Sunday, December 25, 2016


Currently in Goodyear AZ  (Low 39 Mostly Sunny and Cool High 55)

Merry Christmas!!

The following is note that we sent along with our Christmas cards this year.

We had a great year, we call it the ‘family, friends, bucket list, and backroads tour’. Jo’s neck and back pain are always with us but she did get some relief from the nerve cauterization and the neurostimulator implant. She just said she was going to live her life and enjoy this great country. We have blogged ( throughout the year and following our blog is the best way to keep up on us. Our photos of all the places we have visited since we began fulltiming is at Here is a brief summary of what has happened in our lives over the last year, both planned and unplanned.

We spent last Christmas at Saddle Mountain RV Park in Tonopah Arizona and then moved to our normal winter spot in Goodyear Arizona. 

When we left Goodyear our first stop was in Congress Arizona to get our RV weighed at the Escapees SmartWeigh station. We got good news that we were underweight, well at least our RV is, and that we just had to move things around a little. We then dodged the weather, mostly high winds but some thunderstorms, on our way to the Kansas City area. We spent a month in the Kansas City area and it was filled with visiting friends and family and eating at some of our favorite places.

This is where the family part of the tour really kicked in. We went to Iowa and then to Illinois where we met aunts, cousins, an uncle, and nephew. The unplanned nature of living fulltime in an RV reared its ugly head first in Illinois when a lawnmower threw a rock into our RV door. This caused a delay which meant we didn’t get to visit an item on our bucket list, Sleeping Bear Dunes in Michigan. We were able to visit Sault Ste. Marie Michigan (The Soo) and camp along the St. Mary River watching the big ships heading to and from the locks which was a bucket list item. 

After The Soo we visited the Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum on Whitefish Point which was also on our bucket list for its exhibit on the Edmund Fitzgerald.

You knew that if we were on the Upper Peninsula that we would try to visit Houghton and one of our favorite RV parks, the City of Houghton RV Park. We were able to stay there 6 weeks and decompress from our whirlwind travels, a vacation of sorts. After Houghton we were able to get a sliding cargo tray for the basement storage area that Bob has wanted ever since we got the Lifestyle. Then it was off to Minnesota where Bob met an old college buddy then on down to Iowa for more friends and family (Bob’s sisters and niece). During our visits in Iowa Bob’s sister was able to join us camping at a few spots and some other friends that also camp a lot also joined us for a weekend. It was a great time. Missouri was next and we saw friends and family again. Leaving Missouri we were on our way to another bucket list item, the International Balloon Fiesta in Albuquerque. 

Along the way we had our first major problem with the truck causing us to stop in Oklahoma City. Luckily all was needed was reprogramming of the control module, one of the cheaper alternatives it could have been. In Amarillo we had another truck issue, the emergency brake failed the safety inspection. It took multiple visits to multiple Ford dealerships to get this repaired, along with finding other items that needed to be repaired.

We finally got the truck repaired and made it to Albuquerque for the Balloon Fiesta. Our good friends TC and Linda offered their 30a hookup and the street to park (what is called moochdocking) just a few minutes from the ballon park. Not only a place to park close by but they also recorded the Chiefs game and we watched that after parking and then they fed us supper. Camp TC was very hospitable. Then it was off to the Balloon Fiesta. We had a RV site that sat above the launch field so we could take our chairs and watch all the activity. It was something to see 550 balloons ascend to the skies in a short period of time. 

Unfortunately another unplanned item was also happening. Our kitchen slideout was acting up but we could not get it looked at in Albuquerque until for a month or so. We decided we could cancel some plans and hot foot it to Goodyear getting there before all the snowbirds and get it repaired there by a good mobile service company we know. That worked out great as we had the slideout repaired long before it would have even been looked at in Albuquerque.

As we mentioned before this was the year of backroads. We usually travel interstates while towing and then sightsee in the truck. This year we traveled more backroads; Highway US54 in NM, TX, OK and KS. The neat thing about US54 is that we were in those 4 states in one trip. We took US71 in Missouri to Iowa and then US30 across Iowa. Of course all the highways in the Upper Peninsula are backroads as the only interstate is from the Lower Peninsula to Sault Ste. Marie. Interstates are nice but it is nice to get off them and experience small town America on the backroads.

We jammed a lifetime of vacations into this year but there is still so much more to see and do. Next year we plan on heading again to the Great Lakes area for the summer then then hit the Midwest in the fall on the way back to Denver for Bob’s Beryllium testing. After Denver it is off to Texas in the winter. We will miss our friends in Goodyear next winter and we hated to leave in January due to health insurance coverage for Bob. We have loved being here and appreciate the friendships we have enjoyed for so many years
We hope everyone has a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!!

See you on the road sometime!!

Bob and Jo


  1. Merry Christmas. We'll miss you and look forward to meeting again as soon as possible.

  2. Merry Christmas to you both. So many people say to us aren't you afraid of brake down's on the road, etc., etc.. Well as former full-timers we know the great joy traveling in an Rv can be. Even with problems it is so much better then just sitting home reading a great blog like yours. Now as part-timers we can't wait for our next trip. I am just sorry we haven't been able to keep up our blog as we did in the passed. We are preparing a year end draft of our 5 month tour of the west and even surprised ourselves that we had visited over 20 national parks or monuments. So keep traveling as long as you feel able to do so, and keep making memories. God speed and safe travels and hopefully our paths will cross again.

  3. You two have had a super, blessed year of adventure. Sorry to read that you will be leaving in January. We will be in your neck of the woods come March. We plan to attend Spring Training for the Cleveland Indians again this year. But, there is always Texas.