View from the top of Old Man of Coniston hike in Lake District National Park, England.
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? Preston, Lancashire, England.

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? Wyke, West Yorkshire, England on May 29th!

Sunday, May 31, 2015

May Expenses

Not a bad month, all things considered. More than we'd like, but we had to get the little blue car registered in Saskatchewan, and with the rip off government mandated vehicle inspection it's not cheap to do that. But, we had no choice.

We spent a total of $1,143. (Note: These are all Canadian prices. Subtract 20% to get the approximate American equivalent.)

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Go west, young man...

This phrase was first used in 1851 concerning westward expansion. The fertile farmland of the west was considered an ideal place for people willing to work hard for the opportunity to succeed. The phrase came to symbolize the idea that agriculture could solve many of the nation's problems of poverty and unemployment that plagued the big cities of the East.

My grandfather was born in Nova Scotia. When his older brothers became of age, every summer they hopped on a train to Saskatchewan to work the harvest. Eventually, it was my grandfather's turn, and he headed to Saskatchewan as well.

Friday, May 29, 2015

What's it like to visit a Middle Eastern country?

I had a note yesterday from our traveling friends Heather and Volkan. We had met them in March of 2014 in New York City after communicating several times by email. We only met for a quick hour and a half lunch at the time, but I know we'll see them again some day.

Heather and Volkan don't have a blog, but they send out regular emails to their family and friends and they've given us permission to share their last email with you. I think it's really interesting. They're in Paris now, after having spent three weeks in United Arab Emirates. We love visiting different places, and middle eastern countries are certainly different. UAE is very  different, and Heather's email details their visit to this world of indoor ski hills and Lamborghinis. So, without further ado, here is Heather...

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Canadian Tire - The saga continues...

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about our unpleasant experience having some work done at Canadian Tire's automotive service department. You can read about it here.

This was all because Saskatchewan has government run auto insurance and requires a vehicle safety inspection before an out of province vehicle can be registered and insured in the province. The little blue car needed front brake pads, so I changed them the other day. But, I had to bring the car back to Canadian Tire for a re-inspection so that they could see that the front brake pads had been changed.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Slept in...

It seems our alarm clock needs a new battery! We have to have the little blue car in for it's re-inspection at 8:00am this morning, so we have to leave in 20 minutes and haven't even had breakfast yet.

So this is all you get for a blog post today. Sorry!

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Just an update...

Reservations for our busy season continue to dribble in. Busy season for us essentially lasts from June 27th (the day after the kids get out of school) until August 9th. About 6 weeks.

 I was comparing to last year, and we're definitely taking more reservations for the week before the July long weekend, and the week after the August long weekend. And August long weekend will again be sold out this year, in fact there are only six full hookup sites still available.

Monday, May 25, 2015

We're approved!

I'm disappointed. I expected more response to yesterday's post. I figured that you all were a technologically advanced lot who would have hundreds (or at least tens) of suggestions of exciting apps for our smartphone. But, maybe you all use these fancy devices simply to make phone calls. To those of you who did leave a comment, thank you!

We're often surprised by what topics engage people and which ones do not.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Show us your apps!

Okay, so I'm slowly getting used to our iPhone. One thing I'm learning is that it seems to use an awfully lot of data. It's always wanting to update something or other. Same with iTunes, so I don't let it update on the laptop either. And because we are on a fairly expensive pay per use cellular data supply, I now don't even turn on data for the iPhone here at the park. I wait until we go into town for grocery shopping and let the free Walmart wi-fi download all of the updates. One of the mapping apps we use needed to do a 78 MB update!

If you don't keep track of these things, it adds up really quickly.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

It's that time of year

We would have thought that the lack of rain would have translated into a lack of mosquitoes. Or at least we hoped that it would have, but that's not the case. Unfortunately, the little buggers are out in full force!

Maybe we shouldn't have watered the grass so much.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Using your GPS - Hints and Tips

When I read stories from people who say that their GPS sent them this way, or sent them that way, or made them turn their vehicle into a corn field, I have to shake my head. Seriously? It made you turn into a cornfield? It's like they turn on their GPS, and turn off their brain.

Your GPS device is made to be used as a guide, not meant to be followed blindly.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Saskatchewan gets a bum rap

Most people who tour Canada don't put the province of Saskatchewan anywhere on their list of "things I want to see". Even Canadians! I think that's because people envision flat prairie land and they think that all you'll see is fields of crops growing.

Don't get me will definitely see fields of crops growing! But there are pockets of beauty in Saskatchewan, such as our very own Cabri Regional Park.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Stuck in the mud

We finally had a beautiful and fairly calm day yesterday. The wind had been really bad for at least a week, and it was sure making our clean up operations difficult. And frustrating! It'll be nice when we're done all of this cleanup and we can concentrate on other projects that are on the agenda.

The forecast for the next week looks gorgeous though. Highs of around 24C (75F) and sunny!

Tuesday, May 19, 2015


We had an abnormally cold night, and woke up to -4C (25F) yesterday morning. Almost a record low for this area. Some of the campers had frozen water lines, and a copper line that runs on the outside of our office building had split. Things warmed up quickly though, and soon that split line was pouring out water. Easy to turn the water off to that line, and I fixed it later in the morning.

And, I had purposely left a few of the water sprinklers on because things have been so dry. Didn't plan on things getting that cold though. No harm done, but the picture is kind of funny...

Monday, May 18, 2015

"Which country is your favorite?"

One of the most common questions we are asked is... "Of the countries you've visited, which one is your favorite?"

And it's a tough question to answer.

First of all, we've only been to somewhere around 23 countries. So considering there are around 195 countries in the world, we really don't have that many to choose from. However, it's still a valid question.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Slightly busier this year

Last year we had a total of 20 RV's for the May log weekend. This year, we have 28. Part of the reason it's busier is that spring is a little early here this year and many of the local farmers have finished seeding operations.

It's certainly not busier because of our long weekend weather. We've never seen it so windy here as it was yesterday afternoon and evening.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

External battery packs for your smartphone

We have joined the 21st century and now have a new to us iPhone. We don't really need it for day to day use, although I did take it with me when we did shopping the other day. The only reason we decided we need to have an iPhone is to make our travels better. We like to use it mostly for mapping, so that we know where we're going in new areas, and so that we can track some of the walks and hikes that we do.

But the one thing we noticed while testing it is that the battery life is not as good as we would like it to be. So we started looking at solutions to this problem.

Friday, May 15, 2015

It's payday!

The neat thing about working is that you actually get paid every couple of weeks. What a concept! And working is what we have been doing. Every day for the last two weeks. But, the time has flown by and we're getting lots of exercise. And without having to pay for a gym membership.

The Canadian May long weekend is here. The park isn't as ready as we would like it to be. Still too many leaves around from that two days of high winds. Nothing we can do but keep picking away at it.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Our iPhone is now unlocked!

We had used a borrowed iPhone during our trip to South Korea last October, and we realized how handy it is to have a portable smartphone type of device when you're traveling to a new country.

So when our son got a new iPhone a few months ago, we were thrilled that he gave his old iPhone 4s to us! (Thanks again Alex!).

But the iPhone 4s was "locked" to the Telus network here in Canada. We wanted to have our iPhone unlocked so that it could be used with any SIM card with any cellular carrier in the world.

Here's how we did it...

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Two steps forward, one step back!

We've been working really hard to get the campground ready, but we sure do notice the difference with May long weekend being so early this year. We had been pretty much on schedule for this coming Friday, but two days of strong winds really put us behind.

That made leaf cleanup very difficult, and it actually made some of the leaves blow back onto areas that we had already cleaned!

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

All I'm doing lately is trying not to get ripped off!

And if you don't stand up for yourself, they'll walk all over you.

First, it was our Canadian Tire story last week where they tried to rip us off for $22.77. Had I not went to the manager, we would have paid $22.77 more than we were supposed to. And I'm not done with them yet. I still think we paid $35 plus tax too much.

Then, Bell Mobility had charged us a $15 plus tax connection fee to activate our mi-fi internet. I saw later that they had a special on that the guy didn't know about and the activation fee was supposed to be waived. One phone call was all it took to fix that.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Mountain driving in an RV

We did a lot of mountain driving in our motorhome this past winter. I've heard that many people don't like mountain driving, however I don't have a problem with it at all. I wonder if a lot of people don't like it partly because they're unsure of how to do it properly. And therefore it makes them nervous that they're going to end up going too fast to make the next curve, or that their brakes are going to overheat or something like that.

Of course you want to have brakes that are in good condition, however the most important part of mountain driving is the correct use of your transmission.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Listen to our hour long interview...

Today is the day that our interview is available at the 2015 RV and Travel Summit. If you haven't done so already, you'll have to register first, and then you'll get an email that gives the link to today's interviews.

Actually, now that I check, it's only 43 minutes. We haven't listened to it ourselves yet. There's not a lot of editing that was done so I hope we didn't say anything too stupid! It's too bad, but the day that we did this, Ruth had a really raspy voice because she had a cold. So she doesn't say very much, which is rare for her. And I said a lot, which may not be a good thing. Anyhow, it should be interesting, and we're curious about your feedback.

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Carefree RV Summer Camping in Ontario

There are 15 Carefree RV Resorts in Ontario. They're all located in the southwestern part of the province, and most are within a two hour drive of Toronto. Some of them are huge, and have a lot of amenities. We think they're mostly geared for families who want an "all in one" resort experience.

The first resort we're going to tell you about is called Sherkston Shores. It's located 90 minutes from the city of Toronto, and only a few minutes from the U.S. border at Buffalo, New York.

One week to go

Including today, we have one week to get the campground ready for opening day. We've already put in a solid eight days straight, and looking around, we think we're about half way there. So we should be okay.

It's feeling a little rushed because last year there were three of us. This year, we couldn't find a suitable replacement for our one full time summer student, and he has agreed to come back part time but he can't start until the 25th. So it's just Ruth and I, and the fact that the May long weekend here in Canada starts a week early this year.

Oh do what you gotta do!

Friday, May 8, 2015

Canadian Tire Automotive - Never Again

Before we get to our story, I'll first give a little background because many of our American readers may not know about Canadian Tire. If you're from Canada, then obviously you do. Essentially, they're a big box store that sells everything...but mostly related to hardware, automotive, and sporting goods. Some of them even tried to get into groceries, but I don't know if that went over very well.

Canadian Tire stores have a weekly sales flier, very often with some great discounts. I've always said that if you buy something at Canadian Tire at regular price, you're crazy...because whatever it is it will come on sale at some point in the next month. So the stores themselves are great for getting some good deals.

But, each store also operates an automotive service center. This is where things go downhill.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Glad that's over with!

Yesterday was the first day that we start to take reservations here at the campground. It began at 8:00am, and the phone rang constantly. As soon as I finished with one person and hung up the phone, it would ring again instantly.

Although we have around 110 full hookup sites, 80 of them are taken up by seasonal campers. It's a popular park and there is also a waiting list to become a seasonal camper and there are around 35 names on the list.

So with only 30 sites available to the general public, it's no wonder the phone line never stopped.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

2015 RV Summit starts today!

Don't forget to check into the 2015 RV and Travel Summit which starts today! You can listen to the stories of those who have done the type of travel that you may be interested in doing, and gain hundreds of tips from those who have already experienced it.

Plus, Travel with Kevin and Ruth are among the presenters!

Monday, May 4, 2015

The Ultimate Campground Project

Had an email from fellow bloggers Brian and Sue, telling us about a campground listing website that they use. And surprisingly enough, I had never heard about it!  So I figured that if I've never heard about it, some of you may have never heard about it either.

Brian says "I’m stunned – shocked – here I thought you were the king of all ways to save money."

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Fresh air and exercise

We put in a hard days work yesterday. But it was another beautiful day, and it felt good to be outdoors and to get some exercise. Sure, we do a lot of hiking in the off season, and that's good for the leg muscles and aerobics, but our upper body muscles tend to get a little soft.

I expect that area will firm up a little over the next couple of weeks!

Saturday, May 2, 2015

More pics of our Great Horned Owl Family

I spent the morning getting the office back into shape and the computer system online. We start taking reservations on Tuesday May 5th, and it's nice to know that everything is ready for that day. Meanwhile, Ruth began with the cleanup of our front yard. The grass needed cutting already, and the leaf blower doesn't work as well in the longer grass. But, it had to be done.

Oh...and our Great Horned Owl does have twins!

Friday, May 1, 2015

April Expenses

April was a travel month, so we expect our expenses to be higher during a travel month. And sure enough, they were higher.

But when you consider that we started the month in Ottawa, then went to Nova Scotia, then Las Vegas, then drove 1,500 miles (2,400 kms) and saw a whole pile of things along the way, the amount we spent for the month was pretty darn reasonable!

If yesterday was any indication, then this is going to be a great summer!

We spent most of the day cleaning the cobwebs out of our house trailer as it's been shut down and unoccupied for the winter. We also got the water turned back on for our trailer and the office canteen building, and that went very smoothly. Everything happened exactly as it was supposed to, with the exception of a minor leak in one of the toilet tanks.

Oh, and our great horned owl is back, and we think she's got two little ones this year!