Saturday, July 14, 2012

We're closing in on the end of week 1 ...

I can't believe it's Friday evening already.  This is the last day of our first week in our new Moby Homa!  It took me most of the week to get a blog post completed.  I've been trying hard to spend some time writing each day, but it's difficult to finish more than a thought or two before an interruption of one kind or another.  Also, it's almost impossible to write with a cat in my lap.  No place for the laptop!  Also, there are so many things to take care of, and much more interaction with Steve - not a bad thing!  Just doesn't leave a lot of time to be in my own head.

Thursday we had a welcomed visit from my brother and his wife.  They had kindly offered to put off their visit for a week while we tried to get settled, but next week we have an appointment for the motorhome at Camping World to get some of our problems solved.  It made more sense for them to come this week.  As it turned out, it was exactly what we needed!

We had a lovely visit, getting our minds off our unpacking and sorting.  Steve prepared for their visit by taking most the bins back out and storing them away in the basement.  That made us feel better too!  It felt like we were actually entertaining company - the family kind - and it felt great.

I fixed us a lunch of sandwiches and leftover pasta salad.  Let me stray off topic and say I've done two great new recipes this week.  The ideas came from lunch/dinners served to us at my parent's place last week.  One day for lunch my mother served us a really yummy pasta salad.  She used a Suddenly Salad boxed mix, Chipotle-Ranch variety, and doctored it with lots of added vegetables and black beans.  It was really good!  I determined I'd take a run at copying the recipe, without using a boxed mix.  It needs a little tweaking, but it was yummy!  That was the leftover pasta salad I served to Paul & Diana, my version of Chipotle-Ranch Pasta Salad.

The other copycat recipe attempt I made was inspired by some tilapia my Mom served us for dinner one night.  She purchased it, frozen & already seasoned, at Costco.  Our whole family enjoys fish, and she apologized she hadn't cooked more of it, as we ate every last bit.  Naturally, we didn't need more, but we'd have eaten it if it was there.  I had frozen orange roughy in my freezer here in the motorhome, and made a similar flavored fish.  This one was a real hit!  We'll be having it over and over - Lemon-Basil Orange Roughy.

I was able to share some of my over-stocked pantry with Paul & Diana.  I've learned that when you live in an motorhome, you don't need to have 2 Costco bottles of Worcestershire sauce.  I find it rather embarrassing on some level that I had such a well-stocked pantry at our former house.  This new life-style will afford us to live in a more just-in-time, simple manner.  We practiced this new lifestyle when we park hosted for 2+ months last Winter.  When I do my grocery shopping, I have to continually ask myself, "When will you serve this?"  A good buy is only good if you use it!  I will get better at this over time.  I now have the added motivation of limited storage space to inspire me.

I made a couple phone calls on Friday to State Parks with park hosting opportunities available.  I'd left a couple messages at Champoeg State Park, and hadn't heard back.  We have really been thinking it would be ideal to work a month or two at Champoeg, as it keeps us close enough to Camping World while we work out the bugs in our motorhome.  This call paid off with getting to talk with the ranger in charge of volunteer hosts - Mike Smith.  As might be expected of a ranger in charge of hosts, he was very personable.  I explained our situation, and he explained his.  He had two other hosts call in who might be able to come fill his July needs immediately.  If so, that would be his preference.  Another host currently working for him had some personal issues come up that might cause them to need to leave early, he'd heard.  He said he'd be speaking with them and if they did indeed need to leave, perhaps we could fill that position in August?  Either way, he'll be getting back to us.

Next I called Wallowa Lake State Park over in NE Oregon.  It's a gorgeous park, and we haven't been there for several years.  They have several openings posted for September and October.  I spoke with the ranger in charge of hosts, who's name I unfortunately didn't get.  She did an impromptu interview with me over the phone and said she'd be sending me information on their hosting program.

Each state park has unique needs from hosts.  Wallowa Lake has only 2 yurts, and no cabins.  They need campground hosts who assist campers and clean up the sites after campers leave.

We are anxious to figure out where we'll be living over the next few months.  We were only able to get a reservation here at the Old Stone Village RV Park until the 23rd of this month.  We may be scrambling for somewhere to stay until the end of July at least.  I reminded Steve he needs to be praying with me about where we go from here!  This is a new thing to get our heads around - we need to know where we can park our home to live each month!  I imagine, over time, we'll have our favorites.  It's a little precarious right now as July & August in Oregon are prime vacation months.  Openings are limited.  Stay tuned ...

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