Monday, January 30, 2017

Trying To Step Up My YouTube Game....Want to Help?

Hello Luvs,


The entrance to the Preserve.
So, I am going to try to step up my content on YouTube. Through not only this blog, but on YouTube and Nuime (https://niume.com/profile/104880#!/posts) I am continuing to share our journey of living in an RV full-time. We have been in Eartha (our 1977 GMC Motorhome) for about three months. Even before then we were staying solely in Airbnbs. We started in June 2016 and continued up until we purchased Eartha.
Jalen and Myles taking in the view.


During that time we have been in Canada (St Ferreol Les Nieges, Ottawa, Montreal, Quebec City), throughout the United States (Vermont, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Oklahoma, Connecticut, Massachusetts, New York, New Mexico, Texas, Arizona, Nevada, California, Tennessee, Delaware, Virginia, Georgia, Arkansas, Utah, Colorado), and down into Mexico (Los Algodones). And during this time I have shared many pictures and videos. I feel as if you've been there with us. When we see a glorious view YOU see a glorious view!
Who knew contrails could be so
BEAUTIFUL!?!?

So, to be able to share even more of our adventure I am going to start adding more videos onto my youtube channel (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCt-rqxxOylbvEUMDGYlM2tQ?view_as=public).

Subscribing to the channel is the best way for you to experience new content because you will know when a new video goes up. Because editing video and doing a blog along with it might prove too time consuming I will most likely post straight to YouTube.
Taken at the overlook.


How can you help me out? Well, you can subscribe and share the content I post. Social media is the best way to share my vision. I have already uploaded several videos from our travels along with budget friendly meal ideas. I've even added some poetry. It is a work in progress, and I will continue to try to finesse it to where it falls in line with my skill set (which is growing with every day, upload, and banner made!) and is not boring for you to watch....wouldn't want that! How does that sound? Would you be willing to share my YouTube site? It would mean more than you know!
A Mama and her cubs!

Today I am posting a video that walks you through the FREE ADMISSION Bird Viewing Preserve in Henderson. It is an activity that keeps us occupied for a couple of hours, assists in homeschooling the kids, and did I mention it's FREE? If and/or when you find yourself in the area make sure to stop by. Below is a link to their website.

H.B.V.P.: http://www.cityofhenderson.com/henderson-happenings/facilities/henderson-bird-viewing-preserve
Boardwalk goodness...

I hope that you enjoyed the pictures throughout the blog! Now go and view the video on YouTube!

Bird Preserve: 
When outdoors exhibitions are
called for.




Til next time,

Kat

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Does Straightening My Hair Betray My Blackness?

Hello Luvs,

As I enjoy my burrito (con pastor- DELISH!) from our favorite Mexican place Taco Tijuana I once again came back to a thought that went through my hair earlier this morning. As I drove behind Eartha taking pictures of her touching the mountain landscape I started to twist my hair. I have been thinking about growing dreads again, and I wanted to see what state my roots (new growth/unstraightened hair) were in. It was twisting well but I still have a significant amount of hair that would be hanging in a strange way. In order to achieve the dreads I would like I would have to cut all my hair off. I am not opposed to doing so. I have done it many times in the past. This brought me back to my thought....
Sky-High...Oh My!

I had purchased a kit to straighten my hair last week and wanted to wait until we had a lot of water to work with (actually just a little more....getting good at this water conservation thing!) before doing so. During this time I've thought to myself whether or not I was not showing pride in my race by changing my hairs texture. The consensus regarding this is varied. Some who have taken on the struggle (or more correctly lived it their whole lives!) think and say that doing so makes someone not their authentic selves. Trying to set a good example for my children regarding confidence in who they are made this come to mind more so than anything.

The status of my hair was the subject of a blog last week. Read it? Just click the link below.

It has been several months since I REALLY took care of my hair so I find myself with a head of hair that is screaming at me and threatening to go on strike. Something had to be done this weekend. So....this is the conclusion I reached before addressing it....
Eartha headed toward the dump site....snowy mountains act as her back drop.

I have NEVER been ashamed of who I am, the color of my skin, the thickness of my hair, the fullness of my lips/hips, shape of my nose. or the extreme bend of my second toe. I have worn my hair natural and sky high, in bantu knots, long braids, twists, cornrolls, feathered (not successfully!), afro puffs, and mohawks. I have changed my hair as an example of my artistic expression. It has never worn me. I have cut it off, shaved my head, grown it out, then cut if all off again. I walk with pride and adoration for those who have come before, walk alongside, along with those who follow behind me. I curse it, love it, brush/comb it, process it, diy it, shave it...whatever feels good at the time.
Being myself allows me to
look ahead.

I will support another's idea for what it is...their idea and sometimes identity. I will not respond to them unless it's REALLY called for yet still try to see their side. My hang ups are not theirs and theirs are not mine. 

In the end, I am me....a mother, wife, educator, poet, musician, singer, writer, storyteller, human being, student for life, village dweller in THIS life. I exist to share my passions and good will with others. I aim to raise two well adjusted compassionate, passionate, giving, productive, loving people. Throughout the rest of my life I want to learn as much as this fluttering and busy brain can hold while smiling from the inside out. My hair DOES NOT dictate any of these actions or goals....will you let yours?

Took a few pictures to show you my finished hairdo....
Yep, shaved the sides again...
Til next time,

Kat

Saturday, January 28, 2017

What This Mind Has On It Needs to be Shared....!

Hello Luvs,

Today is a special day....it is the Hubster's birthday. We have some fun things planned and we've just started. I might post some snapshots of our adventure within the next couple of days. Remember, when you do not see a new post from me I am most likely boondocking without wifi. It is a perfect time to catch up on all my latest blogs. 
We took a roundabout way that led us
through this beautiful barren area.

If you have trouble commenting and/or following me here on blogspot, please pop on to Nuime: https://niume.com/profile/104880#!/posts. It is an additional site I am using. You will find not only posts from here but other items like photography videos and poetry.
One of my favorites! All four of
my lovies!!!!!!




Now, even though today is a day that has started out with wonderful family memories I find myself wanting to share a rant. My heart and mind hurt thinking about how fast the new president is destroying not only our relationship with other countries, but dead set on destroying many...many lives in this country. The same person who promised to make America great again....yeah right!
Myles always finds a cool spot.

Josh just mentioned that an Academy Award nominated director will not be able to attend because of the new ban put in place yesterday regarding visitors traveling to this country. Anyone considering traveling here will only be given preference if they are Christian. WHAT! Christianity is not the only religion practiced throughout the globe. This puts a large amount of travelers at a disadvantage. It is scary how quickly he is establishing bias because of religion and nationality. As a wise person once said, "Race, sexuality, and religion are the easiest ways in which to separate who is considered superior from those deemed inferior." It has begun..... Now we are a one way road toward a REAL LIFE Hunger Games, V for Vendetta dictatorship, and 1984. The last of which has seen a huge surge in sales because of the similarity.
Lake view through rusted bracket.


The other thing that will have a direct affect on our family is the repeal of the Affordable Care Act. When it is repealed we will start to see it's affect. It is set to be a direct cause for around 20,000 deaths a year. For a party to be soooooo pro-life this is a direct contradiction. Taking away funding for planned parenthood removes money for birth control, prenatal vitamins, women's check ups, and pregnancy confirmations (which is what Josh and I used it for confirmation of my girl's soon to be existence), and many more NEEDED SERVICES). The one reason I believe they do it is to stop abortions even in cases of rape or health concerns for the mother. The fact that they help low income individuals is even more of a reason for them.
I have seen additional and even more painful symptoms of my health concerns and fear that when my true and accurate diagnosis comes around I will no longer have insurance. It is such a heartbreaking decision that will harm so many fellow human beings. After speaking with a friend a couple of days ago she shared that she will not be able to afford insurance. The A.C.A. is the only way someone who is an artist and not wealthy can afford to maintain preventative and regularly scheduled medical care. 
The water was brown, green, and blue.

From speaking to others I have found that it is not only the wealthy who say that this administrations actions will not affect them so they aren't worried. The mindset of many baby boomers is that as long as they are taken care of and live out their lives without the world crumbling around them they are ok. I am not saying that all baby boomers think this way, but I'm finding a large amount who do. The thing they're going to realize very soon is that the administrations actions are going to have quick affects and they are going to feel the pains DURING their lifetimes.
THIS way quite the view.


So what do we do? Josh and I as parents have made our decision and it is not going to be us sitting around waiting to see how it goes. It is not to stick around and continue to experience more and more open hatred toward our family unit because now racists have witnessed an openly racist, misogynistic, ego driven person elected (though many believe as I do that the electoral college no longer stands for democracy) to the highest office 'in the land'. If he can be that way and achieve that result than why can't they be the same dysfunctional way openly?
Another view of the lake while
heading back.

If I share everything that is on this troubled mind this might turn into a novel. Instead, I will leave you here and go back to the wonderful day we have planned. Throughout the blog are pictures taken during and after our glorious walk down to the lake with Goldie and Pippie. I hope that your weekend sees light and love. We ALL could use a lot of that today!

*To make sure that you never miss one of my rants, a travel recommendation, food recipe, budget friendly family activity. or poetry inspired by life please follow the blog and on one of the social sights listed to the right------>>>>>
These were two tired puppers!!!



Til next time,

Kat


Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Our Recent Experience at a Las Vegas Library...Sahara West That Is!

Hello Luvs,

I wanted to quickly share our experience we had at one of the local libraries we frequent. As a whole the Las Vegas, Henderson, and Boulder City library system and it's employees have been kind, courteous, and accommodating. We spend a significant amount of time at almost all of them when in the area. Not only do we use them when the kids are doing their homeschooling, but when needing to charge our devices. For a large percentage of the time we use a study room if one is available. Occasionally we stay over the two hour time frame if no one else needs the room. The kids do at least 90 minutes of school so allowing them a fair amount of screen time after makes their mornings less of a chore. If you're a parent (even if they are publicly schooled) you know that doing homework and/or a project and/or studying for a test can be rough.
On a different day than the incident....
luv the architecture of the building!


So, now on to the experience we had. We urban boondocked about five minutes away from the Sahara West Library. It was a Saturday and the kids wanted to visit the library to use their devices, check out some books, and look at what movies they had. Once we were up and had the coffee made we decided to drive over to the library. They have spots for buses. Because we do not want to take spaces away from cars we park there. It only makes since.

Josh was in the Prius doing some work things and around 9:15 I saw a security guard walking up to Eartha. When she was close (just outside) I opened the door. I wasn't sure what she wanted, but I didn't want her to start Goldie and Pippie barking and opening up before the knock seems to work in that regard. When I opened up the door she mentioned how it was a great day to be there (keep in mind that we have Nevada plates and we in any way appeared to be visitors) because there was going to be a performance later in the day at 2:00 p.m. That was what she used to start talking to us. That WAS NOT why she really came up...she wasn't on duty yet and was rolling her things along for the day in a suitcase. She walked from the complete opposite side of the library. I knew this because I saw here while I was snapping pictures.

What she really wanted to say was...."You can't park here overnight." Remember, this was 9:15 in the morning! There was no indication that we were planning to do so. We were there just like any other patrons wanting to utilize the library during it's open hours. We were pretty sure that she did not go up to people parked in their car (let their dog off leash to poop) and tell them that. Was it because we live in our RV? She doesn't know that but she had already made assumptions about us. Nevermind the fact that I had picked up a ton of trash I noticed while walking Pippie. As an individual/family we make the library a better place.
Eartha nestled on the other side of a section
that I picked up the trash from.

The harassment did not stop there. She then asked about our dogs. "You have more than one of them in there?" I said yes. Josh later said that it was none of her business, but it still had not sunk in that she picked us out. She then said, "You don't leave them in here when you go into the library?' I should mention that is was about 50 degrees and overcast. I responded that we are responsible dog owners, and that we know what to do with our dogs.

This is when I started to get annoyed. We are very aware of how to take care of our dog that we've had for over 13 years (Goldie), and our second that was a rescue (Pippie). For someone to ask me about it in a condescending way was upsetting. Once again...she assumed too many things about us.

In the end there was a report made and she said Josh was harassing her because he wanted her to justify why she picked us out and questioned our care of our dogs. Remember, Josh was not with me and was told what happened when he came in. He was not happy and took the appropriate measures. While speaking to her he witnessed her smoking and throwing her cigarette on the ground. What about that! He was aggravated just as much as I was especially after seeing her doing that. Her explanation was that she threw it there in order to smoke it later. WHAT!!! I would argue that he was even more so after that. He has had enough of those who have hang-ups regarding RV'ers. Or more apt would be those who have issues with individuals living a lifestyle that is not CONSIDERED normal. She was not reprimanded. Her company has not responded to his call. But most of all, she believes that she can single out someone who in the end was doing nothing wrong. Pretty sure that she regretted choosing us. Maybe she thought that she could use her uniform and power (at least the power she thinks she has) and push others around.
The sun will rise and this experience has taught us
NEVER take kind individuals for granted.


What do you think about our experience? Should assumptions be made about those who reside in RV's? Should someone have spoken to us about staying overnight when it was 9:15 a.m. and the library did not close til 6:00 p.m.? Does someone have the right to question your care of your pet when you are holding it, it is friendly, and the vehicle is occupied and around 50 degrees outside? Should an employee (she is actually a contracted security person from security company) decide on their own with no precedent even approach someone without cause? There are so many questions I have!

I am sure that this will not be the last time that we experience something like this because of the lifestyle we live. However, we would not change it. We are a stronger family unit, have taken ownership of our children's education, and are exploring the worlds around us!  No a bad exchange....!

*To make sure that you never miss a travel recommendation, rating for a National Park, budget friendly meal idea, and many other things please follow the blog and on one of the social sites to the right------>>>>>

Til next time,

Kat

Monday, January 23, 2017

What I Observed On a Recent Trip To Walmart

Hello Luvs,

It's been a couple of days since my last post. I have been busy adding items to my Etsy shop. The shop has been renamed and has a new focus/goal. Throughout my travels I will be searching for GREAT bags and wallets that will be available at a reasonable price to my customers. There will be designer pieces along with evening and tooling around fun bags that 'just make you feel cute'....no matter what you are wearing. Who doesn't need one of those? Below is the link to the shop. Simply click the link and pop on.

New banner goodness!
https://www.etsy.com/shop/ParasolWillTravel?ref=hdr_shop_menu
Now...on to the main subject matter of the blog. We as a family are not really Walmart shoppers. Sometimes we need to go because there is nothing else around. Such was the case when we first purchased Eartha. We needed sleeping bags for the kids (we use them in their bunks) and we bought them at the Walmart closest to where we were. They were very reasonable and the kids liked the color. As is most of the items, we found out that the quality was not so hot. So, less than 2 1/2 months later I went in to return one because it was falling apart. As I waited in line I turned around to take in the scene.

We've seen some crazy things while shopping at Walmart. Whether it is a 100 proof liquor bottle completely emptied to a woman with her hands up her girlfriends shirt right in the middle of the aisle. Whenever we see a crazy thing we are usually not surprised. There is definitely a wide array of folks who shop there.
It's missing in action!
Image courtesy of the Congressional Progressive Caucus

As I took in what was happening around I noticed something that was truly sad. All (and I mean ALL) of the employees from the greeter, cashiers, and stock people were all at least 65 in age. First thing you might think is that they have a job and it is great that Walmart hires people who are mature in age. Then you remember just how Walmart treats their employees. They treat women different and lessor than men. They have full-time employees who still have to rely on government assistance to feed and maintain their health. Those are just a couple of quick examples. For a company to rake in money hand over foot to pay their employees so little is a disgrace. As they hire these people they know that they will have to return a large portion of their money to them because they cannot afford to shop elsewhere. They also know that taxpayers will be on the hook for their healthcare despite these people working very hard for them. It is do surprise that I run into people who are so defeated.

Then you think about the fact that these men and women are at retirement age (I asked an employee who had to be around 80!). Even though it keeps going up in age of qualification they still qualify. Still....they are not enjoying their later years in relaxation. Yeah, some people work to keep their minds and bodies busy, but do you think that is the case? If so, then good for them. If not....then how did they get there?
When burned and quickly decaying....
can it be fixed or should we redefine it?

There are a few reasons I think they are back at work. The first is that they were born and spent their first half of adulthood living in a country where you have that house (and sometimes RV), buy those toys, charge on that credit card, and take out that second and third mortgage. With the wage not reflecting inflation their money would have simply been no longer enough. Owing or paying more than what they receive from Social Security they find themselves trying to make ends meet. The amount received is simply not enough because rent, food, gas, clothing, and other things have gone up through the years. Many end up upside down on their mortgages. They did not save because they were not shown how or they were lulled into thinking that they would be taken care of. They paid into a system that simply is not there...really....truly.

The last part is really scary because now we have a person who is the leader of the country who will most likely sign a bill brought to him by republican leaders that wants to dismantle Social Security. They also want to take away the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare). For those of us who have paid into the system since we were teenagers this not only makes me mad, but it scares me to the bone. There are so many negative things that are now possible that I would have never have thought were just one short year ago.
Sad...but true.

The most maddening thing about all of this is the fact that a lot of these people who are now having to work somewhere that treats it's workers poorly more than likely voted for him. They wanted an outsider and this billionaire was their ticket. In the end he will do the opposite of WHAT IS NEEDED for them to survive. They voted against their self interest which happens to voters over and over again. Clinton being supported by African Americans was tragic also. The school to prison system benefits her.  The tragic thing is that it will be too late for a turnaround because of their lack of judgement.

In North Carolina the Governor who lost his reelection bid held a special session and stripped the new Governor of some of his legislative power. With the way the results of the recent elections shook out what is to stop him and others who want to rip this country apart (broadening the gap of wealth) from passing items that strip the next President of his power and/or set up legislation that cannot be overturned. Maybe I am being am alarmist.....or maybe prophetic. Either way, it does not sit well in my stomach. What about yours? Does all of this sit well with you?
This Luvs is the truth about who was elected
via an outdated electoral college....
not in a TRULY democratic way!

*Thanks for taking the time to read the blog. To make sure that you never miss a travel update or recommendation, budget friendly meal, and or this mind's rambling thoughts please follow the blog and on one of the social sites to the right----->>>>>









Til next time,

Kat 

Thursday, January 19, 2017

What To Do With This Mane WITHOUT Cutting Off All My Hair!

Hello Luvs,

It is not very often (if ever) that I have devoted an entire blog to my hair. Often I get to the stage where I need to do something or I will cut it all off. I've done this many times in the past. When I have, a weight has been lifted and I've felt liberated. So....what is a girl to do when living an RV life where we conserve our water, power, and time doing things that detract from exploring. This faux hawk might just have to go?
Accessories lead the eyes AWAY
from the mane!

Being African-American (if you haven't figured that out yet should I be concerned?) Woman, who doesn't follow the trails set before me in regard to my hair, continuity isn't a given. From a young age I have used my hair as a vehicle for self-expression. In high school (quick bit of immodesty) I started a bit of a trend with my haircut. Each time I make a dramatic change I remember that It is hair and it grows back. At least, thus far it has.

I've toyed with dreads many times. As my hair was growing out I would start 'em. I start to twist and manage to keep it up for months only to change it because it was more of the same. I did mention continuity....right? So I would do bantu knots, then twists that start from bands, and then start to french braid it. All would be good til I wanted something different.
What I had to do to
get it here!!!


I believe one of the reasons I lose it is because my hair is just too thick. The kind of thick that had little girls cutting their dolls hair after it has been in the yard through a couple of rain storms. Yep, that's my hair! I try everything under the sun but it remains the same. Yes, there is a kinkiness to it, but when it starts to reach about 2 inches it curls more. They are tight ringlets that have me feeling cute until....ya guessed it! I am ready for a change.

Just imagine it.....all gone!
Then comes the last attempt before processing. I blow dry it til it is screaming for mercy and cursing me out. It becomes so mad that it starts to scream. I try to subdue it with some really good product. For a bit this mane is my friend....then it happens again. My head rebels and I get frustrated. After that there is no other choice (at least for me) but to process it. Doing so brings it to a state where I can whip it into shape...shape it up...get straight (DEVO anyone?). Without much money (never ending budget) both Josh and I have to be able to manage it. Yes, the Hubster will cut my hair and/or anything else I need from him. I did good...!

Yeah, it was a good hair day!
As I write this I realize that there are so many factors that go into decisions we make regarding our hair. When you have hair that is outside the norm (or what is CONSIDERED normal) it makes it more difficult. Traveling around I know that there are others (you know what I mean!) who need products for their hair and skin. Many times I have trouble finding hair care and make-up that matches my skin tone. This just might have to be something I revisit in the future. When I come to an area that lacks just like a barren desert OR spills to it's edges to abundance I'll share it with you. This all seems like a loss of potential revenue. Why is this happening? Are these businesses not worried about losing this customer base? By not stocking options they are saying that they're ok without their money and/or business. Anyone have any thoughts on that? You can send shout outs about places I must visit should I flutter through an area.

In the end I am still not sure what I should do. Pictures of the mane's current status are placed throughout the blog. Thoughts????? Anyone????? 

*To make sure you never miss my oversharing follow the blog and on one of the social sites to the right------->>>>>>

Til next time,

Kat




Wednesday, January 18, 2017

What Adjustments Have I Made While Living Full-time in an RV?

Hello Luvs,

Yesterday, while using the library ladies room I realized how comfortable I have become using public restrooms. In the past I would often wait until I was at home to use my own bathroom. Not just for (excuse my terminology) number two....but for urinating also. As this occurred to me I started to think about the other things I've shifted toward in order to become more of citizen of the Rv lifestyle.
Our home on wheels...Eartha!

When you live in an apartment or home you just know that the water will be there unless you didn't pay your bill or there was some type of weather related occurrence. There would be hot water to the point that you had to accommodate immediately with cold. Now....living in Eartha, we have to shift our water usage. This in imperative especially when we are boondocking. Because we wouldn't want out water pump to burn out we turn off the water when not in use. In order to have hot water we need to use the water immediately after driving or running the generator for thirty minutes. Oh, and you MUST have the water heater on to make sure that it is heating to just the right temp. When the generator is not running and/or we have no need to drive somewhere I heat up the water on the stove (for use in a a baking soda head to toe body wash) remembering that it will use propane. Because the water and holding tank are the exact same size we have to watch what goes down the drain. That means that if I use bottled water for something I have to remember to balance it with what I use from fresh. Otherwise there is more water in holding tank then should be and it can cause the holding tank to overflow. We've had this happen a couple of times, and I can tell you that they experiences were not pleasant. I am gradually fine-tuning my system as a constant thought on my mind. Since really focusing on it we have not had the overflow happen again.
In this picture you can see some of
the things I have done to maximize space.

Using passive solar is another thing that we are constantly utilizing. With the evenings and some days still being chilly and overcast we have to be aware of where we park and when to open and close our window shades to maximize the sun's heat. It can make the difference in whether or not it is toe chilling or a heat box. Neither of which we want. Josh has taken the lead on this, but I do try to make sure his way is clear to do so.

That brings me to my next item. Finding the best way to organize Eartha so we get the most out of our small amount of storage is a constant project. I have really dialed in about half of the interior storage area. While out I try to find the best storage containers that work in a small space (200 square feet) while not adding too much weight. A few of the things I have found have really helped in this function. Jalen has taken on the project of under the bed storage of shoes and they are now clearly placed. This helps with trying to find the shoes you want when you want them. 
An example of using the sun and
recirculating the air.

Grocery shopping and stock items have been easier than I thought they would. I have mason jars that hold bulk items placed snugly behind the stove. The coffee, cereal, rice, dog food, etc. are at the ready whenever needed. They are at a size that allows Jalen and Myles to replace whatever is needed for feeding the dogs or themselves. I also use the cutting boards for extra counter space when preparing meals. This is an area that can get filled fast, so I have to be smart about the order of preparation.

One of the biggest adjustments has been our sleep schedule. We tend to go to bed earlier because we rise earlier. This happens for two main reasons. The first is that Josh is on a different time zone from his company so he must rise much earlier. Then there is Pippie. She is a younger dog and needs more activity. We have no yard (and do not really like the outside RV fence thing) so we need to take her out early. Since Josh is working it falls to me. I know that she truly needs to go because she does her business immediately. Sometimes she wants a long walk and sometimes just a few minutes before she wants to return to the RV. She was on her own with her sisters for quite sometime and is used to going when she wants. We are gradually trying to make things more reasonable. It is hard to be stern with her because she is such a communicative lovey dog. We just adore her!
We have made great use of the 26 feet we have.


I'm sure in the future I'll share more of what changes we have made. If you have any questions for me I would love to answer them. Until then, come back and see where we are boondocking and the experiences we share as a family. There will be budget friendly meals, park and activity recommendations, social observations, and poetry that has stemmed from some or all of these things.
Using the outside area as livable
space helps a lot.

* To make sure that you do not miss a thing follow the blog and on one of the social sites to the right----->>>>>>

Til next time,

Kat

Monday, January 16, 2017

Today's Message is a Goal For Some- Are YOU Included?

Hello Luvs,

I hope today finds you well. Thinking about what this holiday represents I thought I would try to express some of what I feel it is and whether or not many (including myself) felt that it has power.
A path of light with
darkness all around.

I am an optimist by nature. My positive outlook has helped me get through many tough spots throughout my life. Oftentimes it has exposed my naive side. Thinking that someone or something could not be as bad as others think. That a certain person would not stoop to actions that would be considered by most as reprehensible. Still, I am the same person who now sees that some of my naivety may have truly betrayed me.

Martin Luther King Jr. was not a perfect man. He had faults just like the rest of us. The thing that made him different and special was that even though he did he still saw the bigger picture. He continually made it a priority to show others that hatred and bigotry were not the answer. Non-violence was his way of proving that the Black Man/Woman/Child were not savages or heathens. That they (we) were and still are Human Beings. As Human Beings we long to be judged by our actions and not the color of our skin. When I say actions I mean our true actions and not those placed upon us as a given. The "You know how they are!" mentality.

Growing up I felt that there had been significant growth in that area. That yes, there were still racists and bigots, but that this country in the whole was not that way. With the experience we've had since the election results were set have shown that there are many who still have the mindset of those you see in stock photos smiling as someone's son hung from a branch, screamed at a child who was trying to enter a school to continue her or his education, or the men (both black and white) who had hot drinks spilled on them while they sat at a counter requesting service. There was so much more in these photos but I thought these would bring about images in your head faster.
On a small scale...the mountain whose
 location is brightened by others.


So, where is this country and where is it going. If the people who are spewing their hatred against liberals and African-Americans and/or trying to turn around progress that has been made get their way?

-A young couple (like Josh and I were) who cannot afford insurance will no longer have an option for confirming a pregnancy or the needed care to ensure a safe delivery.
-People who have paid into social security their whole lives (like me and many others) will not have it as an option in our older years.
-Schooling will be privatized with public school students being primed to be the lower class  population and subservient.
-A state will dictate to a woman who was raped whether or not she has to carry and keep her rapists child.
-Many will no longer have access to needed healthcare and die.
-State Parks and Conservation Areas will be mined or privatized to the point that they are no longer affordable.
-The lives of mostly men (but sometimes women) will be at the mercy of those who would shoot first and check for weapons later.
Do we leave a trail for our children to walk in light?


There are so many concerns that I now see as scary scenarios. I still believe that there are good people. Those who  REALLY TRULY subscribe to the same belief system as MLK Jr. The reason for such concern makes the heart pound because the voices calling for hatred and elitism to reign are becoming louder.

How will we answer their call? Will we become the Village of Humanity that pushes for equality and community? Two questions that I no longer have a clear answer to.

Til next time,

Kat

Sunday, January 15, 2017

When Picking a Spot To Hike-Why Did We Pick Red Rock Again?

These clouds seemed to be magnetized to the mountains.
Hello Luvs,

Well, with the holiday tomorrow and the Hubster still working (though fortunately a short day) we decided that half of today should be spent outside. It has been a while since we had a picnic, so we dressed warm and headed to Red Rock National Conservation Area. 


Pippie before hike!
Goldie before hike....














So, why did we pick R.R.N.C.A. once again? There are several that come to mind. The first being the fact that the Park is ran quite well. There are numerous family friendly spots to hike and/or picnic with lots of trash cans and restrooms scattered around. You find lots of places for those who like to climb (we ran into some folks who were just starting to learn). They have also been restoring several areas. Once of those is a habitat for the spring mountain squirrel. The entrance fee is $8 which is quite reasonable or what you get. Lastly, it is located pretty close to where we are urban boondocking at the moment. It was only about a 10-15 minute drive which flies by.  
THIS is a view from the inside of the
visitor's center-those mountains are REAL!


Making our way to the area we missed
last visit. Fire-Water-Air-Earth












The only drawback is the campsites. There are no hook-ups except for the hosts. There are also no dump or fresh water refill stations. Charging $15 a night without all that makes it a no go for us. We drove by the RV/5th wheel area and it was quite pathetic. It was basically a roundabout. We were not surprised that they were only about 20% booked. Folks have other options out there. Most would choose to bypass that and just come for the day. 
Birds in flight...

Far away grandeur....












I'll probably put up a top five places to boondock, camp, or hook-up sometime in the future once we've stayed at enough to have a true list. So check back for that.
Turtle crossing the pathway.
High Point Overlook
Just in case you weren't sure what
they were.












Throughout the blog I have placed quite a few pictures of our day. They are glimpses into just what this Park inspires and contains. A landscape so vivid and breathtaking that you feel overwhelmed at times. Oh, and we even got a chance to view pictographs and petroglyphs. If you are within a couple of hours drive tomorrow seriously think about going. It's free for the holiday!!! Just sayin'.....

*To make sure that you never miss a family travel recommendation follow this blog and on one of the social sites to the right------>>>>>


Til next time,

Kat


Sculpture celebrating the snail....
Can YOU pick out the big horned sheep?



One of the areas being restored.

Even water flowing down adds it's layer
on this area of art in life.
There's my climber!













See mountains will climb....with dogs!