Runs with Scissors… and RV Farewells
Hello, everyone. I hope you all enjoyed having that extra day in February. Too bad it was a Monday: an extra weekend day would have been better. I spent my extra day creating with the new So Special release. So Special is a huge release with an incredible variety of images and dies and I could use a few more leap days to play with them all.
I am in love with the Medallion die! Once I started cutting medallions, I could not stop. I will share two of my medallion cards today so you can see how versatile this die is. First up is khaki and black with a touch of lavender. Certainly this is a very formal or masculine look. Placing the medallion on an angle was a happy accident.
See what I mean about versatile? By putting the medallion vertically on the card base and adding the bow from the Bow Set, this card looks like a birthday package wrapped and ready to go. The intricate dies from Penny Black cut beautifully and it is such fun poking out all the little bits and pieces. Some machines or slightly warped cutting plates may necessitate a shim, but the end results are perfect.
I stamped the image using the Freshly Cut cling stamp and Versafine Onyx Black ink. To color the image, I used Inktense watercolor pencils as well as Zig Clear Color Real Brush Pens. I was inspired by Jill Foster’s use of the Geometric Borders in combination with floral images and love the look.
Chapter 5: Winding Roads and Farewell
As full time RV’ers we were members of “Escapees”, an organization for full timers based in Texas whose mail service provided us with a mailing address. They held our mail until we notified them where we would be on a certain date and they would forward our mail to that location. We received mail about once every ten days.
A benefit of membership was the annual “Escapade”, an RV rally held annually in rotating states. That year the rally was held in beautiful West Virginia, a state with gorgeous winding mountainous roads that John Denver was moved to write about.
We amazed ourselves how quickly we were now able to set up our RV from backing it onto the site, to setting up the satellite dish, putting out the sides and opening the awning. Not everyone at the rally had perfected the art of backing into a site, however.
Note: It is common RV Park entertainment to sit in one’s lawn chair and observe new arrivals backing into their site. Usually the husband is doing the backing while the wife is standing behind the rig, where he can see her in his side mirrors. She uses hand signals to tell husband which direction the trailer needs to go in order to back onto the site. Husband has to turn steering wheel in the opposite direction; if the trailer needs to move right, steering wheel must be turned left. Remember, dear reader, this couple has finally finished a day’s driving that has involved husband driving, wife navigating. Most likely at least once when wife has given husband directions to “exit here” or “turn there” he has foolishly said “Are you sure?” Tension is running high.
So, now this tired wife is doing her best to remember that “left is right and right is left”. It does not always go well. The couple knows they are being watched, which makes things worse. Sometimes a kindly neighbor man will take over the signaling duties from the tired wife and once again, a marriage is saved.
We spent the week attending classes and socializing. We heard stories of some incredible RV journeys. “It seems you had trouble with liquids” was the reply from a newby RV’er after hearing the stories of our first weeks on the road.
We had now been on the road for six weeks. We had covered 17 states and three Canadian provinces. It was time for Mr. RWS and I to head back to Wisconsin and heed the advice of the security man at the first RV park to “trade in that trailer and buy the best rig you can afford. It will make Mama happy and then everyone will be happy.”
The dealer who sold us our trailer agreed to accept it in trade. We selected a brand new 35 ft. model which included Corian countertops, leather recliners and a couch, and a wall unit to hold the TV. Not a single bit of red, white and blue. Welcome home, Jung’s!
On the left, the new RV. On the right, the original “open concept” living space. Note the pitiful Christmas decorations, including the tiny Christmas tree in the upper left corner.
It wasn’t too long before we began having trouble with cabinet hinges coming off, trim popping, and worst of all, the closet pole collapsing. Why was everything coming loose? After we journeyed to Indiana for the needed repairs, we learned the manufacturer had used the wrong nails. All the “too short” nails were replaced with longer ones.
Many miles later after two flat tires, we learned we had defective aluminum wheels that had to be replaced with steel rims. This could be done by mail. When I explained to the supplier I had no way to package the heavy rims, he agreed to send the new rims first and I could use their packaging to return the defective ones. Finally, and at last, our new rig was problem free and we were parked in Arizona for the winter.
A couple of anecdotes from our travels:
Once we were parked next to an RV that had some beautiful stained glass windows. My husband struck up a conversation with the man who had made them and asked why he chose stained glass for a hobby. The man replied that his criteria was to have a hobby as expensive as his wife’s. The wife’s hobby: rubber stamping.
One day during our travels Mr. RWS and I were shopping in yet another strange grocery store and I witnessed two lady friends happily run into each other, immediately exchanging the latest news in their lives. I burst into tears and poor Mr. RWS asked me what was wrong. “I will never run into anyone I know in a grocery store”, I blubbered.
Along the way we met a woman who traveled with the two full-sized mirambas that she loved to play. She said you find room for whatever is important to you. I couldn’t help but remember the two bowling balls that R and S had decided to travel with.
Of course, I had claimed the space under the lift up bed for my stamping supplies.
Our full time RV’ing ended when we bought a small home in Casa Grande, Arizona where we wintered, and parked the trailer in an RV park in Wisconsin where we spent summers. By now five years had passed.
I confess I had agreed to early retirement and full time RV’ing because I believed Mr. RWS and I each had a life expectancy of about five years. We had survived some serious health issues and RV’ing, I thought, was as good a way as any to spend those final years.
Since we outlived that five year plan, it was now time to plan for the next five. We had made several stops to visit my sister who lives in Huntsville, Alabama and Mr. RWS realized it was as good a place as any to settle: mild winters and retiree friendly taxes.
And here we are, ten years later, in my brick house with no wheels. We have managed to once again accumulate enough stuff to fill the house, a garage and an attic. I am thrilled to have daily mail delivery and I treasure the times I run into a friend in the grocery store.
The Sweet Smiles transparent set includes this little guy sitting in his apple tree. This is simple Copic coloring and some fussy cutting. I snipped apart the Happy Birthday sentiment from the Your Day die. This is a die that can be used three different ways.
How much fun is this image from the Paris Love transparent set? It’s simple black and white with a few gems added. My favorite part of the image has to be the Eiffel Tower earrings: OMG! I don’t text very much but I know that OMG is just right for this Parisian lovely.
Coloring this amazing umbrella reminded me of the adult coloring books that are so popular right now. How relaxing to randomly pick up a marker and color. When it was time to color the bird, I did try to include colors I had used in the umbrella. The images are from the cling set Feel Well. The bright colors and fun images would bring a smile to any patient.
Cooper and I have a friend named Sally who sent us presents for Valentine’s Day. He loves his new “blankie” and sends a big “Thank You” to Sally!
It’s time to end the RV stories. I have left out the scenic wonders: the lakes, the trees, the water falls, the desert, the big cities, the historic sites, and the diversity of our country’s landscapes. There were serendipitous discoveries that made a long day’s travel worth every minute. I have also left out the part where I broke down sobbing as we left our newly sold RV for the last time. It had truly become my home.
Thank you for letting me wander down memory lane. I have so enjoyed every comment. Please share your lovely Penny Black creations in the Penny Circle Flickr Gallery.
Thank you so very much, Mrs. Runs with Scissors, for inspiring us yet again with your stamping and writing talents! It’s always a treat to have you here. And before we go, we have even more Saturday fun… here are the winners of our recent “So Special” giveaway.
Lucky ladies, to claim your prize, please email us your shipping information and product selections from our online store (totaling $25 retail value) at firstname.lastname@example.org. Include “So Special Giveaway Winner” in the subject line.
That’s not all! Sarah Caudill you are the winner of Vicky’s YouTube Giveaway. You’ve also won a $25 shopping spree to our online store. Please email us your selections and shipping information at email@example.com. Include “Vicky YouTube Giveaway Winner” in the subject line.
Note: Due to product availability, please claim your prizes within two weeks of this announcement.
Shop for today’s featured Penny Black supplies:
- Stamps: 40-443 Freshly Cut, 30-349 Sweet Smiles, 30-332 Paris Love, 40-433 Feel Well
- Dies: 51-211 Medallion, 51-212 Bow Set, 51-132 Flights of Fancy, 51-196 Geometric Borders, 51-202 Your Day, 51-215 OMG
- Designer Paper: 80-012 Wintertime