Quick update

Day 4 and we have seen lots and the weather has been crazy.

We stayed outside of Henderson Nevada last night at a small KOA campground. I love camping and my little tent is quick to set up.

Last night was terrible though. Almost 100 degrees at 1am. I don’t think I have ever tried to sleep outside in that kind of heat.

I jumped up early and started packing. I was anxious to get on Route 66 and go to Oatman Arizona. A tiny town where the donkeys wander the streets. I will write about Oatman in another post soon. This one is more about trying to sleep and the weather we have seen.

When leaving Oatman it poured rain. Huge drops. Lighting, wind, you name it. By the time we got back on I40 we were good and the temperature started to rise again.

So our next destination was Williams, Arizona. I made a special reservation at a much larger KOA. More to come on this place too.

Here is where we are staying tonight! And the weather is more like home. 60’s.

I am ready to get some sleep. It’s a little chilly but guess what? Our tee pee has a space heater and a fridge!

Good night! šŸ’¤

4th Annual Shotgun Rider Road Trip

Well the planning is as far as it’s going to get. Less than 48 hours and we will be on the road.

I am sure I am forgetting something but I’m not worrying about it. I keep thinking about the line from the movie Coal Miners Daughter when Patsy Cline tells Loretta Lynn to not worry about not having the things she needs.

Patsy Cline: [to Loretta] “I’ll call you on Monday and we’ll go shopping. Anything we can’t buy, we’ll make. Anything we can’t make, we’ll steal!”

With that philosophy I suppose we are ready to go.

No real plans for the first 3 days. I want to hit as much of Route 66 as possible because it’s Route 66. Who wouldn’t want to travel on Route 66 given the chance.

We have reservations for Wednesday night outside of Sedona Az. That location has a little twist I will share with you when we arrive. Then 2 nights at Grand Canyon and 2 nights near Bryce Canyon. We are hoping to hit Devils Tower in Wyoming if our trip takes us in that direction.

For now I will finish the little bit of prep needed at home and just start my slow down and relax mindset.

Ahhhhhh, it’s almost time to kick my shoes off and travel shotgun style again.

Prep work for a Disneyland Halloween time road trip

Getting ready for an October Disneyland road trip that includes Mickey’s trick-or-treat party. That means we need costumes. 

Disneyland has some specific limis on the costumes adults wear.  No masks and capes must not be longer than their waist. As you may know, Disney properties have really upped their everyday security measures. Your bags and strollers are checked pretty thoroughly at a security checkpoint. If capable, you must go through a metal detector. As well as you may be check with a detector wand.

They have a no weapons with your costume policy. Nothing spiky that could actually  poke another guest. They request that you don’t take pictures with other guests in costumes. If you go Disney trick or treaing, you’ll see costumes that look exactly like Disney’s professional costumes. You would suspect that the guest is the actual princess or character from the park. I’m not quite sure of the reasoning for no pictures. FYI, Any other day adults or kids 14 & over cannot wear a costume in the park.

I do like to dressup in a way called Disney Bounding. It’s when you wear regular clothes but the coloring and the set up of the clothes resembles a Disney character. For instance,  I wore a long, green skirt with a purple top and my hair happens red. The little mermaid, ARIEL. 

This time I wore a yellow dress with a little blue sweater over the top and I have a red bow in my hair. 


Me in Sniw Whites grotto

I’ve heard people say they were sent away at the security checkpoint for bounding. I think it would be hard to prove that you specifically were trying to trick guests into believing that you were the character with bounding. Honestly when you go look around. You will see people with Mickey and Minnie ears and gloves on, as well as Goofy hats, Donald hats and so much more. They are encouraging you to celebrate the characters with clothing. I have not never been questioned for my attire. 

Going back to prep for our Disney trip. I’ll admit it I totally overpack for myself. I never know what mood I’ll be in just like other trips but Disney is pretty bad when it comes to packing. My boys pack very minimally. I guess that’s one of the differences between boys and girls. 

Obviously one of the essentials is having your tickets. You can buy them there and sometimes at your hotel but I suggest you get your tickets early. The lines at the Disneyland ticket booths can be very long. Plus you have to go through the security checkpoint first which in itself can be a long line. Maybe it’s just an introduction to the right lines you’re gonna have to wait in later. 

We are annual pass holders to Disneyland and take several trips a year. In most cases I t’s not worth the price if the annual pass if you don’t go at least twice. The additional discounts in the park and downtown disney relieve so of that monthly fee. 

There are a ton of hotels near the entrance gates and more are being built. Google maps is your easiest way to seethe location of each hotel. I’ve stayed close for a short walk. I’ve stayed a bit farther for a long walk. I’ve stayed at enough away to drive. My favorite but most expensive hotel is Disney Resort hotels. Specifically the grand Californian. The newest and the most expensive. It’s a treat when we stay on the resort property in more ways than just being close. That’s all for another blog though. 

Clothes, tickets, hotel and money. All of the essentials right? Best advice of all for a trip? Enjoy the Disney magic. Relax, don’t stress and look around. It’s not all about running to the next ride. Just being in the park can be a thrill if you let it. Let yourself soak it all in. 

Do the things you have to do so you can do the things you want to do

Do the things you have to do so you can do the things you want to do. 

I think I heard this for the first time on a tv show when a father was teaching his son a lesson about school. I have repeated this line repeatedly to my boys.  

Last night hubby and I watched Disneys movie, “Up”. The story is important to my blog so stick with me please. If you haven’t seen “UP”, this post is a big huge spoiler. Stop now if you don’t want me to ruin it for you. 

“up” it a love story about a regular couple. No princess, no animals and no catchy songs. Carl and Ellie meet as kids, get married, lose a baby, never have another child, and are happy with the life they share. 

As their love grows they start a fund to live in Paradise Falls someday.  Everyday life keeps draining the money jar.A broken window, a flat tire, and a broken leg were just some of the unexpected events which delayed their trip. Just not enough money. 


Like most Disney movies, a big sad moment and lesson comes when as an older couple Ellie passes away with Carl at her side. Through his mourning and bitterness he remembers the Paradise Falls jar and decides to make their dream of going on the trip a reality. Nothing will stop him. Finally he decided above all else he would complete this trip for the love of his life.

How he does or doesn’t do it isn’t really important. It’s the point that after his wife, his anchor, the one he would put his life down for is gone. They didn’t find the time and now it’s too late to do it together.

As I write today I’m reading about an unexcusable, senseless shooting in Las Vegas. At this time it’s being reported that over 400 have been injured and 50 killed. The numbers keep going up. A shooter cowardly sat in his safe hotel room and took aim on 22,000 people happily watching a country concert. 

I’m sure they were singing, dancing and having a spectacular time. None of the victims could have thought this may be my last moment on earth. 

Let me be clear. In my opinion everyone of  those attending, the working, the first responders and all of their friends and families are victims. They will live with this memory the rest of their life. They should have the fun times of the concert to remember not this horrible event which may not have been able to prevent. Does that really matter right now. It happened and the after effects are horrendous. 

My heart is hurting thinking about the unfulfilled dreams those killed never were able to make happen. Maybe the car broke down so their money had to go to fix it instead of taking the trip cross country/world with their family. Maybe they had a wife or girlfriend at home waiting to have a baby. What about the bachelor and bachlorette parties Vegas is know for. How will the future spouse cope? 

I know life is about the have to. Without it you can’t do the big things you want to do. That’s the responsible thing to do. Maybe you work  a little harder to get a little bit more. Not easy for most I know. Scrimp, save so you can’t fulfill that dream. Life is short is a common saying . How often do you think about your dream then tell yourself it’s impossible? What about the person(s) you were going to fulfill the dream with like Ellie and Carl? Maybe fulfilling dreams is a “have to” as well. 

I am so fortunate. I try to remember to tell my husband daily how much I appreciate his hard word, how much he loves me and our boys. He just got done working 18 days straight to pay for this Disneyland trip. We are driving down I-5 as I type. This trip is important. Memories for all of us are important. We, as a family did what we had to do so we can now do what we want to do. Sometimes it’s leaving the dishes undone to go for a bike ride. Movie and game night is important in our house. 

I want to fulfill my families dreams before the end of my life. Yes we are all going to die. It’s a fact of life. To quote a song by the great Greorge Strait “Life’s not the breaths you take, But the moments that take your breath away”. I want thousands of breath taking moments with my family. It’s up to me to find the things me. Do the things I have to do to have the time. 
This has been hard to type through my tears. It may have a lot of spelling and grammatical errors. I don’t care. I hope just one person reads this and makes some time. Find a way to fulfill your dreams. Big ones, small ones, ones that cost a lot, and especially those that are free that you can do everyday. 

Yes, life is short and full of the unexpected. Live it now. Find that thing that will take your breath away today. 

Make your own adventure, don’t just lfollow mine. XOXO

Day 2, I’m a survivorĀ 

Ok, let me start with Kristine Dugger is a machine. She is kicking my booty. Her energy is definitely motivating me. I can only hope to get my rear moving and start a real workout program at the gym. Maybe next week. Monday sounds like a great goal. Someone make a point of reminding me. Even better lots of you push because the competitor in me needs it. 

Planning on getting my before pictures and stats ready tonight. I may or may not show them until the end. In my head I’ve made this a 30 challenge but hope to make it a lifetime change. 

My friends Michele and Valentina have also jumped on board. I expect to see and hear from you two regularly, ya hear? Just keep moving šŸ˜

Who wants to throw down a small and obtainable goal for us? Go hiking, run your personal best, then try to beat it. Anyone want to send us some motivation? New gear to try? Healthy snacks and shakes? I have an address if you want us to give your products a try, I’ve said it before, this blog is for me but heck free stuff for me and my friends = free advertising for you makes for a win:win in my books. Just throwing the idea out there. If you don’t ask the answer is definitely no. 

Stay tuned for our continuing adventure towards weight loss and getting fit! 

Get FITBIT CHALLANGE SHOTGUNRIDER VS KRISTINE-AUTHOR

I’m a shotgun rider. I sit in the passenger seat while my husband drives. However I’m finding that my weight is slowly inching its way up and I worked very hard to lose over 100 pounds in the past five years. I did have weight-loss surgery which made a huge difference in my life but it’s so easy for the weight to come back on slowly inch by inch pound by pound.  This last trip I didn’t want to take any real hikes. I was very lazy. 

I first noticed those pounds coming back on in my thighs. Jeans just tend to fit a little bit tighter. I’m not gonna lie it’s what I’ve put in my mouth. I haven’t always made best choices  And I’m not as active as I used to be but all of that is about to change. 

Some of you may know my obsession with romance books and the authors. I devour books 3 to 6 per week. Thanks to Facebook I’ve gotten to be friends per se with some indie authors and it’s really a close community. It’s also expanded an online friendship with many fellow book lovers. 

Would you believe that I ran across an Indy author who loves softball and she has actually written a romance book that includes softball. 


It’s on my to be read list I actually have a signed copy and softball ball from her. I won it during an online auction for a fellow authors charity. The only reason I haven’t gotten to it yet is because I generally read off my iPad and only read paperbacks when I’m sitting at the pool. 


So back to the weight-loss story so much can do more on my road trips. I was on Facebook a few days ago and this author Facebook page Kristine Dugger mentions wanting to get back into shape. I messaged her with an online challenge request. Being a competitor it’s really hard to do this by myself. 

She responded and believe it or not is writing a blog about her progress too! Now we can blog compete too! Challenge each other in some unique ways with some help from our fans. Even better get our friends ad fans on board to compete and give us challenge ideas! 


We both have a Fitbit so we’ve decided to do the simple challenges even though neither of us really know what we are doing. She started today, I started around 2:00 today. Ok so my excuses are starting already. Pretty sure Kristine is gonna kick my ass today. I’m ok with that. 


You’ve got my blog page, keep following and referring to other friends please. I’m begging for followers. I’m not too proud to beg.

Check out and follow my Challengers blog.  Kristines Blog DAY 1

She’s so brave and posted pictures. I’m jealous. I plan to get some good measurements and ….. so scarey, pictures so we can hopefully see the progress. 
I keep telling myself…it’s a marathon, not a sprint! Wish us luck and let me know if you want to join our Fitbit group.  

Come join me on my new adventure!!!

Day 1 starting weight eeeek.  140lbs,  I was at 125lbs at my lowest 5 years ago. There I womanned up and spilled the beans. Goal is to lose at least 15 would like to hit 115 lbs. 

Like how I hid it all the way at the bottom just for those for those who don’t read the entire article. I surprised ya, huh? 

Oh Canada, Victoria to be precise

Early Thursday morning we waited in a long line at the Port Angeles ferry dock. We got there early because we had to drive our truck onto the boat that would take us on my biggest adventure yet. 


Let me back track a little. I just got my passport specifically for this trip. I’ve never been outside of the US before. I hate to fly. I have flown out of necessity and when I was much younger. Admittedly 9/11 scared the crap out of me therefore adding to my already unreasonable fears. It’s that bad that I even think is over the top. Now y’all know why this blog is called “road trips”  not my worldwide adventures. Maybe hubby will convince me to travel abroad someday. 

Ok back to my current adventure to Victoria, Vancouver Island, Canada. The ferry ride was a blast. I rode the whole way on the bow. I stood tall loving how the breeze felt and the ocean looked. I’m sure I looked like a little kid standing on the large pipes so I was tall enough to see over the rails. Yep, I’m short. Only 5ft. God stopped when he found perfection, or so I tell myself. 

When we entered the docks, all vehicle passengers were hearded downstairs. The process of loading and unloading the vehicles was quick and efficient. Since we had reservations we were in the front which really paid off for the customs line. It only took us about 5 minutes. I admit to having some nerves about this part. We have all of our camping  gear which includes some knives and an axe for firewood. Was this allowed? Thankfully we didn’t have any problems, 

We had lots of time to drive aimlessly and site see before checking into our sleeping quarters for the next 2 nights. The city is breathtaking. The homes are beautiful. The people are polite and kind. I discovered all of this within the first hour on the island. 

Our reservations were for an “Otentik” Read more. Basically it’s a tent/cabin. 

That was cool by its self. Now add in the fact it’s in Fort Rodd Hill Natiobal Historic site.


Wait there’s more, it’s also the location of the Fisguard Lighthouse. 


But wait, there’s more. The park closed at 5:00 and there are only 5 Otentiks, our first night we had to share the park with only 4 other people. Imagine getting to explore this historical location without anyone bothering you. Stepping in front of you while you read signs, take pictures etc. it was so quiet and peaceful. The family of 4 was exhausted and went to bed early so the park really was all mine! 

Oh! but hold on, there’s still more. Picture the sun going down. The air turning a little cooler, the only noise is the water lapping at the shores and the geese flying around making the occasional honk. Then you look up to the lighthouse again. OMG! I was stunned by the beauty. Thank god I had a camera.  You judge for yourself. 


I went to bed with this image in my mind and a smile a mile wide. 

I’m not sure this trip has anything to beat that vision. Challenge excepted