Trapped in Texas y’all

Extended winter travel often demands adjustable scheduling and flexible lodging arrangements due to unpredictable weather difficulties.

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Seems that once again winter has arrived as a blast of arctic air from the north… and is snuggling in all the way to our southern borders. Luckily we headed south from Colorado just in time to avoid being snowed in, but here we sit shivering in south Texas a month later.  Today there is a freeze and hazardous beach conditions warning … and while 42 degrees sounds warm… add a 30 mph wind and this storm system has us digging out our long johns to go birdwatching.

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Our 24′ RV is plenty big when our living quarters can stretch out into the landscape around us…. patio chairs and hours of hiking/biking in the sunshine are a comfortable arrangement.  But days of cold grey drizzle, blasts of wind that keep us off the road, and long stretches of time spent indoors can get old rather quickly… so we like to mix it up. While we normally prefer state and national park settings, during stretches of bad weather we are not adverse to paying a bit more for comforts like electricity, cable TV, wifi and a hot tub.  We are finding that an RV park with these amenities typically runs $25-30 per night… still lower than most lodging in desirable places.
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We also own a couple of timeshares that work for occasional changes of scenery.. so this week we grabbed a 2 bedroom getaway condo on South Padre Island… Splitting the cost with my sister and brother in law made it nearly the same price as last week’s stay in an RV park and we greatly expanded our living quarters with a 8th story view of the ocean and direct access to the beach. It was a great excuse to spend time with family and explore a new place. We’ve fixed fresh fish for dinner, watched movies and enjoyed short trips to local attractions.  Walking the beach in the winter became much more enjoyable… but as the end of the week is approaching the weather is getting worse instead of better 😦
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And so a new search of options began…. the RV parks on the island are meager and relatively expensive $30-35 for basic hookups in a parking lot style arrangement.  KOA offers a bit more… hot tub, wifi, TV.. but at over $50 a night it is beyond our budget.  No getaways available for another week in the area… so I checked local hotel rates and was surprised to find nights at the Ramada Inn just down the road for less than the cost of an RV spot.  $29 a night will get us a king sized bed, microwave, refrigerator, TV, wifi, hot tub, free breakfast and a place to park the motorhome. Cheaper than camping. What a deal!  We will spend the rest of the stormy weekend here on the beach and plan to head out on Monday in the RV.
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Flexible lodging options.  Mixing it up works for us….

Hoping that the weather will smooth out and let us enjoy some time in the desert next week… but for now, we are trapped on the Texas coast for a few more days.
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Bird watching? Beach combing?  Sure… Let’s go!

BTW… I tried to include clickable links in this post because I haven’t done much of that. Try them out and let me know if it adds to or detracts from the post? Thanks!

Geo-power-trail… My First!

Our first ever power trail…
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what better way to spend a day too windy to travel any farther in Kansas by RV… and what better place to wait out this weather than at the Ellis Lakeside Campground?
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Nice views, hookups, wifi and hot showers for a mere $15. We unhooked our tow vehicle and headed out for a couple of hours of fun on backroads.
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Ran the entire series in order until we got to the S… then it took a little backtracking. Not entirely comfortable going around “road closed” signs … but it wasn’t far and it was too windy to walk. I had to muscle open the door, hold on to my hat and turn my back to the wind to avoid having the log blow away at every stop… but the day was warm and every cache was where it was expected.
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Great series!! We tripled our “most caches in a day” total with this series! This really put Ellis on the geo-map for us!
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Headlines, Deadlines, and Bottom Lines

My life is relatively stress free… relative to times in my own past… relative to the stress faced by many other people in this crazy, uncertain world.  Everything is relative.

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Lately I have allowed myself to get caught up in the details of regularity (no, not the biological type)… the “what day of the week is it” or “what time is it” sort of expectations.  The kind of routines that sap spontaneity from the moment, lure me away from mindfulness and leave me apprehensive about the consequences of stepping out into the unknown. 

“worry is time wasted, wishing for something you don’t want” 

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There are a few details that pop up every so often in my world that I am best served to attend to in a timely manner…. Paying bills, maintaining important mechanical items, and dealing with malfunctions come to mind.  These things are the “urgent” in my life… but, in the bigger picture… they are not the most important.

“If money can “fix” a problem… It’s not really a problem.”

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My health, my family, and creating memories by experiencing new things are what I consider priorities.  Focusing positively and intentionally on these things is what makes me happy… It fuels my optimism and motivates me as I anticipate all of the exciting, fulfilling adventures that await me in life.

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When I let urgent concerns from within and without become my focus, I can feel my vitality drain and my mind is swept away in the futility of worry. Politics, distant wildfires, senseless violence, weather forecasts… there is nothing beyond living compassionately and being alert that I can do to change these things… yet being connected to the media in an instantaneous world causes these things to crowd into my realm of “urgent” concerns…. Impacting my health and happiness on a daily basis.

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Today I embark on a recurring mission… to reclaim the reality that I call life by focusing on those things I deem most important and letting the peripheral issues slip away….  I have faith that the world is unfolding as it is meant to… I believe that humanity is basically good… I trust that we will find ways to adapt to all that is constantly changing around us. 
The only thing that’s permanent… Change.

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Perhaps the best way to break the habits generated by routine is to set off on a new adventure where the days are blank slates to be crafted with intention… where focus can be redirected and celebrated.

Ready? It’s time…. Let’s go!