California Relaxin

While camping at Wilderness Lakes Thousand Trails in Menifee, California

Walking Update: Kevin and I have been walking 2-3 miles most days. This campground is almost 1 mile around the perimeter. One of the main things we look for in a campground is a walking area.

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Kevin and I were walking around the park one night on labor day weekend and we noticed a Rock n Roll band playing at the pool area. We stayed for a few songs. The usual preschoolers danced around in front of the band. The music was good. The night was pleasant. It was a good treat for us.

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Kevin joined the Elks at the end of April this year in Texas. I have spouse privileges. That means I have all the benefits but I can’t vote and attend a meeting. It’s a good deal for us. We have been having a nice time visiting different Elks lodges for RVing, Elks pins, meals, fundraisers, good conversation and some good camaraderie with other Elks.

Its been so hot in Southern California we haven’t been able to do much outside so Kevin and I headed over to the Lake Elsinore Elks Lodge #2591 for lunch. The lodge was burned down a few years ago. The new lodge is nice.

We were given a tour of the new lodge by a fellow Elks member. The new lodge has a good size dance floor, nice lounge, kitchen, rv hook ups and great club sandwiches. The rv hook ups are next to the lodge. They’re located on a black top with electric/water hook ups. There was plenty of room to camp the day we visited the lodge for lunch.

Our daughter came over after school for dinner, a game & a 2-mile walk. We had a salad & two slices of cantaloupe then walked around the park. Our daughter Katie and I joined weight watchers together so we will have many of these walks & weight watcher meals together.  We had an unexpected visitor on our walk. We saw a snake.

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It looks like a Western Diamond Back. I could be wrong. If you know what kind of snake this is then leave a comment below. We had a nice visit even with the snake interrupting our family walk.

The Hemet Elks Lodge has a lunch a few times a week. The lodge is new looking. They have an outside area with places to sit under the shade. There is no RV parking at this lodge.

They gave us two Elks Lodge pins & a donut for free. The lodge members were getting ready for the weekly evening bingo night.  A few of the members took the time to chat with us. We had some good conversations with the members here.

Happy RVing!

California Elks Lodges

California Elks Lodge Pins

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Interesting Places in Oregon

Oregon State Mental Health Museum
One Flew Over the Cookoo’s Nest Film Location

Kevin and I are in Keizer Oregon until after the Solar Eclipse. We decided to find a tour in the area. I found the Oregon State Mental Health Museum tour. The museum is located next to the Oregon State Mental Hospital. The cost of the self-guided tour is $5.00. A volunteer who worked at the hospital walks around explaining things and answers questions. This photo is the museum entrance.

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The reason we picked this tour is that the movie One Flew Over the Cookoo’s Nest was filmed here. The movie is played continually at the museum. Most of the original hospital has been demolished except for the front area and cupola used for the mental health museum.

The stories are plentiful at the museum. One story is on accident (was is), rat poison was grabbed in the storage room instead of flour and many people died that day. Many women were put into the mental hospital for ridiculous reasons like reading a novel, religious enthusiasm, bad company, infertility etc.

 

 

The museum has displays of the many “therapies” of the day. They had this strange therapy called Tunnel Therapy. I don’t know if this was sanctioned by the staff but the patients could head on down to the underground tunnels for some “love therapy” with each other on the cement floor. Very Strange!

They also have a memorial area for the 3,000 patients that died here & no family claimed their bodies. No one knew about these cremated bodies until a few years ago. There are 1500 patients unaccountable for. Where are those bodies?

 

 

We never saw Nurse Ratched at the museum or Jack Nicholson. I was really hoping to see one of them. The museum was worth our time. Its not every day you get to see where Jack Nicholson hung out.

Willamette Pie Company in Silverton Oregon

Kevin and I headed over to the local pie company. This pie company has been around since 1986. The Company has several buildings on the property.

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There’s a small cafe that sells muffins, pies, coffee, ice cream, smoothies, turnovers etc. We split a pie slice of Marionberry Crunch Pie with ice cream. The combination of crunchy pie crust, marionberries, and vanilla ice cream was exquisite. Kevin and I are lucky to be on a Fitbit Challenge this week to walk off the slice of pie & ice cream we split. The company sells jams, Amish popcorn, seasonings, soap, bbq sauce and more at the store. I saw an area for kids to ride small bikes outside next to a hot dog stand.

 

 

The Town of Independence 

Kevin and I stopped at the Independence Elks Lodge to pick up an Elks lodge pin for our collections. The Independence Elks Lodge pin is really nice. It has a covered wagon on it. The Secretary told us of several places to have brunch and entertained us with things going on in the area.  Then, we walked over to the Second Chance used books store. We’re hoping to pick up some field guides for our nature identification hobby. The store didn’t have any field guides we could use but we had a good time looking at all the used books.

 

 

The Pink House Cafe has been in the area since the 1800’s. The two-story house is converted into a cafe. The locals have no problem telling their ghost story experiences they had while in the house.  I liked the ghost stories the waitress told us because she genuinely believes in such things. She experienced feelings of a little girl playing with her hair while she slept in the upstairs rooms.

Happy RVing!

Next, the Solar Eclipse.

RV Camping in Florence Oregon

RV Camping in Florence Oregon

While camping at Florence Elks Lodge in Oregon. This campground is located in downtown Florence.

Fitbit Walking: We’ve been walking downtown to the boardwalk from the Elks lodge in the mornings. I put on my thin jacket, floppy hat, my audio book ear phones, and carry my walking stick. We try to get 10,000 steps a day. A few times on our morning walks we stopped at Old Town Coffee Shop on the boardwalk for a drip coffee and everything bagel. What kind of exercise do you do?

Farmers Market: On weekends the farmers market on the boardwalk has a good amount of artisan vendors and one veggie vendor. The vendors like to talk about the products they sell so we learn how to cook new things, where the products were made and most importantly what its called. Also, Its a good place to walk outside. Whenever we visit a new place I look up where the local farmers market is located.

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Boardwalk Farmers Market

Amazon Prime: I ordered a few things from amazon.com prime so we’re staying in Florence until my items are delivered. We drove to Springfield & Eugene Oregon to see the Elks lodges. They both had a few campsites available but Eugene is closed for cleaning next week so we won’t be camping in Eugene.

 

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Beach area by lighthouse

Lighthouse Yearly Fix: Also, we drove to the Heceta Head Lighthouse for our yearly lighthouse fix. The walk up the hill to the lighthouse is nice. The keeper’s house was closed because a wedding was taking place on the grounds. We saw the keeper’s house last year. The lighthouse volunteer talked to us about the migrating whales. We saw a few ocean loving birds by the lighthouse.

 

 

Restaurants: We’ve been to a few restaurants in Florence. The best clam chowder I’ve found in Florence so far has been at the Bridgewater Ocean Fish House on the boardwalk. Its creamy with just the right amount of clams.

Happy Travels!

Campgrounds in Oregon

Oregon Farmers Markets

Oregon Local Restaurants, Cafes & Coffee Shops 

Lighthouses in Oregon  

Seaside Oregon

While camping at Seaside Thousand Trails in Oregon

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Seaside Thousand Trails is one of my favorite thousand trails in Oregon. Its has clear open areas so we have good satellite reception. Our Verizon wifi works good here. We found a campsite with full hook ups by the indoor pool & spa. We can walk to the beach & movie theater from the campground.

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Local Restaurants: The local breakfast place we found is Pig’s n Pancakes. It serves a variety of breakfast meals. The coffee is hot and the waitresses are friendly. We have tried the Dooger’s Seafood & Grill for Clam Chowder. I was happy with the flavoring of the clam chowder here but it wasn’t the best clam chowder I’ve tasted.

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Seaside on Saturday: Saturday was busy in Seaside. The beach was filled with excited kids & hopeful parents for the beach soccer series in Seaside. The muscle cars lined the streets in downtown Seaside during the muscle car & chrome show. The local Seaside elks had a fundraiser for a fallen police officer. Saturday in Seaside was filled with things to do.

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Nature Identification: I’ve spotted several wildflowers to identify. Also, we found a new bird for our life list. While on our morning walk we spotted a Caspian Tern. His orange beak and black-capped head stood out among the seagulls on the beach.

Happy RVing!

Bird Life List

Wildflower List

Local Cafes

Traveling in Oregon

Traveling in Oregon

And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.
-Anais Nin

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I spotted a Bindweed wildflower in Huntington Oregon at the Catfish RV Park on our walk.

Camping at the St Helen Elks Lodge #1999- Kevin and I had a great meal, good conversation and a friendly welcome at this elks lodge.  There are a few low branches on the city road leading into the lodge. There is camping with electric/water on a grass campsite. It cost $15.00 a night. The view of the Columbia River at the lodge bar & dining room is beautiful. While relaxing in the lodge we saw a barge going down the river. The dining & bar is non-smoking. This is a great lodge. I would return here.

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I spotted the Red Clover or Cow Grass next to our camping site at the St Helens Elks Lodge camping area.

On our walks, I discovered several wildflowers in the St Helens Oregon area.

Oxeye Daisy

White Campion

Hairy Cat’s Ear or False Dandelion

Happy RVing!

Wildflower Spotting List

Ticks, Copper Pans and Walking

While camping at Cherokee Landing Thousand Trails in Tennessee

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Tick Removal:  Kevin saw a tick on our Yorkie Joey. The tick buried its head into Joey’s neck. Kevin and I took turns holding the dog and gently removing the tick from his neck. Our Yorkie was glad to have the tick removed. It was gross. We bought tick medicine for him afterward, I wish we had bought it sooner. I was told the campground was sprayed for ticks. I found two ticks during our stay. I don’t want to think about how many more ticks would be in the area if thousand trails staff hadn’t sprayed.

New Pans: Kevin and I are trying the new copper pans from Walmart. He bought a flat pan for cooking grilled cheese sandwiches, eggs, bacon and using on his bbq outside.  I bought a 9.5-inch pan for cooking veggies and heating chicken for fajitas. The copper pans are working out so far, only time will tell how sturdy they are.

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Plenty of open camping sites here but not many big rig sites

Walking: Kevin and I entered the Goal Day 2017 for Fitbit. Our Fitbit goal is 10,000 steps or 4 miles today. I’ve changed my Fitbit strategy. We saw two American Robins on our walk this morning. Kevin and I both reached our Daily Fitbit Goal today.

Happy RVing!

Next, Camping at Natchez Thousand Trails in Tennessee.

 Bird Spotting

  • American Robin
  • Chipping Sparrow
  • Blue-grey Gnatcatcher  (new life lister)
  • Red-bellied Woodpecker (new life lister)

Tiffin Factory Tour

“You can’t buy happiness…but you can buy an RV, and that’s pretty close.” by an unknown author

Kevin and I didn’t start our day with the decision to attend the Tiffin Factory Tour.

Kevin and I like to eat local foods so we decided to look at the local farmers market in Red Bay. The google phone map brought us to the Tiffin Factory instead of the local farmers market at just the right time for the factory tour.

This picture below is the Allegro Visitor Center with a 1976 motorhome out front. The motorhome has a green shag carpet and a green/orange color scheme inside. I remember these colors being very popular in the 70’s.

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The tour started out with a short video from the Tiffin family. Tiffin makes 12 motorhomes a day. Tiffin is going to start making a Class C & a Fifth Wheel soon.

We saw motorhome ceilings, wires, slide outs, bathroom showers, sinks, water tanks, batteries, wood, rv roofs, lighting, furniture and more. We watched how things were cut, sanded, glued and nailed into the right place in the motorhome. I liked seeing the type of material that was put into my rv.

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A motorhome before the paint job

The picture below is me by a motorhome chasis prior to going into the factory assembly line. IMG_5481

I’m glad we went on the tour its interesting to see exactly how a motorhome is built.

Happy RVing!

Next, Tiffin Service Center