Category Archives: Missouri

Photography 101 Day 6: Connect and Tags

Tags are a means of connecting a blog post with others who share a common interest. Merriam-Webster defines connect as:

  • to join (two or more things) together
  • to join with or become joined to something else
  • to think of (something or someone) as being related to or involved with another person, thing, event, or idea

Capturing these concepts in a photography can be easy or challenging depending on how the photographer interprets the definition.

I chose these photos because they demonstrate power in connections.

Safe Harbor Farm, K-9 Rescue, Rehabilitation and Rehoming CenterMaysville, North Carolina

Safe Harbor Farm, K-9 Rescue, Rehabilitation and Rehoming Center
Maysville, North Carolina

My wife found a connection with the resident cats at Safe Harbor Farm by using food as the tag.

Union Covered BridgeParis, Missouri

Union Covered Bridge
Paris, Missouri

Union Covered Bridge is one of 4 remaining covered bridges in Missouri that incorporate the Burr Arch design. The bridge connected early travelers with either side of the Elk Fork Salt River. Additionally, the timber connections of the Burr-Arch design provide strength and integrity to the bridge.

200 AMP Transfer Switch
Mark Twain Landing, Monroe City, Missouri

The transfer switch transfers power from the source to the users. Without the switch (tag), there would be no power distribution or connection to the electrical users.

Dam on Mill CreekCades Cove, Tennessee

Dam on Mill Creek
Cades Cove, Tennessee

The log across Mill Creek and the flume gate are tags that connect the creek to the water wheel at John Cable Mill.

John Cable's MillCades Cove, Tennessee

John Cable’s Mill
Cades Cove, Tennessee

Without the tags (log and flume gate), there would be no power at the mill.

How do you connect?

Thanks for stopping by, y’all come back now.


Thanksgiving, A Reflection

As I sit at my computer this morning while parked on the edge of the Smoky Mountains, I thought about the early RVers (aka pioneers) who decided to ‘Go West’ to a land that was flat and fertile. Leaving the comforts of their homes, families and friends in Virginia, North and South Carolina they headed west searching for a new life and happiness. As the coastal waves and rolling hills where behind them, they encountered the Appalachian Mountains. Here they faced what seemed like an endless climb to cross of the mountain range.  I thought about their courage and strength that fueled their desire to push on and not turn back.

It was courage and vision that led the pioneers to leave behind a comfortable, settled life and trek West to begin a new life in a new place. Many of those from the East that went West found a strength within themselves that they didn’t see while they were in their old life. Instead of being one of those that just kind of went along with the others in the old life, they became leaders and visionaries in their new lives.

I borrowed this comment from Terry and Jo Miller, who inspired me to take on the pioneering spirit when I struggled with retiring in 2011 so we could begin our RVing life. You can read about that emotional journey here.

In the past two years, we have driven our  RV to Maysville, North Carolina; Blue Ridge, Georgia; Piney Flatts, Tennessee, and to Ledbetter, Texas; then back east to Jasper, Alabama; Monroe City, Missouri and our winter resting spot in Townsend, Tennessee. We encountered excitement, met new friends, and have seen some beautiful country. This is not to say we have not encountered difficulties or challenges along the way. As an example, in the last two days, we encountered a our first minor snow storm and long-term cold freezing weather. We’ve learned to adapt and be flexible.

Today we have so much to be thankful for that the list would just go on and on. Instead of doing that, I would like to say that I am most thankful for my wife’s maternal grandparents. Blanche Barrett (aka Mom ‘B’) and Bill Barrett. Mom ‘B’ was the person who planted the seed of Jesus in my heart in 1966, one year before my wife and I married in 1967. Their Christian walk had a tremendous impact on my life and spiritual growth.

I am thankful that we have two beautiful daughters and their families. I am thankful for our health and our friends. I am especially thankful for the joy we’ve met along the way. And I am thankful that our future is secure in knowing God is directing our lives and leading us on to new adventures.

May the God of Peace and Comfort bring joy and blessings to you and your family. Thanks for stopping by, y’all come back now.

Another Chapter Closing

It is time to close another chapter in our world of living on the road. We’ve met new people, made more new friends and have another place to return should we want to in the future. This has been a busy year for me. Carol had the opportunity to get her shoulder fixed. Since she was not working regularly she did some sewing and quilting in the Clubhouse. Her last job was finished last night in the ticket booth at the Haunted Trail in the water park.

At the end of March, we traveled north and encountered snow. This was a new experience for us Texans. Coming from Corpus Christi, snow was not a common sight.  Between Paducah, KY and  St. Louis, MO we were Searching for Spring and discovered that Winter was not over just yet. DSCN0304We arrived at Mark Twain Landing (MTL) and discovered Spring was going to be delayed. The weather stayed colder longer than normal for the season. Snow turned into rain. Storms surrounded us. We encountered a couple of tornado warnings and hunkered down in the central bathroom waiting for Mother Nature to unleash her wrath. MTL was spared but some of the farms in the area suffered damage to their barns and out buildings.


With the rain and melting snow from further North, we saw the Mighty Mississippi River at flood stage. Parts of Hannibal, MO were closed. Flood gates were up and kept the historic safe. We drove up to Lover’s Leap to get a good view of the river.

DSCN0362The water park (Splash Landing) had a slow start because the water temperature was slow to warm. Once the temperature warmed up, the crowds came and enjoyed the huge wave pool and slides.

SpalshLanding2013From repairing rotted floors and roofs, to laying tile, to cleaning window A/C units, to erecting a 40 foot fence, to replacing the sliding doors on 11 cabins with standard entry doors, to replacing worn out electrical service panels, I had plenty of work to keep me pretty busy.

Work summaryCarol enjoyed her time working on the gate in the RV park, ticket booth at Splash Landing and working with the Trail of Terror. Together we enjoyed leading Camper Church. We had great turnouts each week and received several comments from folks who enjoyed the messages.


We worked with some great people. Saying good-by was not easy. Many of these left shortly after Labor Day while we hung back for another month of work,

Workampers MTLMonday October 28th it was our turn to depart to a new destination. As the sun sets on this chapter of our journey, a new chapter awaits us at Tremont Campground.

DSC_0600Thanks for stopping by, y’all come back now.

WHOA! What Happened To August?

Somehow, I lost a month? Yep, no blog entry for August. How did that happen? Better yet, what happened in August? Best way for me to figure out what happened is to check the photo log.


We went to Paris. That’s right, we took a trip to Paris. No not Paris, France – Paris, Missouri. Paris is a small, quaint town a few miles down the road from us. The city’s website calls Paris a throwback to a bygone era: people live in harmony; kids are free to be kids; elderly are treated with respect; and no one is afraid to take a walk in the evening.

DSC_0585We enjoyed breakfast at Jonsey’s Cafe.

IMG_1096Even bought a truck for my brother. He collects Texaco memorabilia so if you run across something in your travels, please let me know.

New Furniture

We decide to replace the very uncomfortable couch bed that came with our RV with a couple of recliners. There just is not any single piece of furniture that fits us just right. Our recliners were delivered on August 6th. Since the width of the space where the recliners go is tight, we opted to order motorized recliners. This makes it easier to choose a reclining position without the need to reach between the recliners to pull a lever. Why did we wait so long to do this? Our next improvement will be to get rid of the booth style dining table. That will be replaced with a storage credenza and some sort of bistro table or dining bar.


We started the month with some pretty cool weather. Lows in the 50’s with highs in the 70’s. Not to be left out of the heat, Mother Nature brought us about four days of heat with highs in the low 100’s. Thankfully the humidity was low so the heat was tolerable.

Awning Repair

Before we arrived here, our awning arms were broken in a freak gust of wind. I replaced the arms back in June but did not tension the springs. It was time to do that so we could roll the awning up. It was not difficult other than removing the safety cotter pin after the spring had the correct amount of tension. Once that was removed, everything worked as expected.


Of course, there was plenty of work to do around the park. More electrical work and other stuff kept me pretty busy.

elec Service Panel-cutoffSewing

Carol had to opportunity to crank up the sewing projects she had not been able to work on this summer. She was in her zone in the club house where she was able to spread out a bit.

Carol SewingAfter all that work, it was time for a break – ‘feet off the floor time’ for me and nap time for MeiLing. Cody just sprawled out on the floor.

RestingFall is in the air as is evident from the leaves falling on the ground.

IMG_1143I leave you with this parting shot of our ‘catch and release’ fishing hole.

IMG_1100Thanks for stopping by. Y’all come back now.

New Skills for Resume

First of all, I welcome a new follower, D. D. Scott. She is an Amazon and Barnes & Noble top 100 Humor Arthur, blogger and fellow RVer. Thanks for hopping aboard. Hope you find some. You can find her blog at

Adding new skills for the old resume is always a good thing. Today I’ve updated our resume on to include camper church preaching, ice moving and electrical pedestal replacement.  And since I’m updating our resume that means our resume will bubble up to the top of the heap for prospective campground managers to consider.

Camper Church

Carol and I have been leading Camper Church for about 7 weeks now. We were asked to take over due to the departure of another workamper who was doing this. While neither of us are professionally trained or licensed pastors, we do love telling folks about our Christian experiences. Camper Church is not a formal church service.  Attendance can be anywhere from 4 to 40.  We’ve received good feedback from the local folks and the weekenders.

IMG_1062Ice Mover

This is not a big task but it is something I do as part of my maintenance job. When the ice runs low in the store, one of the ladies calls maintenance to ‘front’ the ice. Fronting is a grocery term that means moving the shelf stock to the front edge of the shelf. Fronting the ice means a trip to the ice freezer. That is a cool job to have on a hot day. Small bags are on the left, large bags on the right. The hand-operated pallet lifter makes the work much easier.


Electrical Service Pedestal Replacement

Mark Twain Landing RV Resort has a mix of 30 amp and 50 amp electrical hookups. We are working on replacing many of the 30 amp pedestals with newer 50 amp pedestals. Campers will then have the option of plugging into 30 or 50 amp service as needed. We target the 30 amp service pedestals that have been known to be problematic. Here is an example of a problematic pedestal. The plastic cover in the photo on the left shows a hole that was caused by excessive heating. The photo on the right shows what probably happened in the past. Apparently a resistive short occurred causing a wire to burn off (see arrow). The problem was corrected but the pedestal was not replace at that time. Today, I replaced it..

30A pedestalOur two young guys dug out the old pedestal. My job was to install and wire the new pedestal. I was supervised by our workamping electrician, George. He approved the work and said I can now add this skill to my resume. The large size wires are required since they can carry 200 amps of service to the RV sites. This is the kind of power that can be deadly if not handled properly. George said I did a good job with this installation. He even commented that he could leave now since someone else could do this work. I am sure he was joking about leaving.

50-Amp PedestalSo, there you have it. New skills for the maintenance guy. Cool.

Speaking of cool, we have had some beautiful fall like weather for the past several days. Low temps have been in the 50’s while highs have been hovering in the high 70’s and low 80’s. Tonight we are expecting a bit of rain. Sure wish I could send the cool and rain to our family in Texas.

That’s it for this time. Thanks for stopping by, y’all come back now.