Where We've Been (46 out of 50 States)...Where We Are!

Where We've Been (46 out of 50 States)...Where We Are!
We are extensively traveling around...working and having a blast...Life is Grand!

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Primm Valley Resorts…Casinos…& Ending 2011

We had mentioned to one another several times as we passed through the Primm Valley area that one day we would return and actually spend the night. They do not have a RV Park, but boondocking is allowed in several different areas. Because the weather was going to be freezing at night, we opted to stay in one of the three hotels.

Our choice was at Whiskey Pete’s in a Jacuzzi Suite. Our suite, as the entire hotel and casino is in need of some repairs and TLC, but we made the best of a not so great situation, as we tend to do so well and the view was spectacular!

There were minor malfunctions with the room, no coffee pot, shower not working correctly, toilet about to fall off and plugged, Jacuzzi not working properly, constantly shutting off. We were also informed it was a non-smoking room, but there were ashtrays in the room and both neighbors were heavy smokers which made it very hard for me to sleep. Smoke in the casinos is rough on my allergies, but usually clear up once we leave the casino and we get some fresh air. But not these two days, we were inundated with it and it made for an uncomfortable time, so uncomfortable that we shortened our stay and only stayed two nights.

Whiskey Pete’s, Primm Resort, and Buffalo Bills are all part of the Terrible’s family of casinos, each one is very small with not too many slots to play so we chose to amuse ourselves with other activities. We ate, we Jacuzzi’d, and we shopped at the outlet mall, and we enjoyed our time off of working.

We headed over to Laughlin, Nevada a day early and are staying at the Avi KOA RV Park. We have stayed here several times in the past few years on New Year’s Eve since they do not raise their prices outrageously during the holidays and even though it is usually packed it doesn’t seem to have a lot of activities which cause for a loud night.

Our plan as usual is to celebrate with just the two of us in our home, but there may not be too much celebrating since Jerry caught some sort of bug and has kept us both awake most of last night due to it coming out both ends. He’s feeling better today, but not at 100%, but hopefully he will back to being himself soon and we can taste some of the different types of wine we purchased while we were traveling.

For more photos, check out our Picasa Web Albums.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas…We Are On the Road Again…

Yes, we finally left on Saturday around noon and what a farce it ended up to be…we continue to ask ourselves why we did not follow our hearts and adventure into new territory when it was offered to us earlier in the season by another company. We live and learn and it was a costly lesson, but we learned it well. We now know why he doesn’t get many return management…what we learned without going into details is he is not a man of his word and never means what he says or says what he means and we will no longer work for a man who is so wishy washy, or dishonest, or whichever term that fits this situation. The one thing we know is that we are leaving with fantastic karma and he is not. We gave our all and did a great job, and almost doubled his business, even though he stated differently, we found last year’s totals, so we know differently than what he was trying to hand us.

Now, looking at the bright side, we had the best crew ever. We chose to hire a group of the high school kids but needed to hire a few “Elders” to handle the day shifts while they were in school and we have never experienced such great kids. We have been enlightened that there really are fantastic kids in our world because when you listen to the news and other older folks, it sounds as if there are not any good kids left. Well, there are and they were working for us this season. These kids were well mannered, polite, and eager to learn, took initiative when needed and did not complain. Now for the elders, who by the way were kids from the neighborhood who all knew one another but were in their early 20’s, now the elders were just a bit more to handle but all in all they all did a great job and if we were to return, which we WILL NOT, we would hire many of them back again.

Another great condition this season was the weather. We could not have asked for a better weather season. We had many days of fog, and some really frigid temperatures in the evenings and first part of the morning, but as for any rain…virtually none. We did have one morning, it was frigid and rainy until about noon, then it cleared up and it was sunny for the rest of the afternoon. This helped us through the rough days when Kevin was being a real poop head.

We had a mix of customers as well, some not so nice but most of them were very warm, kind, and in the true spirit of Christmas.

Jerry found a BevMo just around the corner from us and we were able to do some tasting of different kinds and types of wines which we will be sharing with you all in some of the upcoming days. First, we will be doing some resting up, some cleaning up of ourselves and the rig from too many long hour days.

We hope you all have a safe and wonderful holiday season and we hope that the New Year brings all of your dreams into your reality. We are currently working on a pretty exciting adventure that we can’t yet share with you, but we will just as soon as we are able to do so.

We have added our photos from the lot on our Picasa Web Albums, please feel free to check them out.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Single Digits

Not temperature, but days until we are on the road again…

We honestly did not think we would make it through this gig, but we stuck it out and learned a lot about ourselves. We learned that most of our lives we settled and always took abuse from others because it felt normal to us. Well, we now know it is not normal and we do not deserve to be treated as badly as we have been treated again this season.

We deserve to have the best that life has to offer, even though that little soft voice within ourselves says differently, we know that we deserve the wonderfulness that life has waiting for us once we claim it and believe it.

We stood up for ourselves and spoke with him, but as usual, it did nothing. He actually tried to turn it all around and make it as if it were our fault. He actually told me that I had a side which he referred to as Bad Kimberly that did not like to be told what to do. After trying to defend myself, I finally gave up, realizing that he was not going to get it and I refused to waste my time trying to make him understand that his so called opinion of me did not matter. We have the experience of managing his lot without all the supervision he felt he had to give to us, but he has this idea that we can’t, even after working for him for 4 years. No amount of explaining would make him understand, so we just let it go and will finish off this season, but will not return. We deserve a much better environment for the holidays.

Christmas Eve and Christmas Day will be our traveling days…we will head southeast for some rest, relaxation, play and figure out what we will do next. We have some drying out to do, both the rig and our bodies…we have some remodeling and repair to do…again both the rig and our bodies. The one thing we know for sure is that we will be living our lives from an entirely different perspective. Life’s lessons are not always fun to go through, but in the end they are what assists us in continuing onto the next phase of our lives and we look forward to every moment.

In the past few months, we have tried several different types and brands of wine and will share all of our reviews once we get in vacation mode. We wish everyone in our lives the best holiday season...travel safe and make the best memories ever.

Friday, December 02, 2011

Caring What Others Think

This has always been one of our Achilles’ heels and even though we have been working hard at it, it seems to be taking a toll on us these last few days. It doesn’t help that the lot has been so slow and we are just sitting around…not what we expected from this location but the weekends are really busy so we should be good now.

We have always had a great disposition when it comes to people but we are not perfect and we have had a few not so pleasant times with customer service. The complainers always complain the loudest but the good ones hardly ever say anything… Why is that? Anyway, I was bored so I went online with my new IPhone and searched reviews about this business and found some comments about my attitude with some of the pumpkin people…well needless to say it did not sit well with me. Then, our boss was in a mood and said a few things that really got under our skin.

So, for the past few days we have been down on ourselves, then we had an epiphany…we will NEVER be able to please everyone and until you have walked a mile in my shoes, do not have the audacity to complain about my customer service when in all honesty it was you that was being unreasonable.

We always go above our call of duty, because that is how we were raised and it feels right to us. But, there are times when people expect so much and are not willing to give back nothing. That is exactly what these few circumstances were all about.
We still do not have the proper electricity we need to run our motorhome and it is now worse since we have a gauge which is telling us that not only do we not have enough power, we also do not have a dedicated line for us only. The other day I came in to vacuum and looked at the meter and we were peaked…we had nothing running to warrant that sort of usage. When the museum shut down at 4pm we looked at the gauge, it was back to what we have been living with for the past few weeks.

Bad enough for our rig not having the power we need, then our setup in the lot is bad as well. I usually use a space heater in my booth to keep me warm and whenever I turn it on, my lights go out and there are other little nuances about electrical stuff throughout the lot that when we expressed our concern, we were brushed off.

The good news is…we have only 22 more days…then we are off to the desert to dry up. We are looking into other types of work for next year, we do not want to do another pumpkin or Christmas lot ever again! We want to have fun while we work...enough of this already!

For more photos, check out our Picasa Web Albums.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Our Vacation Continues

What a difference a day makes…one night we paid the most we have every paid for a site and the next we paid under $20 for a just as adequate site at Kit Fox RV Park. We have stayed here several times when we had been in the area and will continue to stay here whenever we are nearby.

How is it that many of these resorts feel they can get away with highway robbery? It is still a site, not a hotel room. We still provide our own living space and do not need any services that hotels offer, but somehow they still feel they can charge these exuberant prices for a site. We never use any of the facilities. We use our own showers, bathroom, and every so often we use their laundry facilities that we pay extra for anyway. How do they justify it?

Our next stop was Jackson Rancheria Casino RV Park. This place was 100 times better than the Marina Dunes RV Park and for more than 50% less…how does that work? They are still on the high side, but compared to others they are less expensive, plus we had another play day.

We have been staying a few days at each location, just enjoying some play time at the casino and then some down time relaxing and writing. Once again, we know that we need to write and take photos and share our stories with our readers. Every time we decide to stop writing, we get yet another comment from one of our readers that hit a chord within our souls and tells us that we must continue our dream lifestyle. Life seems to happen that way.

After a few days at Jackson Rancheria Casino and RV Park, we drove about 40 miles to our next location. The drive was spectacular, we love taking many of the roads less traveled. We took 49 north to Placerville KOA which happens to be one exit away from the Red Hawk Casino. They offer a free shuttle, we had a blast. We got there in the morning and stayed until the wee hours of the next morning, we remain ahead of the game and continue having so much fun. Life is good.

There was a special rate at the Placerville KOA, so we stayed for three days, playing, resting, cleaning the rig and doing some laundry before moving on to our next adventure.

For more photos, check out our Picasa Web Albums.

Placerville KOA

4655 Rock Barn Road
Shingle Springs, CA 95682

With an online casino discount, we paid $100 for 3 nights. Our site included, electric, water, sewer, free cable, free WiFi on a not so level, gravel pull-thru site. Our Verizon phones and MiFi had great reception.

The staff was so friendly and willing to go out of their way to make our stay perfect. They allowed us to check in at 10 am without an extra charge, they also allowed us to move our site when we mentioned a few of our wants. Customer service always changes our outlook on a place and makes our stay much brighter, allowing the little nuances to slip past us.

There were traffic noises since the park is located right on a highway. We do not mind the consistent noise like traffic, we do not like the loud noises like dogs barking and loud rude people late at night, which this park did not have any of that.

The grounds were not immaculately taken care of, the grass was dry in many areas, leaves everywhere, and the sites were gravel and not very level, but there was not any trash littered in the park.

The amenities that were located at the front office were kept clean and well maintained. The laundry room was small but the washers and dryers worked so well, we were in and out very quickly.

The pool, spa and game room were all closed during our stay since only polar bears swam during this time of the year.

Pet Policy – Pets are welcome, but they must be on a short leash at all times. They are not to be tied outside alone for they tend to get lonely and bark for you to come back. Sorry, NO Pitbulls/Pitbull mixes allowed. They have a special place of their own by the petting barn. If an accident occurs before you get there, please pick it up so nobody steps in it.

By calling the casino number given to us by the office at check-in we had a very accommodating free shuttle service to the Red Hawk Casino, located one exit away. The casino is huge and we found ourselves able to play any machine even at the busy times since there were so many machines to choose from. If we are ever in the area again, we would stop by for another visit.

For more photos, check out our Picasa Web Albums.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Our Great Escape…A Visit to Hearst Castle…Traveling Highway 1 & So Much More…

We escaped and had a successful closing of the Pumpkin Patch…so much we actually left a day early. We had the place cleaned up a before 10am on November 1st, so we decided to begin our vacation earlier than our original plan.

We stopped for two nights in Gilroy, California, a drive of just 80 miles. We did our major WalMart shop, we both got haircuts, and then hooked up for the night. We took long showers and just relaxed the rest of the evening. The next day we did our laundry, cleaned the inside of the rig, the outside will have to wait for now, and we took some time to rest our weary bones. We once again chose to stay at Gilroy Garlic USA RV Park, be sure to check out the reviews of all the parks we are staying in while traveling California.

We are noticing outrageously high rates that many of the RV Parks, Resorts and Campgrounds here in California are charging…unbelievably ridiculous. Some worse than others, but for all of them…NO RV site is worth, 60 to 70 dollars per night, but unfortunately that is what we have been paying for many of them.

We decided to wait to visit San Diego some other time, just too much traveling when we are trying to get some rest. Instead, we plan to meander around Central/Northern California, looking for exciting things to visit and play at some of their casinos…we love play days and possibly visit some of the local wineries!

Since we had already made a reservation at the Flying Flags RV Resort & Campground in Buellton, we decided that would be the furthest south we would head. One of the main reasons we chose this resort was they offered a free shuttle to the Chumash Casino Resort and nearby wineries. After checking in, we found out that they still offer this service but they only ran every 4 hours…what an inconvenience. The wineries in the area, were actually wine tasting rooms, the actual wineries were miles away. We do not like wine tasting rooms, we prefer to do the winery tours with free tastings.

We did stop at the Pea Soup Andersen’s Restaurant and had a bowl of their famous Split Pea Soup in a Bread Bowl. Now, don’t get me wrong, it was delicious, but my mom made the best split pea soup ever. Her soup was thick from soaking the peas overnight, and she boiled the peas along with the ham bone from our Easter dinner for hours, then she threw in all the leftover ham, then chopped up onions and potatoes into small pieces so they all sort of merged with one another. It would take a miracle for any place to beat her soup.

Then we decided to take a very scenic drive along the Pacific Coast, Highway 1 from Morro Bay to Monterey, stopping in San Simeon to view the Hearst Castle. We took the first time tour, which gave us an overview of the entire estate. First, let me say, the bus ride alone is worth the $25 per person we paid. It takes you up the windiest roads with a fantastic view with every twist. My camera was going non-stop for the entire ride, as well as when we arrived at the top to the castle.

Wow, to have that much money to one day decide that he had all this land and was tired of living in a tent, decided to create this castle…28 years later it was completed. Truly it was never completed, as he always found new and different things to build or add to this magnificent creation. We, on the other hand after being out here the first year full-timing in a tent decided we were tired of living in a tent and bought Maggie. Not the Hearst Castle, but we love her just the same. Can’t even imagine living like that…maybe that is why we struggle so much, we think we want to live high on the hog, then we realize we are not cut out that way.

When we set out on the drive, we hadn’t made any plans where we would stop for the night since we didn’t know how long it would take, we were very surprised with the twists and turns of the entire highway and it was almost dark when we finally hooked up at the most outrageously priced RV site at the Marina Dunes RV Park in Monterey. Check out the separate review for all the details.

Since we had to wait until the office opened in the morning so we could pay them, we took a walk on the dunes to the ocean. It was a great morning walk, the ocean, lakes and most water really puts me into a great frame of mind, almost a meditative state of mind that leads me to better decision making and a very productive life. A few moments on the water make up for months of no time on the water.

We took a ton of photos, we have them in separate albums, one dedicated to Hearst Castle, another from the scenic drive up the coast as well as each of the RV parks we stayed. We also did separate reviews, so please check out our photos at our Picasa Web Albums page and our reviews on separate blog entries.

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Jackson Rancheria Casino RV Park

12222 New York Ranch Road
Jackson, CA 95642

With a 10% discount using our Good Sam card we paid $70 for 2 nights with no additional taxes for a water, electric, sewer, WiFi and cable back-in site on a concrete slab with a picnic table. A bit pricey but not as high as many of the California parks we have stayed in lately. We did use their free WiFi since our Verizon phones and MiFi was very slow.

The last time we were here, we showed up as we always do but they were full. Apparently this happens a lot since they cater to many clubs. We recommend reservations or at least as we did this time, we called ahead to see how full they were going to be for our timing and then called the night before to assure we had an available site and we did.

This place is really a class act. Upon checking in, they give you coupons that give you some great savings. Not only at the Casino but for future stays here at the RV Park. Also, due to some sort of environmental thing once you check in you pull into an area where they dump you and give you a liquid to use in your black tank while you are parked.

Their amenities are very well maintained. The showers, restrooms and play areas were immaculate. They have two spas and a nice size pool that we did not partake in since it was frigid the few days we were here.

Pet outside your RV must: Be attended and leashed at all times. Be kept quiet and under control. Never be tied to anything. Be cleaned up after immediately. N pens, cages, or kennels permitted outside without prior approval. Management reserves the right to require any guest to remove a misbehaving pet or vacate their site if a pet is a nuisance to others.

The free shuttle service runs every 20 minutes or so and we had a fantastic lunch for only $5 each, using the coupons they gave us at check-in. The casino had some good slots and was fun at first, then after lunch the place got crowded and stayed that way until late into the evening.

With or without the coupons we received we will be keeping this gem on our radar for future visits.

For more photos, check out our Picasa Web Albums.

Sunday, November 06, 2011

Marina Dunes RV Park

3330 Dunes Drive
Marina, CA 93933

We paid $70.56 using our Good Sam or AAA discount for a water, electric, sewer, free WiFi (our phone and MiFi worked great), free cable (that did not work) on a level, gravel, back-in site for 1 night. Yes, you read that right, it was for one night.

We arrived late in the evening, after dark and self-registered for our site. Nowhere anywhere on the forms was there a price, just a really great way to check someone in after hours. There were laminated forms on a board with all the information about the site, the size, the services, but no price and informed us to come into the office in the morning and settle up. Needless to say it was major sticker shock for us, but we paid it and moved on.

The park was small and covered with many trees which gave it a very private feeling. It was not open to see other RV’s; we could hardly see our neighbors. We took a walk in the morning before the office opened at 9 am and took some photos of the area, nice facilities and amenities. Including the grounds, they were all maintained, but not kept very clean. This was unacceptable for the price they charge.

Pet Policy – “We love pets, but they must wear a short leash when outside their rig and please, don’t leave them alone. They get lonely when you’re away and let everyone know how upset they are. Please walk your pet outside the Park and pick up after them.” We encountered poop right outside the park and along our walk to the dunes. We also had a few barking dogs throughout our short stay in the middle of the night and bright and early in the morning.

Due to the exuberant nightly rates, we will not be staying there again anytime soon.

For more photos, check out our Picasa Web Albums.

Saturday, November 05, 2011

Hearst Castle - Hearst San Simeon State Historical Monument

750 Hearst Castle Road
San Simeon, CA 93452

Open daily at 8 am – Advanced Reservations Recommended.

This is not anywhere remotely near anywhere else, so you will have to make it a trip of its own. The drive along Pacific Coast Highway 1 to get there and then the bus ride up to the Castle are both breathtaking and worth the trip. The roads curve and wind and twist and with each turn there is a different view to enjoy. On the bus ride up to the castle, you might see deer, horses, cows, zebras, buffalo, and if you are truly lucky you may even see the more exclusive animals that still roam the hills.

Once arriving at the top, you are greeted by your host who gives you a guided tour for about 40 minutes before letting you go to explore on your own. They offer several types of tours, we opted for Tour 1, the Experience Tour – Recommended for the first-time visitors as it provides a broad overview of the many facets of Hearst Castle and it is the least strenuous of the tours. Not so, we still walked hundreds of steps.

Many of the tours duration is a few hours, so be prepared to have that time available so to experience it all. The other tours they offer are more of specialty tours that includes the Upper Floors, the North Wing, as well as Garden Tours and Evening Tours for your personal pleasures.

We took so many photos that do not even begin to tell the story of how exquisite this castle truly is. The workmanship and the priceless items on the premises is beyond our comprehension, they are each grande on their own without being so professionally gathered together with each other item.

We highly recommend a visit here, if for nothing else the fantastic photo moments the area offers.

For all of our million of photos we took during our visit, check out our Picasa Web Albums.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

They Say...

It's my birthday...I'm gonna have a good time...

We are almost done...3 days left and we are vacationing for almost 3 weeks before we return to do the trees...but for today, it's my birthday and I am going to have the time of my life!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

How Did We Ever Live Without It?

For any of you who know me personally, you know that I have always been very up to date technology wise, always knowing all the latest programs, software, hardware and everything in between. I lost most of that drive when we began living this lifestyle, still dabbling in the latest and greatest gadgets, but just not doing it with all the vengeance I use to have. There has always been that deep pitted desire to upgrade to an IPhone, but could never justify the extra cost…well, today is a new day and I am finally in the 21st Century.

For my birthday this year, coming up the end of this month, we decided it was time for me to get the IPhone. We were able to pick it up for under $100, with a 2 year contract. We are never concerned about signing a 2 year contract with Verizon, since they have and will always have the best service amongst all the others.

Now the new issue is how can we get one for Jerry? His contract is not up until December of 2012 and without it, we would have to pay over $600 for his phone…not happening. Since my computer crapped out and I took over his, we have been planning to get him a new one once we leave California. Did I mention the taxes here? OMG…We paid an extra $45 in taxes on our phone since it was delivered to a California address. Now, we think with as little as he uses his computer, we could get by with getting him an IPhone for him to check the few websites he actually visits…still mulling this over and since we will be out of California in January, we will get him his IPhone then.

As for our experience at the pumpkin patch, well we are in the single digits of days left until we are done with it. We are so tired of complaining…doesn’t change a thing and is so unproductive and now that there are only days left, we need to get productive and make the best out of this entire situation. We grew a “pair” and have begun to very nicely and firmly get our point across to some of these nincompoops. We also know that it is not the long hours, is not the hard work, it is the people…the rude, inconsiderate people that insist on being idiots. Well, that is there problem and we will no longer allow their stupidity to control our happiness, after all you can’t fix stupid.

We have looked into other seasonal types of work, but the money keeps us coming back to doing this. There are a few others that we have considered and will once again look into them. As far as future pumpkin and Christmas tree lots, we love the sales part we just do not like the type that cater to the kids with all the entertainment. It is too much for just Jerry and I to do on our own, we may also like it if it were a bigger operation and we had help. We will continue to look into new adventures for next season, but for this season, we will continue with what we have and look into other possibilities for next year.

We have looked into the gatekeeping, mostly in Texas and the pay, even though many say is great, for us it is not a good fit. Working 12 hour shifts is enough, being on duty for 24/7 for $125 for both of us calculates terribly for us. We understand that you are not working 24 hours a day but if somebody needs something at no oclock in the morning…guess who needs to take care of them with a smile.

We also looked into Amazon, and we make more in less time working these lots than we would working months at Amazon…and, the weather at the locations is frightful. We love the warm sunny days of being out west.

Thank you for all your comments and support during this time for us. Life always seems to give us lessons, the sooner we learn from them, the sooner we can move forward. We are really digging deep and trying not to allow others to dictate how we manage and feel about ourselves. Life is just way too short to allow others to control our feelings.

For more photos, check out our Picasa Web Albums.

Monday, October 17, 2011

My Venting Is Out of Control!

What the hell is wrong with some people?

This entitlement era has to end…it is not just the young, but the middle age as well as the elderly.

We knew it was hard work managing a Pumpkin Patch, the difference being Patch. We not only sell the pumpkins which we LOVE to do, but just doesn’t seem to be top priority to this owner. For some reason he believes that giving everything away for free will bring him business...wrong. We have free popcorn, free pumpkin painting, free admission, free petting zoo, free movies …the list goes on and on. He feels if we give all this away, when the time comes for them to buy their pumpkin they will return to us. But, in the meantime to make it all balance out, our pumpkin prices are exuberant. Many of these freebie takers say the same thing, when it comes time to purchase their pumpkins they will go down to the grocery store where they can pick one up at a fraction of our price. We continue to tell ourselves that it is not our business, it is his and we only work for him so we do it the way he wants it done.

It is just so hard for us to understand how there are so many idiots out here who believe that it is okay to allow their children to destroy merchandise and not give a damn about the property. It is all about them. How rude is it that we work here 12 hours per day with no breaks or time for lunch and it never fails whenever we try to grab something to eat, some idiot will come up and ask us if they can go into the petting zoo. I smile and say they are at lunch at this moment and it will be just a while longer. I tell them to look around and gather their purchases and we will be right there just as soon as we finish our sandwiches. They very bluntly state that they are not here to purchase a pumpkin, they are only here to see the animals. Dah!

We are just so irritated at how much needless work that has to be done due to people’s stupidity. Where else does anyone work where when a family leaves the lot, we have to go around and pick up behind them? They allow their children to pick up and move every item, including huge pumpkins that then get dropped…

Do you know what happens to those pumpkins? Days later we are shoveling them up and tossing them in the trash.

We have displays throughout of all the different pumpkins and items we have for sale and people just allow their kids to walk on them, crawl on them, roll them around and pick up and drop or even better some throw them.

Kids are not supervised at all…too many parents bring them here thinking it is a park and allow them to just run amuck…climbing all over the pumpkins, even after us taking so much time building them a fort and pumpkin/hay horses for them to climb on. We are both tired of having to tell every parent not to allow their children to jump, walk, sit, or roll all over the pumpkins. Doesn’t anybody have and use any common sense any longer? These are edible items that we are trying to sell, but instead we end up trashing more than we sell.

Why must we have to repeat ourselves several times regarding things that should be obvious? Because there are too many self-absorbed people that feel the rules do not apply to them. Most of our rules are not rules, they are common sense, but too many people take it as if we are picking on them, or as some stated that we are being aggressive by asking them to please keep their children off of the pumpkins.

Then…don’t get me started about the petting zoo! We have hundreds, I kid you not…hundreds of people daily and thousands over the weekend coming through the patch and we have to limit the time that they spend inside the petting zoo and ask that they only go in once a visit, so that others may have a turn. Of course, they all feel that it does not apply to them, so we have to remind them and then they get all Diva like and play the it’s all about me card.

Some people are just so dense!

Last week we had this couple come in during a very busy time with two young children. Each child ran in and grabbed wagons that are supposed to be used for purchases. There were only a few wagons left for buyers, plus the kids had already run over several of our displays and a few people within feet of grabbing the wagons. At this point, I very calmly asked them to limit to one wagon and to make sure they supervise the kids if they pull the wagon, they rolled their eyes but went about their business.

Later, this same family went into the petting zoo, rules explained to all that there is no running or screaming. The rest of the group complied, but almost immediately, their child was screeching and running around, we firmly asked several times for this mother to please control her daughter or we would have to ask them to leave the animal area. It continued and the animals were getting rangy, so we asked her to leave. They huffed out of here as if we just committed some sort of crime against them. A few days later we, as we often do, we checked into any reviews about the patch and found a very different view on what happened. Needless to say, they did not say anything nice about us or the lot, but we have learned that you can’t and won’t be able to please everyone. If we have pissed off a few families, then so be it, because when it comes to customer service we are really good at it, so the hundreds of great people who compliment us all the time is worth a few sore losers.

Good news…only 2 more weeks of the pumpkin patch…we are so looking forward to doing the Christmas Tree sales, they are so much easier since it is all about selling, not entertaining.

For more photos, check out our Picasa Web Albums.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

This & That

This Monarch Butterfly flew into our Pumpkin Patch a few days ago, but my camera was in the house and it had flown away before I could get a photo. Then we found it, dead amongst our pumpkins, still beautiful and so much easier to photograph.

Weekdays are our days to rest up and recoup from the very busy weekends, but instead it has been a very busy week too. The sales still never match up to the amount of traffic that comes through the Pumpkin Patch visiting the Petting Zoo and just browsing but the good news is, 2 weekends down and only 3 more to go!

There comes a time in our lives when we have to just choose to do what we love and love what we do. That my friends has always been for us to travel, write, take photos and share them all with our readers, still trying to find the way to balance it all out to where we can make it work financially for us. We just can’t seem to give up on the idea.

We have never made any wise investment choices, so what we have is what you see. Our bank balance is always low and no savings to even lean on, but we make it through and for the most part, we are fine with it all. But, then there are moments like right now that we get a bit discouraged. Our rig needs some TLC that will take some bucks, and we are really tired of taking jobs we are not happy with, but the money looks good. We would love to be able to make a decision that is not based on our finances, but instead on our love and passion for it.

Just doing some ranting…we usually just say this to one another but it just doesn’t seem to be enough for us right now, we need to get it further off of us and out into the Universe so it does not continue to fester within our souls.

We have realized that we love to sell, put us in a Pumpkin Patch to sell and we could, we just do not like all the “free” stuff this particular company gives away, just does not balance out and this year, being our 4th year with him, he seems to be lacking with taking care of our needs. We had the lot up and running and making him money as scheduled, and our needs are still much less desirable then we have been promised or received in the past.

We have always had 30amp electrical service, this year it is 20amp and plugged into an outlet hundreds of feet away, we have low voltage which can and just might ruin some of our electronics in our rig. It has been two weeks and he continues to say he will fix it by doing this or that and nothing gets done, and even if he fixes it, it will only be 20amp…Not happy! Then our water situation is terrible, the pressure is so low it is almost a dribble, but we fixed that by filling up our fresh water tank and then use our pump which gives us adequate pressure. Now our dumping situation, we are supposed to be dumped weekly when the port-a-potty gets serviced…well…he forgot to set it up and we had to go 12 days without it being done…we are usually pushing it on 7 days since our tanks are small. Needless to say, we began to smell mighty ripe towards the end of that situation…Again…NOT Happy!

We love working for Scootaround, all the traveling and even though many of the jobs includes some long hours, we still find it fun and enjoyable. Unfortunately, the jobs do not always align well together enough to make it all work and there are months of no work at all. We will continue to do all we can with them though since we really do enjoy the work and hope it all once again falls into place.

As far as other types of work that we enjoy, just does not seem to be panning out. We love customer service type work, we never thought we were much of sales people, but we are learning that we are, if it is something we believe in. We tried to sell photos from which they took from the helicopters…not something we believe in, so we were not good at it, plus it was cold sales. But, put us in a booth at shows and wow, we sizzle.

A few years ago, we looked into managing a seasonal Hickory Farms booth but we ran into difficulties getting it all arranged and now for the past few years without a tow vehicle, we knew it wouldn’t work. But, we are now looking at getting another tow vehicle…if anyone knows of an older Jeep Wrangler for sale, please let us know. We are looking to purchase one just as soon as we can find a good deal.

Hopefully, my ranting will allow for the yucky stuff to exit and the good stuff to enter…otherwise, we may be venting even more…at least for the next 18 days, until this lot closes for the season.

We continue to add photos from our Pumpkin Patch adventure, check out our Picasa Web Albums.

Saturday, October 08, 2011


Shane, owner of nationalrvparks.com asked if he could interview us and publish it on his website. We always like assisting folks that are starting out in new adventures. Check out our interview on their website.

We are still in Walnut Creek tending to all of the animals and pumpkins. We are running out of energy and it seems time is standing still, but we are down to almost three weeks before we close up this adventure.

We keep trying to find things to keep our spirits up, we look forward to the few weeks off in between the two lots and we are going to have a blast exploring in San Diego. It was going to be our honeymoon place, but we chose to get our home instead so 14 years later we will enjoy it as if it were our honeymoon.

We have been busy building scarecrows and painted heads for them.

We took more photos of the pumpkins and our animals and uploaded them to our Picasa Web Albums, be sure to check them out.

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Seriously…Where Has All the Time Gone?

We left the east…headed west. Had a few play days then headed to Los Angeles to work the AARP show and now we are working at a Pumpkin Patch.

The AARP Convention in Los Angeles was loads of fun. Those were definitely some long days, 3 @ 15+ days and 2 under 12 hours. Working with Scootaround is always so nice for us, we love the work and most of the people are great. We had a few angry people, but those type of people are usually so unhappy that we end up feeling feel sorry for them. To live their entire lives being so angry, unhappy, sad or fed up is just not the way we choose to live ours.

We had never attended an AARP Convention, and we have to admit it was eventful. There was so much to do with all the seminars, vendors and of course the entertainment they had scheduled. If you haven’t been to one, check it out the next time it is in an area you want to visit, next year they will be in New Orleans and some of the entertainment sounds like a good time.

Once we were done, we took an extra day driving to do the pumpkins, headed straight for the ocean from LA and leisurely drove along it for as much as we could. What a fabulous drive!

Once we arrived at the coast was fabulous, but leaving LA getting there was a nightmare. It took us over 2 hours on a Sunday morning, all due to some sort of marathon that was going on that detoured traffic so much we ended up going miles out of our way only to have to go more miles to get to the roads we needed to take all in lots of traffic.

Then we arrived at the pumpkin patch…didn’t think we would return, and we actually didn’t return to the same lot. This one is located in Walnut Creek, California and it reminds us of a boutique. Very small and quant, and to top it off the people so far have been marvelous. They bring in the kids, take photos, check out the animals and they actually buy pumpkins. Not like last year when all they did was come in for whatever they could get for free. This is nice and even though the hours are long, the weather has been wet and chilly, we are enjoying our time here.

These are just a few of our photos of the Pumpkin Patch, for more photos, check out our Picasa Web Albums, we will be adding more photos as the days go by.