The Urban Life

I have been thinking about this post for awhile. When we are not traveling I find it hard to sit down and write but I have wanted to tell you about our new digs and what living downtown has been like for us.

We moved into a one bedroom apartment on the west side of the river in the downtown Cedar Rapids area. This is a brand new building that actually they are still working on. The first floor is businesses, floors 2 and 3 are apartments and floors 4, 5, & 6 are condos. We love the building. Every apartment and condo has a balcony that looks out over the river and the McGrath Amphitheatre.

Our little apartment in this building is 767 sq. which, after living in our 5th Wheel for 7 years, seems huge. We feel these apartments were well thought out. The kitchen is wonderful. It has a large island (all  solid countertops - quartz I think) with a large sink and plenty of seating room . We started by buying 3 barstools but found that it would fit 5 and since when Mitch, Jen and Evie vis…

Back in Iowa and changes ahead

I've been contemplating this post ever since we arrive back in Iowa. We got here by way of Smith Center KS where we had some work done at the Excel Service Center. A new air conditioner, gray tank, slide seals and adjustment and we were on our way.  They do a great job there but it was definitely a bill.

We arrived back in Iowa in time for both John's birthday and our granddaughter Evie's 4th birthday. It has been so great to see her, Mitch and Jen again. Soon we hope to see our older son Gabe and his wife Melissa. They live in NW Iowa and hope to make it here in a couple weeks. It's also good to see old friends again. A good friend Steph is recovering from chemo and it was so good to see her and hear her CT scan looked good at the end of treatment. My BFF (as the kids say) Trudy and I are back to regular coffee sessions and have a trip to Galena planned next week for her birthday. We have already taken in one Kernels baseball game and had drinks with Brian and Mary. …

Elephant Butte and Dodge City

We are actually back in Iowa now but I wanted to tell you about a couple places we stopped on the way from Tucson to Iowa. The first is Elephant Butte State Park in Elephant Butte NM. This is one of my favorite places. I'm always worried when I go someplace like this, that I love, that this time it won't meet my expectations but no worries there; it is still one of my favorites.

The campground we stay in is actually about 8 miles north of town at South Monticello Point. The main part of the state park is in town and is ok, but this campground we feel outshines those by a mile. Now, for RVers, I need to tell you this is not a park to come to expecting lots of activities. In fact, it is just the opposite: a restful very serene place. A perfect spot to recharge. It is surrounded by mountains and buttes with a wonderful 360 degree view. We had a pull thru with a view of the reservoir. What I love most about this place is the quiet. It had little sound pollution. Sometimes I don&#…

The desert blooms

We left Tucson on the 27th and right now are at Elephant Butte State Park and I will tell you more about that (I love it here) in the next post. I wanted first to tell you about a visit we took to the Sonoran Desert Museum just a little before we left. In the desert behind the park we had seen hints of spring with some ground flowers and blooms on the bushes but no cactus blooming. At the craft group meeting I learned that the gardens at the Museum were in bloom. They get some irrigation and bloom earlier. Ralph and Cheryl invited us to join them in visiting the museum. Yes, the gardens were in bloom and I am so happy we got to see them. I tried to put a slide show together but haven't figured out that software so decided I would just post photos. Some things are just better left to our visual senses. Besides the flowers I have included the photo of the Kestrel they had for people to see, This is the bird that we had perched in our tree early in our Tucson visit. The photos are m…

The desert is getting ready to bloom

This week we hiked in Saguaro National Park Western Division and we are beginning to see buds and a few blooms.  Its not quite time yet but it won't be long.  Previous years we have left before the blooms so I am excited to see it. The rains this year are making for an earlier bloom than usual. The month of February saw quite a few rainy days (for the desert) and the temps were below normal much of the month. However, for the next 10 days the predicted temps will be about 10 degrees above normal (normal is around 70). Just finished another walk and the temp is around 80+ with just enough breeze to keep you cool. Love it.

Our friends John and Sharon Hinton were in the park for about 10 days. It was great to spend some time with them. I am always sad to see them leave but I know our paths will cross again down the road.

Since there really isn't too much to write about on the RV front. John is an avid reader and I love to read too but I also love to knit and I haven't figured o…


We are back in Tucson. This is our 4th winter visit here and will be the longest stay we have had here. Our plan is to stay until the end of March. I haven't been in much of a blogging mood but lately I have been doing some pondering on my walks about what to write. We did stay a couple places on our way here that I didn't blog about. Spent a week at Jojoba Hills Escapees co-op park and had a chance to spend time with Lu and Terry. We enjoy them so much and it had been much to long between visits. They are the type of friends that when we meet up it feels like picking up where we left off.  Jojoba hills is a beautiful park in the mountains of Southern California. It is a place we would consider trying to get onto when we are done wandering.

Then it was on to Yuma where we spent a week. It was during Christmas and we were able to spend some time with Brad and Martha that we met last year. We had a fun day in Mexico with them and their son Chris who just returned from a trip to A…