Thursday, April 13, 2017

Counting Down To Lift Off

video

Sorry, hope you can read lips..need to figure out the sound issue. :-(
I bought a selfie stick! This morning I made about 5, yes 5, videos and in each one it was difficult to hear my voice.  I thought it would be good for doing vids on the road but I need to re group. We do have an ProGo and it will attach to the stick so that may be the way to go in the end. 

The count down has begun.  Our friends are doing their preparations to leave as they go before us. Our blast off date is about June 1st.  OMG, can you actually believe that!! So much to do and get finished. The one thing we do have is reservations! For the summer months of June ,July, August and part of September we will be 8 miles from my daughter and her family. We will be staying at a campground in Lee, New Hampshire. Beyond excited! We will then travel to Myrtle Beach and stay for a week at Apache Campground for Roger's submarine reunion. October 2, ...we head west!

                                                               New Watercolor


Yes I'm working away here. I'm hoping you all find something you can't live without. My goal is to post something on my Daily Paintworks site so it will help in our travels. I'm manifesting health, safe traveling and an income to help with the diesel fuel. WE ARE GOING!!!! 

I found an art Guild in Lake Havasu City, Arizona. It will be about 30 minutes from where we are staying and yes, I'm joining. Living the artists dream is about immersing myself into that culture. 

Well I'm off to open the smashed package that came from Amazon poorly taped, hardly closed and holding a 20" x 20" stretched canvas. I emailed them last night about the sad job on packaging. I'm hoping I don't have to email them about a ruined canvas. 


I know this blob of tape and get frustrated when it does that but I cut that part off before sending a package.  It may have been a long day for the packer, they were probably exhausted from walking and packing all day when they did this too small box. Yes, just a wee bit of sarcasm there. I either receive a huge box for the tiniest tube of watercolor or this too little room box for my canvas. Then in the big scheme of things it's really not that important is it. 

The Year of The Cat is on the radio now, (Al Stewart) and I need to get up and dance and twirl. 

Have a great day..see you tomorrow and you can meet the "kids"

Warmly,
Sheila

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Membership To An RV Blog Group

Well this is exciting!! Now that we are actually planning on traveling I joined this group to tell you about the campgrounds we will be visiting! So, maybe I should tell you about where we have been for about two years while we were getting ready.

                                                             Our Home For A Time

That's us there with the car parked in front. CiCiBlue. Except for going to Georgia and South Carolina we have been here getting repairs done and Doctor appointments up to date. Basically learning all we could about our motorhome. Crystal Lake Park is right off Rt. 95 and we are close. Some people complain about traffic noise but after a few days you don't even notice it and at night it can put you to sleep. The hum of the road. The sites are large which we find find a huge bonus and prices are reasonable for this area. Close to Kennedy Space Center, Disney, Beaches and stores. Call early for winter spots since a lot of the people are return snowbirds.


From our front door. Not bad!! I will miss that! 


Taken from our bathroom window. Last year they mated and had a young one. He stayed with them until recently as we watched the parents teach him the mating dance.  (I'm saying HE since he grew to be larger then both parents)


I have driven through other parks nearby and they seem squished in so for space, I'm giving Crystal Lake RV Park a thumbs up!!

Have a great day..

Warmly,
Sheila

Monday, April 3, 2017

Update On Our Refrigerator Safety

 Our friends, Mike and Jeanette, emailed us to let us know about something that we can use to keep our refrigerator safer. Well, us safer actually. It was their coach that burnt last week and as Mike said, he wished he had known about this product sooner.

                                                          Halon Fire Extinguisher
Please click on the link so you can read more in depth information on it. Basically, you place it in the back of your refrigerator, the outside of your RV behind the little door. I have read that it may be too large and you won't be able to lock the door back on but you could use a strong roofing tape as one man did or as Roger plans on doing, extra strength velcro. He wants to install it high enough so that the gas, if at some horrid chance a fore did start, will rise and extinguish the fire before anything happens. From what I have read it really protects, extinguishing the fire instantly.

We have found them on Amazon but at a higher price.


So we ordered ours today. A fire may never   happen but our CiCi Blue is now 12 years old and the frig dies then comes back to life every so often. In hotter weather the temp inside goes up and our ice cream is always soupy.  It's getting tired. I wish for it a peaceful death and I wish for us peace of mind and once it's installed I will breath easier.

So, please check it it out. $185.00 is not much when you consider the alternative. The one on Amazon is 255.00 I think and yes, I would have put that baby on a credit card without hesitation.

Our friends wanted us to be safe so I'm passing this on. Please pass it on to your RV-ing friends too or anyone. You can also use them in your cars...(I could get carried away with these...trying not to become paranoid..lol)

Have a great evening...

Warmly,
Sheila

Sunday, April 2, 2017

More Preparations

  I said to Roger the other day that I think we do more work now on and around the RV than we ever did at the sticks and bricks. So what happened this week.?



Not sure if you can see but we are thinking maybe our alternator may be overcharging our batteries and as a result, acid bubbles over. The acid corroded the battery cage and they were on a severe tilt towards the road.  So, Bob, our savior, purchased the materials to weld a new battery grate. And yes, he has a welding unit with him. (love this man)

Roger and Bob hooked up our batteries from outside the cage so we always had power and lights. Another bonus! It took a few days due to appt's and other things but finally it was done. Roger painted the steel with 
Rustoleum and voila'...the batteries went back in.


I did mention to Roger we need to look at AGM Deep Cycle sealed batteries. For our first try we over watered the babies we now have. 

Then, we have another goal before we leave. It's my to do list actually. The batteries and a new refrigerator. 
Our Norcold is propane/electric. We run it on electric and if I tell you our ice cream is soup you will understand. Another ugh. The other issue is they catch on fire. There had been a recall and ours had been done but I still worry. It will "die" and as soon as I call the repair guys, it comes back to life. The perfect scenerio is for it to die and we can put it through our warranty. Since it's a high dollar item the insurance company will send someone to check it out. Second opinion so to speak.  Yes I think I did mention this in the last post but let me show you what happened the week after to friends of ours. 


And it was in storage. The unit is on it's way to the insurance company but the fire Marshall thought it was, yes, the refrigerator. Not sure how but our rv repair person has said watch for the yellow residue. Ammonia leaking. Needless to say I've been a fanatic.


Where do you keep your receipts? We keep ours in a plastic box in a closet. So did our friends. They burnt. I said maybe I would put them in our fireproof safe? Theirs melted. Plan B is copying them and letting my son hold onto the originals, God forbid we ever need them.

So, my goal, a new refrigerator. Rolling in the dough Sheila? Not at all. I'll be painting non stop working to make enough to do this. CiCi Blue is our full time home. I stayed awake all night trying to think of how we could get our dogs out, how we could get out. I just read of a class C  had their frig catch on fire while driving. The woman felt the flames at her back as she struggled with her seat belt and thankfully she was safe. So, think good thoughts and manifest a residential refrigerator for us!!


Something fun!! Roger made me a fun light for over the dining table!



The other evening we watched the PBS program on Yosemite Park. Lola came up to lay with us for a bit and started to watch the program with us. It's hard to see but the second photo shows a coyote! Lola perked right up and started barking at it.  Roger and I couldn't stop laughing, which I will say we so needed to do. She's such a goof. 

Well that's it for today. It's getting really hot and dry here in Florida which means I'm miserable. But you have lived there for years?? Yes I have. Silly me. Roger loves the heat and can sit outside forever. For me, I melt. I am so looking forward to going out west and have no humidity. (Now watch, I'll complain that there's not enough moisturizer in the world to stop my skin from drying up and becoming leather). Moisturizer....that's on my list too!!

Have a great rest of your weekend...

Warmly,
Sheila

Friday, March 24, 2017

My Birthday Week And Beyond

 
We have been busy getting more things done. I'm excited and nervous. Friends needed work done as they were leaving sooner than we are so our bathroom was put on hold for a week. Not a problem. Their bedroom had a huge spot on the floor from water damage . The tire was kicking up the water and hitting the floor boards. Bob put a piece of linoleum between so the water wouldn't come back up and hit their flooring again, and then they were off on their adventure.


So here is our tile. Cocotik Peal and Stick.  Super thin and super light. Perfect for an RV. We used 3 M adhesive spray along with it, which they advise, to make sure it really stays on the wall. I do keep the spray can close because I have had a few start to peal away from the wall. One side was sprayed but when I use the adhesive spray in my art work I spray two areas, The surface it's going on and the piece itself. Roger said, "why didn't you say anything while we were working?"  I'll just say it was men at work! It's all good. The tiles seem to be separating from the wall so I'll be using heavy duty glue soon.


So on March 18, our 22nd Anniversary, we decided to take the valance off the bathroom window and recover it. Have I mentioned I dislike beige?


Roger cut the fabric off then took out the zillion staples. Oh sure we will remember how to put it back together. Thankfully Roger marked everything with arrows and circles. ;-)


Lola telling me that I just glued that fabric in the wrong place..and..I even ironed the fabric!


The gluing was fine. I did touch the bottom of the hot iron..why? ..I have no clue.  The most important lesson? Don't use long staples working with a thin piece of board. That's when I said ok, lets wrap this up for today! I still need to finish a small area but as Roger said, "who ever uses our bathroom?" I will finish it off. As of know I sit there and press the tiles back on then look up to see "beige" looking at me. Roger mentioned that now we could redo the rest of the valances.....I'm thinking fabric paint or just curtains. 


In an RV one needs to live by those words!!


Later that same day, with swollen stapled finger, we went out with friends for a farewell dinner for Dan and Jonelle. (Third couple from the left) They are off to Michigan to help friends then to the Grand Tetons to work for the summer as workcampers. They worked there this past summer and were asked back for another season.  We will keep in touch and I'm sure we will meet up again somewhere! Love you guys!!

From left to right the motley crew consists of; Roger, Moi, Paul and Diane, Dan and Jonelle and Betty and Bob.


This is Bob. He worked a few days trying to get the wiring correct for our tow dolly. The previous owners rewired it for something else, possible a motorcycle ramp. Then we have one more project and as Roger says, we will be outsourcing the work. (Still a computer geek!)

We have been planning our trip west. Our plan is to go to Roger's Sub Reunion in Myrtle Beach at the end of September, meet Betty and Bob, then catch Rt.40. I'm pretty excited since Rt 40 is also part of Rt 66.  I am thinking a series of paintings of the old highway and of course, a Lab in there somewhere. 


The hurricane did small damages that need to be repaired. My job the other day, caulking with the silicone. Tiny water leaks here and there along the seams. CiCiBlue is an old girl. I ask Roger if people with new coaches have this much work to do, getting a bit discouraged. He assured me that yes they did but probably larger issues since CiCi has her bugs worked out already. We're just doing up keep stuff. It has rained since and no leaks so I'm doing my job well.


The allergies, the pollen this year has been intense. Poor girl. Every afternoon she climbs up on the couch to sit on me. All 110 lbs of her but how could you say no and today I found the Zyrtec and she's happy.


On the easel, so to speak. I'm doing memory boxes for a few people that have had their beloved pals go to the Bridge. I'm thinking I need to clone myself to get everything done, but I am so grateful to be getting the work.


Yes, it's my 16 year old self. She had no idea what was in store for her, two beautiful children, life bumps, changes, more bumps and adventures. She survived and became stronger than ever. I'm proud of you girl...and you kept doing your art all through it!! We may be 70 now but I think we both made Rockstar Status!!!!


Have a great day all....keep rocking it!!

Warmly,
Sheila

Monday, March 6, 2017

We Are SO Getting Ready

We still haven't decided where we will roam to this summer to make sure CiCiBlue is up to the big travel. I know she's excited as we are!!  Diesel Pushers are meant to go.

So where are we now on stuff.


My art stuff. Ok, I need a home for everything, But where? Yesterday I emptied out a closet space and put in my watercolor stuff. Bag on bottom left. Put all the unfinished boxes in a box since they will be painted and shipped soon.


On my side of the closet at the back of the coach, I have the safe, then a small shelf to place something on. I put velcro on the bottom of that box, it holds various scarves, and you never know when one needs to flow with grace across an RV park. (deer in headlights face here). Then I stacked my canvas on top.


And yes, it will move while we roll, so a snug strip of velcro around said canvas hopefully will do the trick.


The bathroom project is moving along. Today was placing the foam insulation and sealing everything to get ready for the board over. I ordered stick on tile and that should be coming in today. I'll do a show and tell tomorrow on it. I liked it in the photo, hoping I like it when it's in my hands.


And..In Progress!!! 20" x 20" oil on canvas. A real Texas boy sitting happily in flowers. I have lines around for correction and direction. Thought I'd be getting to this today but after my great arrangement of my canvas, I closed the mirrored doors and something was stopping the doors from ever opening again.  After trying to dislodge whatever it was with an umbrella I grabbed a screw driver and started to unscrew the bottom strip of wood holding the door on the rail. Three screws were considerate, 5 were not. I was finally able to open one side large enough to get my hand and arm inside and that's when I felt the 20" x 20" canvas leaning against the door. "Oh for crying out loud" was what I did not say...then got back on the floor to rescrew the three screws back into their place. This was an hour and then I had to re hang all the clothes I took out of the closet in hopes that maybe a sleeve became jammed. Ok, the positive out of this, I threw out a lot of things I no longer wear, need or even remember that I had and oh, found that 20" x 20" canvas that hasn't been finished. So that's where I put it.!!

It's been really gusty here lately and allergies have been kicking up for everyone. Itchy eyes, sneezing, runny noses. We are quite a group.

Ok, have a great rest of the day, I think I'll go take a little snuggle with dogs!! See you tomorrow.

Warmly,
Sheila


Thursday, February 23, 2017

Just Stuff

 The day we were going to finish off the bathroom, it poured. There is outside work that needs to be done and it needs to be dry. Bob wants to push out the screws that attach the awning arm, silicone the heck out of them since they are also the offending parts allowing rain to enter, and attach them to a two by four inside. Hopefully next week everything will be dry enough to do it.


 Who knew we lived near a Buddhist Sanctuary. White Sands Buddhist Center  Six of us decided one day to take a lunch and go to visit. I have to say I felt like I was in another world, a peaceful one. Around the center pond there were stone benches and each one had a word etched on it. Wisdom, Forgiveness were two that I sat on. Since then I have been actively conscious of what I say and think and have been working on my forgiveness of past "stuff" and it feels great. It is so easy to be pulled under into negatives, people talking, politics, etc.  Our goal is to travel, artists living the dream and painting and photographing America in our CiCiBlue and three fur kids and we are working towards that goal, bringing in positive energy.  Who knew that a couple of hours sitting in peace and serenity could have this effect. (Probably quite a few people actually and that's why they meditate). Ok, joining in!!


Finished but needs to be signed. I am pleased!


This is my son Jamie and this is our annual birthday selfie. His birthday! I'm so proud of the man he has become and I'm always amazed how tall he is. Wasn't it yesterday that I brought him home from the hospital?


His big sister, Erin, and Jamie at 4 weeks old. Yes, time does fly by.


Finally, one more commission that I finished and pleased with. 20" x 20" oil on canvas. "Sweetie"

If you would like a beautiful portrait of your best friend please let me know. EMAIL ME

That's it for tonight. I'll keep you posted on our preparations for traveling. I'm getting so fidgety!! 

Thanks for stopping by and have a great night.

Warmly,
Sheila

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Oh CiCiBlue

Ok,what's happening now. Well she is about 13 years old but with a good wash she looks sparkly and beautiful. The only way to tell her age is out split front windows. 2005 I believe started the whole picture window on coaches.


The previous owners scraped something along the plumbing bay door and it unsettled the top of the door where it attaches. Two years ago we resealed it but age, heat and a hurricane got the gap to widen.


Unfortunately we do have to open that bay door every so often to empty our tanks so that has made it worse. Tanks emptied so we are set for a bit. The plan? Bob and Roger plan on taking that piece off, and replacing same onto the coach. It looks like the screws holding in onto the coach rusted and broke as it pulled away. I'll record the process and post it as it happens.  (Munch The Scream face here).


Yesterday I was trying to take a quick nap after our SuperBowl party on Sunday. Yes, still recovering.  Sammy jumped up and laid down beside me then ,whap, his paw was on my head. A blessing? More of a "could you move a little bit more Mum".  He kept it there for about 15 minutes and I do feel blessed by it.


In progress...and today started yet another 20" x 20". This particular one will be fun. He's sitting in a field of wonderful flowers. Years ago I did a large painting of our Chocolate Boy, Fergus, sitting by vases of flowers. SEE IT HERE.

Well, that's it for today. Storms came through last night but thankfully we are all safe. So, see you tomorrow with updates. Roger is picking up Styrofoam for our bathroom wall and Bob is cutting out a board to cover that. Then I get to order sticky tiles to do a fun mod.

Have a great night.
Warmly,
Sheila

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Decisions Made

Well we did it. Made an actual decision to be travelling and be somewhere else next season. (Picture fireworks and confetti flying here please.) We even put down a deposit! Black Meadow Landing, Parker Dam, Ca. And it's in the middle of no where on the Colorado River surrounded by mountains and hills and wild burros in the park.  Oh Lord...Lola will be going insane. (We are in serious training mode now though)

I spent part of the morning looking at internet reception and phone reception out there. 😮 More research. We have AT&T right now so heading to The Gurus to find out how to upgrade so I can connect with the outside world when I blog or connect with our kids. (The two legged kind)

So this past week Roger went with our friend Bob to Pa. on business. I was on the home front with 3 fur kids. You can see from the photo that everyone was running amok. That ball of yarn eventually landed outside in the dirt, but was a great play toy for the boys while indoors. I gave up trying to hide it after about 4 times taking it. Labs are great search and rescue dogs and great at finding lost items. I gave up.

My announcement was usually started with a big sigh, then, "OK, I'm going to hide". Lola would come in, climb up on the bed and then rest her huge head on me and stay for awhile. It's tough to be crazed with a big furry girl trying to comfort you.


We had a day and night of threatening storms roll through bringing in colder weather. Strong winds, heavy rain and tornado warnings. New people not accustomed to our Florida storms spent the night in the park bathrooms but we stayed in the coach but still prepared.


The boys with their slip leads on. Ready to run, just in case, and as usual, the storms went just below us and above us. Thankfully.

Oh no Sheila..what happened.? Well, there had at one time been a leak because we found that the bolts holding the awning arm were never sealed with caulking so there was water damage to the wall inside. Our hurricane and all it's rain did the tell tale showing of water somewhere but I never guessed it was because of something I did. I read on an rv blog that someone covered his weep holes with electric tape. I didn't have a cover then so out I went with our electric tape and covered our bathroom weep hole. Those are the holes on your window that drain rain water, and covered, well, it comes inside. We have thick insulation though don't we? sigh.

So, Bob and Roger will get new insulation and board to repair my mistake. The positive side? It could have been worse and now we are going to get fun sticky tile and do the side wall rather than beige wall paper.  It dose offset our dark wood but, oh lord, it puts me to sleep.


So now that I'm not work camping here I have my nose to the grindstone working to cover expenses. (Which will be more as soon as we start to move) Positive thinking here. Thank you to everyone who have been asking for commissions. I have been offering crazy low prices so I have been busy.


My "studio" is a wee bit cramped but it's all good. My new easel is fantastic so I'm happy. This next painting is in progress and I'm in love. As soon as I put his eyes on the canvas he came alive and I could feel his energy. A lot of times when I'm working on a pet that's at the Bridge, I'm in tears. Not sad tears but loving tears. Their energy comes through very strongly and I have to say that those paintings always turn out to show that energy the best.


I purchased a great head light for walking Lola at night. I look like I'm heading into the mines but wow, I can see all the way down the road. At night a snake may come out to warm himself on the road. I'd like to see him before he is right in front of us. Into the mines I go! Inexpensive and incredibly bright.

Well that's it for today..another cup of coffee, laundry and working on my paintings. Have a great day and see you soon.

Warmly,
Sheila

P.S. GO PATRIOTS!!!!!


Saturday, January 21, 2017

Yes, It's Been Awhile

Let's see, where have I been and what's happening. I finally got an appointment with an orthapedic Doctor for my hip. I brought my MRI and entered his patient room. He's a nice man,late 40's, but his first sentence was "SURGERY" . He said my MRI showed bone on bone and what pain meds did I take and how often.  Tylenol for some burning at night? I'm a very curious person so I googled MRI's and how to read them and found one similar to mine. I saw that I still have some cartilage. I said I have a tough time straightening my leg and he explained that the hip's muscles tighten around it. OK, may I have muscle relaxers then? OK and pain meds, which I don't need. Yet.

Calling my Doctor on Monday to see if I can go to PT and learn to stretch properly to straighten the muscles. I don't have time for hip surgery at this time. No pain getting up and down the coach steps so I'm good to go. I'm also waiting for Stem Cell Therapy to be mainstream and be covered by insurance.


Oh Oh, what's this? When we bought CiCiBlue we had a bubble that went across the area that the awning arm was attached too. Then I noticed it moving a bit.



Our friend Bob who helped us with our floors last winter season.  We found the water has been leaking slowly in through the weep hole. I covered it with electric tape last year, bought the covers but never put them on. Duh. Water in a coach..DANGER! 


Bob brought up a fan that we have in the bathroom now drying the damp and wet. We also need to get behind the steel beam to get that part dried too. Another thing we noticed is when we had our awning arm plan is in a few days to replace the insulation and cover the entire wall rather than try and get a perfect form. I'm fine with that and then I'll paint the bathroom with color! Goodbye beige wall paper. I'm actually excited and more excited we found out about the leak. I'll keep you posted on the repair. 


Last night was Friday Fest in Cocoa Beach, and we were there with our lights and planters.  Night venues are perfect for us. We turn them all on and people love them and we actually had returning customers!


Not sure If I showed you this one. Watercolor and Gouache on 300LB paper.  It sold and I was thrilled! Going to a new home! 

Well tomorrow a storm is predicted to come in with threats of tornadoes. I'll be putting things away in the am then painting the rest of the day to catch up with my commissions. So, with that, I'll end and wish you all a great evening.

Warmly,
Sheila

P.S., see you tomorrow!