We didn’t buy a pickup

Tuesday was a very pleasant day for us…especially since we have not been out much in the past 5 month quarantine. We have had many conversations about “if we could only go camping” which would require us to purchase a camper…and a pickup to get the camper from point A to point B. For entertainment we have been dream searching for a truck on line which in the back of our minds we had no intention to buy solely because I could not see myself spending hours and hours with other irritable people at the DMV during a pandemic. I could end the story here by saying we went “out there” to search and there is nothing out there…most dealerships we visited had shockingly bare lots. It would have been easier to find a heads up penny in the parking lot than an affordable used truck….or an affordable new truck unless we had enough money laying around to buy a small house.

But this is really a story about attachments. As we sat in the socially distanced show room with a salesman, I told Phil that this is the very first time I didn’t have an attachment to the outcome. Normally I have had my sites set on the vehicle I wanted…firmly set on the outcome that I would buy a vehicle before I left the dealership. Through the crazy discussions … especially those crazy discussions in my head always waiting for the conversation to play out as if I were directing it. Always knowing I could walk out but that really wasn’t a real option because through tunnel vision there was no real option other than signing on the line.

I could also feel neutral energy from him. I knew we were not operating from a place of fear or scarcity. I felt I could think clearly while acknowledging that my happiness and continued blessings and gratitude were not tied up in whether I would/could get my way on someone else’s playground.

Bottom line, we spent an enjoyable afternoon together doing what we have always liked to do together, drive through car lots and dream…envisioning ourselves driving around enjoying the new car smells…in our vision….that will come in the right time.


I woke up to 45 degrees this morning at Bennett Spring…

Of course it was 8:30. I have no idea how cold it got last night but we are sleeping under a sheet and 3 blankets so it really doesn’t matter. What does matter is the rolling out of bed shower….that fear when I step into the shower wishing there was a foolproof way to check the gas level in the tanks. Knowing the water heater doesn’t hold a lot of water, last October trip I stepped in and started rinsing before the hot water reached the shower area as i always do … ya…it’s cold but I knew when the hot water got there it would be divine!….the temperature of the water did not change…so then I was really cold AND wet.

Absolutely perfect autumn day in southern Missouri. Leaves are not peak color yet but they are beautiful.

Started the day meditating along the stream.

Watched the bald eagles on the Niangua

He found a couple sticks and made me walking sticks for hiking the trails today, saved $17.99.

He sketched while I read

Took a drive after supper “somewhere” we didn’t have an Internet or cell signal and only nearly one and a half lane roads but we found a Missouri crossing type “bridge” over the beautiful Niangua River

Until next time….

Lake Jacomo Day 3

Visited the 1855 town today.  Worth the wait.  The chickens were in a fenced area but the sheep just roamed the town…pretty much wherever we were, they would be also.  It was really special…he and I were the only tourists…it was a Tuesday early in the season so it was Incredibly pleasant…I was able to put myself there in 1855 and could just imagine little kids running around the street with hair braids flying and barking dogs and hard working mothers and fathers.  The most enjoyable place for me was the tavern and travelers stop.  This was taken of one of the two rooms upstairs…one for men  and one for women ….travelers could stop for a hot meal, a bath and overnight stay.  If the Inn was full, strangers would sleep in the same bed and use the wood commode in the same room.  Check out the bath tub between the beds.

We hit a local restaurant for lunch…splurged on pecan pie for dessert.  Just something we don’t do anymore.  the meal was good home cooking not your typical fast food sit down like Perkins or Panera!  

Picked up Jax this afternoon for a camping experience.  He is such a blessing!  

Until next time….

No brakes

If you read my last blog about that “feeling” that something just isn’t right…well here you go!  ALWAYS listen to those uneasy or gut  feelings.

We have a shorter bed Ford F-250 pickup with a Reese extender 5th wheel hitch.  This is necessary when we need to back the trailer into a campsite or driveway because without it, the clearance between the front of the 5th wheel and the back window on the truck collide.  (We have replaced the back window 3 times$$$).  We thought the hitch apparatus wasn’t working right because we could not get it to lock into maneuver position…..then we realized that the problem was the brakes on the trailer were not working which allowed the 5th wheel to slam forward.  SO…..

We took the rig up to Camping World in Grain Valley this morning and found out the new electrical bundle connector they installed last November was not installed correctly.  the technician had failed to hook up the trailer brake wire.  The seven connector plug only had 6 connections.  I assume just using the truck brakes for stopping could have been a deadly situation had someone stopped short in front of us and they had been run over by the momentum of a 30 foot 5th wheel with no brakes.  This is a very scary scenario…..and a lesson to those idiot drivers who don’t stop at stop signs and pull out in front of a truck hauling a camper.  Big/small theory is always in motion!

Two lessons learned here.

Until next time…..

Our last day and night at Bennett

We did our hoodie and his ball cap shopping at the park store last night…well I did the shopping while he waited in line to get his trout stamp for this morning.

Notice he will be wearing Royals blue and I went for Chiefs red.  At least these ball caps actually say Bennett Spring rather than BS…every time we go out in public with his BS cap, I always wonder if people,think he is making a statement!  FRannie and I just enjoyed the heat from the sun on our backs on this amazing autumn day while he is in the stream fishing.

I forgot to post the picture of my purchase at the Lead mine general store from Tuesday.

This morning I watched an apparent family or perhaps old friends camped near us.  The oldest man in the group has a bum leg and was walking faster than he should trying to help a younger old man with a problem in his trailer.  The younger old mans wife? Was sitting at the picnic table watching the work.  The old man walked up the 3 steps to the camper but couldn’t reach the door which was wide open to close it…after 3 attempts he finally was able to grab the screen door.  meanwhile the woman kept her ass firmly planted on the picnic table.  It would have been 6 steps at the most to help him.  I was shocked and then Imstarted second guessing myself…maybe my personality to try to help people actually would have made the old man feel helpless?  Needless to say I keep chewing on it and am still bothered by it.

On a lighter note….I’ve noticed in the campground that diesel white pickups are the standard…and there may be more dogs here than people.  This was the menagerie at our driveway a few minutes ago ūüėú

Until next time….



As many of you know, I now live in Pleasant Hill, Missouri. ¬†Years ago, I¬†lived in Pleasant Hill, Iowa. ¬†Monday we returned to the Iowa version and camped at Yellow Banks Park.. the county park is situated on the Des Moines River and the river is up…actually there is a lot of flooding in the area. ¬†The camp ground sits pretty high up from the river, so the flooding didn’t affect our camping other than:




Katy and Adam visited Tuesday night – it was a lot of fun. ¬†Adam and I love fire, sparklers and s’mores and we did all of them! ¬†The two of them along with him walked down to see the flooding – I’m still recovering so I offered to drive down to get them so they didn’t have to walk up all of the huge hills back to the campgrounds. ¬†It was Kate’s first time in the back of a pickup truck on steep hills. ¬†She loves it when I take pictures like this.


I’ve talked about Brett in many posts. ¬†He was my girls band director and one of the most inspirational and motivational people in their mother’s life. ¬†We became very good friends and spent a lot of time camping, fishing and drinking coffee together. ¬†He passed in 2010 after a lengthy battle with lymphoma.

Brett didn’t like all of the cutesy lights that everyone put on their awnings…and I loved them…his opinion did not deter me and we always had some good natured disputing about my pink flamingo lights.


I have one string left….and it always brings a tearful memory of the Brett/Nina friendship when I hang my pink flamingos. ¬†As I hung them Monday night, I felt like he was standing right behind me – saying …GGUURL WHAT ARE YOU DOING!


That’s it for tonight….

Until next time….

A day past two weeks…

I’ve read everything I could get my hands on in order to adequately prepare for my nephrectomy recovery. ¬†4 weeks seems to be the magic number for returning to work. ¬†Exhaustion and muscle pain are often mentioned…but I swear i didn’t ¬†think it would happen that way with me… low and behold…here I am. ¬†Also fighting an occasional mental demon.

He pulled the camper home this week so we could get it cleaned up and do some camping this year. ¬†It has been two summers and I’m ready. ¬†Washed all the sheets, blankets and towels…he’s going to vacuum up dead bugs and we will be ready! ¬†I’m glad we put it away clean and organized last time we used it. ¬†Makes a huge difference. it’s a hybrid camper. ¬†Everything is stationary except the two queen beds which pull down on each end.

Life will be back to normal soon.

Until next time….

I’m looking forward to…

Well, it isn’t the snow forecast for the weekend in Kansas City.

The weather will start to warm up next weekend – in the 50’s – it arrives while we are in Belize. Obviously, we didn’t plan that well. ¬†This would have been the week to be gone!

I look forward to camping this summer..Bennett Spring is #1 on my list…I would like to take a camping trip to Glacier National Park in Montana during the sultry days of July. ¬†The first of May looks to be perfect for ¬†3 days in Vegas with some friends from the Sheriff’s Office in Newton. ¬†I’m giddy with excitement to see the other 4 again. ¬†I’m looking forward to Major League Baseball season. ¬†While I’ve had to switch my lifetime allegiance over to the American League from the National League (I will still root for those Cincinnati Reds) but after last years Royal Fever, I know it is not going to be a hard adjustment.



He and I took our taxes to the CPA this past week so while we were close, we decided to drop by the Sports Complex to find our way around.

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Which only made me look forward to the NFL season!! ¬†I look forward to spending time with family and friends this summer. I hope to get in a couple of Slipstream concerts. ¬†I can see the Iowa Stair Fair on the agenda. ¬†There is hope……… good Lord willing and the creek don’t rise.

Until next time…..

10 days at Bennett Spring

The weather was wonderful.  We did have rain one evening and again in the middle of the night a couple of nights – otherwise the sky was blue with wonderful fall days.  We were there with Brett and Christa.  Brett’s mom and dad; and then Christa’s brother and sister-in-law came from Rockford, IL; then Brett’s brother and niece drove down from Pella, Iowa so there was always something going on.  B and C and his folks initially camped on a double site then when they left – we moved the pop-up over to their site…still up…what an adventure.  We ate fish, antique shopped several days – drove nw of Springfield, MO for an auction – traveled with the group to the Bass Pro shop in springfield on another day and ate at Lamberts south of Springfield.  This is the throwed roll restaurant.  After you order your entre – waiters and waitresses circle the restaurant with bowls of sides and warm rolls – you want a roll – you stick your hand up in the air and catch it.  A really fun place.  If you are ever in the Branson/Springfield area, it is worth the trip…I think there are 2 or 3 in the area.  In case you see familiar faces from my pics (because I’m always looking for the 6 degree connections), you can go to my Facebook philninab@gmail.com where I have more detail attached to the pictures.

It is good to be home.  Got a phone call at 0730 this morning from Aunt Frances…something was wrong with my mother – she was unresponsive…Aunt Frances had already called an ambulance.  Things weren’t normal – she was sitting on the side of the bed in an awkward position but she swore she was fine and then would fall back to sleep sitting up…she was down right nasty to the amb crew and refused to let them take her pulse or her b/p…I finally told them I would sign a release that she refused care.  I finally got her back into bed “laying down” against her will.  She would wake up long enough to be irritable and say she was okay and then off to sleep again.  I think there is something going on there but told Aunt Frances to keep and eye on her and let her sleep for awhile and we would make a decision later.  Aunt Frances, apparently, has just told her that she is moving back to Des Moines at the end of November.  Aunt Frances gave her a good year at home – out of the nursing home – she needs to get back to her own life and her own church – have no idea what will happen to mother.  I’m guessing she will be going back to the nursing home…I won’t offer her a bedroom at our house this time…last time she indicated that being stuck in a bedroom here would be just as bad as a nursing home.  ahem…ya.

Well, I go back to work tonight for 1 night – I need to get some sleep even though it is afternoon.  I’m slowly going to get caught up on your blogs…I have no idea what is going on in anyone’s life…so…until next time…..

I think we are taking on water….

Captain..I think we are taking on water…it was windy, the waters were rough, the boat was loaded with 6 adults and one cute little cocker spaniel named Daisy…by the way the adults on board had 2 things in common – they all weighed over 175 – some by a long shot and all were wet.¬† “He” and I took the boat and camper down to Lake Red Rock over the weekend.¬† Sunday afternoon Brett and Christa and Daisy along with Tom and Rhonda joined us on the lake.¬† The first indication that there may be issues was when a couple of boards splintered off of the boat trailer as we were lowering the boat into the water…by the time we got turned around and headed out on the lake, most of us realized that this was probably not a great idea because water was coming up over the front of the boat..sometimes just little waves of it – sometimes great splashes.¬† “He” attempted to move folks around to redistribute the weight farther back on the boat, Rhonda’s sandels were floating to the back of the boat, Daisy was standing in water, as we turned around to head back in, the waves started floating over the right side of the boat…we tried to load back onto the trailer but the wind and waves kept us cockeyed and the rear end of the boat kept sliding sideways.¬† I told Brett to save a cigarette because if it looked like we were really going to die, I was going to smoke.¬† Whew.¬† We made it – but as he and I were pulling up the long boat ramp, we heard that disgusting dragging sound of pontoon on cement…the wood that had splintered off caused the boat to hang down in the rear and we developed a scrape hole…now this is bad enough but after we got her parked, water started pouring out of the pontoon; and pouring…we obviously were taking on water in the pontoon which explains the waves coming over the right side… They all left with assurances that they had fun and we would do this again…probably empty words – we’ll never see any of them again.

Camping was wonderful.¬† The weather was warm but not humid.¬† We did nothing except read, sleep and¬†eat. In fact Monday night, we sat around the campfire until around 3AM…actually cooked brats over the fire at 1AM.¬† We boarded devil dog but Sierra and Marley had a relaxing weekend also.

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They got to sleep in the pop-up camper with mom and dad…and look at this picture of “his” bunk


Bed spread and sheets pulled up over the pillow.¬† I can’t show you a picture of my disheveled bed – it is embarrasing..wouldn’t his momma be proud ūüôā

I also added a video of Marley and Sierra when they thought they were alone.¬† They spent a lot of time together and he obviously appreciates her delicate lab face ūüôā¬† This is not a sex video just a lot of slurpy doggie kisses.

–Edit–you know, I’m a little disappointed in Marley’s behavior..just look how he was fawning over Daisy two weeks ago see entry June 16th hmmmmm…now he’s looking at Sierra with a sparkle in his eye…

Until next time….