Sunday, December 30, 2012

Bugging Out And Bootlegging

It has been one busy and long Christmas for us. We celebrated 4 days in a row and now we are exhausted. Though I had a chance to go to work to get a little bit of "rest". We took the Revcon for the first trip hoping that all the issues with the fridge and what ever else would have been resolved. We were pleased to notice that indeed they were. As expected the dogs were all fine, excluding Pixie, who always freaks out if we go somewhere. Just a matter of getting used to that sort of thing, or so we hope. The drive itself down to South of Texas to meet the family was uneventful, though once we had a deer run in front of a rig. That was not entirely unexpected, there are lots of deer around, but what surprised us was that it was in the middle of the day.

We arrived to our destination and camped out at Lee's cousins house, where they have repeatedly provided us with their RV hook up and this time we almost blew up their Christmas lights. They have a nice level driveway that we were allowed to use. This might not sound like anything special, but I can tell you that it felt luxurious compared to our driveway which is not level nor is it long enough for our rig. We have done some creative parking blocking the use of our garage, but let's get back to the story.  We spent the first night thinking that only the greyhounds would be able to climb up to the bed above the cabin and we were right. We did not expect though that the old girl Nelli would decide that she wants her place between our pillows, but as soon as we decided to hit the hay, there she was staring up at us and making noise and we knew that there would be no end to that if we didn't give in (14 years of training us has paid out). Plus she is surprisingly easy to ignore, since she doesn't really take a space that we would use anyways. We slept our night tightly and warm despite of the close to freezing temperatures. We also came to a realization that we need to add a rail and a step to our bed to keep the dogs from hopping down to the floor from that high. All of them did jump down at some point without requiring any broken bones, but it will be just a matter of time if they keep doing it.

The next day the weather warmed up nicely and we went for a Christmas dinner with Lee's mothers side of the family. I only wish I had taken pictures there, the house and the few acres of a lot is simply amazingly beautiful, it is surrounded by the fence and cattle guard, and they usually have cattle too, but due to last two years of drought the cattle has been sold and the donkeys are claiming it as their territory. The old crooked oaks shade the lot nicely and every time we visit I dream of finding as lovely place for us. I would never even consider moving again! Oh yes, the dinner... The dinner was like usually nothing short of delicious and it fed tens of people. The dishes were beyond the drooliest dreams and we stuffed ourselves silly and drove back to our dream spot on our cousin's driveway.

How lucky do you have to be to have views like this every day
 from your porch?

Before going to bed, the cousin's husband, Lee's sister and her husband plus we two hang outside talking and the discussion for some reason geared towards zombie apocalypse, prepping and they decided that the Revcon should be the bug out vehicle when the crap hits the fan. The plans to mount some heavy artillery and  to use dry erase board as lining inside was brought up and of course nobody would take us seriously without run flat tires. This conversation pointed out the direction for days to come too and this Christmas will go into the history as Zombie Christmas. Alas, the time goes fast and soon it was the time to crawl back into our cave to sleep. The night was hot, and the dogs were restless, making our sleep a bit sporadic.

The next day we drove to the city to Lee's grandmother's house to meet the father's side of the family. We were greeted as soon as we walked in with a cold beer, of course Shiner, since we are in Texas. The cousins and aunts and uncles, nieces and nephews, boyfriends and girlfriends and what not all filled up tummies with another amazing setting of holiday foods and all kinds of appetizers and deserts. If anyone left hungry, it was their own fault, food was delicious and there was plenty of it. We also took a yearly family picture, this year being special, since we are pretty sure everyone made it, not one person was missing of the fun. The next part of the day was the high light of the year. The big bootlegging: liquor exchange, there is no better fun that it is. We do the Chinese Christmas where we either open a concealed present or steal someone else's present. And each present is available for stealing three times. And the liquor is high quality and there is plenty of it, the stealing goes on for quite a while. The plotting and planning is so fun. I left with a keg of my favorite beer Newcastle and Lee got two bottles of Texas wine with a stack of scratch offs.

Soon we had to head out to Dallas. The dogs slept most of the way home, they were too tired of all the excitement and about worrying when ever we left them into the RV alone. Next time they will know better what to expect.

Louie, pretty perfect travel dog
The next day would be Christmas Eve, the day Finnish people celebrate their Christmas. We have now for few years had the tradition that I make the Finnish Christmas meal and Lee's sisters family and mother will come over and we will eat all together. So we did this year too, except that it is becoming more of a tradition and we actually sat down almost till midnight talking and having fun. At least I really enjoyed it. The three kids are all old enough to be able to take a part in our conversations and we really enjoy their sense of humor. They are all really great kids, so much fun to be around them. The clean up was really easy too, we had dogs to do the dishes ;o)

The weather turned back to really cold again in the wee hours of Christmas Day and it started hailing and raining and the aluminum roof was very loud keeping us awake. We also realized that getting the greyhounds to potty outside became a serious chore. So the next morning we headed to Lee's mother's house for the actual Christmas celebration. We were hours late, since the weather kept us awake the night before and getting the dogs settled took longer. I am sure that the kids were just about to go bonkers waiting for us to come over so that they can open the presents. First we ate breakfast, which is traditionally corn beef gravy with some toast. I remember thinking it was strange food when I first ate it, now I am expecting it as a breakfast every Christmas.

We told everyone not to buy us any presents this year, but that of course didn't happen. But we really can't complain, we received some really amazing present, like a table top grill for the RV from my sister in laws family, some LED lanterns and lights and the cutest flip flops ever, just to mention some. All in all, Christmas was lots of fun and for a very long time. It remains as my favorite holiday and next time it might be very different if we get our plan in action. We shall see! For now I am happy this Christmas is over. I enjoyed it a lot, but considering all our dinners around Christmas they just all happened one after another and it can be kind of tiring. Still I wouldn't miss any of those days!


Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Preparing for Christmas

So it is not a secret that not much has happened since last time, it is almost quite shameful really, but there has been reasons for it too. And then on the other hand, I am sure we could have gotten something done, but the holiday season sort of took our time. The house has been without any attention for now, we have been waiting on some financial actions to be finished, and this must be the record waiting for it. It has been almost 3 months ago since we started the process, and we are still waiting. Lots of things will have to happen before we can move on with the remodeling and foundation issues, but they all are waiting for the finalizing of the financial matter.

While it seems that the clock is just ticking away, yet another holiday is approaching us, and man, we Finnish people don't fool around that holiday. The decorating, presents and most of all food is taking over our lives for at least a month ahead of time. I have to admit that I am not going to quite the whole distance with any of it this year, we are trying to keep it more about family and spending time together. But there are some things that you just have to have, or it is not Christmas. Well, snow isn't high on my list anymore after moving to Texas and the presents are really on the lowest of our priorities this year, though I feel a bit quilt about it, but the upcoming lay off will make me hopefully think it was better this way.

Most of the Christmas foods are fairly inexpensive but take a long time to prepare and since I don't live in Finland anymore, I can't get them ready made from the stores. The must-haves are ham, beet root salad called Rosolli, carrot casserole, rutabaga casserole and sweetened potato casserole (which this year we are switching to mashed potatoes, waaaaay easier, and for my American family a little more familiar tastewise ;o) ). Gingerbread cookies and Glogg (kind of spiced glow wine) are appetizers, and prune cream is the dessert. This is very simplified list of the must-haves, on top of all this most families have other meats, fish served several different ways, all kinds of side dishes, ton of cookies and cakes, coffee, wine, cheeses, fish roe and cold cuts, mountains of candy and sweets.

The traditional Christmas in Finland is celebrated on Christmas Eve, and since that is when Santa leaves to deliver all the presents for the nice kids (lucky for Finns Santa Claus lives in Finland) they are the first ones to get their presents. The Christmas has started usually already few weeks ahead of time with frantic baking and decorating. The night before Christmas Eve is when the ham is baked in the oven, this generally takes hours and hours, depending on a size of a ham, quite often the typical size is around 40 pounds. On the morning of the Christmas Eve the typical breakfast is rice pudding with some fruit compote. Typically people go to the grave yards to light candles on the graves of their loved ones, some people go to the church at 5 am to sing Christmas carols. The traditions vary, and it depends also which part of Finland you live. But everyone agrees on one thing: when the clock hits 12 o'clock at noon, the work seizes and from then on it is Christmas peace for all.

The Finnish Christmas is filled with traditions, starting from the foods. Every family has their favorite foods, but they are always add on for the ham and casseroles. The foods are what used to be available in the dead of winter hundred or two hundred years ago, the root vegetables in a cellar and then the fattened pig got butchered just for the holidays.

Finns tend to love all the traditions, and also decorating follows the old style. The typical decorations are made out of straw, pine cones painted with silver or gold paints, candles and what ever the kids were able to come up with, like snow flakes cut out of paper. The colorful and loud decorating is still today frowned by many. But the times are changing and today the candles are changing into electric lights, though many still insist on lighting up real candles even in a tree.

I miss my family especially around the holidays and I try to hold onto the traditions for the sake of feeling closer to what used to be my normal, and that was close to my family. My mother in law and my sister in law's family has made it feel like I am where I belong, and I miss my family less because of that. But holidays are always bitter sweet, since we have the same tradition Americans do, we are supposed to spend it with our families. I have been lucky in last 10 years that I have lived here, I got to spend two of the Christmases with my youngest brother who visited me twice, and there is no better Christmas present than that.

Now that Finns celebrate the Christmas on the Eve and American on a Christmas Day, and since I still want the Finnish Christmas foods, we have started a new tradition, two days of Christmas! I make the Finnish foods and everyone comes over on Christmas Eve, and then on the Christmas Day we mooch on somebody else's house. :D I love it, suits me, since the Christmas has always been my favorite holiday, and this way I get twice the fun!

This year feels different, not just because we aren't buying the presents, but because we know it might be the last Christmas for a long time that we are spending all together. I am bit upset and sad about that, but I guess we will just have to make it to Texas for the holidays.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Operation Bed Spread

I decided to make the Revcon a bit more colorful and cheery. Well, I might have taken a bit too ambitious and time consuming project to start with, but I have decided it will be done, no matter if it will take year or two to finish it. I have always loved all kinds of crafts, and one of the things that has been pushed for years aside is crochet and knitting and I am ready to start again. I should have probably made first some potholders and washcloths but nope, I decided to make a bed cover for the California King size bed in our RV. I was planning on doing it with granny squares to keep the weight of it a bit lighter while working on it (Everyone who does crochet knows what they are, others maybe not. They are usually either square or round shaped smaller pieces that eventually get connected into a larger piece). But Lee did not like the granny square style, and I was not going to spend the best part of a year (or maybe even two) working on a project that he would hate.

I spent several days trying to figure out how to use my yarn that I had purchased for granny squares, since I had almost as much Ivory colored yarn as I had various other colors. I had enough of yarn, but how to make it so that I won't run out of any color in the middle of the row, and how to distribute the Ivory colored yarn there evenly so that it won't look like I miscalculated at some point (which would be easy to do) or that I had bought the yarn for some other project (which actually did happen) and just tried to use it in something else it wasn't suitable for.

The most difficult part was to try to figure out how to get the Ivory in there, and how to visualize to see if my plan would work or not. So I decided to take a pieces of each yarn and lay them down. One piece of yarn was going to be representing one row of crochet. One by one I set the yarns down and counted how many rows of Ivory I still have to crochet to get long enough bed cover to actually cover the bed. Once I had the amount of Ivory needed figured out, I cut the yarn and started to divide it evenly out hoping that I can come up with a pattern. I was in luck to find a way to even it all out in repetitive way. I made a sample out of each color in patter and laid them out to plan the order. This is what it is going to look like, unless I miscalculated the rows needed to finish the project.

I was hoping to get kind of effect where the colors change gradually, but with having to use lots of Ivory, I don't think it will be as smooth as originally planned. I don't know how it will look on a bigger scale, but I am sure it will be fabulous! How could it not? I am making it, so what could go wrong? Ok, please, one at a time, I know all my home boys and girls are now laughing and waiting for a chance to speak up and prove that everything could go wrong when I am in question. Maybe the first one to prove my mistakes is my super handy sister who can knit anything (she got it from me, I am sure). I am one of those people who usually just jumps into a project without any instructions, but I tried to plan this one out since it is going to be a lot of work. I am just hoping I don't have to pull it all apart after spending about 100 hours and realizing it isn't going to work.

I made about three ripples wide sample to trying to figure out how many stitches I needed in one row, but I was afraid the sample should have been longer to get more accurate estimate. And sure enough after several hours later when I was finishing my third row I decided that the piece has started to take a form to allow me to measure how wide it actually is, and I noticed it was 11 inches wider than what I wanted it to be. I am already making it wider than the mattress is, so that when making the bed, the spread will come all the way down the mattress to cover it, but I really didn't feel the need to crochet any more than what was needed, especially since one row takes a looong time. So I took the scissors and just cut of the excess. Who said you can't do that? I just did! I just tied the ends and smiled at myself. I have to still time out to see how long it is actually going to take to finish one row, but it certainly is more than one hour, maybe even more than two. I am not the fastest one with the hook, and most of the time I get interrupted for this or that. And I am sure after few months other projects will take the priority, but this will get done, sooner or later. I will be updating you on this project later on.

Just to show you what the ripple design is, here is a picture of a pretty one, made by Lucy from Attic 24. And if anyone else is interested here is the ripple pattern.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

It Is Official, the Dogs Love the Beast!!!

So we decided that it was time to go fix the day and night curtain if we could possibly figure out how to do it. And we decided to take the dogs with us to get used to being in Revcon. After all, we needed to see if it is going to be a disaster or not. I lifted up one of the greyhounds to the bunk bed, since that is where we are going to be sleeping and this is the spot that we were expecting to cause most problems. Let's go to the ugly truth and admit that the puppies sleep with us, under our covers and the hairiest dog Nelli... heh, on our pillows, so this is what is going to be the biggest obstacle. Louie seemed to like it up there and so did Pixie, we didn't even try to put old girl Nelli there. She will most likely want to sleep there too but for her safety, I think she will have to learn to sleep in her own bed on the couch or on the floor. It will be interesting to see how that will work out. So I took Louie and Pixie down and we started to fix the curtain, and it looks Louie figured out in no time how to get back up there. So the dogs love the bunk bed, that is clear, now we just have to make is so that they can get down from there without hurting themselves. Some sort of ramp thingie with a rail will have to be put up there at nights.The stuff we do for our little hairy kiddoes.

Oh, and not to forget, we did figure out how to fix the curtain. We are going to have to be more self sufficient in order to survive out in the boonies. And boonies is where we would love to be! Boonies, be prepared for a crazy bunch!



Friday, November 16, 2012

RV Cooking So Easy Even Caveman Could Do It

Lee and I started this series of experiments on food and how to make things RV friendly. The biggest challenges are that we do not have counter space, at all! The table will have to work, no matter how small, as prepping area for our cooking. We also need to simplify our recipes. I like to every now and then try new things and sometimes the recipes are complicated. Well, complicated is not gonna cut it in the RV. I don't mind cooking complicated stuff, what gets me is the chopping and prepping. If I can't have a sous chef, I will have stuff that has been sous cheffed for me ahead of time. Ladies and gentlemen, we have a perfect solution: easy cooking and easy storing (does not mean it doesn't take any room, just no special requirements) and prepping all done for you. The solutions is freeze dried ingredients!!!

As I am typing this I just have my RV soup simmering and it was so easy to make. I was going to make just a traditional soup with veggies and meat in it, until I realized that we were out of potatoes, or had just couple that looked kinda suspicious. And the meat was still frozen. Since I needed to cook for my poor hard working hubby, I decided that I will go with what my conscious has always rebelled against, easy route. So I took all our freeze dried veggies, a can of diced tomatoes, freeze dried meat and tossed a bit of this and a bit of that into the pot with some water, those tomatoes, and some salt, pepper, paprika, all spice, chili sauce and oregano and let it simmer for an hour. Now we have healthy, delicious and most of all super easy soup. Nothing to clean except the bowls we eat from, the pot and spoons. I love this!

When you are snuggled up by a rock or a tree out in the boonies, with as small of a fridge as we do, and you don't have an option to go grocery shopping daily, this is the way to go. The simplicity makes it so effortless too, that even someone who has started to lean towards the take out pizza versus home cooking just for its easiness can not complain at all. All it took was couple of minutes to throw things into the pot and add some spices. Once it started to boil, I just put the lid on it and let it simmer for another hour and by the time all has stopped floating on the surface, was well re-hydrated and cooked. I just sprinkled a bit of cheese on my soup  bowl and gobbled it all up. How much easier can it get? And all the ingredients are high quality, dry stored and we don't even have to go to the grocery store to buy them, they can all be ordered online. Hah, I can see how people get extreme on all kinds of things, I am ready to see how far I can go. 

To our surprise this soup was yummy!
No refrigerator needed
No tears
No peeling and chopping


Sunday, November 11, 2012

Beast, Monster, Cave, Bat Mobile, Zeus, Mad Max???

So we are still on a quest to name our rig, though it looks like the original name is sticking to it pretty tightly. So far she has been called Beast by almost anyone who sees her. I tend to like Monster better, and we got some amazingly good suggestions on Facebook and private emails from people, but so far nothing has gotten stuck enough to replace the Beast. Our friends borrowed it for a tiny road trip and returned it the next day, they were all chuckled about the fact that anywhere they made even a short pit stop, they were surrounded by people asking about it, taking pictures and just generally being really curious about it. I have to say that it is much bigger in person than what it looks in pictures, and when it rolls down towards you, it makes you take couple looks as if your eyes were lying. The first words out of your mouth would likely be: " What the heck?". It truly is a Beast rolling down. But before we close the files on the name search we will be still accepting suggestions. It is not time yet to let this case go cold.

Talking about the cold... We have been battling with her refrigerator for few weeks now. After  fixing the power drainage, it refused to stay on with propane. We take it to the shop to get it fixed, and it comes back with the same problem. We might have to buy a new fridge  but if the problem is not the fridge itself, then that would not do any good either. It is getting rather frustrating. We struggled with this earlier with our Chinook too, but finally that one got resolved. What ever it is, it needs immediate attention. Fridge that doesn't stay on is not a fridge, it is a closet with poor air circulation.

My plans for the interior are very simple: total overhaul. I can't stand the black and white, it is very 80's looking, especially for a rig that was built 2002. Some of the black is going to have to be replaced along with the black and white carpet. I want hardwood floors for easy cleaning and also the golden faucet will need replacing. Lots of the black is in big items like leather couches and counter top. Most items could possibly be changed but would be ridiculously expensive, like the solid black marble counter top. Given that it is probably cast marble, it is still expensive, and I think we just have to make the rest of the changes to work with it. I am trying to make it look a bit less masculine from the inside, since right now it is so "dude". I think that crochet granny square stuff will be boho enough, and make even my husband to feel warm and fuzzy... though I am sure that nothing warm and fuzzy made him to get the Beast in a first place. The leather will be easy to replace in some places and in some not so much but I think it can be also partially a project for the road, something we can get done while already in motion. The flooring needs to be changed first and rest will follow.

We have considered even some constructional changes with our rig, nothing major that could not be changed later, but since we do have the fold down table on the back and our kitchen is pretty much non existing we were thinking of just converting the dinette into one big counter space with storage underneath. would be fairly simple to do, and could be easily removed later on. Not sure yet if we want to do that really, time will show I guess, if we can figure out a way to get one done and stored inside the rig without it being on the way, we could just do it and then use it on as needed basis. I just don't think we could really use the underneath for any storing in that case.


Sunday, November 4, 2012

Pecans And Baking

Well, we have lived for over 4 years in this house and this Monday our lawn crew came and they asked if they would be allowed to pick a little bit pecans under our huge tree after the mowing. Of course, why not, we never did. I guess we assumed that we got nothing this year since last year the shells were empty due to severe drought. And the year must have been tough for squirrels too, we have much less of them than we used to. We happened to talk with our neighbor about the pecans and he just said that the pecans are beautiful this year, so I decided to go see if there was any left under the tree and I was in luck. I collected about two to three gallons of shells and very few actually were either empty or damaged, they might have been from last year for what we know.

Suddenly I wanted to bake a pecan pie and I had never baked one before. I asked my friends in Facebook for a good recipe and Catie Doman graciously shared her blue ribbon winning recipe. Keep your eyes peeled, I will share it with you with her permission. I went back to get some more pecans and kept jumping up to reach the ones up on the lowest branches too. I just wanted to make sure that I had enough for a pie in case they end up being bad ones. I was in luck again. I think I could bake thirty pies out of them. Better safe than sorry is what I'm thinking.

So I had most of the ingredients at home but wanted to make my baking as RV'ish as possible and I think I would use ready made crust to save time while RV'ing. And since I am trying to learn to take shortcuts, I decided it was good time to start using the half ready products. I am originally from Finland and we make everything from scratch and I need to learn to simplify my cooking a lot in order to enjoy it better. So here is the recipe for the filling, I used Pillsbury pie crust and I still have half of it left, since it has two crusts in it. I can make another one as soon as this one runs out, which is probably later on tonight.

Fresh from the oven, hot and still puffy!

Catie's Blue Ribbon Winning Pecan Pie:

1/2 cup of sugar
1 cup of Karo dark syrup
1 cup of pecans
3 eggs
4 tbs butter (which I forgot, still came out good)
1 tsp vanilla
1/8 tsp salt

Pillsbury pie crust or home made crust.

Mix the ingredients and pour onto the crust. Bake 10 mins in 400F and then 35 mins in 300F. You can probably make it prettier with nice edge and not forgetting the stuff out of it. But at least I do have a reason to make another pie. It is pretty yummy, make two at the same time so you don't have to be baking all the time.

Just imagine the stick of butter in the picture, I am sure it will be even
 tastier  with it.

Saturday, November 3, 2012


The decision to keep the house has calmed me down. I am not so worried anymore what kind of rig we have, or if we have enough room. Not that having the house will help anything with the fact that we are living small while on the road, but just the knowledge of being able to return here will release some of the pressure of having to sell everything. It might actually be worth keeping the furniture at least some of it, so we don't have to go all crazy spending once we are done roaming around the country.

We also are relieved that we don't have to fix as much right away, since we are not trying to sell for a top dollar. Some changes that we need to do can be done down the road, whenever it seems necessary and we get to keep our nice neighborhood and all our friends and family close. Such a nice feeling. I am already feeling a little sad of missing on all the fun lunches and dinners with one of my closest friends. We usually have dinner in our favorite Indian buffet once a week, or anywhere we feel like, and those will sadly have to be iced until we come back from our Tour de America.

Fresh herbs will be greatly missed, especially the basil that
 took over the whole back yard
I have been following a few RV bloggers and I have to admit that I am pretty anxious to get on the road. Some of the bloggers have absolutely amazing photos on their blogs, and I am sure they would be able to make our dumpster to look like a dream vacation spot, but I can't help but wish I could go to see all those fabulous views and sceneries that they have photographed to their blogs. Looking at those pictures it just makes you think that they are either professional, or they have a camera that has a button "$1M" that makes everything look like million dollars. Maybe you can train your eyes to see the photo in front of you, but the colors look sometimes so surreal, maybe they have more professional gear than my point and shoot.

I have been frustrated with my own photos, since there isn't really anything yet to take pictures of, and when you are trying to blog about the brainstorming it gets a bit difficult to take photos that are actually somehow related to the post itself. I have to use pictures of what ever random stuff  that are not related to anything that I am really talking about, but that have something in them that I like, not necessarily great photos, but images of things that I like. This is one of the reasons you have seen so many pictures of our critters and our home. But this is one of the things I would like to concentrate more once we hit the road. I can't wait for that one.

Another amazing photo of the... vegetation on our yard. 
Moving from 3000 square feet to about 150 will be a huge change. I am sure the lack of storage is not going to be the only issue, one of the things I have been threading is the cooking. We have a pretty big kitchen with all the possible appliances and gadgets and the RV, well, it just doesn't. I have been thinking about toaster oven and maybe a single burner to add little cooking power, but then again storing them will be an issue. I think we will just try to figure out how to use the convection micro as an oven and try to get by with as little as possible. I think my Kitchen Aid might not have a spot in the RV, drats!


Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween!

We feel the blues of Chinook being sold. We were supposed to "baby sit" her while the new owner was out of town for the weekend, but his wife seemed to bond with her real fast, and we haven't seen her since the money changed hands. I am glad it went to a good home where it gets used. Now we get to step into the next part of our plan, which is getting the house fixed, so we can rent it out. Time is going by fast, and we need to kick in the next gear, there might only be couple months left for us to get ready.

The Halloween has been really tame this year for us. We usually have a party for Halloween, but this year we sold our awesome margarita machine, and decided to not throw a party after all. We did attend one though, and like usually for this holiday, we were dressed up for the occasion. I love Halloween.



Chinook Officially Sold

After passing all the inspections and a thorough look over of the Chinook by a professional inspector, the Chinook is now officially sold.  So everyone who was hoping the sale would fall thru so they could snatch up such a great vehicle will have to continue the hunt.  Even while filling it up with gas today, I was approached by someone who wanted it (there were never any for sale signs on it either).

The market for Chinooks is definitely a hot one!

All for now, Happy Halloween!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Moving forward

So we are almost done with the Chinook. It is with sad realization that the Chinook will not be with us anymore. We have a sale pending officially, and I am pretty certain that the sale will be finalized on Monday. This will finally get our wheels in motion, since the selling of the Chinook was our ticket to do the foundation repair and some of the other renovations. Then we just have to figure out where to put our junk that will need to be stored for later use, and get it done! I just have a feeling that it is easier said than done. I am pretty persistent when I get my mind into something, but I think we are so different in that matter, that it will take us longer than it needs to. But there is no need to get into any major stress about it, just start early on, so we don't have to panic once the time comes.

I think Chinook will have plenty of interesting adventures ahead of it, the new owner looked like he had very interesting history,  not your average RV buyer. We had lots of interest in the rig, and we got requests about it all the way from Canada, which was kind of surprising. Though we have to admit that we would have gone a long way to get one for us, we just happened to be really lucky to find ours from Houston, so we only had to drive few hundred miles to get it. Now that our beauty is about to leave us and we will have the beast to house us on the road, the urge of finding an appropriate name has become evident. Until we come across suitable one, we will just refer to her as the Beast.


Sunday, October 21, 2012

1998 Chinook Concourse Side Entry for Sale!! -SOLD

Really hate to do this, but we really don't need 2 RVs.

Really rare side entry Chinook with permanent bed floor plan. Low Miles, around 40,000.

We just took it on one last trip and it performed flawlessly over the 450 mile journey.
If you are looking for an easy to drive RV, this is it! If you are looking for an RV that is the sports car of RVs, this is it!  Made of a one piece Fiberglass shell, it should last a Long Long time.

As the driver of the vehicle I can attest to the handling, speed, braking, horsepower, and comfort of it.  You can cruise at pretty much any speed you would want to drive.  It easily handles 90+ mph, in fact it is fun to pass sports cars in a motorhome effortlessly. Averages 10-13 mpg with a full load of water, gas, supplies.

Some of the features:
Ford 6.8 Liter V-10 Triton Engine
4 Speed automatic w/ overdrive
Power windows
Power locks
130amp Alternator
Cold in dash A/C
Driver and Passenger air bags
37 gallon gasoline tank
Onan Microlite 4000 watt gas generator with less then 80 hours.  Auto cutoff if gas tank goes below 1/4 full.
6 CU FT Dometic 2 door refrigerator/freezer, 3-way runs on A/C, D/C, or LP.
I believe an 80 watt solar panel on top to keep your batteries charged.
2 burner stove
Kitchen sink
Shower/toilet combo unit with medicine cabinet. REALLY hot showers
LP 6 gallon water heater (heats quick and is HOT)
32 gallon fresh water tank
36 gallon gray and 15 gallon black tank
16000 BTU Furnace
A/C unit on top
30 amp plug with 23 foot cable.  Has adapter to plug into a normal 110 outlet as well.
Full size permanent bed 75"x47"
Dinette converts into a 1 person, or 2 child bed. (Twin bed)
2 Deep Cycle Marine batteries for 250 amps of power, batteries less than a year old.
Sewer hose and a new in box spare sewer hose
Windows all have the double privacy screens on them
Privacy curtain that snaps onto the front cab of the unit
13 inch tv
VCR(easily swapped) and stereo
12 gallon LPG tank
exterior shower
Carbon Monoxide and LP gas detectors
Equipped with Vehicle Boost Start, in case your engine batteries are dead, it allows you to start the engine      with the coach batteries.
Tow hitch, can tow 8000lbs
Tires have 90+% tread remaining.
2 Fantastic roof fans, one in main cabin and another is the restroom/shower.

Small enough unit for stealth camping, see Glenn's Blog to see how he gets away with free parking 99% of the time.

Side Entry in a rig this size gives it many advantages over a rear entry model. For one, you can have a trailer or car towed along behind you and not have to unhook it in order to go outside. Or if you opt for a cargo hitch to carry stuff it will not interfere with your use of the main doorway.  Also folks with pets report problems with the rear entry models as you end up opening right into the street, whereas the side entry, you end up away from traffic.  Plus for full timers having a permanent bed is a boon to having to constantly put your bed up every day and back down again at night. Plus there is a big storage area under the bed, easily accessible from the outside.

All the electronics work perfectly, mechanically in superb condition.  Has some minor wear on the exterior, but for a 14 year old rig it handles better than any of my other vehicles.  Chinook put out a Super high quality vehicle.

Located at Plano TX.

Contact Lee with any questions: