Monday, June 12, 2017

Toms Creek Falls

The boy and I decided to check out Toms Creek Falls.  This little gem isn't too far off the beaten path and is well worth the trip.  The parking area is a small, gravel, road side lot.  There is a kiosk marking the trail head.

We began this easy hike into the cove forest.  The path is mainly gravel and other parts are well worn, so you shouldn't get lost.

There is a foot bridge to cross over a little creek.  We made our way to the primitive campsites and down to Toms Creek.

We then made our way to the waterfall deck.  It provides a nice view of the falls.  A tree had fallen recently and we had to climb over it.  I'm sure it has been removed.  Little Man wanted to continue up the trail to get a better view.

We headed up and over a few large rocks and then down to the base of the falls.  This was the best view!

We enjoyed our short mile long excursion to Toms Creek Falls.  We can't wait to return with other family members to show them!

Saturday, June 3, 2017

Joseph McDowell Historical Catawba Greenway Trail

Little Man and I decided to go exploring in the Marion, NC area.  We stumbled upon the Joseph McDowell Historical Catawba Greenway trail.  This little gem is well worth a visit!

The small parking area was almost full when we arrived, but the trail is about two miles long (4 round trip) and the foot traffic was spread out.  At times we saw no one on the trail.  When we did see others, everyone was friendly.

Little Man loved the exercise/fitness portion of the trail.  He had to try out each piece of equipment.

The path is paved and level.  It has plenty of shade and nice views of the Catawba river. There are two fishing decks along the river.  Several sloping areas to access the river along the trail.  We saw one man fly fishing in the river.  There are also several benches along the trail to stop and take a break if needed.

We enjoyed finding a variety of insects along the path.  We also spotted several squirrels, slider turtles, woodpecker, and song birds.

We decided to follow the Round Hill loop and climb to the top of Round Hill.  The steep climb to the top of Round Hill will get your cardio going!

We can't wait to return and take our fishing poles to see what we can catch from the Catawba river!

Monday, May 29, 2017

Second Annual Homeschool Campout!

We decided to have another fun homeschool camp out with friends.  It is always fun to camp with friends and share memories together!

We returned to Orchard Lake Campground.  We love the amenities for the kids.  Between fishing the lakes, canoes/kayaks, swimming, zip-line, play ground, game room, etc. it keeps them occupied.  We never have to hear about them being bored and having nothing to do!

We decided to go with themed meals again this year.  It is so much easier and no one envies the other families food.  Each family prepares their own dishes, so everyone is happy about the taste.  We all eat together and have a great time with fellowship.

What camping trip would be complete without the nightly s'mores dessert?  Roasting marshmallows and lots of giggling is required.  So, is a sticky table at the end of the evening!

One of our friends brought two boxes of international treats to share.  The kiddos gathered around the table and listened to the description and history of treats from Japan and the U.K.  The Japanese treats were quite interesting.  The kiddos weren't fond of many.  For example one was flavored as beef tongue!  The U.K. treats were a bigger hit. Plenty of Cadbury chocolates could be found in many of the treats! 

Everyone had a great time and is looking forward to our next trip together.

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Stove Covers for the RV

Our stoves in the Conquest and Zinger did not come with a cover.  Counter space is precious in an RV. Adding a foot or two of counter space makes life much better in the kitchen!  I am frugal and when pricing a stove cover I was shocked at the price.  I didn't want to spend fifty plus dollars on a cover.  So, I thought what could I use that could serve a dual purpose.  I came up with a cutting board stove cover!

First, I measured the stove top.  Then I headed to Wally World in search of a heavy duty plastic cutting board.  I had one in the house I used often and wanted a similar one for the trailer.  They had just what I needed.

Next, I got it home and applied four small Velcro pieces to the back and added a grip shelf liner.  This made it where the cutting board did not slide around on the stove when towing.  It also keeps it from sliding around when bumped.

In the Conquest, I didn't have sink covers.  When I used the stove, I put the cutting board cover over the sink and expanded my counter space.  In the Zinger, I have sink covers.  I can still place it over the sink or on the table.  It doesn't really get in the way.

Once the stove is cleaned and cool, I simply place the cutting board cover on it.  Then I put an absorbent dish mat on top of the board.  I picked up a small dish drainer at Wally World and place it on top.  Since the sink and stove are beside one another, it makes washing and drying easy.

When the dish drainer isn't being used, I store the potatoes and onions or other produce in it.

So, I have a frugal, multi purpose solution to many issues facing a travel trailer kitchen.  Counter space added, cutting board for veggies, dish drying station, and produce storage all in one!

For more mods in our Zinger see:  Kitchen Organization in the RV, RV Mods Part 2, and Making the Zinger 28bh Our Own