Friday, October 31, 2008


Ladybugs are beautiful, non-offensive bugs. They do no harms to humans, but definitely benefit the crops as they eat aphids. They are not native to the United States, but were introduced to try and control pests on crops. The Chinese believe them to represent
good luck. But today, in Wisconsin, they are like the plague of locust. They are absolutely everywhere. We can't seem to walk for fear of stepping on one. Anytime one of us opens the door, a bunch of them come in. I guess if we believe like the Chinese we are overflowing with luck.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Baraboo Zoo

There is a town about 10 miles from us called Baraboo. It is the home of the Ringling Brother's Circus and Circus World Museum. Although that is not what took us to Baraboo today. Today we went and visited their city park/zoo. Their zoo is a free to the public zoo, which makes it great to go whenever we want. They take in animals from around the area and keep them in an open air zoo. There were llamas, timber wolves, black bears, monkeys (that we didn't get to see), domestic goats, a potbellied pig (again we didn't get to see), marmots, white-tailed deer, ducks and a swan. The kids really had a fun time running around and looking at all of the animals. They even got to feed the goats. Hopefully, we will be able to go again someday soon.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

RVing is Different in the Winter

We know that living in the RV this winter, we will have to do lots of insulating to keep us warm and unfrozen. We have been researching and researching what the best ways are to do it. So far this trip we had been filling and refilling the water holding tank and not ever connecting to the "city" water. Well yesterday, we ran out of water in the holding tank and needed to fill up. For the winter we thought it would be better to use the city water and not have to worry about a frozen holding tank. Last night we hooked up our water hose, not thinking it would get too cold. But of course this morning it was frozen, oops. Today we went and bought the heat tape and the insulation, so we should be okay tomorrow. That takes care of our water, now we just need to completely insulate the rest of the RV. What an adventure it is from day to day and season to season.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Halloween (A little early)

Downtown Portage had a trick-or-treating good time this morning. The businesses were offering a safe way for the kids to get out and get candy. I know this is like many other places all over. Well we decided that since we don't really know the town that we would take the kids out to this for an early Halloween. Angela was a princess/queen. We kept calling her a princess, she kept saying she was a queen and that she was in charge (ha ha). She looked very pretty in her pink dress and tiara. Just a side note for those who didn't hear the story: Angela, bound and determined, won that tiara herself at a carnival in Spokane. Connor was a dog. When we got into Portage we had some time to kill before the activities started. Connor did not want to wear his costume but he held on tight giving it a hug for almost 45 minutes. We finally talked him into wearing it and he looked great. Angela is an old pro at trick-or-treating so she just did her thing. Being that this is Connor's second Halloween he was a bit new. He did his best to say "trick-or-treat," which came out sounding like, "teeeet." And when he learned that it got him treats he was very eager to say it. Both of them following up with a "Thank You." What good kids we have. Now that that is done, I think we will stay in for Halloween night.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Life still goes on

As much as we have changed things over the past month, I was reminded today that life still goes on in its usual way. As I was preparing dinner Angela alarmingly says, "MOM!" Concerned that something way wrong I whip around to her. She had a tooth in a very unnatural position and a huge smile on her face. Needless to say, within about 30 minutes she had pulled it out. She is now very excited for the tooth fairy to visit the 5th wheel.

Must have a library!

Every town we have been in for more than one night has been fun for the kids and I. We immediately get to exploring the town finding out where important things are. We find the post office, grocery store, bank, cheap gas and most importantly the library. Today we found the Portage Library. Since we are going to be in Portage for (hopefully) a few months or longer, I decided we needed a library card. I had hoped that because I had ID and a signed lot recepit for our camping site that we would be okay. Not quite. We had to pay for a temporary card due to not actually living in the town. Once we turn the temporary card back in they will give us back our money. It is a small price to pay for the freedom to check out books with the kids. It is a wonderful way to save my sanity. Not to mention lots of books for me. We left today with a bagful of books already eager to go back next week.

Monday, October 20, 2008

The first 20 days of our trip.

Well, welcome one and all who choose to come and read our postings. We are the Jamison's: Dad, Brian; Mom, Laci; daughter, Angela; son, Connor; and dog, Harley.
Back in June Brian started going to school to get a new job. Once in school it was decided it would be best for him to get a traveling apprenticeship. Therefore we started the process of selling our home in Washington State and buying a 5th wheel. After a grueling couple of weeks of packing and moving most all of our things into storage we were sort of ready to leave. We planned on leaving on Wednesday October 1st, but decided that we might as well get started on the road the night before. Sure enough small little glitch after another fell on our already stressed selves. After a couple rush trips to the store we made it on our way all of 20 minutes from home and then we camped for the night. We started paring down what we had packed, throwing away and giving away things. We "enjoyed" lots of driving, about 335 miles per day. Our second night was spent in a little town in Montana. The third night was also in Montana, but just barely in Montana. We were unable to get out of that state due to some motorcycle dilemmas. We had it on a little rack stuck in the receiver hitch of the 5th wheel. After a couple of days of bouncing around it was about to break off. Therefore we hooked it up with the front wheel on the rack and the rear wheel pulling behind. It sort of worked, except for turning tight corners. It was the best we could do at the time, until we could get to a bigger town and get an utility trailer for it. During the fourth day we stopped at Mt. Rushmore. We all really liked it. As we were on the freeway, oops, one of the motorcycle straps broke and we layed the bike over on the freeway. Scary for me since I was following Brian and saw it all happen. Fortunately the bike itself was fine, just a little bit of the plastic got ruined. We headed back into Rapid City, SD for a utility trailer. After that everything seemed much nicer. That night we stayed in a little town in SD. The fifth night we stayed in Omaha, NE. Most days we drove to dinner, spent a couple of hours resting and then drove some more. Not so the fifth night. We got in and rested all night. The next morning we got to go to the Henry Doorly Zoo there in Omaha. It was a lot of fun seeing monkeys, giraffes, elephants and rhinos. We all really enjoyed it. That night we arrived in Indianola, IA where we stayed for the week. Of course we enjoyed our time there but we were not completely out of the oops zone. I was headed to the store to get some keys copied, including the camper key. Once to the store, no key. I searched and searched and couldn't find it. Thankfully the locksmith got us into the camper and made us some new keys. Brian finished his training on Friday and wanted to get moving, only problem, we snapped the shaft that ran from the front jack motor to the jacks, therefore no leaving. We were able to hook the camper to the truck the next morning and off we left for Monomonee Falls, WI (a suburb of Milwaukee). We got close that night, but we couldn't quite find it. Thanks to Wal-Mart we had a place to stay. The next day we found the union hall and stayed there. On Monday, Brian had an appointment and then we were off to Madison, WI. Again another appointment for him and off to work just north of Madison. We found a campground where we thought we would stay, that is until they turned off our water. So now we are at a campground near Portage, WI and we are settled for a few months. We have been having lots of nice weather but they are predicting rain and wind for most of this coming week. Brian really is enjoying work. The kids and I are trying to settle into a routine. We are still enjoying everything, including the nomadic lifestyle we have chosen to adopt. It is difficult to remember to connect with family as the time zones are throwing us off, but we will do our best.