While camping at Seaside Thousand Trails in Oregon
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.
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.
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.
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.
Bird Life List
And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.
I spotted a Bindweed wildflower in Huntington Oregon at the Catfish RV Park on our walk.
Entrance to the Elks Lodge
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.
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.
Hairy Cat’s Ear or False Dandelion
Wildflower Spotting List
While camping at Natchez Wilderness Preserve in Hohenwald, Tennessee
Natchez Wilderness Preserve is a thousand trails campground. Kevin and I are elite members of thousand trails. We found a campsite by the lake for an extra fee of $10.00 a night. The campsite has lakeside access, fire pit, full hookups, gravel campsite and a good view. The staff BBQed a pig for memorial day and had a raffle. We didn’t win anything but we had a good conversation with fellow campers.
At the red barn, a band played for a few hours. I liked the music until a thunderstorm interrupted the band playing. We were already in the RV nice and cozy when the storm started. The thunderstorm took out two trees in the park. We sat in front of the RV watching the thunderstorm. It was magnificent. The next day the sun came up. We enjoyed the lake swimming and relaxing outside our RV identifying birds.
Red Barn Band
bbq & raffle
Kevin and explored the Meriwether Lewis Burial site. This is Lewis from the Lewis & Clark Exhibition. Lewis was on his way to Washington to explain his finances when he was found shot twice. There is some controversy on how he was shot. Did he commit suicide? or was he murdered?
We also walked the Natchez Trail for a bit. I felt very much in awe of the people who walked this trail and the history behind it all. I couldn’t find the National Historic Site stamp here but the site was worth the stop.
Yoder’s Homestead Market: This is an Amish/Mennonite store. I admire their commitment to something they believe in. The sandwiches and pastries were supposed to be excellent. We weren’t disappointed. The ladies that worked the store were dressed like an Amish/Mennonite person. One of them warmed up a cinnamon pecan twist for us. It was nutty with the perfect amount of drizzled frosting. We had the ham & cheese special for lunch it was excellent. The bread was exceptional. It tasted soft and fresh. The Amish/Mennonites know how to make food.
Happy Walking- Kevin and I took time off the Fitbit Challenges. I was getting too competitive. Its about balance. I like to balance my walking, healthy eating alternatives, and portions. Its not about winning. Its about keeping healthy. I’m back on track now. Bring on the Fitbit Challenges 🙂
Next, camping near Nashville, Tennessee. Change of plans – heading South to Red Bay Service Center
- Barn Swallow
- Tree Swallow (new bird to life list)
- Rough-winged Swallow (new bird to life list)
- Black Vulture
- Northern Mockingbird
- American Robin
While camping at Cherokee Landing Thousand Trails in Tennessee
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.
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.
Next, Camping at Natchez Thousand Trails in Tennessee.
- American Robin
- Chipping Sparrow
- Blue-grey Gnatcatcher (new life lister)
- Red-bellied Woodpecker (new life lister)
“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.
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.
A motorhome before the paint job
The picture below is me by a motorhome chasis prior to going into the factory assembly line.
I’m glad we went on the tour its interesting to see exactly how a motorhome is built.
Next, Tiffin Service Center
While camping at Grapevine Elks Lodge in Grapevine, Texas
Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie
Chicken Fried Steak with garlic mashed potatoes & broccoli rice casserole
Birthday Breakfast: It was my 53rd birthday so Kevin and I went to breakfast at the Old West Cafe in Grapevine, Texas. This place is perfect for us. The western decor is interesting to look at. The waitress was friendly and had a good understanding of the menu. The coffee was hot and the restaurant has flavored creamers. I had a meal called the cowgirl. It was one egg, one sausage, grilled sourdough, strawberries & bananas. Excellent!
Farmers Market: After breakfast, we drove to the seasonal outside farmers market on 325 S Main St Grapevine, Texas. The farmers market is one row of vendors in the Town Square Gazebo. We looked for Texas grown vegetables but the vendor had mostly out of state stuff. We sampled Texan made bacon, Texan made cheese and cantaloupe/honeydew at the farmers market.
Storm Warning: I looked for a hike but a storm warning was in effect in the afternoon so I watched Twin Peaks and Guardians of the Galaxy on tv. I’m looking forward to seeing Guardians of the Galaxy vol 2 soon.
Geocaching: An easy geocache was in walking distance so Kevin and I went on the hunt to find it. I like the feeling of accomplishment after finding a good geocache. It was a good hunt.
Birthday Dinner Meal: My first idea for my birthday dinner was to split a cheese burger at the elks lodge with Kevin but they don’t service food on Saturday nights. I ended up at the Cotton Patch Cafe. I tried a few southern dishes for my birthday and I wasn’t disappointed. My birthday dinner was fried pickles with ranch dressing, chicken fried steak/gravy with garlic mashed potatoes and a margarita. I had a slice of chocolate peanut butter pie from Judy’s Pie store. Excellent Birthday!
Grapevine Seasonal Outside Farmers Market
Local Farmers Markets
Local Cafes we’ve experienced on our travels.
Camping at our Elks Lodge in Texas
This is our camping site at the Grapevine Elks Lodge. We pay $20.00 a night. We have electric & water hook-ups and plenty of social opportunities. The lodge has a drawing & meal on Wednesday nights. Thursday nights is Karaoke nights @ 7. Friday night is a nice dinner & dancing.
Kevin and I attended the Wednesday night meal. It was chicken parmesan, meatballs, pasta, 2 different salads, and 2 different desserts. The volunteers were friendly and helpful. I’m happy to be part of this lodge.
Grapevine Elks Lodge #2483
Lodge #2483 began in 1971 in Hurst, Texas. Kevin and I were given a tour of the lodge when we joined. The kitchen area looks clean and efficient. The dance floor looks like fun. A new outside area was recently added. It looks like a good place to relax with a drink or meal outside.
Members Only Park
Wonder what is cooked here
Places to relax during an event
Members only park
This is the members-only park we have access to. Joey (our yorkie) likes to sniff at everything in the park. lol
If the weather is nice Kevin found a few places we could go on our morning walk up the street. I’m involved in several Fitbit challenges this week. I love it! It keeps me accountable. My daily goal is 10,000 steps a day.
Overall, the Grapevine Elks Lodge is a great place to join the elks. The location is near the Globe Life Park in Arlington where the Texas Rangers play baseball. The lodge is military veteran friendly. Kevin and I both served in the Army. The members are friendly. Whenever we enter the lodge a member takes a moment to talk. I’m very happy with our membership here.