Saturday, January 30, 2016

Tallahassee Baby!

We got all settled in at Tallahasse RV Park (I'll do a review when we leave) around 6:00 and then headed over to Dawn and Arin's for supper. It was too dark for a picture so here we are in the morning.

Then it was a trip to Walmart for a few things and Sierra was so happy to find a My Life Doll on sale and this one even came with three dogs. It was about 1/2 price. She is such a budget conscious shopper when spending her own money.
 She could barely wait to get back to the camper and get it set out of the box!

The girls were quite disappointed that this park will not allow them to drive their battery operated Jeep around the park. No worries we packed it up and took it over to our friends place so they can ride it there. Apparently there is a park rule that you have to be 16 to ride anything battery operated alone including this Jeep and battery powered scooters etc. They do have fun riding their bikes around.

Aayla was a brave girl one day and tried out the pool. It was freezing but she did get under about twice before opting out.

We have enjoyed many great meals here. Aayla loved the Indian lunch we had one day but for the most part we've been doing a lot of scrumptious cooking over at Arin and Dawn's like avocado chicken, pig roasts and stake dinners...being spoiled.

Sierra has been asking to try a macaron so we found a little French bakery called Au Peche Mignon. Their macarons were $2.55 each so they both got two different ones to try. Sierra tried lavendar and strawberry shortcake and Aayla tried pistachio and birthday cake. Sierra ended up not really liking the ones she tried but if she had to pick a favourite she said the lavendar one; which was Ians favourite too. I liked the pistachio the best and Aayla liked the birthday cake.

 We've been busy playing Fuzeball, hot tubbing, bowling, playing games and visiting local parks which I'll do separate posts well as just hanging out with our friends.

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Walmart Lenoir City TN and Camper Bowling

I have said it before but I will say it again...I am ever so THANKFUL that many Walmarts still allow overnight RV parking.

This Walmart in Lenoir City Tennessee was located at 911 Highway 321. They were very pleasant when I called to ask permission and again when I went in to confirm the parking area when we arrived. We even had internet from the parking lot where we were parked which was an added bonus.

We are very thankful to have the ability to stop and sleep at Walmarts on travel days. Parks are so expensive and basically all we do is shop and sleep while here so paying for a park on travel days is a hard bullet to bite.

It was a long day of travel and Ian hopped to get the satellite set up but apparently the companies have started to block reception of our Canadian accounts while travelling. Boo hoo.

We went in to Walmart and did a little bit of shopping and then had a few games of bowling before bed.

Tomorrow we hit the road for another 7 hour travel day but we will arrive in Tallahassee and the long days will all be worth it.

Boonshoft Museum of Discovery and Reciprocal Admissions Program

We had to make a bit of a side detour after leaving Toledo to the Boonshoft Museum of Discovery in Dayton, Ohio.

***I'll warn you now if you are towing a trailer or a Fifth Wheel the parking lot entrance and exit is narrow and has a tight turn. We made it pulling our 36' trailer behind our 20' truck but it was a close call on the way out. There really is not a lot of room for error so drive with caution or unhook and drive in without your trailer.***

We arrived about 1/2 hour before they opened so we had ample space to find parking. There is a lot of parking but I can see that at busy times it would be difficult to find parking while hitched up.

Since we wanted to buy a membership here (I will explain why at the end of the post) we decided to take an hour and have a quick visit inside. With a seven hour travel day planned we couldn't afford to spend any more time then that here. We didn't get to see everything but our girls had a blast.

Their first stop was the climbing structure in the centre of the Museum.


Next up was the grocery store and pizza shop. Both my girls could have stayed here all afternoon taking orders and making their pizzas.

We had to put the pizza stuff away though and head through their little zoo and aquarium area.

Then it was off to the courthouse where daddy was the judge and me and the girls were the jury.

A few other shots from around the museum...

 Sierra wasn't so sure what to think about the real mummy and was pretty quick at leaving the room.

We may only have had a short time to visit here but we will make great use of our membership in the months to come.

When we took our Maiden Voyage and hit 35 States in 2011, we purchased a membership at the Living Desert Zoo and Gardens State Park in New Mexico (you can see our trip there HERE).That membership gave us admission to many zoos and aquariums in the Reciprocal Zoo program so we could attend for half price or even some of them for free. We made such good use of it.

This time with a bit more research I learned that if we buy a membership at the Boonshoft Museum of Discovery we now have access to not only zoos and aquariums, but also many science centres and some Childrens Museums (to get admission to more Children's Museum you need the $135 Adventurer membership). This is extremely helpful for this winter as we will be spending all our time in Florida so it makes the $100 family membership cost of the membership worthwhile having more places to use it.

If your interested in learning more about the Zoo and Aquarium's Reciprocal Program please visit HERE. They have a list of participating zoos and aquariums across the US by State.

You can find out more about the ASTC Travel Program for Science centers HERE .

Last but not least you can visit the Association of Children's Museums HERE.

Be sure to always call ahead of time before you drive too far out of your way as sometimes programs change but we have never run into a problem ourselves. Parking sometimes is not included as well as there may be extra costs for extended programs like IMAX theatres etc. Also Boonshoft allows two named parents on the membership and up to six children, however you should call ahead to the reciprocal places you want to attend as they may have extra fees for larger families.

Travelling to Florida for the winter with our Canadian exchange rate this year is more expensive then planned for with our quick decision and house sale, so we are always looking for ways to save a bit of money where we can so we never have to feel like we are missing out on anything. This program is truly amazing.

Want to see a couple of the places we visited on our maiden voyage using our reciprocal membership?

We visited the Tampa Lowry Zoo in Florida HERE,

Texas State Aquarium HERE (middle of post).

With more time on this trip we have quite a few places in Florida we will be using our membership at this winter.

Have you used this program before? What did you think?

On the road again!

It seems like forever ago we sold our last house and moved across the country...

In November we were approached by our real estate agents asking if we were thinking of selling as she said they had someone possibly interested...long story short; they put in an offer and we left our sticks and bricks home on Jan 21st for a life on the road for the next while.

So what will we do? Well we have put everything into storage that we didn't need with us in the camper and are heading towards Florida...bye bye snow.

A couple days before we left I realized the girls Nexus were valid but their passports expired just before Christmas so we had to put in a rush order for them. That left us picking up the passports on the day we had to exit our house so after picking up their passports we spent our first night on the road at a friends work near Toronto. It's cold here in Toronto and we needed a little extra electricity so as to not ware down our batteries or freeze. We are very appreciative of the help.

In the morning we got up and headed to Service Ontario to change our drivers license, health card addresses etc and then headed to Toledo Ohio to visit friends for our second night.

Everyone had a great game of indoor hockey.

The girls loved the park by their house. Thankfully it was sunny as it was chilly but they had way less snow in Toledo then we did in Wasaga Beach.

There ended up being a very bad storm where we were supposed to be driving the next day so we stayed a second night. We visited Camping World and BasPro and got a new Barbeque and camping chairs as ours needing replacing. The girls always love looking at all the animals at BasPro.

We went to Skyzone with our friends and the kids all had a blast.

 Sadly we had to leave...but we plan on stopping by on the way back to Ontario in May. Aayla and Jackson became great little friends. Aayla is however quite excited to be heading towards our Friends Dawn and Arin in Tallahassee and drew them many pictures on the white board while driving.