Alaska – The Last Frontier (RV Series #20)

(Our family is on a five month RV trip. We are journeying West from Dallas, TX and making our way up the Western coastline finishing in Washington state before we streamline our way back to CO for the summer.)

Confession: I married a planner. As in a guy that actually likes to sit down as a couple and PLAN. Everything. It’s the most attractive quality in regards to planning for retirement, planning for a house remodel, or planning for company to visit. It’s incredibly annoying when it comes to planning vacations. He not only wants to schedule them on the calendar but also plan each day’s activities months in advance.

We planned our Alaskan cruise nearly seven months ago. We knew we’d be RVing up the West coast of North America so we let the cruise departure date drive our journey. We began in Arizona mid-January and we’d need to be at the Seattle harbor by the end of May to set sail for Alaska. John’s customer visits determined how long we visited each city and state in-between. That was the plan.

Except that four months into our five month journey, we were burned out and not looking forward to spending seven more days with our kids anywhere, let alone all stuck in one room aboard a vessel bound for a state no one prints on their driver’s license. Continue reading

Death with Dignity? Easy Decision

When I shared the update link about Brittany Maynard’s death on my Facebook page, I chose not to offer an editorial comment. I wasn’t ready to engage in a debate. In spite of my non-comment, a debate occurred in the comment stream without my prodding. And I’m so glad.

You know what’s so great about debating a topic with someone? It means you’ve stepped away from people in your life that always agree with your opinion. Yes, our opinions may be based on sound theology, but what good is it to preach to the choir?

I experience true growth when I engage in deep, philosophical conversations. I’ve never walked away from an evening discussion about pizza toppings feeling challenged. Continue reading

The “Other” Vancouver – Canada (RV Series #19)

(Our family is on a five month RV trip. We are journeying West from Dallas, TX and making our way up the Western coastline finishing in Washington state before we streamline our way back to CO for the summer.)

Remember that lunch stop at Red Robin just before we crossed the border into Canada? Um, yeah, that’s where John left his credit card after paying for lunch. Apparently Canadian RV Parks share the same payment policy as American RV Parks. Payment is necessary to stay. After a quick call to our lunch establishment verifying that the manager locked up the credit card in the safe, we paid our bill with my card and settled into the land of Maple Leaves.

We didn't eat here but the kids thought the maple leaf apostrophe was so funny.

We didn’t eat here but the kids thought the maple leaf apostrophe was so funny.

By settled in, I mean drinking beer. Continue reading

Scraped Up In Seattle (RV Series #18)

(Our family is on a five month RV trip. We are journeying West from Dallas, TX and making our way up the Western coastline finishing in Washington state before we streamline our way back to CO for the summer.)

Seattle, Washington. The words alone soothed my heart like aloe on sunburn. John and I agreed that four months was perfect for our first adventure. Five was one too many. We’d stayed the course because we had nowhere else to go. Our Denver home was still under complete renovation from the flood and our mountain ranch home was in the final stages of a complete remodel. We were forced to stick it out to the dire end.

Had I never driven in Seattle traffic, I would’ve proclaimed it the coolest city of all. California traffic congestion has nothing on this town. Continue reading

Colorado or Coeur d’Alene, ID? (RV Series #17)

(Our family is on a five month RV trip. We are journeying West from Dallas, TX and making our way up the Western coastline finishing in Washington state before we streamline our way back to CO for the summer.) After three short nights in Kennewick, WA, we continued further east to Coeur d’Alene, ID. John’s customers were a short drive away in Spokane, WA but we’d always wanted to visit Coeur d’Alene so that’s where we drove to next. Another beautiful drive and six hours later, we were set up on Blackwell Island along the Spokane River.

Blackwell Island RV Park

Blackwell Island RV Park

We popped a bottle of wine, grabbed two wine glasses and walked down to the river. Love was in the air. Literally. Seagulls were mating all over the pier in front of us. Continue reading

Kennewick Compass Shift (RV Series #16)

(Our family is on a five month RV trip. We are journeying West from Dallas, TX and making our way up the Western coastline finishing in Washington state before we streamline our way back to CO for the summer.)

We built our RV travel itinerary around two factors: the northern pacific thaw and an Alaskan cruise departing at the end of May from Seattle, WA. We kept a close eye on the weather forecasts and drove north maintaining steady daytime temperatures around 72 degrees.

We’d originally scheduled two weeks in the Portland area but my teens’ rebellion combined with the never-ending drizzle was like Chinese water torture. I needed out. Continue reading

Oregon (RV Series #15)

(Our family is on a five month RV trip. We are journeying West from Dallas, TX and making our way up the Western coastline finishing in Washington state before we streamline our way back to CO for the summer.)

I say Oregon, you say _________. Oregon, ________. Oregon, ________. Did you say rain? Ducks? Weird? Bridges? Beautiful? Scratch ‘n Dent? Any or all fit the bill and all are reasons to visit:

• Rain. Crossing the border into Oregon from California, we officially traded our beach towels for umbrellas. Continue reading