In between our stay in Austin and our return to Milwaukee, we spent a couple more days at The Vineyards in Grapevine, Texas. It now officially qualifies as one our favorite campgrounds, and we haven’t even been there in the nice season when we could take advantage of all the cool stuff to do! One of the reasons we love it? The views out the RV window. I took these pics the morning we left. The stunning sunrise made it that much harder to go.
We’re back in Milwaukee this week, in the middle of a snowstorm, so my jaunt through Memorial Park in Round Rock, Texas, a couple of weeks ago seems like a dream. Thank heavens for photographic evidence!
Memorial Park is home to the rock that gave Round Rock, Texas, its name. The park is right off of I-35. Brushy Creek runs through the middle of it, and a pedestrian bridge under the highway connects both sides. There’s a playground on one side and the Sunset Strip apartment complex on the other. It’s a very pretty park although a little bit seedy.
I stopped there with the dogs after I saw the park off the highway when I was dropping Mike off for work. I had no idea that the famous rock was there, so I missed it entirely. I guess I was close, though. From what I’ve read, if you want to see the rock, you need to walk over the low water crossing near the parking lot and go along the north side of the creek.
I strolled in that direction but got sidetracked by the granite stadium stairs by the softball field. I just had to climb ’em! I did two sets with the dogs, but then Sadie refused to do any more. I wasn’t going to let our little diva hold me back, so I parked the bark babies in the Jeep and did another 13 sets for a total of 15.
The rock isn’t the only cool piece of history in the park. There’s also a Vietnam War memorial and a commemorative WWII torpedo to honor Round Rock residents who fought on behalf of their town and country.
What a fun outing to remind me that there’s more to life than the deep freeze!
Some say that spending every moment together kills the romance. Absence makes the heart grow fonder and all that. Not for us.
Mike’s never been a flowers-and-chocolate kinda guy, and he’s still not. Instead, he’s a subtle sweet talker. He woos me with simple words that show his love more than a pretty bauble ever could. Constant togetherness equals more wooing. It means every day can be Valentine’s Day.
words by mike daniels | photo by elisabeth daniels | photo editing by picmonkey
As I sit comfortably in the recliner, working and writing blog posts on my laptop, with blueberry green tea in the cup holder and a view of the marina out the window, I glance up to see our new neighbors arrive. They’re a little loud but awfully nice to look at. A small smile crosses my face as I turn back to the keyboard. This is what RVing is all about.
When you become a full-time RVer, or embark on some other kind of epic trip, it’s easy to let the pitfalls drag you down. Things break; people are strange; the dream job is still a job. Sometimes you’re gonna get sand in your margarita. It’s easy to get discouraged, but when those situations come up, remember:
Don’t worry about the potholes.
Just enjoy the journey.
Winter in Milwaukee is never a treat, and with a polar vortex descending on the city not once, but two times, this winter’s been worse than ever. The coffices in town have done a great job of making their places even more welcoming to compensate for the dismal conditions outdoors. Urban Joe Café, in West Allis, for example, serves warm apple cider that takes the chill off as you sink into a cushy, overstuffed chair – after plugging in and connecting to the free Wi-Fi, of course.
With only 50 seats, Urban Joe’s is small, but the thoughtful layout and muted earth tones make it feel spacious. Owner Joe Tairi is very friendly. If it’s not too busy, you might just find him tapping away at his own laptop across from the counter. Come for lunch as well as work because the sandwich selection is excellent, including vegetarian options. Everything is made with fair-trade or organic ingredients as much as possible.
West Allis is named for Edward P. Allis, who ran a late 19th century Milwaukee manufacturing firm. From Urban Joe’s giant windows, looking through the falling snow, the historic facades of the Greenfield Avenue business district create a softly blurred picture of the city in Allis’s time. If you squint, you can almost see men in top hats and women in bonnets strolling by the shops.
Urban Joe’s is exactly what a coffice is supposed to be: a comfortable place to work with good food and drink and a refreshing view. Well done, Joe. Well done.
When we saw this super cute cupcake trailer on the side of the road, we had to stop. How could we resist a sweet treat from an Airstream-esque bakery on wheels?!?!
The irreverent sense of fun didn’t stop there; the flavor combos were hilarious. A Michael Jackson, anyone?? Mike went with plain vanilla (of course!) while I noshed on a Sweetberry. This mobile cupcakery isn’t far from our campground on the outskirts of Austin, so I have a sneaking suspicion we’ll be back!
We always meet interesting people on the road. Bob with the 2001 diesel pusher Bounder was our neighbor at Warrior RV Park in Tulsa.
We started chatting with Bob because he had this really cool slide topper that wrapped around the sides as well as the top of the slide. Our slide topper was ripped to shreds early in our journey. We finally took it off completely, and we’ve been looking for just the right the replacement ever since.
We were bummed when Bob told us that the topper had been discontinued. But in the process, Mike was invited into Bob’s spotless rig and got to learn a bit more about him. Bob was from Worland, Wyoming, which was cool because Mike is from Cheyenne. Bob’s sole companion was his fluffy white dog Cheebee as his wife had recently passed. A couple of years ago, his wife had suffered a stroke. Bob added a lift to the motorhome so that they could continue to enjoy their travels. The lift mechanism was still attached by the door. Bob was in Tulsa to bring his sister home from his wife’s services. His next stop after winterizing the rig was returning home to Worland.
Anodyne Coffee’s unusual name was inspired by turn-of-the-century medicine bottles that were imprinted with the word “anodyne”, meaning “to soothe or cure pain”. Read about this sleek Milwaukee coffice with its upcycled furniture and robust beans over at the Coffice Girl blog.
Riverview Campground seems to be out in the boonies when you transition from the highway to the back roads that take you to it. But it’s actually just 15 minutes from downtown Waco and the dealership where Mike was working. Be careful driving those rural routes, though. You might have to navigate around roosters in the middle of the road like we did!
Riverview is a lovely park with pull-throughs, full hook-ups, and paved sites. We paid $30 a day for our 50-amp, full hook-up, pull-through spot that included Wi-Fi.
Amenities include a brand new laundry room/shower building and a small play area for the kids. The property has three different club houses for large or small RV clubs. Next to an in-ground, salt water swimming pool is a large dog run with a park bench and a couple of trees to provide shade from the sun.
We celebrated our six-month anniversary of being on the road while we were there in early January. Most of the trees were bare. We figure it’d be beautiful in the spring, summer and fall when the leaves and flowers are in full bloom.