Floored . . .

Well, the floor project is officially under way.

Before Chris got here, I had cleaned everything out and unbolted the chairs from their pedestals. The flooring on the left side of the screen is a test piece I laid down to see how it would look.

Allure Flooring Install 1

The first thing we did was pull the chairs and put them outside, where Mister decided he was going to spend the day camped out in one of them.

We then started going over the floor inch by inch, pulling up any of the missed staples that originally held down the carpet, and pounding out any bumps.

Chris also did a really good job getting the rest of the carpet out from under the steering wheel and cleaning that area up.

Allure Flooring Install 2

At this point I realized I must have had a brain fa . . . eh, fade. I sure seem to remember pulling up the pedestals last time to get the carpet out from under them. But it quickly became obvious that they didn’t come up. In fact I even called American Coach to be sure.

I had thought that the pedestals were held done by lag bolts into the plywood flooring.  But as it turned out, they’re held down by large bolts with nuts underneath the chassis, that can’t be reached. Oh, well.

Next I started patching the bolt hole depressions with Plastic Wood. These are the bolts that hold the plywood subflooring to the chassis.

Allure Flooring Install 3

Once we got all the prep work done, we knocked off for the day. We’ll start fresh tomorrow laying down the flooring and cutting around the obstacles with a jigsaw.

With a little luck we’ll be able to finish up then.

Stay tuned. More to come.

Thought for the Day:

If everywhere you go there’s a problem, guess what?


Getting in on the ground floor . . .

Jan and I spent the morning going through stuff so we could get everything out of the front of the rig so Chris and I can start putting down the new flooring tomorrow morning. And as many readers have requested, I will be posting before, during, and after photos.

About 3 PM Jan and I headed out for our daughter Brandi’s up in Katy. Jan will be staying there for several days while our son Chris and I do the floor. On our way we stopped off at Sam’s Club to pick up a couple of prescriptions.

I was kind of worried about the traffic on the way, but it seemed we were able to stay just ahead of it all the way there. And we timed it perfectly, getting there just a minute before Lowell and Landon showed up.

Brandi showed up about 30 minutes later bearing dinner from a local Mexican grilled marinated chicken place. We’ve had this once before, and it’s really good, especially the spicy tomatillo sauce. Very good.

Landon has his own iPad and spends a lot time learning and playing on it.

Landon and his iPad

I said my goodbyes a little before 7 finally getting back to the rig a little after 8 PM. I spend the rest of the evening getting things ready for tomorrow.

More from the floor tomorrow.

Thought for the Day:

Want to have a little fun?

Rename your WiFi hotspot to “FBI Surveillance Van #7”.


Hitting the Road and Flooring it . . .

Today was another day filled with client stuff so I headed out about 10 AM, finally getting back to the rig about 3:30. I did stop off at our storeroom to pick up our big 10’ x 20’ tarp and our (actually Miss Terry’s) chop saw. I also got Powerball tickets on the way home.

Shortly after I got home Jan and I headed back out to have dinner at Hooter’s since we both needed a hot wing fix, and their new ‘Triple Dog Dare” sauce, their hottest, really hits the spot.

After that it was a quick stop at Wal-Mart so Jan could pick up the ingredients for her world famous spaghetti sauce. The it was home just in time for another great Galveston Bay RV Resort sunset.

Galveston Bay Sunset 4

Later, about 8 PM I fixed us K-Cup Hazelnut Cappuccino which we had along with some of the Nestles’ Toll House cookies Jan made this weekend, as we caught up on ‘Person of Interest’ episodes on the DVR.

Now, as far as ‘hitting the road’, Jan is. Tomorrow afternoon I’m taking he up to Brandi and Lowell’s to spend the weekend. While she’s there, she’s going to make her spaghetti, which is why the Wal-Mart stop.

As for why she’s going up there, it’s to get her out of my hair. Well, maybe a hair reference is not the best one in my case, so let’s just say it’s to get her out of the rig for a few days.

And that brings us to the ‘flooring it’ part of the title. Friday morning my son Chris is coming over and we’re finally going to install the Allure vinyl laminate flooring in the rig. Yes the same flooring I’ve been threatening to install for about 3 years now.

Allure Flooring

Allure seems to be perfect for RV’s. It’s actually a rubber-based product that looks and feels like wood laminate. But because it’s rubber, it’s completely waterproof. Great for when your slide seal springs a leak. And also, the planks are very flexible, at least compared to wood laminate. Again perfect for driving your floor down the road at 60 mph.

We chose a lighter color, Oak, because our cabinetry is also light, and a dark color would tend to make the space seem smaller.

With Chris here, and Jan gone, we’ll be able to pull all three Captain’s chairs out and then pull the base mounts up which will make it much easier to lay the flooring with less measuring and cutting. We are only replacing the carpet in the front of the rig, leaving the tile flooring in the rest of the rig, as it is.

Hopefully we can finish it off Friday and Saturday because Chris doesn’t want the project to cut into his Super Bowl time on Sunday. To me that just gives him more incentive to work faster.

It’s a win, win.

Thought for the Day:

Why would anyone want to get married?
About half of all marriages end in divorce.
The rest end in DEATH!!!


Sheets to the Wind . . .

The high today was 50 degrees at 1 minute after midnight and it just went down from there. The sleet started about noon and the temperature dropped down to 30 and stayed there the rest of the afternoon. We’re looking for about 26 degrees tonight, but into the mid 40’s tomorrow so things are looking up.

Because the weather was so crappy we stayed home today and just enjoyed the time together.

For dinner Jan fixed our version of Skyline Chili’s Chili Spaghetti Four Ways.

Skyline Chili Ways

She mixed a can of Skyline Chili with a bag of our homemade chili from the freezer, put it over spaghetti, and added shredded cheese. It would have been Chili Five Ways, but I forgot the onions until it was too late. As usual, really good.

Jan and I have really been enjoying Sleepy Hollow which just wrapped up its 13 episode 1st season. And happily it has been renewed, a fate that other series we really liked, i.e. 666 Park Ave., have unfortunately avoided.

I like being surprised by well-written plot twists, something that seems missing in a lot of shows, but Sleepy Hollow has enough surprises to keep me entertained. A creative re-telling of the Legend of Sleepy Hollow with Ichabod Crane, plus George Washington, The Headless Horseman, and the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, and switching back and forth between Revolutionary War days and the present, it’s non-stop.

Now, on to the sheets. When we spent the night at our daughter Brandi’s on Christmas Eve, Jan fell in love with the soft sheets Brandi had on our bed and wanted to get some for us. Brandi said they were 1000 thread count sheets that she got on Groupon.

So I started researching high thread count sheets, and found that any thread count over 400-600 is kind of just advertising hype, because looms don’t hold more threads than that. What they do is twist several fibers together and use those in the count. So two fibers twisted together and then wove on on 500 thread loom becomes a 1000 thread count sheet. The biggest difference is the type of fibers used and whether the sheets are percale or sateen, with sateen being the softest.

So I got on Amazon and after some research, came up with these.

Milani Sheet Set

Striped QUEEN Sateen Sheet Set

They’re listed as being 1500 thread count which probably means 3 fiber thread on a 500 thread loom. The reviews were pretty uniformly good except for some who were upset about the depth of mattress the fitted sheets will handle. And even they’re not $200, they’re not $100, or not $50. They’re $25 for a set of 1 fitted sheet, 1 flat sheet and two standard pillow cases.

So we took a shot and ordered a queen size set from Amazon, knowing we could return them if we weren’t happy. We also order a set of two king size pillow cases as well, since we have two king size pillows and two standards.

When they came Jan washed them and we put them on the bed. And they’re a big hit. We really like them. They’re very soft, but not slick, and have a kind of microfiber feel.

Very nice. We plan to order a second set.

Thought for the Day:

As Mae West said, there’s no such thing as too much of a good thing. 


Ring Toss (Loss) . . .

A lot of you have been doing your Amazon shopping through our blog, and your support is much appreciated.  Keep it up.

Shop Amazon


I headed out about noon for client stuff that pretty much ate up the rest of the day. Getting back a little after 4 PM, Jan and I headed out to have dinner at the Five Guys Burger and Fries over at Victory Lakes.

I really like the fact that they have all the different toppings, and at no extra cost. I had a Bacon Cheeseburger with Mayo, Mustard, Tomatoes, Pickles, Onions, and Jalapenos. Jan had a regular Cheeseburger with Mushrooms, Ketchup, and Mustard. And this time we were smart enough to not order the Large fries, and just got a Regular fry which was enough for the both of us.

Next up we stopped by the next door Wal-Mart for a couple of things. But I’ve come to believe you can’t just stop at Wal-Mart for a ‘couple’ things. It always becomes a ‘bunch’ of things, somehow.

Getting back to the rig I set up my cube heater and my thermostat in our water bay.

Titan Cube Heater

Holmes Compact Ceramic Heater


Inline Thermostat

Inline Thermostat

The next couple of days are going to be cold with rain, sleet, and possibly snow with temps in the 20’s at night and hardly getting about freezing in the daytime. So with the thermostat I’ll just set this up in our water bay and won’t worry about it. The thermostat will turn the heater on at 35 degrees and off at 45 degrees, so I just set it and forget it.

As far as Ring Loss, a couple of weeks ago I lost my wedding ring. Unfortunately I didn’t discover it was gone until later in the evening, after we been to a number of places. I tried retracing my steps and calling the businesses to see if anyone had turned it in. But no luck.

So after over 46 years I was ringless. Checking around and online, I decided that unlike my original white gold ring, I would get one like this.

Tungsten Ring

8MM Men’s Tungsten Carbide Ring Wedding Band

It’s actually made of Tungsten Carbide, second only to diamond in hardness. Because it’s so hard it can not be engraved in the normal way, but only with a laser.

It also can not be resized, so be sure you have your size correct before you order one.

The reason I lost my ring is that my fingers have shrunk over the last 46 years, and seem to shrink even more when my hands are cold. In fact I could just hold my hands down at my sides, wiggle my fingers, and my ring would fall off.

I really like the feel of my new one. It’s wider than my original, and half a size smaller, so it stays on just fine, even wiggling my cold fingers. It’s nice looking, and even better, it was only about $20.

The only possible downside is that if you hit it hard enough with something like a hammer, it will not bend, it will just shatter. Of course if the ring is on my finger when it’s hit with a hammer, I’m probably not going to worry about the ring.

What’s up for tomorrow? Maybe a snowman.

Thought for the Day:

Which One Should Be Banned


Do Big Cats Dream of Electric Dogs?

We got in a 1 mile walk this morning, and will probably do another one tomorrow morning since the weather starts to get cold and crappy from Monday night on.

Since it was not too windy, we sat outside for a while with our coffee and finished up the last of the Buc-ee’s Cranberry Nut muffins that we got a few days ago.

We left Mister outside on his leash with the door open most of the afternoon as we often do when the weather is nice. Later I heard dogs barking outside and looked out the door. I saw Mister in his usual place out in the sun, which puts him pretty much at the end of his leash. The two dogs, one, a young yellow lab about 40#, and the other a small poodle about 15#, were about 10 feet away barking at Mister, who for his part, just lay there watching them.

What happened next was really something. Mister had a strategy. He turned his back on the dogs and slowly walked back toward the coach, making about 6 feet of slack in his leash. Then he turned back around and crouched down, facing the dogs. I then realized what he was doing.

He had a plan. He was luring them closer!

And they fell for it. They both came nearer, ending up a couple of feet inside where his leash reached. And he knew it.

At this point his rear end came up and started swaying back and forth, just like you see on NatGeo right before the cougar pounces on the unwary antelope. But not wanting dog parts splattered all over the toad and the rig, I yelled at the dogs a couple of times and they ran off.

After a few seconds, MIster turned around and gave me a really dirty look, like I was spoiling his fun. Then he stalked back over to his spot in the sun, curled up and went back to sleep, probably dreaming of dogs that got away.


Our son-in-law Lowell sent over a photo of Landon wearing the glow-in-the-dark Thomas the Tank Engine shirt I bought him at the train show a few weeks ago.

Landon in his Thomas Shirt

Now all I need is a night shot.

Jan and I headed out a little before 4 PM so she could get the haircut she missed yesterday. And even on Sunday she had almost an hour wait before she got started. But I was just fine waiting in the truck since I had my Kindle Paperwhite to keep me occupied.

For my part, I was happy to see her walk out of the hair place with a smile on her face. Sometimes she comes out with a scowl because she’s not happy with her cut, and I hear about it. A lot.

Jan had said she wanted breakfast for supper tonight so after she was finished with her hair, we drove across the large parking lot to the nearby IHOP, the same one we tried to eat at with our friend’s Bob and Maria last Sunday morning. Then there was a 30+ minute wait so we ended up going to the breakfast buffet down on SH146 at La Brisa.

But tonight there was only a couple of other diners when we got there, though after a while the place started to fill up. I did note to Jan that I thought we were the only couple in there under the ago of 70. If some of the others weren’t over 70, then they had led a really hard life.

Tomorrow it’s back to more client stuff. Busy, busy, busy.


Thought for the Day:

“Maybe we should start emailing each other copies of the Constitution. That way maybe we can be sure that the government has actually read it.”


Hair Cuts and Bee Vomit . . .

Had another client meeting about noon that lasted until after 4 PM. She had 3 computers, 4 printers, an iPhone, an iPod, and a digital TV that needed looking at. That’s about enough to keep me busy until we leave. I was able to get through most of it, and I think I can talk her through the rest over the phone, but I may need another trip back.

Getting back home, Jan and I headed back out to meet our son Chris and his wife Linda for dinner at Barcenas Mexican Restaurant near their house. Unfortunately our granddaughter Piper was out of town so we didn’t get to see her, but we did have a great meal and a great time as usual.

Jan had hoped to get her hair cut this afternoon before we met Chris and Linda for dinner, but I got back too late, So she tried to get it done on our way home tonight but we got there just as they closed, so she’ll get it done tomorrow.

Tomorrow should be pretty nice, so I’m going to try and get some stuff done around the rig outside before the weather gets crappy again. I’ve also got a couple of clients to take care of in the next several days, so I’ll still be pretty busy.

Came across an interesting new phone app, though I’m not really sure exactly how I’d use it. But it is neat.

Available for both iPhone and Android, it’s called Burner. Here’s the website description.

Phone numbers when you need them

Need a phone number for a day, a week, a month or longer? Create a Burner number on your iPhone or Android in less than 30 seconds. Keep the number as long as you’d like and burn it when you’re done.

Control your mobile identity

Now you can share your phone number without having to compromise your privacy. Post your number on Twitter or Facebook, use it for selling on Craigslist or make it your business line.

Burn when you’re done

Done with the number? Click "burn" and the Burner number goes out of service, wiping it from your phone and stopping texts or calls to the number.

Basically it gives you a disposable phone number linked to your cellphone, that you can shut off, or ‘burn’ whenever you want. I think the best use for most people would be when advertising something for sale, as related above.

The only downside is that it’s not free. It does cost to use. So check it out.

Thought for the Day:

Don’t judge a book by its cover. Honey is just bee vomit.


30 Days and Counting . . .

Houston Ice Storm 2014

Well, we did survive the storm. Here at the rig it was still 32 degrees when I got at 10 AM (didn’t go to bed until after 2 AM). By noon it had dropped to 30 degrees and we had a ice film on the windows and icicles hanging from the awnings

At the same time it was 47 degrees in Fairbanks, AK. I think we sucked all the cold air down here from up there. Who ever heard of going up to Fairbanks to get warm?

I had planned to visit a couple of clients today, but since it never really got above freezing around here, and the TV kept talking about icy roads in the area, I just stayed home.

Jan did go outside for a few minutes to feed the birds, but I don’t like birds that much and just stayed inside all day where it was warm.

If we stay on schedule, we will be leaving here 1 month from today. The only problem is that we don’t know where we’re going yet. But we’ll come up with something by then.

The only definite time/place we have planned for this year so far is the 54th Escapade this coming May 12th thru the 17th in Goshen, IN.

And I just found out today that I will be giving one or more of my “Gate Guarding for Fun? and Profit”  seminars at the Escapade, the same seminar I last gave at Nick Russell’s Gypsy Journal Rally in Celina, OH.  And now we’re got another Gate Guarding experience under our belts. See you there.

Jan fixed a big batch of delicious chocolate chip cookies later in the afternoon. Warm cookies and hot coffee really hit the spot in this weather. It’s supposed to be warmer tomorrow, maybe up into the 60’s, but not for long. The cold weather’s coming back with a vengeance and Tuesday’s low here in San Leon is supposed to be 23 degrees.

Make it stop!

Saw an interesting program the other day that really made me think. Right now car enthusiasts are still collecting 40 – 50 year old cars from the 60’s and 70’s. But 30 or 40 years from now there may be no classic cars from today. Or at least no running ones.

The problem is the computer chips/modules used in the engines for the last 20 years or so. Even now there are some cars manufactured in the 1990’s for which engine computers/chips are no longer available from the manufacturer. So some people are now scouring junkyards trying to find parts to keep their babies running.

So stock up now and corner the market.

Thought for the Day:

Due to the increased cost of ammunition, please do not expect a warning shot.


Rain, Sleet, and Snow? . . .

and 1/4” of ice on roads and bridges for tomorrow. And I’m supposed to see two clients. We’ll see how that goes.

One of the things I wanted to do today was to get my Duck Dynasty Chia Pet started. My son Chris gave it to me Christmas,  but in all the chaos it got put aside until now.

But today’s the day.

Willie Chia

Chia Willie Duck Dynasty Handmade Decorative Chia Pet Planter

Chia Willie starts out looking like this.

Chia Pet 1

First up, you soak him in a bowl of water for about an hour. At the same time you soak some of the chia seeds in some water.

Chia Pet 2

Then you set Willie in little plastic tray, fill him full of water, and then smear the seed mush all over him.

Chia Pet 3

Then put him near a light source and keep him filled with water. And hopefully Willie will soon bloom in all his verdant glory. I’ll keep you updated.

One thing I didn’t know is that after Willie blooms you can eat him. Apparently Chia Seeds are high in Omega 3, fiber, and protein. YUMMM!

Chia Seeds

About 4 PM Jan and I headed up to Webster to have dinner at one of our favorite places, Rudy’s BBQ.

Rudy's BBQ 1

I always get a little of everything, moist brisket, pork ribs, and jalapeno sausage links,

Rudy's BBQ 3

and some of their great Cream Corn. And a lot of left-overs to bring home.

Later, after we got back home, I ground up some of my Trinidad Scorpion Chili Pepper Pods.

Trinidad Scorpion Package

Dried Trinidad Scorpion Chili Pepper Pods

Until very recently, at 1,400,000 Scoville Units, this was the hottest pepper in the world. But just a month or so ago, it was surpassed by the Carolina Reaper. The King is dead. Long live the new King.

As a comparison, a jalapeno is about 5,000 and a habanero is about 20,000 SC’s.

I use my Mr. Coffee coffee bean grinder to make a powder from the pods to put in my shaker. And just the little bit of dust that escapes into the air makes your eyes burn, your lips numb, and then you start coughing and sneezing.

This ought to be a GOOD batch.

Thought for the Day:

Remember, if you can swim, then it doesn’t matter how deep the water is.
And if you can’t swim, it doesn’t matter either.


Girls with Guns . . .

Jan and I started out this morning with a 1 mile walk around the park before enjoying our coffee and muffins sitting outside. And enjoying it while we can, because tomorrow the weather gets pretty crappy for the next several days.

We’re looking at several days of rain, with a HIGH of 37 on Friday.  BRR!

I want my Global Warming, and I want it NOW!   Excess body heat only goes so far.

About noon I headed out to a couple of clients, and looking for a couple of new computers for other clients. And by the time I’d taken care of everything and gotten back to the rig, it was about 5:30.  And my beautiful wife had dinner ready.

Saw an article online about ‘Machine Gun Tourism’. For some reason when I first saw the title I thought it said “Machine Gun Terrorism”, which kind of made sense.

But then I figured out what they were talking about. Renting out machine guns for tourists to try their hand. And when we were in Las Vegas in 2010 with our friend’s Nick and Terry Russell, Jan did her part to keep tourism alive.

And this was at “The Gun Store” location mentioned in the article. She’s firing her new favorite toy, a Thompson Submachine Gun

Jan And Her Thompson 1 

Jan And Her Thompson 2

And apparently it runs in the family, because here’s our granddaughter Piper in Houston, firing a Smith & Wesson 500 .50 cal. revolver, considered the most powerful handgun in the world.

Piper's First Gun

I’ve shot one of these a couple of times and they’re a handful.  Piper said she enjoyed the feeling of power it gave her.

Also according the article, you can now fire one of these at “The Gun Store”.M249

This is a belt-fed M249 Light Machine Gun, and Nick and I both want one.

Just the thing for those pesky squirrels.

"The only difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits." – Albert Einstein