We are in the midst of our maiden voyage with BAHM. We are staying at a campground about 5 miles from home. It's close to the freeway, but I am amazed by how peaceful it is.
We put the hitch bike rack on and I followed in the van.Parker fishingDori swinging
Set up!
I am already so thankful that we got such a big ass motorhome. I feel crowded and there is just 4 of us, the dog, and less than 1/2 the stuff we are taking to AK. We will have to get used to the confined spaces. So far we had everything we need. Of course, we haven't cooked yet! LOL!

Our Summer Roommate - House Sitter has ARRIVED!

Andy is in the house! He's the college student we know that needs a place to stay for June & July! We needed someone to house sit...so it's a perfect match! We had him move in a few days early because we are going camping this weekend. We are taking the dog with us, so he will have some peace & quiet. Maybe not~ the teen doesn't want to camp with us. We are making him go out with us and sleep in the RV on Sunday night, but the campground is just a few miles away so we will bring him home in between. I am sure we will take frequent trips home & to the store as this is our maiden voyage and we will probably forget LOTS of things!!


BAHM has arrived!

Eric got back yesterday around 4 with the RV. He was not nervous driving & towing for the first time. He stuck close to the speed limit, so he was being passed by everyone. Last night he vacuumed it out really well and today he cleaned the inside & out. We plan on BBQing with family and eating under the awning this evening. Once it cools down (it's 90!) we can start packing it!Oh, and for those of you who don't know what BAHM means...it's BIG ASS MOTOR HOME. It's ASS is big!!


Toad Ready

Eric sent me this pic from his phone this morning. The jeep is all ready to be hitched up! He & his dad have been going lots of little things with the vehicles. Mostly going over how to use things. Eric has been taking notes and has started some check sheets. They have a few more things to go over, but he will probably come home with both vehicles this afternoon. w00t!

updated~ New photo just sent! All hitched up and ready to head home!The Jeep looks tiny in comparison!!


Time to Get the RV

Eric is on his way to pick up the RV right now! He and his dad will be doing the final tinkering and Eric will be driving it home either tomorrow or Sunday. I wonder if he's nervous?! He's driven it home from where we bought it and up to his dads...but this will be the first time towing the Jeep. I know Parker would have liked to go with him, but the boys have a big concert tonight...possibly the ONLY one they will both play at. One of our favorite band teachers is retiring. Parker is scheduled to play drums in his first concert and many of the high school marching band kids are going to show up and surprise the director by playing a few of his arrangements. I'm already emotional thinking about it.

FYI~ I updated a few links below the header~ Our Rig & Itinerary


Toad Protection

A lot of advice we have read about towing a vehicle in Alaska is to protect your radiator and headlights from rocks and debris. All the stuff that is sold specifically for RV towing is Uber Expensive. We checked around and read other blogs and forums and found a solution.

Most people who live in Alaska just put Hardware Cloth on the inside of the car fascia protecting the radiator. Well that takes a lot of time and removal of stuff, so I just picked some up at HD (a 5 foot rolled up sheet of it) for $8.88. I cut a piece to cover the radiator, and then two more to cover the lights.

Yes I drilled and sheet metal screwed it straight to the fascia.

We are making a Vinyl padded protector for the windshield next.-- Eric


Yes, I love Technology

We recently stepped into the 21st Century by actually signing up for a Family Cell phone plan. Our son had a birthday recently and he wanted a modern phone as a gift. Since we were thinking of getting something a little more robust than our Tracphone/Pre Paid phones, we decided to take the plunge.

We went with a Versizon plan that has a Data allowance (more on that later). We got our son the Samsung Intensity. It does all the things most phones do and you can load music on it as well. Our plan includes unlimited Texting, you know, 'cuz our son is a teen and will text up the wazoo.

The Samsung Intesity happens to be the phone I was just upgraded to at work (the phone it replaces is from 2002), so I know what it was capable of and would recommend it to anyone not wanting something as big as a Palm or iPhone or such.

Diana got a Palm Pre Plus. It is a smart phone and syncs up with her Gmail accounts and calendars. It also can act as a WiFi hot spot for up to 5 Devices. We wanted to get this type of access anyway for our trip, and our timing was great, we got the 5GB/Month access FOR NO EXTRA CHARGE. I was ready to lay out the $60 a month for it, but now we don't have to.

The Palm Pre Plus also can use other WiFi spots (up to "g" speeds) so we can surf the web and not use up our Plan Data Allotment. Sweet! It also multitasks, so you can have more than one app running at a time. I totally love this phone (very mini computer?). I was also pleasantly surprised to see that it has 16GM of memory (15 GB for user use).

The trip looms closer and closer and we are nearly "road ready". :)

-- Eric


Home Sweet Safe Home

So yesterday Eric IMd me from work and asked how I felt about having someone stay with us this summer. I wasn't sure what that meant at first, but then he explained. There is a student that he knows from the sailing club that was going to sublet a studio apartment from a friend of a friend. The arrangement fell through this week and he needs a place to stay until his new lease starts in August. Eric has known this guy for a few years and said he's very responsible. He just needs a place to stay for 8 weeks as he will be flying home later in the summer to see his folks. So it's a no-brainer. We will be gone for 5 weeks and need someone to watch the house. This guy is a dog-lover, so he is willing to watch the dog too. So now our house will be safe while we are away and the dog doesn't need to be boarded! w00t!


Brake Buddy Bought

Yesterday I found a supplemental brake system for the Jeep while it is being towed. Nearly every State or Provence we will pass through and including Alaska requires a braking system for towed vehicles.

The Brake Buddy sits in the Jeep and is connected to the brake pedal. When it senses the RV slowing down it in turn presses the brake pedal. It improves (shortens) the braking distance dramatically.

I exchanged a few emails with the owner of the system and we worked out a deal. I sent the funds via PayPal.

-- Eric



Things are coming along with the trip planning. I've spent a lot of time over the last week trying to figure out a basic itinerary. After reading through books, doing online research, and asking questions at RV forums, I've come up with a plan!! I also made reservations at Laird Hot Springs in BC and Denali Nat'l Park in AK. We will be at those places on weekends, so I thought it was important to have reservations. Other places we might just wing it.

I've felt a HUGE weight lifted off my shoulders with the itinerary figured out, so I have turned my attention to this blog. I had a cute idea to have a pic of us coming out of the RV waving, but I decided to have it moving instead. I'll be tweaking the design and might make changes before we leave.

I've started purchasing things for the trip. I figure if I buy things little by little then things might not feel so overwhelming at the end. I know we have a lot of storage in the RV, but I will have a better idea when we bring it down in a few weeks. I plan on bringing most of our (non)perishable food with us and precooking several meals and freezing them. I saw a tip at a forum that said to freeze them flat and then line them up like a bookshelf in the freezer. Not sure how long things will stay good, so I will wait til a little closer to the trip to start cooking.

Eric continues to do vehicle prep. We went up to work on the RV with his dad a few weeks ago. The main thing they got squared away was the towing. He got a chance to practice driving around with the Jeep in tow. He said it doesn't even feel like you are pulling anything. We still need to get an axillary braking system and come up with a way to protect the front of each vehicle from rocks and debris. We will have some drives on gravel, so we risk cracking windshields and lights.

We made reservations at a nearby campground for Memorial Day weekend. We figure this will be a good chance to get a feel for life in an RV and work through any issues we might have. The campground is just beyond the city limits, so we will be close enough to run to a store or home if we need anything. We will probably camp at least one other night before we leave. I am thinking we need to try a Walmart parking lot. Probably not the quietest place, but it would give us a chance to practice camping without any facilities. I am sure there will be quite a few nights without any services on the trip.

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