January-March 2015

Always wondered how they did that -
Slide out removal

 Floor replacement for the driver's side front slide out, the BIG one in the living room.
 01/01/15 - At Home
RV Wheelchair - Office Chair Actually
01/01/15 - Ok, I'm dating this 1/1 but in reality it's 3/19 and I'm just trying to take a little time out to work on the web site again. With Sheila's breaking her knee just before Christmas January was a killer  month. That 6 weeks with NO WEIGHT on her left leg was a killer time. She wasn't able to do much other than lay on the couch and read and needed to be helped (carried) to move around. With your left leg and left arm both out of commission it's really hard to get around, but we've put it behind us now and are glad it's back there where it belongs :)  The picture to the left is Sheila in her RV Wheelchair - it beat dragging her around on a towel or carrying her lol.

Of course with very limited activity for both of us there hasn't been much to report so you haven't missed much. We returned to the Dr at the end of the 6 weeks, 1/27,  and she got the all clear to start putting limited weight on her leg with the leg brace on.  We're scheduled for the next visit on 3/16 and hope she'll have the all clear at that point to start just walking again. So let's see if I can get this back on schedule now and fill in the blanks for the past 3 months.
01/15/15 - Wear & Tear
Wear and Tear
I needed to get the pots & pans drawer out, it's the bottom drawer in the counter slide out as it needed cleaning and discovered  that the pots were doing a number on the bottom of the drawer. This was especially noticeable beneath the steamer where the rough edges around all the little holes in it were acting like a file as the drawer vibrates going down the road. So I lined the drawer with a couple pieces of that 'non-skid' stuff that we use to keep things in place and from vibrating when we're traveling. I think that's going to do the job for protecting the drawer.

Remount Hose ReelNext up was a rework of the hose reel and cleaning the hose up. The hose reel seems to constantly find a little water to puddle up underneath it and after repainting it a few times I decided that raising it, like I had done with the electric reel, might be a good idea. So disconnected the water and pulled the reel out. Repained the bottom and noticed in the process how dirty the hose had gotten. So while the paint on the hose reel dried I clearned up the hose. You can see in the photo how dirty it had gotten and the ProtectAll that I used to clean it. That ProtectAll is good on almost everything for cleaning off the grime and giving it a protective coating.  Then with the paint dried I reinstalled the hose reel with a 1/4 inch gap under it to keep it out of the water. Now we'll see how that works :)
02/11/15 -  Computer Crash Computer Crash
 02/11/14 - So there I am sitting at the computer working away and my screen goes blank. So I flip the switch on the KVM and switch over to the laptop - screen works. Back to the desktop and still a blank screen. The desktop goes in that hole on the left sideof the desk so I pull the computer out and open it up. The video is on the Motherboard, not a separate video card, so I figure, no big deal, I'll run to town and pick up a video card, install it and I'll be back up in a couple hours. That was on the 9th. The picture you'll notice is on the 11th. So the 9th ended with me working remotely using the laptop to access the desktop so I would have a display. On the 10th I took the computer into town to the computer shop. He plugged it in to his test setup and the monitor came up. But he's plugged into the VGA port, not the DVI port (my KVM and all my cables, etc. are all DVI. So the rest of the 10 disappears into trying to get the VGA at home working. On the 11th, I decided it was lose more time attempting to get the old working again or move to a new desktop. My old machine was 2 terrabytes and I had been just copying the old machine to the new for years. So this time I figured I'd do a selective move and clean a lot of that old stuff out in the process. That, it turns out was a major, as in a week, project. It sounds simple, but wading through 2 terrabytes of programs and data to get the things you currently use and need is really time consuming. There are also issues with moving from WIN7 to WIN8.1. But, now, with the dust all settled and my touchscreen monitor installed and the new 1TB Win8.1 desktop running, I'm happy with the new arrangement. There are a lot of unexplored possibilities with the touch screen :)
03/02/15 Sheila Out For A Morning Walk
Sheila Walking
.This one reminded me of another here in the site so I dug it up - Post Transplant Walk - you'll notice the missing oxygen bottle in the link and the addition of the cane in the picture here. Sheila has started getting out for her moring walks again and is really feeling good now that she's able to get out and about. For now it's the cane so she can keep part of her weight off her injured kneee, but that will be going the way of all good things soon. As I work on this now, the cane is gone. Still a bit of a limp, but no cane or knee brace any longer :))

The Louisville show is approaching and we're staring to make plans for the trip up to Red Bay > Louisville > Red Bay and then back to Fl again. It's been a couple years since we've been out anywhere and we're really looking forward to being able to get back on the road. Of course this is a small trip to see how things go, but it's a trip :)). After sitting mostly for the past couple of years we're ready to go. We have several things that need to get done while we're in Red Bay and so have decided to do part of it on the way up and the second part on the way back. We'll get started on this next adventure on March 11th. We'll go up to the Mayo for a night of dry camping, then Sheila has a visit with the eye doctor. After that appointment we'll go down to Wickham Park again for a couple of meetings and to pick up the show stuff. Then back up to the Mayo on the 16th for a Port visit (blood tests and flush her port) and then head for Red Bay from there.

03/08/15 Wickham Park
Dinner On The River
Back in Wickham Park for a few days to pickup the show stuff and meetings to be sure everyhting is ready for the show. We're making some changes in the program, removing the demo, which never really worked as intended, and having a coupon code for the show (a 10% discount) along with a price increase, so there's some changes that have to be made and a little planning to get everything ready.

It was an interesting day! The front of our space in Satsuma is sandy and was originally broken up a bit by the previouss occupant with his pickup/fifth wheel going in and out a few times. The last time we got home from one of our short trips here we also broke it up even more backing into the space. The front wheels need to be cut hard to make it around the tree in the front of the space and when you cut them hard they tend to dig into the sand and plow it rather than rolling over it. I wish I'd thought to take a picture. The front wheels butied themselves up to the hub (middle of the wheel. So on the way out of the space the sand collapsed again and we dug in. I did manage to get back up out of it, but there was no going forward and getting out of the space. So Jay got some boards that he uses for the boat lift and we put those down and drove over them. Then when we got to Wickham park, the path into the site was web and soft from all the rain and we buried the front wheels again - it was, to put it mildly, an interesting day.
03/12/15 Hanna Park
Hanna Park Morning Walk
From Wickham park we decided we'd just stay out, especially after our problems getting out of the home site, so we headed up to HANNA PARK for a few days before Sheila's appointments on the 16th. The plan is to stay here for a couple of days, get a walk or two on the beach in and then go to the Mayo to dry camp on the 15th so we're there early on the 16th and can get an early start on heading north.

It was overall a quiet couple of days. I got out for walks on the beach. Nothing compares with an early moring walk on the beach, the sound of the surf, the sun rising, the serenity of it all. I had gotten a couple of new books to listen to on my morning walks and even with them playing in my headset the sound of the surf just helps to put the world into perspective. I'm still listening to Eckhart Tolle and some others mostly on inner peace and related topics and I have to admit that I'm seeing and feeling the effects of a few years of reading (listening) to books on this topic has had a positive effect on my outlook and attitude :)).

Sheila also got out for a couple of walks. A little later than I go out, she likes for the sun to be up and the air to warm a little before she goes out, but we both enjoyed our time here.
03/16/15 Lake View Campground, Opelika, Al
Lake View RV Park Opelika, Al
We were up bright and early with X-Ray at 7AM, AIC for labs at 7:30 and then the Bone Dr at 8:30. We were all finished up, car hooked up and pulling out of the parking lot at 9:30AM. I had set Opalika, Al as our goal for the day, but we hadn't called ahead to be sure they'd have room. Turned out they had a lot of open spaces when we got there. The drive was uneventful - always a good thing to say at the end of the day - and I think we were both really happy to be on the road again. It's a short trip for us as we have to come back at the end of it but just to be out and moving again was a thrill.

I poked a little, we only had 327 miles for the day, so it was not going to be a high mileage day. I think so far our record for miles was back in 2012 when we headed back to the Mayo from Texas. We did 703 miles that day and made it from Texas back to the Fl welcome center. Will be happy to not do that again, I prefer to take it easy and 300 mile days suit me just fine. We can stop for linner (we eat dinner at lunch time these days thus - Linner :)) Usually when we're rolling it's just a sandwich rather than a full course meal, but then I like the sandwich days. Little less going in and if I get out for a walk that morning it's sometimes down a pound the next morning.
03/17/15 Custom RV, Red Bay, Al.
Custom RV Red Bay Al
Brannon at Customer RV was the first stop on our list. We planned on getting new rollers installed in the Living Room slide out  along with a full service on the hydrohot and a few other minor fixes. Turns out when he looked at the slide out that we didn't need rollers, we needed a whole new floor. Seems we missed the discovery of a problem with the slide out floors while we were parked down in Florida the past couple of years and the floor is a known problem and one of the big three at the factory service facility. We had 2 of the three in need of work, so Brannon serviced the hydrohot and did a couple other small items for us (I had them install a control panel for our SeaLevel guages in the web bay - a big improvement over running bank and forth to check the tank levels when flushing the tanks). Then we headed over to the factory and it seems like our timing was perfect (thanks PTB :)) They had just gotten caught up and we able to get us in the next morning for the wet bay, and then that same afternoon for the slide out. Pictures for these are featured below -
Left - Laying the slide down to remove & replace the floor.
Middle - the wet bay before (I know it's a little out of focus but it's the best I have of the before). The plywood literally fell apart as he took it out. It was crumbling and removed in pieces not a sheet.
Right - the water bay after, that new white board is a plastic sheet so impervious to water.
So new water bay floor and new slide out floor. The floor was a little out of adjustment but we were out of time, so they said to just come in when we got back from Louisville and they'd take care of it. So it'll be the first stop after the show.
03/19/15 - Red Bay - Factory Repairs
Slide Out Removal
Water Bay - BeforeWater Bay After
03/21/14 Cave City, Ky - Cave City RV ParkCave City, Ky
More to come as the show gets underway.
Ok, I'm out of practice and not paying attention to walking out the door and taking the picture the moment I have the thought, so
I'm borrowing a shot from the past - Cave City Campground looks the same as it did back in 2012 on our way to Louisville, so this'll have to do for this year as well. Friday we went to Bay Diesel to get the dash A/C fixed and to get the transmission serviced, something that I thought had been getting done at Cummins South when we took the coach there for service, but which they weren't doing. So it was a little past due and we got that taken care of.

Saturday we headed north and stopped in Cave City. It's not a bad place to spend a quiet day or two and it's an easy drive the rest of the way to Louisville. Plan is to drive up to Louisville on Monday, have Tuesday free to get our shopping done there - they have a Whole Foods that's not far from the Exposition Center, and then get the booth set up for the show on Wed. Seems like lots of people are getting in to Louisville earlier these days and we want to be sure that we can get our usual spot. The spots in the front fill up fast. While we were there I ran over to Lowes and got a new board for the dining table - the new floor is a little thicker than the old floor so when the table is slid out the old board is about a quarter inch off the floor. I like to push on the table when I get up and just feel like it's a good idea to have a support under the end of it to give it a little added stability. We also do the laundry, flush out the tanks and other little chores to be sure we're ready for a week off the sewer. We always get water and electric at Louisville, but the sewer is always a maybe - you just never know till you get there and get set up whether you'll have access to a sewer connection or not.
03/23/15 Louisville, Ky, Exposition Center Parking Louisville Sl last year I was complaining about trying to fit into a 20' booth after the carpet company screwed up and didn't carpet our 30 foot booth. This year, we decided it was just getting to be more hassle than it was worth doing the tradeouts for the booth space, so we just got a 10 foot booth. Then to top if off I forgot that we were only getting 10 feet and agreed to allow a friend with a new product to share the booth with us. He was too late to get a booth of his own as the show was sold out. So we scrunched up and made the 10x10 work for both of us.

Overall though it was a good show. We talked with some friends and several customers came by to say hello. We did the post cards again and by mid-day Saturday we'd handed out all of the 2500 that we ordered for the show. We've seen several new signups with the coupon code that we put into the flyers so looks like we had a good show. I can never tell right after the show. We'll have signups come from the show months afterwards - the goal is to get the name out there (2500 of our postcards handed out) and to be there to answer questions for established customers and people considering the program. with that in mind, we had a great show.

We took off early Sunday to head back down to Red Bay. Need to be there first thing Monday morning to get scheduled in for that adjustment we need. Plan is to stay at McKinney again.

03/29/15 Red Bay, Al - McKinney Campground McKinney Campground 03/29/14 - I65>AL24>Red Bay, Al.
We got an early start, left around 9:30 and it was a an easy drive. Straight down the 65 to the Al24 and across the 24 to Red Bay. Since Tiffin has gotten more popular the Tiffin campground is always packed this time of year and McKinney Rv has put in 20 spaces with full hookups and they're $20/night which is standard for Red Bay. So we headed back to McKinney. It's right across the street from the factory service area so it was real convenient for our early Monday checkin.

Monday we went back over, I took the car as I was pretty sure we wouldn't be going straight in,  and they told us they'd get us in around 11:30 or 12. So we kicked back for a bit, I had some work issues to attend to, and then went back over around 11:45. I checked in again and they'd been help up a little when the big compressor for the building went down and said they'd be ready for use at 12:30 after their lunch break. So we drove around back and got our own supper out of the way. 12:30 we pulled back over and went straight into the bay. They spent a couple of hours on straightening up the slide out and showed me exactly how to do that on my own if I needed to in the future. Aparently when I had fixed the slide out previously it had gotten out of alignment by and inch or so. It's relatively easy to correct - once you know the procedure. So with the slide all realigned and working correctly, we headed back over to McKinney's for the night. Tomorrow it's over to paint to get the fender replaced and some touchup work done.
03/31/14 Red Bay, Al - Custom Paint & Body ShopInto the paint shop First priority is to get the broken fender fixed. Then I also noticed that the back, where the 07's have a problem with the fiberglass cracking was bulging a bit so I showed that to Bruce and he suggested that we cut out around the bulge and put a second strip down the entire edge of the slideEdge crack on back slide. The feeling was that would look the best and I agree, I think it came out really good and blends in well. You really have to look to notice it.

The fender also came out good and they got it all done in one day. We came in 7am Tues morning and he kept it overnight in the shop for the paint to dry and send us on our way Wed morning. If we hadn't been waiting on Sheila's meds and a couple of movies from NetFlix we could have started back a couple days early. But the meds weren't due till Fri and the movies were already late. In the end we got the Meds on Friday as scheduled, but the movies didn't show up. We called NetFlix and they are sending them to the office - Melbourne will be our next mail stop. The campground office called Saturday, after we'd already left to let us know the movies came in. We just had them send them back to NetFlix.