The 'Why?'

To find out what this journey is about, start with the beginning, the 'Intro' post.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Van Gifts to Myself

Decided to buy a few things for myself for my birthday.  Here is the results:

I was having a problem figuring out the whole charging of the jumper pack while I am driving.  In the past, I had been having to recharge my jumper pack by attaching an extension cord to the back of the pack, running the extension cord to the front, then plugging it in to an inverter that was then plugged into the cig outlet.  It took a while, but it did work.  Was kind of a pain to move everything around to accomplish this, but it did work.

So instead, I bought this nifty lil $8 12v male to male plug.  The cord is long enough that it reached my already bungeed down jumper pack that sits on my desk, and it's long enough to be able to plug in to the cig lighter.  Driving around a bit today I juiced it up from almost full charge to fully charged in just a little bit of driving.  Was very happy about this. :D

Also, got another lil $8 nifty extension cord for a 12v plug.  It reaches from the bungeed jumper pack that is on my desk, behind it, around the bed, across the back, and fit to where I have the little DVD player.  That cord is so long, it can pretty much reach anywhere in the van I would need it to.  So now instead of moving that jumper pack everywhere 12v is needed, I can leave it where it is, be able to charge it, and have 12v available wherever I may need it.   Coolness!!!

And then there's the lumbar support thing.  Van Halen has zilch in lumbar support.  And driving as much as I will be, it's important.  So I got this:

Worked great!!!   Just enough support without too much.  And I could feel a bit of air back there, no more sweating back, woot!! :)

Today, I may try to put on my last gift to myself..  these.  :)

It had been raining so much I was afraid to try it until it dried out a bit.  Today might be that day. :D


I really don't mind it so much any more.  :)

I've heard it before, and know it's true..   'You can't die from lack of sleep'.  True, you could have some exhaustion issues that could cause some problems.  But in general, lack of sleep will not kill you.  Since hearing that, I do not stress over my occasional insomniac episodes.  I embrace them.

I was having dreams, again.  Sometimes your subconscious will tell you things, if you pay attention.  And I am the type whose brain never shuts up.  So when a dream wakes me up, my brain won't let it go and let me go back to sleep.  So, I just say to heck with it, and get up.  It's okay, really, I don't mind it so much anymore.

So what woke me up?  I had a dream there was an issue with my RV that is for sale, about to be sold.  Guess I am worried about the deal going through after all.  Trying not to be in my waking hours, guess my real self, my subconscious self,  is a little bit anxious about it all going smoothly.  Should be any day now.  I did go out there last few days, after all this horrid rain, and make sure all was dry and sound.  Nary a problem in there, it's all empty, clean, and waiting for the new owners to come get her and show her love.  Decided to start her to make sure all was well, she busted right off. :)

So I've been awake since 1am.  It's quiet, with the sometime dog barking interrupting the silence.  Sometimes I can do my best thinking at these hours.  I have a full two pages of stuff I've written down to either research, write about, or ponder.

Not sure what today will hold.  Supposed to have decent weather, might get some rearranging done in the van.  Had a mishap yesterday while on a Taco Bell run for dinner..  the smallest, tallest, plastic bin toppled over.  Guess I didn't secure it good enough.  I've been thinking of redoing it anyways, maybe going through it all again and purging things and condensing into a different bin and getting rid of that one all together.  Might have been the push I needed.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Traveling with the Pooch

Am trying to figure out different ways to keep the Chevy doggy comfy when we hit the road.

Temps are going to be climbing up there pretty soon.  Got to prepare for it.  Not good to leave doggy's in cars in high temps, bad for doggy's. 

So far my ideas are to avoid stopping in big cities and touristy traps, sticking mostly to nature and state parks type of places, where she is welcomed.  Will also wait to do any grocery type shopping til later at night once it's cooled down some.  A windshield shade, front windows rolled down some, back side windows opened for cross ventilation, a 12v fan and water close by.  Have considered leaving it running with the A/C on and locking it, taking the spare keys inside.  Or, getting her a vest as a service dog and going only where she is welcomed. 

Will be trying out a few times this week, at different temps, the above mentioned scenario with the shade and fan and windows cracked and seeing for myself at what temps outside it reaches inside and at how many minutes it takes to reach what temps.  Maybe I should look in to getting one of those thermometers that you put inside and also gives you an outside reading with a small hookup outside.  Would be helpful on my trips. 

Other alternative is to beg Hotrod to let her hang out with him...  okay, continue to boss him around like she owns the place, haha.  Last resort, as she loves taking off in Van Halen.  But whatever route, gotta take care of lil doggy!!!

Rain, Rain

...rain...   and more rain...    Our little town was besieged by a lot of flooding today.

I didn't leave the house to go look at all the damage, but did see quite a few posts on facebook. 

Our little downtown main street.

The sign for our city park.

Our house is on the outskirts of town and sits on a hill.  On the property, to the side of the house, is a wanna-be-creek.  It's barely had water in it from what I saw in the past year.  But today, there was a rushing river, rapids even.  Was wild!!

Needless to say...  I didn't get much done in Van Halen today.  :)

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

The Cardboard Box Cry

This happened to my daughter when she was 16 years old.

My daughter  had gotten some wheels and her first job working at Subway.  Well, you know how teenagers are, thinking they know everything.  This was one of these discussions.

We were driving around town that day and she was talking about when she moved out and got an apartment for herself.  I asked her if she'd still be working at Subway, or was she not going to think about going to college. 

At this point in life, she was unsure about college.  She didn't do great with math, and as it was a requirement for most any degree out there, she was having her hesitations.

So me, being the butthole mom that I am, decided to give her real life examples.   I asked her how much she made there working at Subway..  which was minimum wage at the time.  I think it was like $5 at the time.  So I said okay, full time, 40 hours a week, and then after taxes, you are looking about having about $700 a month to live on.  

She came back at that with 'but rent is like $500 for a small apartment here'.   And this is where it got interesting..  I asked her if she was wanting to have electricity.. water.. did she want to eat..  gas money for her car..  insurance..  after adding up just some conservative figures I literally had her bawling in the front seat, crying "I'm going to have to live in a cardboard box!!!'.  

And that is how you sometimes deal with know-it-all teenagers..  real world logic and some numbers to back it up!  :)

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Driving Down SPID

Yep..   this is the pic my lil sis took while driving down SPID, the main busy highway that is in Corpus Christi, TX.  She is driving right beside us and snapped this pic:

Friday, May 15, 2015

I Was 38

I was 38 years old before I ever went to my first concert.

True story.  It was Hurt, Breaking Benjamin and Three Days Grace...  at Corpus Christi, Tx.   It was their out door arena on Concrete Street there in Corpus.  

As I was a concert virgin, John did his best to keep me tame.   We did get close to the stage, with a lot of strange smells and all.   No mosh pitting, although I did hear of stories of his previous life with it, lol.  

Just putting this out there... my damn kid.. yeah.. she was a 'Crush Girl'...  like a Hooters girl but they go places...   When Korn come to town.. we were there, and that lil snot got to go backstage to see Korn and didn't take her mom, argh!!!!   wtf???

They actually went to see Slipknot without me one weekend when I was working.   *sad face*

Sunday, May 10, 2015

More Texas Pictures

Thought I'd post some pics I finally got off my phone from the trip in Texas.  :)

Kiddo with the doggies at the beach in north Padre Island by Bob Hall Pier.  Them doggies were smelling EVERYTHING!!!!  haha

These were when we were chilling at the beach wasting some time waiting for my nephews ball game to be over.  That was our view...  Cookie approved.  :)

Chevy riding shotgun.

Enjoying lunch dockside at Rockport, Texas.  One of the fishing boats had my sisters name, Mary Jo, on it.  I had to be mean and send her this pic to rub it in we were down there..  I'm such a meanie!

Dad driving Van Halen, mom in front, HulaJohn in the middle getting to check out the palm trees.

The 'backyard' at my sister Becky's house.   Life is rough, huh?  :)


The view in front of my parent's place at Lake Corpus Christi, Texas.  So peaceful.

The Hibatchi grill we hit in Corpus Christi, Texas.  The show he put on was pretty cool.  :)   And then..  my damn Dairy Queen Tacos I finally got at the first place I could when we crossed over the Texas line.  Notice how I didn't even wait to take some bites before taking a picture?  haha..   Not sure which one of those meals I enjoyed more.  Seriously.  haha

Well I said I'd post them once I got them off my phone, and there you have it.  Yeah, funny things..  I can email them to myself, who'da thunk it?  haha   I know, I stooped.   Was just damned determined to import them by cord and too damn Taurus stubborn to think of a different way.  *shrugs*

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Before Next Van Trip

There's a couple of things I want to do before going on my next trip in Van Halen.  As I am still waiting for the finalization of the big RV sale, have a bit of time to plan.

Of course, the extra house battery and wiring thing.  Will be getting my dad and possibly friend mechanic to look it over and get their opinions.  If nothing else, what I already have in the van meets my small electric needs.

Oil change, again, with Motorcraft oil, and some Lucas oil stop leak stuff.  Before the Kansas trip I was about a quart low.  Not too bad for 1400 mile Texas trip, the multiple around area trips and such and last oil change months ago.   But not great either.  If the stop leak stuff doesn't work, will just keep checking it and putting more oil in as needed.   Heck, it is only a $2550 van, no sense spending lots more $$$ to fix an oil leak when it really just leaked a bit over time and miles. 

Redo the plastic bins in there...  again.   Right now is kinda overkill, haha.   Have 4 huge bins with zilch in them.  These are for clothes, yes, but do I really need 4 of them??   I am NOT a clothes hog.  I will be taking driving type comfortable, multi-tasking clothing, and not too many, at that.  Basic mix and match.  I won't be eating at 5 star restaurants, so no dress up clothes needed.  Wash 'n wear, roll up tight to fit in bins.  Probably flip flops most days.  You get the idea.  Think I will get rid of the multi-level smaller white plastic bin, put all of those things in one of the big drawers and call it good.  Give it a bit more space for a small cooler for when needed.

Re-arrange the under storage.  Just for ease of use and organization.

I've decided not to take copious amounts of water with me.  One gallon of water = 8lbs, and it adds up over time.  Already have 4 one gallon jugs of water in there.  I plan on stopping at grocery stores for fresh food often enough, gallons of water is cheap.  And those fill up water dispensers are everywhere, cheap, and easy.  My beverages will be just plain water, as well.  Right now I drink room temp water all day, anyways.  I see no need for anything different on the road.

Buy a basic tool set.  Just be good to have....  not that I know how to use 'em.  ;)   lol

Research storage of propane and butane inside the van for the possible warm weather.  It's under the bed, shaded, right now.  As I will be driving all day with the dash A/C it will be okay.  And will be sleeping at night when it's cooler.  No problems there.  But what about when I want to possibly hike somewhere during the heat of the day?   And I may be over thinking this as I plan on going where the weather is more tolerable in both heat and cold. 

Would like to get some rechargeable batteries and a small solar dash type set up to recharge them.  They will be used to power up things like the fans and puck lights.  And the sun will charge them for free.

Otherwise, she's driving great and pretty much have everything else ready to hit the road.

Now...  just to plan WHERE!  haha  :)


Lessons Learned in a Garage

This was when I was a kid.

My dad used our 2 car garage as his shop, more or less.  He was always working on something in there..   cars, the van we drove everywhere, motorcycles, our many bicycles, the mini bikes and go cart he built, boat motors...  you get the idea. 

I hung out there all the time, was his little shop rat.  I actually was able to pick up some things as a kid, and could name some pieces of a motor fairly accurately, even if I didn't understand how they actually worked.  It was all very fascinating!!

It was a weekend night and my Uncle Ronnie was over hanging out with my dad, they were working on motorcycles at the time.  They had the motor running and was tinkering and such.  I was very young, say 5-ish at the time.  I thought those mufflers on the motorcycle were so pretty, I wanted to touch them.   Yeah..    omg pain!!!    Burnt both hands, palm down on hot mufflers will do that. 

One of the first things we did?   Put butter on them.   The coolness of the butter felt good at first, but gees!!!  It really didn't help.   Later on in life I found out that is actually one of the bad things to do to a burn.  Meh, I lived and there was no permanent damage.

Lesson learned:  Shit gets hot on running motors.  ;)