Tuesday, December 25, 2007


WHEN? Christmas morning

WHERE? Arlington, Texas · find us on the map

Christmasing with family in Arlington:

Hoppy Halidays from Mae Dean
Hoppy Halidays from Mae Dean

More Christmasing in Texas:

The Waterford's 2007 Christmas quilt

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Toast your toes

WHEN? Sunday · December 23

WHERE? Pantego, Texas · find us on the map

During the Christmas season we spent a good bit of time at The Waterford where Mother lives. The multiple Christmas trees and other decorations just begged to be photographed. For a look at some of them check out:

Christmastime at The Waterford on flickr

And in case you're wondering about the two fireplace photos ...

I'm considering having one of these enlarged to put in our Airstream for a pretend fireplace. Don't you feel warmer just looking at it?

Thursday, December 20, 2007

A year older and wiser

WHEN? Thursday · December 20

WHERE? Arlington, Texas · find us on the map

Has it really been only a year?
In spite of hitting the road as full-time RVers only last Spring, this lifestyle's busy-ness encourages quick "veteran-ship". Like last December, we met with several full-time RVers at Treetops RV Village in Arlington, where we swapped the past year's road-trip stories and shared upcoming travel plans. Before going separate ways, we made arrangements to get together again. When another Full-Timer tells us, "I know just what you mean" ... they really do!

Escapees Class of 2006

Today's visit allowed us to catch up with several of our fellow 2006 Escapees graduates:

To view our party photos on flickr, visit
Escapees in the Treetops

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Remember whens

WHEN? Wednesday · December 19

WHERE? Cleburne, Texas · find us on the map

Having fun along the way is one of our favorite perks of full-time RVing. Although Christmasing with family is our eventual destination, we're sure having a good time getting there.

We're the class of '55
We're the class with hep-kat jive

An evening reminiscing with several Cleburne High School classmates left me feeling like a kid.

Mae DeanFredaCharlie DellMary
L to R: Mae Dean, Freda, Charlie Dell, Mary*

*This order was how a group photo was taken of the "girls" that evening. We do not want to overlook three hubbies were there as well, and we all enjoyed those pizzas so much. Can you believe they came from Joshua? Or am I wrong? We would have never "thunk it" in 1955.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

M-m-m good!

WHEN? Tuesday · December 18 · (today's second post)

WHERE? Kilgore, Texas · find us on the map

We worked up a Texas appetite while touring Kilgore's oil museum and knew exactly what we were hungry for:

The best ribs in Texas!

We made the short drive just west of Kilgore to Country Tavern Bar-B-Que (State Highway 31 & FM 2767), known in East Texas since 1930 for its famous pork ribs and beef brisket. After several years of good intentions (including one late-Sunday attempt after closing), we finally got in the door! Its large lunchtime crowd was a good sign.

Dark ... like a tavern

Once our eyes adjusted from the noonday sunlight to the tavern's all-day darkness, we realized that there were no menus to bother with. When we told our waitress that we were undecided between ribs and brisket, she promptly told us, “You want the ribs!” We each settled on a half ribs / half brisket order. This place has earned its good reviews over the years.

M-m-m good!

Wendell left with a full belly
and a rib-eatin' grin on his face

Country Tavern:  Home of the best ribs in Texas

See more Country Tavern Bar-B-Que photos on flickr

Honorable mentions:
  • Mae Dean's Country Tavern photos have been included with online reviews from Georgia, Maryland, and Arizona.
  • A DFW food enthusiast also visited Country Tavern Bar-B-Que recently. See what she had to say on her food blog: Donna Cooks


WHEN? Tuesday · December 18 · (today's first post)

WHERE? Kilgore, Texas · find us on the map

Motorhome parked at: S&S Apache Camping Center in Jackson, Mississippi for routine service

The story of Kilgore's oil-rich history is a Texas legend: Discovery of the world's largest pool of black gold, derrick-lined streets, and one plot of ground known as the world's richest acre.

We lived and learned the legacy of those boom years in the East Texas Oil Museum at Kilgore College.

City of Stars

One of Kilgore's original oil derricks
As one of six cities in the Holiday Trail of Lights, over eighty steel replicas of Kilgore's 1930's wooden oil derricks are topped with a fantastic display of lights, maintaining its title as the state's official City of Stars.

See more East Texas Oil Museum photos on flickr

Monday, December 10, 2007

Pa Rum Pum Pum Pum

To set the mood: The Little Drummer Boy Words and Music

This beautiful counted crosstitch was created and given to us by Wendell's sister Patsy many years ago. We had a tradition of sending Drummer Boy Christmas cards every year, but it seems The Drummer Boy has fallen out of fashion in recent years, and finding one to send out has become quite a challenge.

Drummer Boy crosstitch

Since this may be the closest thing to a Christmas card you receive from me, let us Wish You A Merry Christmas and A Happy 2008.

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Historic Candlelight Tour

WHEN? Saturday morning · December 8

WHERE? Downtown Jackson, Mississippi · find us on the map

Wendell and I are continuing to enjoy our "vacation" in our old stomping grounds.

Old Jackson Christmas by Candlelight Tour

Years ago as I was waiting for a ride home from work at a downtown Jackson bus stop, I noticed people coming and going at the Governor's Mansion. I envied those people who were taking that tour and wished I could have been doing the same thing. When I recently saw a notice about the upcoming 12th Annual Old Jackson Christmas by Candlelight Tour on a website, I vowed I'd not miss it again. The weather was unusually warm for the evening, and it was just so pleasant to take in all three historic sights:

Thank you, Greater Jackson Arts Council, for providing the free transportation by Cline Tours. It was such a good way to enjoy Jackson at night.

To find out what the image on the right is, view Mae Dean's Christmas by Candlelight Tour photos on flickr.Click on the image to find out what in the world this is

Only the Capitol allowed indoor snapshots, but photos were taken at every opportunity — even the lights of the cars streaming into Mississippi Veterans Memorial Stadium from I-55 to go to the Class 5A state football championship between South Panola and George County high schools. We arrived home in time to see the game on TV. An extra treat: Instead of intrusive game discussions during halftime, we got to see both high school bands perform!

An article on the game was on the front page of today’s Clarion-Ledger:

Tigers grab 5th straight crown

Not only did the South Panola Tigers win 28-21 over the Rebels of George County, but they also increased the nation’s longest active winning streak to 75 games.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

City With Soul

WHEN? Thursday · December 6

WHERE? Jackson, Mississippi · find us on the map

Jackson: City With Soul
Jackson: City With Soul

While on an afternoon trip downtown for a haircut, I discovered a collection of civic murals. Since they were displayed on a fence in front of the Pinnacle Building's construction site at One Jackson Place, they served to make an otherwise-unattractive area appealing.

The one pictured above is my favorite because of its simplicity and pretty colors. To see all 15 murals, visit:

City With Soul murals on flickr

Thursday, November 29, 2007

On-the-go Internetting

WHEN? Thursday · November 29

WHERE? Jackson, Mississippi · find us on the map

Airstream parked at: Timberlake Campground

We're up and running!

After several months of frustration, we hope we've found the Internet connection that will best serve our needs as fulltime RVers. We are getting wonderful connectivity in the Jackson area now with the Verizon Wireless PC5750 PC Card. We look forward to seeing how it works for us as we travel.

The addition to our PC Card line–up operates on our Rev. A broadband network with typical download speeds of 600–1400 kbps and uploads speeds of 500–800 kbps*. With the Verizon Wireless PC5750 PC Card and VZAccess Manager you can connect to corporate applications, email, instant messaging and the Internet. This PC Card also comes with a high performance hinged antenna and an external antenna connector to boost signal strength and improve network connectivity in fringe areas.
* Speed claim based on our network tests with 5 MB FTP data files without compression. Actual speeds and coverage may vary. If usage exceeds 5 GB/line/month, we reserve the right to reduce throughput speeds to a maximum of approximately 200 Kbps.
We're calling this purchase our HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MERRY CHRISTMAS, HAPPY ANNIVERSARY & HAPPY NEW YEAR gift to ourselves.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007


WHEN? Tuesday · November 27

WHERE? Ross Barnett Reservoir just outside of Jackson, Mississippi · find us on the map

Ross Barnett Reservoir

After spending 10 days with family at Thanksgiving in Olive Branch, Mississippi, we are now here TAKING CARE OF BUSINESS.

Jackson is the closest thing to home for us since we lived here last before going into fulltime RVing, and we lived here over 25+ years, which is longer than we have lived anywhere else.

This is our third day at Timberlake Campground. We're not sure how long we’ll be here, but the good news is they have full hookups and WiFi.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Is that what I think it is?

WHEN? Monday · November 26

WHERE? Olive Branch, Mississippi · find us on the map

Happy birthday ... and dig in !

click on the image to learn all the yummy details
You call this a BIRTHDAY CAKE?

Thursday, November 22, 2007

And the pilgrims give thanks

Can you blame him for hiding?

WHEN? Thursday · November 22

WHERE? Olive Branch, Mississippi · find us on the map

Good food:

Great fellowship:

A perfect start to the holidays!

Wendell and I weren't the only pilgrims at Carla's for Thanksgiving this year, but I'm certain we were the only family members who also enjoyed a Thanksgiving meal last August.

See more Thanksgiving photos on flickr

Monday, November 19, 2007

Mr. Whipple

WHERE? A supermarket anywhere

1970's Charmin spokesman Mr. Whipple

Isn’t it mind-boggling how products have changed over the years? Wendell is our grocery shopper, and he has discovered that picking the right product from the grocer’s shelf is so much more complicated than it once was. It seems that everyone has realized New and Improved is a catchy little phrase that promotes sales.

Poor Mr. Whipple

by Wendell

Poor Mr. Whipple, he came along about 25 years too early. You aren’t old enough to remember him? He was the grocer in a television commercial that got caught in the bath tissue aisle squeezing a certain well known brand. It’s just that the tissue was so soft he could not keep his hands off it. Just had to cuddle and feel its softness.

When Mr. Whipple was around there was only one type of tissue, one size roll, and one size package. To say that has changed would be an understatement as big as the Sears Tower is tall. Today that same well-known brand sells what they call Basic, Ultra Soft and Ultra Strong.

If Basic was the product that caused Mr. Whipple to take a stroll down the bath tissue aisle several times a day, it would be nearly impossible to keep him out of there now that Ultra Soft has been introduced. That leads us to Ultra Strong. Just its name makes one ask, “Are Basic and Ultra Soft strong enough to do their job without tearing apart?” (Don't answer that.)

Not only do they have their 3 different products, they have different sized rolls. The Regular Roll, and the Big Roll that has twice as many sheets than the regular roll. Then there is the Giant Roll that has 2½ times as many sheets as the regular roll. As the TV pitch man Billy Mays would say, “But wait, there's more!" There’s the Mega Roll that has 4 times as many sheets as the regular roll. Not only that, but these 3 different products and their 4 different sized rolls are packaged in rolls of 4, 12, 24, and 36. You do the math, and I think you'll agree that poor Mr. Whipple would be a very busy man if he were with us today.

Oh I almost forgot! There's a variety with lotion added for those sensitive parts of our bodies.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Good news!

Mae Dean's current location in Kentucky provides Internet access that she didn't have last summer in Wyoming. This has allowed her to begin blogging and sharing firsthand travel stories that Carla never could. Experience more personal virtual-travels with Wendell and Mae Dean at:


Expect her blog to include new bells and whistles as her on-the-blog training progresses.


Readers can also expect updated posts on this travelblog now that Mae Dean's learning more eblogger how-to's. Expect blog entries to begin referring to we and us.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Dam tourists

WHEN? Tuesday · October 16

WHERE? Jamestown, Kentucky · find us on the map

Working at the hatchery has given us the opportunity to learn it from the inside out, and boy is there lots to learn. Read about today's lesson as taught by Wolf Creek's dam experts:

The Best Dam Tour We've Ever Had

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Wolf Creek Bike Week?

WHEN? Sunday · October 14

WHERE? Jamestown, Kentucky · find us on the map

Today's hatchery visitors were reminiscent of August at Devils Tower — on a much smaller scale and with no official Incident Action Plan to follow. Since today's bikers were well behaved, no incidents occurred to warrant one. Whew!

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Kentucky's coal heritage

WHEN? Tuesday · October 9

WHERE? Stearns, Kentucky · find us on the map

The company store that Tennessee Ernie Ford sang aboutUndersized simulation of an old coal-burning train engineAutumn scenery in Stearns
Read all about Mae Dean and Wendell's ride along Big South Fork Scenic Railway:

Ridin' the Rails

Friday, October 5, 2007

Birth of a leader

WHEN? Friday · October 5

WHERE? LaRue County, Kentucky · find us on the map

Last night's accomodations: Comfort Inn · Cave City, Kentucky

After an early breakfast-and-goodbyes with Jerry and Ella, we could hardly wait to see more of this remarkable state. Our next destination was only a one-hour drive away - the Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historic Site:

Humble beginnings...Presidential parentsPosing with the presidentCentsible wall in the Visitor Center museum

See more Lincoln Birthplace photos on flickr

LIVING ... MAEDEANS STYLE: Humble Beginnings

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Special guests

WHEN? Thursday · October 4 · (today's second post)

WHERE? Bowling Green, Kentucky · find us on the map

Looky who stopped to spend time with Mae Dean and Wendell while traveling through Kentucky:


Rolling into Bowling Green

WHEN? Thursday · October 4 · (today's first post)

WHERE? Bowling Green, Kentucky · find us on the map

With time to kill before meeting relatives for lunch, we stumbled upon the recently-opened Historic L&N Depot Railpark and Train Museum.

See Mae Dean's Historic Railpark photos on flickr

The simulation choo-choo Scale model Sweet pullman! The little red caboose

See more Bowling Green train museum photos on flickr

Friday, September 28, 2007

Home of the Original Recipe

WHEN? Friday · September 28

WHERE? London, Kentucky · find us on the map

Mae Dean and Wendell
toured the
Kentucky Fried Chicken Museum

* * * *

then ate lunch
where it all began:

Sanders Cafe still looks like it did in 1949

Colonel Sanders poses for a photo op with Wendell

See more KFC Museum photos on flickr

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Hot off the presses

WHEN? Tuesday · September 25

WHAT? This edition's celebrity RVer

The Gypsy Journal September-October issue includes a photo of this Devils Tower celebrity after editor Nick Russell's summer visit to Wyoming:

Gypsy Journal

Wendell's photo accompanied a well-written article about Devils Tower.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Local sightseeing

WHEN? Monday · September 17

WHERE? Jamestown, Kentucky · find us on the map

Kentucky State Parks

Kentucky's preservation and presentation of its natural beauty and resources are impressive. After today's visit to Lake Cumberland State Resort Park, Wendell and Mae Dean intend to return to the area at least once more for a closer look.

Lake Cumberland photo courtesy of the park's impressive website photo gallery

Today's travels also included a stop at Rock House Natural Bridge, located along the banks of the Cumberland River. Kentucky ranks second only to Utah for natural arches, and nearly fifty of them are featured on the Natural Arch and Bridge Society's website.