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Happy New Year! 2022 and 30,000 Miles on the Truck.

What a trip we have had. Amazing and a trip of a lifetime is all I can say. We had a year of mostly clear sunny skies, and warm sunshine. We started our trip driving from Washington, through Oregon and California. The first major stop was Quartzite AZ in the middle of October for a week. It was so hot, like 112. We were too early for the Snow Bird events that started in November. So we did some exploring and headed out.

Next we went to Scottsdale AZ and I visited my photography friend. We had a good time and even found wild horses to take photos of, and lots of other birds and animals. Then Bill and I moseyed over to New Mexico and visited with our son, daughter-in-law and grandson. We ended up flying back to Washington to help our daughter out after some surgery for a few weeks. Then back to New Mexico for the holidays.

January found us in Yuma - living the Snow Bird life. We were in a really, really large RV resort, The West Winds. There were hundreds of friendly people there, and lots to do. Art classes, Bingo, pools etc. Lots of fun - the weather had cooled down to 70s and 80s, the perfect winter get away weather. After a month we headed to Tucson via Tubac AZ. Wonderful artsy galleries and visited with a Longview friend that had moved there. We explored around Tucson and checked out all the fun things to see there. We spent February, March and April in Arizona and New Mexico. I took so many photos.

We were able to drive over to San Diego, CA to our grandson, Patrick, Marine Corp. Boot Camp Graduation. That was so interesting and we are so proud of him.

We checked out Sedona and an animal safari park close to it. I fed a tiger and took lots of photos. (I fed him through a fence with the food on a stick).

The middle of May we headed out to Minnesota to find genealogy information on our families. I even found a little Lutheran Church where my dad and his sister were baptized in 1926. Southern Minnesota was so green after we spending months in the desert. We went to Northern Minnesota and visited with cousins, I got to visit with my 97 year old aunt. (She has since passed away). The ice had just melted on the lake and river and they were having flooding problems. But the pelicans were there for spring breeding and I got great photos.

We left Minnesota the end of June and traveled in Iowa, and Kentucky. We visited with good friends that Bill used to work with. We visited The Ark Encounter (a life size replicate of Noah's Ark) So fun to see. Then we traveled around Indiana, Ohio and New York state. Bill did a lot of genealogy research. We have been to many cemeteries. I sure enjoyed seeing so many old Victorian houses. We visited Niagara Falls, NY and drove over to see the Canada side. Amazing to see. The weather was still hot and was getting muggy too.

The middle of August we drove to Maine. Our 11 year old grandson Gage, flew out from Seattle to visit for a week. He got to play lots of arcade games at the beach town where we were staying. Although he didn't like the hot muggy weather. After Gage flew back to Washington we moved up to Bar Harbor, Maine. There was so much to do there. We took a lighthouse boat tour, I took a whale watching boat tour, and we also went on a 4 mast sailboat, sunset cruise. We drove around and explored. I took sunrise photos over the Atlantic Ocean early one morning in Acadia National Park.

The middle of September we moved over to Littleton, New Hampshire. It was up in some mountains so the weather was cooler. We were waiting for the maple trees to turn red. (Did you know they call tourists that come to see the fall colors "Peepers". I thought that was funny) We were there two weeks and the colors started to change. Then we moved to Vermont. While we were there the colors got into full season - I got some amazing photos. Also photos of wonderful old churches and houses. We left Vermont the middle of October heading to Connecticut to visit some of Bill's cousins. It was good to see them again. Then we started our trek back across the country.

We went to Hershey Penn. and toured the Hershey Co. exhibit. We had a tour of Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream Factory.

We did stop in Pigeon Forge, Tenn. for four nights checking out the Dollywood area. We drove across The Great Smokey Mountains National Park with all the wonderful fall color. Then we traveled for 5 days and made it to San Antonio Texas. We touristed for a week. We toured the Alamo, and rode a tourist barge on the River Walk. Then we were off to New Mexico to visit our son's family again.

We left New Mexico on Nov. 13th and high tailed it back to Washington. It was getting late in the year and there could be snow on the mountains that we had to drive over at the California border. {The photo above is Mt. Shasta} But our trip was dry and sunny as we drove over those passes. (5 days later they had 10 inches of snow) We made it to Washington on November 22nd. Two days before Thanksgiving.

What a wonderful trip - things worked so well for us. Since we have gotten back the trailer has been getting a few things fixed and the truck went to the shop too. But we are well and so thankful for such a wonderful trip. We saw so many things and met many, many nice people. Visited with relatives and friends we hadn't seen in so long. Now we are going to take a rest. We plan on staying in Graham, Washington for 5 months to rest up and plan our next adventure.

Happy New Year everyone! May 2023 be for new adventures for everyone!


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