Friday, July 30, 2010

Meals and Recipes

We have been making a concerted effort to NOT eat out as much this summer.  And I really want to use up all the items in the pantry this summer. Put those  reasons together and we have been coming up with some new and interesting meals. 


I made up a couple of those Louisiana brand Creole and Cajun mixes.  Boy did they come out good.  The sauces are so tasty. I’ll make sure to buy more of those mixes when we get down to Louisiana this winter.









Then I took a shortcut in making my normal homemade clam chowder recipe by just doctoring up a can of Trader Joe’s clam chowder with more onion, celery, potatoes and extra clams. That came out grand!!!


I even went through my recipe box and cleaned out those recipe cards I knew I never would make and pulled out some recipes I remember eating at friends and got the recipes to and decided to make them up. One was for a chili relleno bake. It was so easy to make and tasted very good. It comes out like a quiche. Jim had three helpings. Here’s the recipe:

Chili Relleno Bake

1 pd ground beef or half sausage
1 c onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 x 4 oz can whole green chilies
2 c sharp cheese, shredded
4 eggs
1/4 c flour
1 1/2 c milk
Hot sauce to taste

Sauté beef, onion and garlic until done. Drain fat. Line 13 x 9 pan with half the chilies. Top with 1 1/2 cups cheese. Add the meat mixture and top with remaining chilies; set aside. Beat together eggs and flour until smooth; add milk and hot sauce.  Blend well.  Pour the egg mixture over casserole.  Bake uncovered at 350 for 40 minutes until knife inserted of center comes out clean. Sprinkle remaining 1/2 cup cheese on top. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Recently we saw an episode of “Guy’s Big Bite” which featured a Mac and Cheese recipe from Wilson’s Holy Smoked BBQ in Fairfield, Connecticut.  It had eggs in it and looked interesting, so last night I made it as a side dish to go along with a pork tenderloin I roasted. Oh, my goodness!!!!!!!!!!!!  No more will I be making my recipe for homemade Mac and Cheese, that I made with a white sauce.  This restaurant recipe was wonderful and so easy to make.  So here is that recipe also.  Please try it and let me know what you think.

Mac and Cheese

2 c uncooked macaroni
2 eggs, beaten
1 can evaporated milk
1/2 c butter melted
2 c shredded cheese

Cook macs just till al dente, drain and rinse in cold water.  Mix eggs, evap milk, melted butter and salt and pepper with 1 1/2 cups cheese. Place in greased 8x8 pan.  Put rest of cheese on top and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

Well, that’s the end of the Chapman cooking class (ha-ha) for today.  Come back tomorrow and see what’s next!

Remember, you are loved.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Unwanted visitor at Tucker Ponds

And this one was a “skip” – didn’t pay for staying!!! Yes, there were “bear resistant” bars on the dumpster.

Lifting the bar
The mess he left
A professional photographer took the following photos
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The professional photographer saw the bear on Highway 160 and saw it cross the road and head towards an inroad, so he followed it and came to the campground.  He proceeded to take the lower photos and gave a cd to the camphost who game it to me to copy.

Jim went to clean the nearby picnic area yesterday and checked the campground. Seems the bear/bears moved through the campground and went down to the ponds and got into the garbage cans down there by the restrooms.  That’s not good for the fishermen!

Remember, you are loved.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Pagosa Springs

Went by myself to Pagosa Springs to see the arts and crafts festival they were having. On the way I took some photos

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I needed to find Kern and Anne Stafford’s magnetic jewelry booth to buy a couple more items as Christmas presents.  Here she sees me coming…

CIMG4656 Remember I told you about Anne’s hesitation to be a fulltime RVer? Well, when I arrive she proudly told me she decided to go for it. They bought a Honda 2000 generator and plan on selling their park model in North Carolina and stay on the road as fulltimers!!! They even joined the Boomers BOF. 

Here is a photo of some of the items Anne and Kern make:

CIMG4657 And here is the happy couple:

CIMG4659This was a good festival with some very novel items being offered. 

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I had a good time, but it started getting hot around noon, so I headed for the mountain top to stay cool.

Remember you are loved!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Friends, friends, everywhere…

Last week my friend Lory Sanchez called me last week and wanted to come up to South Fork and take me out to lunch for my birthday.  We set up a date for yesterday, Wednesday.

Ten minutes later my friend Lesle called and said she and Bill would like to come over Wednesday from Trinidad to see us. They would be busy working at a gallery the next couple of weeks and then they will be driving to Coffeyville, Kansas, to again work for  Sure, come on over I said…figured they would arrive after Lory left after lunch.

So yesterday I go into town to wait and meet Lory and Lesle calls and said they were 15 minutes away; OK let’s all go to lunch together.  I called Jim and told him to join us.

Phone rings again and it is our friends Sandy and Charlie who are managers for San Luis Lake State Park outside Alamosa.  “Hay Bobbie, we are coming up to visit you and we’ll be in South Fork in 20 minutes, OK?”  Sure, the more the merrier; come on and meet us all for lunch.

So my quiet lunch date with Lory turned out to be a lunch with a gang of my friends.  What an wonderful way to celebrate my birthday!!!!!!!

100_6596 Remember, you are loved.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Lobo Lookout

What follows are photographs of Lobo Lookout, which is about 11,700 feet high.  It is a peak on top of Wolf Creek Pass between Pagosa Springs and South Fork in Colorado.

It has an old restroom about 8 x 4’ which we get to clean once a week.  It’s about a 20 mile drive from our campground.  The other day we went up there to clean and I took advantage of the perfectly crystal-clear skies to take some photos.  You could really see “forever”.

Sign at entrance
The road going up
CIMG4598Yup, what a sight! CIMG4600 Looking down on Wolf Creek Ski Lodge
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This Continental Divide Trail goes from Mexico to Canada, and is a favorite trail for serious hikers. 

Remember, you are loved.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Connie and Art/Outdoor HOP


We received an email from Connie telling us they “found us” while looking up southern Colorado on the Escapees discussion forum. They are members of Escapees RV Club and were at an RV park in Hooper, Colorado, and had visited Great Sand Dunes National Park and were coming up to South Fork.So last Friday Connie and Art drove into our campground, saw Jim and asked “are you the Chapman's?”


We then enjoyed a couple of hours of learning about each other and who we knew in common.  Come to find out we both know Laurie and Odel, Jan and Chuck Moore and Joyce and Bill Schmidt.  It still amazes me how often we meet one of the 60,000 active Escapee RV Club members and end up knowing so many members in common.


We met up again with Connie and Art when we all attended the happy hour at Alpine Trails RV Park when we joined the Escapees Outdoor HOP folks who were staying there.  Most of the HOP attendees were still out on the trail, but we did enjoy the folks that were there.

So, another Escapee SKP couple has come to visit us here.  We are not lacking for SKP hugs.

Remember, you are loved.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Meeting people on the road

Our friend, Laurie Brown, writes a wonderful blog about her travels with her husband, Odel, called Semi-True Tales of our Life on the Road.  Her photographs are magnificent!

This morning Laurie talked about being lonely on the road as fulltime RVers. This post is very, very good and I encourage all of my readers to check it out.  Here is the link:

Remember, you are loved.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Another Escapee “SKP” camper


We had another Escapee RV Club member come into our campground to camp.  This is Kern and Anne Stafford from Ashville, North Carolina.  They sell healing magnetic jewelry at arts and crafts shows, and there’s one in Pagosa Springs next weekend.


Here are some of the jewelry pieces Anne makes herself. On the left is an anklet I got for one of our daughters who suffers from a lot of sprained ankles; to the right is a bracelet for the other daughter who gets carpal tunnel; and the middle double stranded bracelet is for me and my arthritis.  Yes, I have found much relief wearing this bracelet. 



Here is also a necklace I bought for my girlfriend, Salai, for her birthday this week. It’s done in purple and pink stones, with a pink bear pendant.




Anne was full of questions once she heard we were fulltimers.  Kern is all for become fulltime RVers, but Anne had concerns about leaving friends and family and how you met people on the road.  So we had a long “happy hour” one night and hopefully alleviated some of her worries.  Kern made a lot of notes in a spiral notebook, including becoming “Boomers”, a sub-group of the Escapees RV Club, that we belong to and that has become a big part of our social networking on the road.

I’m going to go to the craft show this weekend with a couple of ladies from the campground.  Should be a lot of fun!!

Remember, you are loved.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Big Meadows Campground

Just found out Big Meadows will not be opened next year....UGH!!!! Suppose to be opened summer of 2012....haven't heard the reason for the delay yet. So we'll be back here in Park Creek next year. We are enjoying the slower pace of a small campground so we don't really mind having to come back here again next year.

So for all our repeat campers in Big Meadows who read our blog daily….sorry about that….please come to one of our other campgrounds.  We CAN manage any size rig.  There was a 45 foot Class A in Highway Springs the other night; saw a converted bus in Lower Beaver and we have three pull-throughs in Park Creek that can accommodate 45 footers.  So come on down and experience a new camping experience. 

In fact, two of our repeat campers from Oklahoma City told us the other night that even if Big Meadows IS opened next year they are seriously thinking of coming back to Park Creek, as it is right on the creek  and the sites are very large and beautiful.


Right now I’m in Del Norte getting an oil change on the Jeep at Jim’s cousin’s shop, Ken’s Tire and Auto Service.  Jim will be going on the Chapman Annual 4-Wheel Trip to Ouray, Colorado, the end of the month.  I wanted to make sure the Jeep was in tip-top shape for him…..especially the brakes!!!  Jim and his brothers go on some hairy passes….I don’t go as it is waaaaaaay to scary for me and not the least bit fun for me.  So he will go enjoy himself with his brothers, and I’ll get my girlfriend Salai to come up and help me clean the 12 bathrooms Jim normally does daily.  Salai and I are knitting nuts, so we enjoy having a couple of days together watching “chick flicks” and knitting together.

Remember, you are loved.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Funny Stories…

So I go to Alamosa yesterday to take our water samples from campground wells to the lab for the monthly testing.

Next I shop for groceries at Safeway and then go have lunch with my friend Salai (Sa-lay-a) at the San Luis Valley Brewing Company where we shared a 1/2 pound hamburger, brew fries and each had a glass of their homemade root beer.  We caught up with each other’s news and then I was off to get toilet paper for the campgrounds at Valley Meat….yes, I know that sounds funny to be going to a meat company to get your toilet paper, but they sell janitorial supplies as well.

As I had called ahead and ordered what I wanted I figure it would be fast and simple…..didn’t work out that way.  I went in to claim my order, signed off on the receipt and as I was walking to the company truck noticed that they had given me the wrong brand of toilet paper.  So I told the stockman to take it back and that I wanted the other brand.  I walked back inside and the lady redid the order and I signed off on another receipt…got in the truck and took off. 

I stopped at Evergreen Nursing Home to see my friend Naomi and give her some cherries I brought for her.  Took her outside to sit in the sun for a few minutes and then said my goodbyes.  As I walked to the truck I noticed the tailgate of the truck was down….horrors the two cases of toilet paper weren’t there!!!!

I called Jim and we decided I best call the police and report it, which I did.  I also called our company’s headquarters to report the “theft”. Was told to make out an Incident Report and note the police report number. While I waited for the police to show up I called Valley Meat to order more toilet paper.  I said “you’ll never guess what just happened to me.  Someone stole those 2 cases of toilet paper I just bought from you.”  Next I heard, “No, no there wasn’t any theft.  Our stockman didn’t have enough time to remove the wrong brand and put in the other brand before you pulled away.  We didn’t have your phone number to call and tell you.  We have the two cases of toilet paper right here waiting for you.”

Oh, goodness sakes alive.  I hadn’t even checked to make sure the toilet paper was in the back of the truck before pulling away.  OK, so now the police have arrived and I have to explain my stupidity; next I call Jim back and explain…..but then I had to call the company headquarters and admit my mistake…UGH!!!!!!  Happily we all had a big laugh at my expense.


Next story------

While visiting Naomi she said “Oh, you want to hear about the excitement I had last week?” Now, Naomi is 94 years old, so what kind of “excitement” can you have in a nursing home?  Oh, just wait and keep reading……

Seems Naomi woke up in the middle of the night one day last week for no apparent reason.  She looked over and saw a naked man sitting in her chair by the bed.  He was just sitting there looking lost. Naomi rang the nurse’s bell and an attendant came and took care of the situation, taking the man away.  Naomi wasn’t hurt in any way, just a bit upset.

So the next day the story made the rounds of the facility and one of the residents asked Naomi “what did the man look like?” Naomi smirked, yes, smirked in retelling me the story, she said “I don’t know, I wasn’t looking at his face!!!”

Go ahead and enjoy your laughter – I sure laughed my head off. 

Remember, you are loved.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Fourth of July 2010

We had a grand and busy time this 4th of July weekend. Foremost, the campground has been full since Friday, so that’s good. Then we had our camphosts over for a steak dinner to show them our appreciation for all their hard work during the 4th of July weekend.








Look at those smiling faces!!!

Then an hour after our camphosts left we hosted a wiener roast for all the campers in our campground.  They all brought side dishes like watermelon, cantaloupe, bean salad, potato salad and several types of chips.  The little guys got a kick out of cooking hot dogs over a camp fire and the seniors in the group enjoyed teaching them how to do it.

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The folks stayed for three hours introducing themselves, getting acquainted and sharing tales of their travels.

CIMG4595 It was a good but exhausting day.  If we have to come back to Park Creek next year we will definitely do this again as everyone said how much fun it was to meet the other campers.

Remember, you are loved