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Last Updated 28 Mar 2023

June 12, 2022

Two updates in two months! Maybe there’s hope for me yet?

The list of RV repairs needed this year is long and expensive. The levelling jacks don’t level, the two slideout rooms don’t slide, the generator doesn’t want to start without lots of coaxing, and replacing the front shock absorbers turned ugly.

I take it in next Monday to get the slideouts fixed and the generator tuned up. The jacks manufacturer has already shipped me a replacement system computer for the jacks. They are made by Lippert/Power Gear. Their customer service department have been excellent to work with in troubleshooting my problem.

When I put the batteries back in the rig and turned the key to start it, it was so noisy I couldn’t hear myself think. Hmmm. I climbed underneath to see what was wrong and where the catalytic converters used to be was nothing. Some jerk had used a portable Sawzall and just cut the exhaust pipes and removed them.

The local truck muffler place quoted me over $2,000 to replace them. Nope. Mark suggested I just patch in replacement straight pipe instead so that’s what I did. $140 and an hour of grinding and fitting and things are nice and quiet.

I do feel a little guilty about spewing dirtier than necessary exhaust, but not $2,000 guilty! Glad there are no non-commercial vehicle inspections here in Alberta.

While we are usually out catching fish by mid-May, things have conspired to prevent that. Medical and dental appointments, needed RV repairs, and stupidly high gasoline prices have delayed our first trip until probably mid July.

I am still planning to go  to southern BC to visit family and friends but we won’t be taking the RV. I’ll drive the car instead since it uses only about 20% of the fuel.

Now that spring is well established (meaning no snow for 4 weeks now) Tess has been planting and her flowers look great. She is not very happy that bugs are eating her beans though.

I have been keeping the lawn looking good. Considering the short growing season, everything looks great.

I continue to spend a lot of time working on our family trees. If you are interested in seeing them, send me an email and I will give you free access to my trees posted on Ancestry.com

There are 11,926 people in my paternal tree, 5,822 people in my maternal tree and 1,572 people in Tess’ tree.

We are all as healthy as can be expected. Hopefully, we have a bunch of good years left in us.

That's about it from us for this update. Stay safe and healthy!

Greg, Tess & Camper

July 23, 2022

Three updates in three months! Maybe there’s hope for me yet?

What a difference a month makes! The motorhome issues with the slideouts is fixed, the generator starts with a little coaxing, the hydraulic levelling jacks go down and up, the ride is much improved with two new shock absorbers installed on the front axle, the basement storage door latch has been replaced, and more. In fact, there is only one small item on the to do list which I will take care of over the next few days. I like my Tess’ motorhome again!

Yesterday we returned from our delayed first camping trip of the year. You can read about it on the RVing page, here.

Earlier this month I made my planned trip to BC to visit family and friends. I went by myself as Tess didn’t want to leave her garden without care for so long, especially with voles (or something) eating everything. Besides, she and Siony had a good visit here just last month.

I had the oil changed in the car and headed south. I went through Calgary, south to Hwy 3 then west to the Castlegar area where our friends of 45 years live.

Greg and I spent several days of quality time solving the world’s problems, trouble shooting the rebuild of his classic 1965 Mercury Comet convertible, and drinking his booze. It was great.

Next stop was farther west along Hwy 3 to the Okanagan Valley to see my brother Todd and his partner Louise. They have a lovely spot overlooking a small lake with a nature preserve behind them. The lake has fish in it and we caught a pair of rainbow trout which I froze and brought home to Tess.

We caught up on brotherly things and he even let me play with his digger. It took me about 15 minutes to dig a hole because I had to think about each movement of the bucket before I usually moved the wrong lever the wrong way. Once I had finally installed the hole, Todd filled in in about 90 seconds. Showoff!

My last stop on this trip was in Vernon. I visited my maternal Uncle Les and his wife Sheila. We caught up on family stuff and now that he is finally retiring, I gave him some pointers on my genealogy hobby. I am looking forward to seeing what he discovers about our shared tree.

Finally, it was time to head home. The Kicking Horse Canyon road rebuilding project is well underway and what was a narrow, 2 lane steep winding 4.8km road will eventually become a 4 lane divided highway. Expensive at $601 million ($200 million per mile!) but BC builds these kind of roads better than anywhere else.

Once home, I had a few days to complete the maintenence on the RV and in a few days we headed out to a nearby Provincial Park for a few days of R&R.

That's about it from us for this update. Stay safe and healthy!

Greg, Tess & Camper

Oct 22, 2022

It has been a couple of months and now that we are settling in towards winter, or at least fall, I have some time to spend on this site.

Isla is now in grade 3 and enjoying school. She missed her friends over the summer.

I had some airline points that were about to expire so I flew to Comox on Vancouver Island to visit my step-sister in Coombs, BC. She is doing very well and we had several days to catch up on each other’s lives.

I rented a 2022 Hyundai Elantra while there and was very impressed with the car. It was quiet and smooth, had adequate power and got amazing fuel economy. At a steady 114kph it used only 5.1 litres to go 100kms. That’s 55mpg!

We got out camping again in mis September. We spent a week at Carson-Pegasus Prov Park about 2 hours north-west of home.

It turns out that we could have gone out again for another week as the first overnight frost wasn’t until October 21st, a new record for the latest ever first frost of the season.

It has been so warm I haven’t even put the snow tires on the car yet. Maybe you need to live here to appreciate that, but kids just wearing a sweater under their costumes on Hallowe’en is very rare. I bet we get a lot of kids!

Work on the family tree continues. At the end of the year I will put aside my work on my mother’s side and spend a month or two working on Tess’ tree again. When that reaches it limits because of the lack of on-line records, I’ll go back at my father’s side for the rest of the year.

No, it will never be done.

Tess and I are thinking about a big RV trip again next year. I want to go back north to the Yukon and North West Territories and she wants to go to the east coast for seafood. Negotiations continue

Hockey season is back so we are glued to the TV 2 or 3 evenings a week. The Oilers are off to a slow start but I remain confident they will be a Stanley Cup contender this season.

That's about it from us for this update. Stay safe and healthy! Type to you in December.

Greg, Tess & Camper

Old news updates - your guaranteed cure for insomnia!

Aug 29, 2022

It is now the end of August and the weather is normally cooling off about now. Not this year! The weather guessers are calling for temperatures above 30C (that’s 86F for all 3 of my American readers) which is just too darn hot for us northerners.

To combat this, I am spending most of my days in the basement, working on my mother’s side of the family tree which is up to 6,459 people. Almost all them have been dead for quite a while! Sorry, genealogy joke.

We have a large green space and pond behind our property and are now starting to see birds we haven’t seen since the spring when they were migrating north. Canada geese are assembling and practicing their formation flying, the blue jays are back making a racket and Tess saw a woodpecker on the deck yesterday. I am going through lots of bird seed as my little friends bulk up for their long flights ahead.

We did finally get out camping for a few days earlier this month. We went all the way to Devon, Alberta, which is an hour from home and about 10kms from the Edmonton International Airport.

It is operated by the Devon Lions Club and pretty cramped but does offer full hookups with30 amp power, water, sewer, & wi-fi. It is on the bank of the 1,287 km long North Saskatchewan River. You can read about it on the RVing page here.

Still with camping, we are planning to head out again in September once the kids are back in school and the campgrounds are nearly empty. And camping fees are reduced because the local water supply is usually turned off. Not a problem for us.

The weather is supposed to cool off so hopefully the fish will be biting and we can come home with a freezer full of rainbow trout. Or rather our limit of 5 fish each.

We have been seeing Mark and Isla regularly. Isla is getting excited about going back to school and seeing her friends and classmates she hasn’t been able to connect with over the summer. She is going into grade 3 already. Time flies!

Tess’ garden is looking great as usual. Lots of pretty flowers. Her two apple trees and her tomato tree all have lots of fruit. The vermin that ate Isla’s carrots seem to have moved on so the new crop is doing well.

Camper is now about 14 years old, we’ve had him for over 12 years. He is getting old with sore joints, cataracts and hearing loss just like the rest of the family!

That's about it from us for this update. Stay safe and healthy!

Greg, Tess & Camper

Feb 14, 2023

I apologize to all three of my regular readers - it has been almost 4 months since I’ve update the site. As I usually do each January (ok, February this year) I have updated the design, colours, and content and done some reorganizing.

So what’s new here? Although life just seems to chug along from season to season, there are highlights. Last time I mentioned how unusually warm the fall was. We had about 150 trick-or-treaters here at Hallowe’en with some really great costumes.

Winter finally arrived with a vengance in late November and we had lots of snow and some really cold temperatures near -40 plus windchill. We started to thing of warmer places (pretty much everywhere else in the world) and on the spur of the moment, booked a week at an all-inclusive resort near Puerto Vallarta, Mexico for the first week in February.

So naturally, two days later our furnace decided to die!

We ran the gas fireplace, ceiling fans and a couple of electric heaters in the basement and happily, the insulation and weatherstripping did their jobs until a replacement furnace was installed the next day.

We had great service and a competitive price from Buffalo Heating & Air Conditioning Inc. Highly recommended local company.

Between furnace day and Mexico day we had lots going on. Isla and I made a gingerbread house,

she had her first ever piano recital, Mark cooked us Christmas dinner (I hope this becomes a new family tradition), and in mid-January Isla was part of the winter songfest at her school.

On January 1st, Isla turned 9 and there was a party at her house. Wall-to-wall kids, parents, and lots of noise. To make up for all that, there was cake. I like cake.

With all the travel chaos caused by weather, poor airline management, non-existant communications with passengers and so on, we were worried about our trip. Especially because we had booked it with Sunwing Vacations which did very poorly over the holidays.

Sunwing’s communications with us were good, the check-in process worked well, and our departure was only delayed a few minutes because of the backlog at the plane de-icing station.

We flew on a newer Boeing 737-800 which is a mid-size single aisle, and fast plane. We held 920kph for the 5.5 hour trip arriving in Puerto Vallarta on time. It was dark as we left the terminal to find our bus. Sunwing staff did a good job of herding hundreds of people onto their correct buses and 40 minutes later we arrived at Riu Jalisco resort in Riviera Nyarit.


As soon as we stepped off the bus we were served a welcome to Mexico tequila as we checked in. This is a large resort with about 1,200 rooms. There are 3 pools, 5 restaurants, many bars, a great beach, and lots more.

The air conditioning worked properly, there was plenty of hot water, the free minibar was restocked every second day, and housekeeping made us a new towel animal each day just like a cruise ship.

Coincidentally, our Edmonton friends Joanne and Dave were also there so we spend a couple of meals with them and a couple of days on the beach.

There were coconut palms, lots of sand, warm ocean water, iguanas, pretty little birds, pelicans and more. The food and entertainment were first rate and they never ran out of interesting drink to try.

We took a taxi into Busarias a couple of times to buy souvenires, tequila and vanilla from the market. And to check out the little local casino. Tess won, I lost, same as home.

On Tuesday, the day before we came home, I started losing my voice. By Thursday morning when I got up in my own bed, we were both very sick. I thought I was sicker than I would be with covid after 5 shots against it and teh rapid test said we do not have covid. Low grade fever, constant coughing, every muscle and joint aches. This is not fun.

Today I started feeling a little better so hopefully Tess will too tomorrow. Joanne & Dave have the same symptoms (not covid) as us so who knows.

All in all, would we fly Sunwing again? Yes, probably. Would we go back to Riu Jalisco? Absolutely!

Greg, Tess & Camper

Some photos of our snow to sun to snow adventure.