RVillage is up and running!!

You check into your campground, get all set up, and then what?  Some campgrounds will give you a list of activities they have planned, or brochures for attractions in the area.  But how do you make connections with your new neighbors in the campground? What if you are looking for someone to go golfing with, or watch your favorite sport’s team? Maybe you play an instrument and want to get together for an impromptu jam session.  Need someone to go hiking, biking, geocaching, or whatever interest you have with?  What if the park has no activities, but you want to meet up with your neighbors, but don’t have the time to walk around hoping people are outside and you can stop and chat?

A new website has now been launched that we believe will quickly become a favorite for those who love RV’ing and/or camping.  It doesn’t matter if you have a tent, or a fancy motor home.  Welcome to  http://www.rvillage.com, a site created by RV’ers, to connect with fellow RV’ers wherever you are (in the United States and parts of Canada for now).

When we were staying in Cedar Key, FL for the month of January, we were invited to join RVillage as Beta testers, which is a fancy word for people who could access the site and try out the features and report any glitches.  We were quickly impressed by what this site could do in making connections on the road.  For those that know us, we have never joined Facebook under our own name.  We only joined so we could see what others were doing, and stay connected with relatives, friends, and some of the groups that we were a part of.  We were always concerned with privacy issues, and the fact there seems to be a lot of junk on the site. We have no concerns with RVillage.  RVillage is designed to get fellow RV’ers together, face to face, for activities.

If you are an RV’er and you do sign up for an account, you can search for us by ‘Dan and Jonell Anderson’ and look at our page and perhaps send us a friend request!

When you go to the website, you sign up for a free account, and then you can create your profile.  When you enter a park, you sign in to that park, and you can see if any other members of RVillage are in that park.  You can also keep track of where your friends are staying, and where other members of the groups you belong to are staying, in case you want to plan some get-together.

We feel this website has so much untapped potential, and will continue to grow as word gets out.  To get a better idea of this website, please read Chris and Cherie’s (Technomadia blog).  They have an excellent article describing more details, as they were instrumental in getting this off and running.

The best part of this lifestyle is meeting so many people from all walks of life.  Everyone has a story to tell, and RVillage will really open up the floodgates when it comes to making connections on the road.  Please join in!

Quote for the Day:  “It’s fine to have social media that connects us with old friends, but we need tools that help us discover new people as well.” – Ethan Zuckerman (director of the MIT Center for Civic Media)

 

Blog post # 50 – stolen by the dog!

Hi Everyone, I heard my parents posted blog #49 the other day, so I decided I needed to take over the big 5-0 post, since my dad has already past his big 50, and my mom won’t reach that until April!

Hello!

Hello!

I am really starting to settle into this RV lifestyle, which makes my parents happy.  I no longer get nervous when they start to pack up their belongings, because I know I won’t be left behind.  And it is always fun to check out my new backyards, and new neighbors, knowing that I will always have my house wherever we go.  Same old creature comforts, just with a different view and smells!  It’s a good life!!

Keeping my peeps informed!

Keeping my peeps informed!

This new backyard, or campground as my parents call it, has a great fenced in area for dogs.  It is even better than the last park, as it has grass, not wood chips.  I have a need for speed, and I can go pretty fast when I play on grass!

Ready!

Ready!

Set!

Set!

Gooooooo!!!!

Gooooooo!!!!

We have been spending a lot of time visiting my grandparents in New Smyrna Beach, which I really enjoy.  Even though I am not allowed to walk on the beach, they always take me for a long walk.  Or am I taking them for a long walk?  I seem to wear them out!

pooped grandparents!

pooped grandparents!

My dad took the above photo, boy won’t they be surprised when they see this!!!  This is why you don’t fall asleep when my dad has the camera!

In my mom’s last post, she talked about the gators that they have seen at the park.  I still haven’t seen any, because they would not take me down by the lake when they saw them.  I was stuck in the camper, so I had to watch from the bedroom window.  If you look close, you can see my sad face in the window:(

stuck indoors

stuck indoors

But given that I’m afraid of most other animals, it’s better that I stay safe and sound.

Take care, stay warm, and see you soon!

Quote for the Day:  “A dog doesn’t care if your rich or poor, smart or dumb. Give him your heart.. and he’ll give you his.”   – Milo Gathema

Cocoa Beach – sun, surf and a shark??

Monday we took a short drive down to Cocoa Beach to check out the area.  There are many public parks along the beach, interspersed with the big hotels and condo complexes.  We opted to check out Lori Wilson Park, because it is the only park with an off-leash dog park (we didn’t bring Makena though). The park is split into 2 parts, North and South.  The North has a large play area for kids, and the South side has the play area for our four-legged kids. It offers plenty of free parking, no park entrance fees, no dog park fees, and best of all, it has the best street name of any park we have been to.

Cocoa Beach, FL

Cocoa Beach, FL

The main entrance to the park is on “I Dream of Jeannie Lane”!!!  Loved that show growing up!

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They have a large fenced in area for dogs, with 3 separate areas.

lots of room for dogs

lots of room for dogs

Each side of the park has a nice boardwalk leading over the sand dunes, to the beach.  It was a beautiful day to spend a few hours, and we were glad we went early, as the parking lot was full when we left.

boardwalk ends into sand dunes

boardwalk ends into sand dunes

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Cocoa Beach

Cocoa Beach

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And yes, there was a shark sighting!! (you might need to double-click on picture to view)

Shark!!!

Shark!!!

Okay, so some kid lost their inflatable shark, but…..!

After the beach, we headed to the famous Ron Jon Surf Shop.  The shop was founded in New Jersey back in 1959, when Ron DiMenna wanted to buy a surfboard from California.  His father told him to buy 3, sell 2 at a profit, and then his would be free.  An idea was born, and the rest is history.  In 1961, Ron moved to Cocoa Beach and opened up his second surf shop.  There are many locations now, but the one in Cocoa Beach remains the largest, and is open 24 hours.

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The store has a large sculpture honoring Kelly Slater, considered to be the world’s greatest surfer.  He is a native of Cocoa Beach.

Kelly Slater sculpture

Kelly Slater sculpture

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And since we were in tourist mode, we did the obligatory touristy photo:

Ron Jon's Surf Shop

Ron Jon’s Surf Shop

Then it was time to beat the traffic out-of-town (Cocoa Beach is popular with Orlando residents, as it is a straight shot East to get to the beach).  Our campground has a small lake with a small dock on it.  Unlike Cedar Key, where the docks were used to watch the sunsets, this dock is for alligator viewing!  And we have seen 2 gators and one snake (not sure if it was the venomous kind though) in the past few days.

Crystal Lake RV Park

Crystal Lake RV Park

gator viewing dock

gator viewing dock

This gators like to hang out on the opposite side of the lake, so it’s hard to get a close up view of them, but I’ll keep trying!

Gator!!

Gator!!

The middle of this photo has a shot of the head of the water moccasin.  We were told they usually come up on the banks at night.

head of snake in the middle of photo

head of snake in the middle of photo

And there are small lizards that like to hang out on the dock with us.

little lizzy

little lizzy

On a sad note, Dan’s Uncle Don that has been in the hospital for a few weeks has passed away, so we will be attending his funeral on Saturday.

Quote for the Day: “Despite our ever-connective technology, neither Skype nor Facebook – not even a telephone call – can come close to the joy of being with loved ones in person.” – Marlo Thomas

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2 out of 3 ain’t bad!

First off, sorry for the long delay in updating the blog.  We had no internet service at our last RV park for the month of February.  Fortunately, we were able to use the internet at Dan’s parents condo.  If it wasn’t for that, we would have finally signed up for a hotspot device.  We are waiting until May to do that, when we are out in South Dakota, work camping, and we won’t have wi-fi.

As the title of the blog implies, we have only accomplished 3 things during the last 2 weeks:  visiting family, visiting friends, and taxes.

Dan’s uncle, Don, has been hospitalized for the past few weeks with heart and respiratory problems here in Florida.  On the positive side, we were able to visit with Dan’s twin cousins, Patty and Vickie, whom we have not seen for many years.

Vickie, me, Dan and Patty

Vickie, me, Dan and Patty

It was great meeting up with them, despite the circumstances.  We also met up with their brother, Dan’s cousin David and his girlfriend Dee (but did not have camera with us).  

We also were able to meet up with friends for dinner, in Winter Garden.  I received a phone call from my former co-worker Jackie, who escaped the bitter cold of Wisconsin for a few days of sunshine with her family.  It was a lot of fun meeting up with Jackie and getting caught up on everything.     They were happy to shed their winter coats for a few days!!

Andy, Maddie, Jackie, me and Dan

Andy, Maddie, Jackie, me and Dan

And then their were taxes…….

We have always done our own taxes using Turbo-Tax, and were a little hesitant this year, after all the changes we made.  But Turbo-Tax walked us through everything, including a lengthy and surprising questionnaire we had to fill out for Wisconsin.  Apparently they don’t like people leaving their state.

We also had to complete a tax form for Kentucky, since we worked for Amazon.  We did that form by hand, as we heard on the Amazon Camperforce Facebook page that it was pretty simple.   Since South Dakota has no income tax, we did not have to complete any form for that state.

As of March 1, we have relocated to Scottsmoor, Florida, where we are at Crystal Lake RV Park.  Unlike the “mega-park” in Orange City, with 550 sites, this one has just 60.  We plan on going back into “touristy” mode, as there are many things to see and do along Florida’s “Space Coast”.  Of course, this park has no internet service either.  We received 4 free hours on their wi-fi, and then you could sign up for a month.  My computer shut off after 4 hours, but Dan’s iPad is still going after 3 days.  So we are holding off paying a fee for now.  And for whatever reason, Verizon gave us another 1 GB of data on our plan.  So we can use that as our hotspot when needed.

Quote for the day:  “Cherish your human connections – your relationships with friends and family.”  – Barbara Bush