Tuesday, June 23, 2015

the comfort zone...

A couple of months ago when my husband first brought up the pick-up and camper idea, I have to admit I was not really "on board". He'd talked about it off and on for years, but it didn't seem like much of a reality. Then 12 years ago our lives changed drastically with my heart problems and basically our focus on life became more day to day and month to month, rather than long term.

Then Hubbs had his own health problems with Meniere's for a few years. After his surgery a few years ago, he's pretty much back to "normal". But we've both realized that whatever traveling we were going to do was not going to be by plane. Him with an inner ear issue and me having had blood clots in my heart, the thought of flying... anywhere... made both of us shudder. We've gotten used to the idea that there are plenty of wonderful places we can visit and enjoy that are here in the states. Although it would be wonderful to jet off to foreign destinations, I prefer to be firmly planted on the ground. Does that make us over the hill fuddy duddies? I hope not. In our perspective, just a little more realistic and practical.

Spring at Roaring River State Park





So last weekend we took our maiden voyage in "The Gray Goose" as we have dubbed our little powerhouse on wheels. We did our first overnight an hour or so south of us at Roaring River State Park, not far from the Missouri/Arkansas state line. If you haven't been to the Ozarks which basically is Southern Missouri and Northern Arkansas, then you are missing some beautiful country. The name "Ozarks" is from the French cartographers of the 1700's when mapping the extensive water system, that is translated "Aux Arcs" which means "bend of the arch". South of Springfield you start into the hilly region with lots of rivers, lakes, and forests. Although we have a bad rap for "hillbillies" and moonshine and way too many billboards for Branson's Country Music shows, we have some wonderful resorts, lake front communities and areas that cater to outdoor and water sports, boating, hiking, sailing, and camping. It's really a great place for family vacationing.(and I know a lot of those "hillbillies" that are multimillionaires).

If you have a minute, this is a great little video that has some wonderful shots of the park and it's history. Also an idea of what the countryside of Southern Missouri is all about.








After 45 minutes of a highway of winding hills and valleys where I clutched my seatbelt and closed my eyes, we found our destination and campsite. Hubbs has done everything imaginable to make me feel excited about the idea of camping, and to lessen the stress and work of taking a trip. From a special coffeepot, (I REALLY love my morning brew) to a portable grill for my favorite steak, he's thought of all the comforts of home, to ensure that I actually enjoy this. We have a generator, heat/ac, full bathroom with shower, galley kitchen with microwave and propane stovetop and oven, fridge, even a tv and dvd player. The bed alcove has a comfortable queen size Sealy mattress and is even equipped with reading lights. So you can see, I'm not roughing it too much.




This is a little creek that ran behind our campsite, and yes, that's actually water!
 I had to take my shoes off and wiggle my toes in it.



The main thing I've had to overcome is fear. Yes, I admit it, I've been fearful to try something new after these last few years of having had so many flukey heart problems. I knew that to be able to enjoy our life, I was going to have to step out of my comfort zone and step out in Faith that this can be a new chapter in our lives. I'm a homebody and love my kitties and a routine. Some days my energy level is pretty much zilch, so taking on something new and strenuous didn't feel like something I wanted to buy into...literally. I was hoping for a sunroom to be built on the existing deck, and maybe not a new pickup and camper. Only thing is that a sunroom wouldn't help my husband find relaxation and the much needed getaway time he needs. Marriage is all about compromise, we all know that. Also it's about being ready to drive off into the sunset with someone you've loved for 2/3 of your life. So I'll have some camping fun, unflattering photos, and bug stories to share here from now on. I hope it won't be too repetitive, just a new chapter of my life to tell you all about.

Joining in Here:
The Scoop at Stone Gable
Tweak it Tuesday at Cozy Little House
Inspire Me Tuesday at A Stroll Thru Life
Wow Us Wednesday at Savvy Southern Style



33 comments:

  1. I'm excited to hear about where you go and where you dip your toes!
    Brenda

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    1. thanks Brenda, I really love hearing about other people's lives. We all have so much to share with each other, and sometimes it's the small stuff that's most important!

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  2. Debra,
    Congratulations on o"new" adventure, dear friend!!!
    "Mr. Ed" and I owned a travel trailer for years. . .and we took it several times to Bennett Spring on our Annual Trout Fishing Trips, but I truly enjoy the comforts that the condo provides for us nowadays!!! Although, I'd love to change out the decor. . .it doesn't belong to us, so I sit out on the "tree house" balcony and read while listening to my favorite CD's!!!
    This Chapter of your life may afford you some of your most memorable moments of your lives!!!
    Fondly,
    Pat
    P.S. We haven't been to Roaring River, so I had "Mr. Ed" watch the video with me. Nice!!!

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    1. Hi Pat, we went to Bennett Spring last weekend, but didn't stay the night. They are very similar, but the lodge at Roaring River is much better in my opinion. We had a wonderful Father's Day buffet lunch there Sunday afternoon. Both locations are so pretty. BS seemed a more "quiet" experience. there were more swimmers at RR and a few more swimmers and water activities. You'll love RR!

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  3. Good for you to spreading your wings! I hope you have wonderful adventures. When my husband and I were dating he was very excited to give me a "tent camping" package in the woods as a birthday gift. I explained to him that I had been a Girl Scout from Brownies through Seniors and that my family had also been "wild" about camping. I had earned a difficult badge which required that I survive for 24 hours by building my own shelter, etc. I had camped so much that I knew fully and firmly I didn't like it. So, he knew this when we got married. I happily do all the shopping and packing for his camping excursions with the Scouts and love my time alone at home.

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    1. oh Laura, that sounds like a little too much camping fun to me too! but wow, I'm impressed with your skills!! My hubby takes a few days each fall with his guy family members and roughs it in a cabin in the woods for deer camp, and honestly, I think he likes the "comforts" as much as I do. He knows we both need to get out and "get a life".

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  4. I'm so happy for both of you! I have wondered how your Hubs also was doing. I have to share this post with MY husband. He is off camping right now, By himself. No where the level of comfort you are talking about. There does get to be a limit to what you will put yourself through at a certain age even if health is not a factor. But I love the woods! After having travelled far and wide I also have a big drive to see more of the states and all the beauty we have here. We will do more of that. Have fun kids!

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  5. Once you take a few trips you are going to love camping. Everything you cold possibly want is in your camper. I've always wanted a small one that I could pull and just take off with my dogs and see the USA, following the seasons. But, unfortunately I've waited to long and have to many health problems like blood clots. So, I know how you feel. So spread your wings and enjoy all the beautiful places you will be going and have fun!
    Mary

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  6. Debra - That doesn't sound like roughing it too badly!!! LOL Hope you and hubby have many great trips in your camper enjoying the beautiful outdoors. That part of Missouri does have some beautiful places.

    Judy

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  7. Neat trip! Enjoyed that vid - I have never seen that neck of the woods.

    I wish you lots of peace, and tranquil worry-free travels, Deb.

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  8. Can't wait to follow along on your camping adventures Debra! Looks like you found a beautiful spot for your first trip:).

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  9. There are so many wonderful and beautiful places here in our own country to visit without going overseas. It's amazing what can fit into a camper, and I love how your hubby has gone the extra mile to make it comfortable for you. I think mine would have to do the same for me since I'm not a camper.
    Looking forward to hearing about more of your adventures!
    Mary Alice

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  10. Good for you, now that wasn't so bad after all!!! And you get to see beautiful natural features to enjoy that can't be had sitting on your sofa.......like dipping toes in fresh stream water!! Can't wait to hear more of your adventures and this new chapter........xoxoxo

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  11. Debra, Your husband sounds like such a sweetie and I love that he wants you to come on his new adventure. Your first trip looks so beautiful - nothing restores our soul like God's nature - and a queen sized Sealy mattress! lol
    blessings and love ~
    Lynda

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  12. We are fierce lovers of the beautiful Ozarks. People who complain about the billboards should get away from the beaten path.;-) Although, we would like to keep that unbeaten path our own little secret. I am and always will be a proud hillbilly.

    Enjoy!

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    1. Ha ha Pat, from one hillbilly to another!!

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  13. Debra, we share some of the same fears. Four years ago I had pulmonary emboli and it scared me silly. I thought I was over it, but after a long driving trip to Mississippi and back recently I developed symptoms again of clots in my leg. Thankfully, an ultrasound proved negative for clotting. We started RVing about 10 years ago, but we only have one good trip a year when my husband can take off work. Being away from home scares me, so I get really stressed in the days leading up to leaving. I don't want to leave my pets behind in case there's an emergency. One of my dogs developed a fear of storms last year and we were away while Texas was being pounded with storms last month. I had good friends that stayed with him during the worst one, which also was flooding our property. Nerve-wracking! But I'm okay once we are on the road and get to where we are going. Hubby and I celebrated our 30th anniversary yesterday and I know I'm very blessed to have this man who puts up with my fears and does his best to help me through them. I do not want to fly; it's been a fear for over 20 years. But there is so much to see out there on the road, even when those roads are up next to a steep cliff with no safety barrier. I close my eyes a lot, too, while I'm mumbling "move over, move over." In the end, we have special times together seeing parts of our country which are beautiful beyond words. I hope you have some great trips !!

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    1. Hey Patty, I think we must have been separated at birth! I get all the apprehension you feel. Leaving my kitties, even though our daughter is here most of the time, makes me a little quesy. I don't do well with heights (or cliffs, or drop offs...eeeeck!)

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  14. So glad Hubby was able to convince you to hit the road and see nature. You are going to love it, the more you do it. It is in our blood to get out there and enjoy nature. Sorry about your heart problems, I had a stroke in March and it really threw me for a loop. Thank God it was a mini one and the only side effect is this ugly lack of energy. I love exercise and walking and it has really slowed me down. I did not know it was unsafe to fly with this issue.

    Take care and get out there camping as much as possible...enjoy this beautiful world....you live in an awesome area. I am in Washington and just got back from Yellowstone and Craters of the Moon in my little vintage Shasta. It was a blast.

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    1. Hi Karen, I think the pressurized cabins in a plane offer a lot of protection, but sitting for long periods of time and the "up and down" of taking off and landing can cause problems. my cousin, who had had a small bloodclot in the past, ended up with a leaky vessel in her brain after a long flight to Kenya. Plus my husband can feel horrible when the atmospheric pressure changes with a storm. Flying sounds problematic to both of us. Yellowstone is on our list, sounds like you had lot's of fun in your Shasta!

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  15. How fun Debra to let go and try something new and adventurous. I think you will love to venture out in your home away from home. That park looks beautiful. Great spot to try out for the first trip.
    Kris

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  16. Debra, what a great post! I am so excited for you both that you are traveling to new places together. Every day is precious, for all of us. I am proud of you for overcoming your fear, too…as a fellow "fearful driver" I close my eyes on winding roads or when my husband has to park in scary small spots too. ;) Love your camper….and your blog, I always have such fun reading your posts!

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  17. Sounds like the hubs has thought of everything to make you comfy! I think you'll enjoy it. I'm not much of a camper either, although they sure do make some nice campers these days, so I might like it better than I did back in the really "ruffin' it days'. Take care, and have some fun!!

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  18. Kudos to you, Debra! It's wonderful that you're willing to go outside your comfort zone to do something that your hubby is so excited about, and judging from the gorgeous photos, I think you'll enjoy it just as much. Don't forget the marshmallows!

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    1. so funny you mention marshmellows. i made a list of all the things we forgot, and smores fixins were on the list. I was ready for a good one for dessert!

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  19. Wow! I'm proud that you're trying the camping. The water looks so relaxing. It's so hot in AL right now that I wish my feet were in that creek right now. I hope you'll continue to enjoy the adventure!

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  20. Adventures at our age are important!! Love that you and your sweetie are trying something new.

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  21. Debra, I pray that your new adventures in life will bring you and your man lots of blessings, wonderful memories and good times! My sweet precious motherinlove used to say...GO and DO...cause one day your DO will be DONE!
    Hugs and blessings, Cindy

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  22. I think this is the perfect compromise. With all the hassles of air travel today, jumping in the truck and just taking off to where ever you please sounds delightful. And just think of all the decorating possibilities the camper provides. I have the opposite problem. I am trying to convince David that we need one! Enjoy each moment together. None of us knows what tomorrow may bring, so living in the now is the best thing to do.

    Big Texas Hugs,
    Susan and Bentley

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  23. We love our "home away from home"...you will too! We are in Boone now, enjoying the cooler temps and amazing views!
    Wiggling my toes in some running water too...fun!
    Blessings,
    Cindy

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  24. I love camping of any kind because I like being out in nature. My hubs on the other hand does not, he says he spend enough time on the ground in Vietnam and didn't want to do it again. I've been looking for a vintage trailer and hopefully he'll go with me, if not I'm on the road alone!

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  25. I think it will be fun to follow along with you : )

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  26. Deb....>I think this is exciting. I would LOVE to see the inside of your camper!!!!! I also would love to see more of where you are camping. We enjoyed Branson so much (2 years ago) and would love to return. I would love to hear of some similar places in the area that are a bit less traveled.....Branson is so busy!!!!! even in the fall/spring! Have a great time!!!! facing your fears is scary, but just think of all the fun you will have!

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