Showing posts from May, 2011

Favorite Decorah Places

We spent almost 2 weeks in Decorah before graduation. Over the last 4 years we have been here often and have come to know and appreciate this little town. I thought I would share some of our favorite places here. If you visit Iowa, make time for this beautiful little town as it has much to offer. I previously talked about Pulpit Rock Campground so I won't say too much here other than it is definitely a favorite campground. If you are a trout fisherman this little trout stream runs right through the campground.

This is a trail that you can use to walk downtown, it is beautiful along the river and cliffs. We rarely drive when we are here choosing instead to walk most places. If you get an ice cream craving, you can't beat the Whippy Dip, it is always busy on a nice day.  If you want to know the history of this area then a visit to the Vesterhiem Museum is a must. This is the premier Norwegian American Museum, the King of Norway has made several visits here. My maternal side of the f…


This last week has been a busy one. Started with Mitchell’s graduation, back to CR so I can start work teaching my first class of the semester, John heads back to Decorah to move some of Mitch’s stuff back and it is now the holiday weekend. I haven’t taken the time to post so I think I will do several posts in the next couple of days instead of trying to stuff it all into one post. Today I’ll just share Mitch’s graduation. He actually isn’t quite finished as he has some language credits to get this summer. He’ll be taking German at the U of Iowa this summer. It is a long story as to why he doesn’t have this done. Partly his own fault but also several snafus by the college. He actually has a semester of Norwegian that he didn’t get credit for because the program didn’t get that part of the curriculum approved as part of his abroad program. So he has to start over with a different language.  The good part is, Luther allows anyone who will be graduating in 2011 to walk at graduation. They …


Just a quick post. We filled up the truck today with diesel. Just $3.89 a gallon! That is $.15 less than our last fill up and the first time in a month that it was under $4. Starting to celebrate Mitch's graduation tonight. I may have to make a toast to lower fuel prices - even if it is temporary!

Exercise and the RV life

This is  topic that I have wanted to write about but have hesitated to do so. Why? Well because sometimes we are very disciplined and sometimes we aren’t and I never want anyone to think since this is the way we do it that everyone else should do the same. However, I do want to share a few things we have found that have helped us along the way. So here goes.
A couple years before we set out on the RV life John and I worked out with a personal trainer for over a year. Sometimes it was 2-3 times a week and later once a week.If you have the money and opportunity to this I highly recommend it. Learning correct form from a trainer is priceless. However, few of us have the money to keep that up indefinitely, so at some point we have to venture out on our own.  The first 6 months out on the road and several of the months ahead of leaving we didn’t do a very good job of keeping up with our training and consequently we both gained weight and lost muscle. At the first of this year we knew this h…

Fall and Winter Plans

We have made a couple decisions this week about our fall/winter plans. John decided we should investigate doing seasonal work for Amazon. Several times the ad has come across our paths through Workamper News and RV friends we met last fall (Eveyln and Kevin of Chronicles of Kevilyn) had signed up to work for them.  He had me email them and ask a few questions. It is a lot of work, 40-50 hour weeks. They pay your campground fees and pay you for the work so with both of us working we could make a good amount in short period of time. So we contacted them, made the application, and had a phone interview. We are now scheduled to start November 6th at their Coffeyville, KS warehouse and will work until December 23rd. What really prompted this move is John’s desire to do a solar upgrade to our rig. Financially it just made more sense to earn the money for this then to take it out of our savings. It may take a bit to get it done but it would be nice to do this within the next year. John has be…

Time at Pulpit Rock

We have been here now the better part of a week. We have been coming to this campground for about 3-4 years, with a tent before we had the 5th wheel. It is a beautiful place with lots of green grass that they are constantly mowing and are very protective of it, no parking on driving on or putting carpet on the grass. That’s ok with us as it is a wonderful carpet to walk on! At the beginning of the week we were the only ones in our loop but had several more rigs this weekend. It hasn’t been as busy as it usually is but I think the weather played a big part in that. Tuesday and Wednesday were very hot and humid and then Thursday the temps went back down and the rain came in. It stayed that way on and off until today. Today it is sunshine and in the 60s, a much better day. The weather this week is suppose to be much better. Yeah!!!!
My youngest will graduated from Luther College next Sunday. His last exam is tomorrow. We have seen him a couple times. The first night here. He and friend Ku…


All the photos today are from last week at Morgan Creek County Park near Cedar Rapids, IA.
We had another busy week in Cedar Rapids. It is really nice being back “home” especially spending time with family and friends but I do miss the slower pace of life out on the road. I think many of the RVers out there will agree that the slower pace is why we chose this lifestyle. We tend to go out more here too which stresses the budget a little. Good thing I will have a small paycheck for part of the summer.  I am about ready for my class. All the printing is ready and first class day things prepared. I still need to get a grade spread sheet ready and some quizzes rewritten.  My other big project for the summer is rewriting the midterm. This will be the first class I will walk into that I don’t already know the students, that is a little daunting. One of the things I like about that is that I have no preconceived attitude towards the students. As a teacher you always try to stay impartial but it…

Reflections on Osama’s demise

For the last two days we have all been reading and reflecting on the death of Osama Bin Ladin. I know we are glad to see the end to someone who had killed so many and affected all our lives directly or indirectly. Here are some things I have pondered. What do you think Osama’s last thought were when confronted with a very lethal Navy Seal in his face? I truly believe he thought he was untouchable and would never be caught, so was it surprise? How about the Seal who made the kill? I know they are trained for this but killing anyone is not an ordinary task. Elation that we finally got him? (I am sure this was part of the reaction)  What about looking into the face of the man you are killing. Does that haunt them a little? What a difficult job.  What about the angst our President must have felt? Not knowing for certain that we had the right target and knowing he would be putting the lives of this Seal team at risk. This is a President who had worked very hard at repairing our image in the w…

The week that flew by.....

Another week has gone by and I haven’t had the ambition to write. We still have been busy but not quite as busy as last week. On Monday we moved to Squaw Creek the other county park we stay at. After 8 months on the road I have really come to appreciate these parks. The sites are large, all have a level of privacy and the grounds are well kept. Both parks also have excellent bath houses which is good since we are still without hot water. The RV dealer we are taking it to had to wait on the part so instead of getting it taken care of last Monday we will go get it fixed tomorrow. John even called to make sure the part arrived. We have a 10 o’clock appointment tomorrow morning so we will move again, back to Morgan Creek for about a week and a half until we head to Decorah for Mitch’s graduation.  There was lots of good news this week. Son, Gabe, got a job at Dublin City (a local bar/restaurant) so is once again employed and Mitch had a great phone interview with a company here in Cedar Ra…