gorge. I researched and got excited about doing this paddle as a day trip, but the winds picked up too strong for me to do the paddle on Sunday and with no exits and high canyon walls I didn’t want to paddle this on a weekday when no people were likely to be around, so I am putting this on my next time list!!!


The Next Kind Loving Thing

I was visiting with my Dad and Step-Mom (Nickname: Oso) one evening this past week while playing cards where we are camped and we started discussing mindfulness. Oso shared a saying that a dear friend had told her. She said that when you get confused or anxious just do the next kind loving thing. That could be cleaning a toilet, cooking a meal for a loved one, or smiling. Whatever form it shapes, being mindful is at the center of it. This stuck with me and the next morning as I was doing my daily meditation session I decided to try mantra meditation and used this as a chant. Later that day after work as I was walking through the hills 21towards the mountains behind my camp this continued to resonate in my mind. Then I saw lots of trash.


This kind of trash is everywhere here.

Immediately my thoughts were, the next kind loving thing I could do would be to organize a great RVers trash pick up day where everyone will take time to clean up where ever they are camping. I giggle now thinking about how easy it was to forget to be mindful. As I continued to think way into the future and how I could make a difference I overlooked what I could be doing in the now and present. I stopped myself and told myself I would return with a bag and gloves the next chance I got free from work and pick up the trash. THAT is the next kind loving thing I could do. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still excited about the idea of a some kind of RVer movement for trash pickup, but I will start at home with myself first! Of course this led to me carrying someone else’s trash 3 miles back down from the Crack in the Wall trail I completed on Saturday. I’ll tell you all about this in my next blog. This was one of my favorite all time hikes so far!


Trash from the trail that I carried back. It was left on the side of the trail. I imagine someone sat down to rest and just forgot about it.

I’ve had a few people wonder about the recent places I’ve stayed.Two of the most recent have been at¬†American Girl Mine Road featuring a trip to¬†Puerto Penasco, a.k.a. Rocky Point. Rather than write about them myself I will share with you the posts made by two of my fellow campers who did a great job writing¬†about our stays there.

American Girl Mine Road by RVChickadee and Puerto Penasco by Becky of Interstellar Orchard.

Until next time.

On Stuff and Gifts When Living a RV or Mindful Life

I recently was camping down at American Girl Mine Road BLM with some fellow Xscapers. One of my fellow campers, Kelly, started posting some items she had to give away as she was downsizing her stuff. Both Kelly and another camper wanted to have less items so they had the freedom to get a smaller trailer if they chose to without stressing on where everything would go. This inspired me to do some more minimizing myself. I had been feeling antsy and uncomfortable in my trailer and part of that is stuff everywhere. I easily found two bags worth of stuff for donation that I don’t and haven’t used. The reality is most of us don’t need a lot of things. We want them, we hang onto them just in case, but what really happens is they hang onto us, they tether us and tie us down. I immediately felt better after getting rid of these unneeded items (and cleaning up)! Each time I have minimized or downsized in my life, it has always been a positive change.


Having a smaller trailer and choosing this life allows me to fit in small peaceful places like this in the Old 95 camping area north of Lake Havasu. 

Which brings me to gift giving. I’ve stopped regular giving of gifts for holidays and birthdays. Why would I send some meaningless, date obligated trinket to weigh down someone I care about. Instead I would rather wait until I can give a gift of real meaning. Maybe I don’t give my sibling a birthday gift for years, but then one day see a very special, very expensive item that I know they would cherish. Guess what! I don’t hesitate to buy it. I could spend $¬†each year on items that will ultimately end up in the garage or wait until something very special comes along (doesn’t necessarily have to be expensive).¬† I also ask¬†my family to not give me gifts. When you live in a small space every item counts. So what do I do when someone wants to give me a gift? I make sure to include on my Amazon list items that I truly need or plan to buy for my RV or self. I suggest a gas card or Walmart card. But mostly I let them know that they best gift they could give me would be their time. It could be a video chat, nice long phone call or in-person visit. I would love to hear about how you deal with gifts and stuff in your life. Please share in the comment section!


Old 95 camp area north of Lake Havasu. This is behind my camper. It’s a bit close to 95 so there is road noise, but surprisingly beautiful. Lots of off-road trails and vehicles around too.


Currently I’m camping north of Lake Havasu City. I started at the Old 95 camping area but that road is really rough and my parents couldn’t get their rig down it. In fact, my Dad and Step-Mom had to come help me exit the area¬†since I had already damaged the bottom of my trailer some¬†scraping on the¬†road in¬†(thank goodness we had a lot of boards and levelers!) ¬†Today I went into Lake Havasu City to shop. I kept thinking about a junk food food fix as I was driving towards town. Usually in my mindlessness I would assume this is what I would want and would just go through a drive through without even giving it a second thought. But today I gave it mindful consideration. You know what I realized? I wasn’t really craving junk food. I was feeling peaceful and healthy and didn’t want junk food from the grocery store or fast food from a drive through that would just make me feel crappy. So I went to town, dropped off my donation of stuff to the local Veteran thrift store, did my grocery shopping and left as healthy as I came.

One really neat thing was Smith’s had a very large bulk food area. This is great for a solo RVer or anyone with minimal space. I can buy exactly what I need without having a big package that will sit around taking up space or a whole jar of spice that will lose its freshness¬†before I can use it. BTW, Smith’s is a part of the same chain as Kroger’s and Fry’s, so if you have a card for one of them you can use it at all of them!

Please share any ideas you have for incorporating mindfulness in everyday life.

Until next time!




Being Truly Free

Like me, many of you probably embark on this adventure or dream of embarking on this journey looking for freedom. Freedom from the daily grind, freedom from your current life, freedom to explore and freedom to enjoy. I sought freedom of choice too. Freedom to explore my passion in this world, find a meaningful way to earn a living and live my life. Like many, I found myself in the same habits and patterns I had when living stationary. I knew there was something I was seeking but didn’t really take the time to truly explore myself and my inner issues.

So that is how I found myself 4 months into the journey with a new Airstream travel trailer. In case you aren’t aware, they are extremely expensive trailers, especially new. I was sure that’s what I needed to fix this unsettled feeling. The reality is, while I love my home, I am¬†no closer to freedom. The combination of my car payment for my new truck and my RV payment for my new trailer is more than my mortgage on my home. So just as before I am still stuck. Yes I can move my home, but I can’t explore new jobs, new ways of life because I have these huge debts that tether me to my current employment.


My previous trailer. Never felt like home. Hated pulling it.

My biggest advice to someone looking to start this journey, buy the trailer you can afford now. Whether that is 100% cash, or something you can easily pay off in a year. You will find as you travel that what you thought you wanted, where you thought you’d go and what you thought would make you happy is different then you realized. Leave yourself free to explore. It’s easy to upgrade or change your RV later when you know more about what you need and want. Please don’t delay your journey for years trying to save up enough money for the expensive RV you think you need. Go out, find what you can afford TODAY, and get started.

I would also recommend heading to the West coast first. You can find a lot of places to camp for free. These place can be remote or closer to towns. Either way it will help you to save money. I burnt through most of my savings in my first 6 months of travel on the East coast where it’s harder to find free parking spots that have good enough internet to work. Check out Campendium and FreeCampsites.Net for places to stay and reviews.

My other advice is to spend some time realizing why you want to journey. Is it the simplicity of the life, the exploration of the land, the opportunity to make new friends and build real connections? Or is it to escape your unhappiness? Maybe its all of these. For me, travelling is how I want to live my life, but I know that it will take more than an awesome view outside my window to be truly free and happy.

All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware.” – Martin Buber

Which brings me to my inner journey. I have been learning about mindfulness in a casual way over the last few years. I have decided that I will focus on practicing mindfulness so I can be more aware, more present and more focused. I believe this will help me in my inner journey greatly and will help me to break free from old routines and habits that don’t serve me and aren’t healthy. ¬†I watched a movie on Gaia.com called ‘The Mindfulness Movie‘ by Dr. Rick Handson. It was a good overview from various researchers, doctors and people on what mindfulness really means, how it can help transform your reactive patterns and some ways it’s being used in society today to make a difference. The movie showed a study of¬†veterans with PTSD that have used this practice to make a real difference and I personally know someone with the disorder that found mindfulness to be very effective.


My meditation spot this morning. I prefer to do this outside, but I’m not all set up at my new spot yet!

What shape my practice will take is yet to be determined, I have much to learn. I will update you in my next blog on camping near Lake Havasu and the progress I’ve made in my practice!


Arizona Oasis RV Park – Ehrenberg, AZ

Occasionally I like to stay in a park with full hook-ups so that I can flush my tanks, charge up all my devices, give the trailer a good scrubbing and maybe even enjoy a relaxing dip in a hot tub.

Arizona Oasis RV Park is located in Ehrenberg, AZ which is on the border of California and Arizona. It’s a town of about 2 streets in between Blythe, CA and Quartzsite, AZ (a place many gather in the winter). Ehrenberg has a Flying J’s with a Wendy’s, a few RV parks, access to the Colorado river, a laundromat and a less crowded place to pick up General Delivery mail (I haven’t personally, but knew an Xscapers member that did). If you pass Ehrenberg and continue onto Blythe, there is an Inspection station immediately after the exit. They normally just wave people through, but occasionally stop you to ask a few questions. There isn’t much to do here but they do have a few festivals each year in the area.


Front entrance to the park.

While here I decided to drive down the street to the Laundromat/Mall to do laundry. Washers were $1.25 and dryers were .25 for 8 minutes. The facility has a good amount of washers and dryers but is not overly spacious. However, I found it to be clean and in good working order.


Laundromat down the street from the RV Park.

Nearby in Blythe, CA you find grocery stores including Albertsons and Smart and Final (an inexpensive store with decent produce), fast food joints, a decent Mexican restaurant and a Starbucks with free wi-fi. Nearest Walmart – 45 miles away in Parker, AZ.

If you are a Passport America member you can stay for $20 a night for up to 7 days here on a standard site. I booked 3 nights because I wanted to arrive before a big storm with wind so that I wasn’t driving in dangerous conditions. I was given a pull through site. The place is pretty quiet with only the occasional road noise and chirping birds. Sites are pretty close together with gravel surfaces, a concrete pad and a BBQ pit. My site is level and hookups are close and easy to hook into. Not a fan of the BBQ pit being a few feet from my neighbors sewer but I’m not planning on BBQing during this rain anyway!

There is access to the river, a heated pool, hot tub, clubhouse, laundry room, dumpsters and on site activities. While I was here they had music and bonfire on the beach Thursday night, live music Friday evening, breakfast on the weekends and several other activities including a full day on Sunday planned with many events. Thursday night I had the hot tub to myself and enjoy a good long soak till closing time at 10pm.

They also have nice tent pad sites, park models, river front sites, cabins and nice landscaping.

Overall it was a good inexpensive stop to get chores done. On my way out of town I stopped at a historic pioneer cemetery. I’ve never seen grave sites like this. I took the scenic road towards Lake Havasu and was rewarded with interesting and beautiful scenery.

Park Summary:

Arizona Oasis RV Park

50238 Ehrenberg-Parkey Hwy, Ehrenberg, AZ 85334



$20 a night with Passport America

Level Sites

Free wi-fi included

Cable included

FHU (Full Hook Up)

Nice shower facilities in two different buildings



Social events

Heated pool and hottub

Laundry facilities

Each test done twice! No booster used.
Conditions: Rainy and cloudy

Using ATT Unite Hotspot and Samsung Galaxy 7 phone with Ookla Speed Test app
Ping: 55ms/46ms
Upload: 14.10 Mbps/15.13Mbps
Download: 5.89Mbps/16.97Mbps
Was easily able to stream Netflix and work using my AT&T hotspot.

Using Samsung Galaxy 7 phone on Verizon network with Ookla Speed Test app
Ping: 39ms/136ms
Upload: .10 Mbps/.15Mbps
Download: .32Mbps/.59 Mbps