Friday, September 12, 2014

All kinds of Critters

Can't really call this section "RV LIFE" anymore. Who know when we'll take our RV on a road trip again. By the end of September, we'll have FIVE dogs! I TOLD you that would happen! Shouldn't be any surprise to Great Escape blog followers.
But, I'd still like to keep some kind of section about RV'ing.
It is a very melancholy feeling to unsubscribe from some RV newsletters or delete the emails without bothering to look at them. There was a time when I sucked in all the info I could. Fulltime RV'ing was a constant learning process and modifying the RV to make it more livable and comfortable. I was also trying to learn about odd places to visit or great farm markets or restaurants. All that is unimportant now because the chances of actually going there are low. Here are some of the items I used to subscribe to.
Camping World This is the go to store for newbies. After a while, you can find RV supplies from other resources, but Camping World has sales, a wide selection, etc.
Good Sam Good Sam club is now linked with Camping World. As a Good Sam Member, I believe you get discounts at Camping World, 10% discounts at participating RV parks, Emergency Road Service available, which we had. Used it once and was satisfied with the service.
RV plus card To get an RV Plus credit card, you need to be a Good Sam member. This is a GREAT credit card. It is a gas/diesel credit card only for Flying J and Pilot. You not only get a discount for using the card, but by using the card, you also get the cash price at the pump. Our latest bill was ZERO. While fulltiming, our diesel charges were as much as our current mortgage payment!
Escapees  Escapees is great for full timer's. I'm not sure of the benefit for recreational RV'rs. 15% discount at participating RV parks. Only about $15. per night at Escapees/Rainbow RV parks. We also used their wonderful mail service as our address and mail forwarding.
KOA  I won't bother with the link. This is an ok membership. You get a discount at KOA's, but KOA's have become super expensive, so we usually avoided them.
RVillage I was thrilled when this site opened on the web this past year. My main interest was to find out where fellow RV'rs were. You can list where you are currently staying and others in the park can see that and message you via RVillage. Unfortunately, since it was only in the beginning stages, I did not have much use of it. I'm sure as it grows, it will be a wonderful resource, to find fellow RV'ers with similar interests, park reviews, etc.
GoPetFriendly Traveling with two permanent dogs and a couple of times picking up a stray dog, Go Pet Friendly is an informative site letting you know where dog parks are, what sight seeing places allow dogs, whether a place is safe or fun for dogs, etc.
RV Life Magazine You may have seen this large sized magazine free at many RV parks. It's an interesting read with info on places to see.
Roadtreking RV Newsletter I've really enjoyed Mike's newsletter. He is a journalist and does quite a bit of long term RV'ing in his Roadtrek with his wife and dog. Even though they RV differently in a small glorified van, he does visit interesting places and also has news items about RV interests, whether it be crime, RV accidents, safety, etc. A very informative newsletter that I used to enjoy.
Scott is still "enjoying" mowing the lawn. He just pops his headphones on and saddles up on his John Deere riding mower. Two hours later, he's done. Oh how he used to complain about mowing our 80' x 40' lawn with a self propelled push mower. It took all of 1/2 hour! That used to drive me crazy! He'd come in after mowing and blow out his breath,like he was so tired from a long day's work. I guess it was all about pushing/walking as to riding that makes the difference.

We are finding all kinds of critters around here. Deer sometimes in the front yard, although the dogs have pretty much frightened them away. Sigh.

Lots of big black crows picking dinner from the front lawn. There seems to always be about a dozen and only come around about 5-6pm & sometimes in the morning.

My first encounter with the Blue tailed skink or five-lined skink was while working camping at Four Paws Kingdom RV Park in Rutherfordton, NC. I thought these little guys were beautiful! Well, we have them scurrying around our deck, cement walkway, and garage. They don't seem to cause any trouble, so I enjoy the flashes of bright blue as I walk around.

We also have some kind of dragon fly that flit around while we are on our walkway. I thought they needed to be near the water. Again, these guys don't seem to cause any trouble and they are beautiful with their large multicolored wings.

Scott has put up 3 hummingbird feeders and all are being used. I sit on the couch and look out our window and the hummingbird feeder and thistle feeder are within view.

Currently there is a praying mantis keeping the hummingbirds away from the feeder.
Are these Goldfinches?
As I was performing my nightly routine in the bathroom, I noticed something out of sorts in the bathtub. I look, I look again, and "Sccccotttttt?"

What the...? How the...? Where the...? Very cool, but how DID it get in the house? There must be a gap somewhere!

Poor thing was so scared when Scott was trying to capture it, he pooped all over the tub! Damn! We don't even use this tub. Now I have to clean it!

Now for the more creepy crawlies. Of course there are ticks around. As I'm clearing the backwoods, I do bring home a couple. So far they've been the larger dog ticks...still yucky, but easier to find. Luckily, they prefer the overgrown areas outside our fence, so the dogs have not had a problem with ticks.

As we do our "poop patrol" in the yard, we've come across...YUCK! EW! I'll never walk barefoot again!!!! Yes, you could say that about the piles of poop we clean up, but that can be washed off. But oh no...
These guys are beautiful in their own way, but still kind of creepy since they are so large, about 3" long!

Eeeeek! Now that is creeeeeepy! We have no idea what kind of spider. He was only about 1/2' long, but still, I wouldn't want to step on him!
Different strokes for different folks...or dogs. Devin loves all the critters around.

This is a good place to start if you are looking for like minded people to get together with. I found a Social meet up in Jackson, which is the closest larger city in the area. I was hoping to meet local people who would be a wealth of info about the area. Unfortunately, in this case, the group is much younger than me and are looking for people to socialize/date with. I went bowling with one 20 something girl. Very sweet girl, but she was only here for the summer, so no local info from her. Last night I went to dinner with 5 other people. The oldest being 33 years old. All single.
In NJ, where it is more populated, you find meetups for all kinds of things, from specific crafts, to dog breeds, to wine makers, etc.
I'm glad I signed up, but it hasn't been very helpful. At least it got me to try a new restaurant.
Sakura Japanese - Jackson, TN
I can't rate since I don't like sushi. But according to Yelp, their sushi is very good.
I went here with a group from Meetup. I was the "old lady" of the group, but we all got along fine and enjoyed trying new items.
SAKE to you!

Sunset roll

Sakura is well know for the excellent sushi. I will say the presentation is impressive. But you will have to rely on other's reviews, since all I had was the scallop fried rice. Very good fried rice, but nothing that I would make a special trip to order again. Very stingy on the scallops. Basically one or maybe 2 scallops sliced on top of the rice.

She Went to War: The Rhonda Cornum StoryShe Went to War: The Rhonda Cornum Story by Rhonda Cornum
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is not an action packed book. Nor is it a book about being tortured as a POW. It is simply a dedicated army doctor that loves her job and her country. We read about how she went from private research to join the army and follower her career through different areas of army life. Ms. Cornum does not want special treatment being a woman in the army. She takes pride in her work in what ever area she is assigned and will fulfill her responsibility.
She was highly respected among both male and female fellow military.
It was very interesting to read of her strong mind set and how she compartmentalizes to deal with what is at hand and not waste time worrying over what she cannot change.
To read of the bonds formed by having the common thread of their freedom taken away and how it was dealt with.
Interesting read.
On a personal note: I found out about this book because Ms. Cornum is a breeder of Gordon Setters, of which I am getting one of hers.

Written in My Own Heart's Blood (Outlander, #8)Written in My Own Heart's Blood by Diana Gabaldon
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

How sad that I've grown to dislike this series. Books #1-5 were probably in my top 10 list of best books I've read. I was obsessed with the series. All 5 star ratings. By book #6, still a great book, but rating dropped to 4 stars. Books #7 & 8...only 1 star. This last book, I couldn't even finish. I returned it to audible for a credit.
Maybe it's my simple mind. I just could not keep up with the concurrent past and present time lines. Then to add to that, the family has grown, so we have the original character Claire and Jamie, but complicated by a 2nd husband. Claire's daughter Brianna is grown with her own hubby and children. Brianna is in the present, but her husband is in the past. Claire is in the past, but her 1st husband is dead, or is he? I couldn't keep all the characters straight and the past and present going on at the same time. Yep, I must be simple minded. I'm sure others would thoroughly enjoy this. Good exercise for the brain!
September is a month of much knitting. I've joined FOUR knit a longs, three of which are mysteries. And out of the four projects, I only bought yarn for one. The other 3 I'm using from my stash.
Updates to follow.


  1. yup, they sure enough are Goldfinches. Must be the day for Praying Mantis. I saw one here at my daughters in Southern NJ today.

  2. Wow, it's interesting reading about your new place and all the critters. Love the skinks. The spider looks like a sci-fi creature. EEEEEK, is right!

    It sounds like you found the perfect property. Congratulations!

    1. The property is perfect, the house is ok. The property was more important than the house. We're very happy.


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