Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Good news at the Doctor

I had my appointment with Dr. Shojania,  my rheumatologist on Tuesday morning and I was worried that with all the stress I have been under that my blood test would not be good.  Well….it was very good.  My CRP (C reactive protein) that shows my inflammatory rate was very low….yahoo! Blood pressure (great) and all other blood tests were good.  Elevated CRP can indicate many things including heart disease, colds, infection etc. and in my case inflammation and (temporal arteritis or vasculitis).  So the good news is that it looks like I may get off the prednisone by August.  Read about CRP -


I have worked hard to get well.  I obeyed Dr. Shojania’s orders, took the prednisone religiously, lots of vitamins (calcium, omega3, and many other anti inflammatory vitamins) walked every day and oh yes, along with eating well I drank beer!  Mexico and it’s good fresh vegetables, sunshine and ocean helped too.  Plus a little good luck doesn’t hurt! 

None of this means that I am completely cured but things are looking good at this point. 

P.S. -  Dr. Shojania is an excellent Doctor and I would recommend him highly.  My condition was very serious at the beginning and he wasted no time getting all the appropriate test done and starting treatment. 

Monday, April 28, 2014

Dealing with sad family matters.

On Sunday it was time to head up to my sister Anne’s in West bank.  My niece Adrian (Anne’s daughter) picked me up and we met Anne for lunch and a little shopping.  I had to have a blood test in preparation for my visit with my rheumatologist Dr. Shojania so I decided to have a sleep over at Anne’s as both the Lab and Dr.Shojania are in West bank.  It gave us time to talk about our sister Elisa.  Sad times but there are good memories too.  Anne and I had dinner, played cribbage (she won two out of three games!) and talked.  Our parents have been gone for many years (Mom at 58 and Dad at 69) so we have been orphans for a long time.  We remain close sisters. 

On Monday morning Anne and I wrote Elisa’s obituary and it was hard.  When we got it drafted I called our youngest sister Joy in Vancouver to make sure she had some input.  She wanted to have it placed in the Saturday Sun and the Sunday Province and she also wanted a picture of Elisa when she was young in the ad and that was fine with us.


Elisa in her 20’s. IMG_0420









In her 50’s. 

When we were done with the obituary we were off to Ralph’s house (Elisa’s husband) to help him clean out her clothes.  Hard for all of us but we managed to sort through it all and everything but what we wanted to keep will go to the Kelowna Woman’s Shelter.

We did talk with Ralph about a small memorial service and that will probably take place in Vancouver at our sister Joy’s house.  Elisa has two daughters Carlie and Brianne as well as their father Gilbert and we hope that they will be able to attend.  Time will tell.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Sunny Saturday and a visit with David and Chiyoko.


David (Eric and Ian’s youngest brother) go to tychoart.com on Google to see David’s paintings.  David just had a hip replacement (congenital) and he and his wife Chiyoko decided to take a break from Vancouver and spend a few days in the Okanagan.  They knew we would be in Kelowna at Ian and Linda’s so it was a good opportunity for a visit.  We had seen them briefly when we were in Vancouver for Mom’s funeral but this was a better circumstance for a visit.  IMG_0414

Beer, chips and salsa and lots of reminiscing.  Mostly about all the stunts they pulled as kids and how much trouble they got into. 


At this point David had his shoes off as his wife Chiyoko said it was good for him!


A chat and a glass of wine in the living room while dinner was cooking.  Chiyoko was born and raised in Japan and came to Canada with David about 25 years ago to get married.  A lovely, warm, kind hearted funny woman.  We all just love her.  Even David!! 


An absolutely gorgeous spring afternoon.


Ian and Linda.


Chiyoko is even funnier when she has had a couple of glasses of wine.  She also has a new camera and loves to take pictures of everything….us, birds, insects….you name it!


A lovely afternoon with family and then a good dinner.  Food for the stomach and the soul!

Friday, April 25, 2014

We made it to Kelowna

We left Soap Lake, Washington this morning and were on the road around 8:30 am.  A bit cloudy but no rain so all was well.  We really love the area and are always amazed at the landscape.


Heading out of Soap Lake.


When we’re sitting in the RV park in Soap Lake we always speculate about where the RV’s are going when they are heading north.  Lots of them are parking at the edge the lakes to fish.


Pretty area.


Overlooking Dry Falls.


We will head West on 2 and then North on 17.



Pretty straight on 17….and quiet as well.



What the heck are those cows eating?  Well…they’re not skinny so they must be doing okay.


Getting ready to head over the Chief Joseph Dam.


We have never seen water coming over the dam. 


Lots of water!


Getting far enough north in Washington to see fruit trees.  Who is pruning and spraying them…Mexicans of course.  


Junction from 17 to 97 North.  


We will follow 97N  all the way home to Terrace.


When we stopped for fuel this was the ironwork decoration in front of the station. 


Coming into Tonasket.


Canada 22 miles. IMG_0391

Oroville, Washington and then we were at the border. 

The nice young lady at the border asked about cigarettes (none), alcohol (we had the allowable amount of beer) guns (none) and did we have any repairs to the truck or trailer.  Eric explained the tire blow-out and replacement of tires and she could see the damaged tire in the back of the truck.  That was it….have a nice day!  Wow…that was a pleasant experience.  A welcome change. 


Grape vines in Canada.



Oliver, B.C.


Our lunch stop just north of Vaseaux Lake.  A bit noisy but okay. 


Arrow leaf balsamroot growing everywhere at this time of year.   http://www.kelowna.ca/CM/page128.aspx  Kelowna’s official floral emblem. 


Okanagan Lake.


Coming down through “West bank”  now known as West Kelowna.  Every six months when we pass through there is more, and more, and more commercial and retail space going up.  Actually….pretty ugly!


Over Okanagan lake on the new bridge.  Three lanes going out of Kelowna and two lanes coming in. 


Here we are snug as a bug tucked into Ian and Linda’s driveway. 

Thursday, April 24, 2014

A quiet day in Soap Lake, Washington

And….boy did we need a quiet day!  The weather was a bit blustery this morning and Eric and I amused ourselves inside the rig.  Eric played with his “Smart TV” as we have a good internet connection here.  Very complicated and tedious and won’t be of any use at home because we have……”dial up!!!!” and can’t get anything else that is faster that is even close to a reasonable price.  So…we suffer with it!   

I got the previous day’s blogs updated and today’s post is just a few pictures and a hello!


Looking down the road beside the rig out at the lake….just beautiful here.


Tucked into the trees all by ourselves.  IMG_0346

Shore birds at the edge of the lake. IMG_0347

Looking back at the park.  IMG_0349

Baby geese already and lots of other birds too.  Must be lots to eat in the lake. IMG_0350

I just love the perspective the trees give to the picture.  IMG_0351

It is desert here and not so green when you get away from the lakeshore.

We have had happy hour, a shower and dinner and tomorrow we will head for Kelowna….a modest 220 miles so it should be an easy day. 

It will be good to get to Kelowna and get parked in Ian and Linda’s driveway and visit.  Eric’s brother David and wife Chiyoko will be in Kelowna on Saturday so we will be able to have a short visit with them.   I will also be happy to see my sister Anne who lives in Westbank.  Tough times for my family. 

Time to get back to the real world.   

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Made it to Soap, Lake Washington

It is 5pm and we are sitting in the Soap Lake RV Park at the north end of …..Soap Lake having a beer.  Made it in by 4pm and happy to be here.  Unfortunately the park is now in receivership and limping along but the hook ups are still operational, internet and some showers are working so here we are.  The caretaker wanted $30 a night and we were going to stay two nights but not at $30 and Eric  said it was $20 last year so he said “okay how about $20 a night.”  Good enough. 

It is a really pretty spot and we really like it here….hope they get it all sorted out. 

Our trip today was uneventful which made us very happy after the last two days of travel.

The weather started out sunny and cool just above freezing in Boise and warmed up just slightly as we travelled.  Over Cabbage Hill it rained and sleeted and then eased off as we got to Pendleton, Oregon.  We left the freeway at Stanfield, Oregon and took my planned route through the country roads to join up with the Columbia River Highway along the east side of the Columbia River which allows us to bypass the busy Pasco/Kennewick city area.  Much more restful.

> Mainmap

371 miles.

We stopped along the Columbia River for lunch and the rain had started.  Then the wind picked up but at least it wasn’t snowing.  It blew pretty good as we travelled but most of it was a tail wind so not too bad.  By the time we got to Moses Lake, Washington and stopped for fuel the rain had quit but the wind was still brisk. 

It is blowing and cool here in Soap Lake but the heaters are warming us up (electric and gas) and we are tucked in for the night. 

Life is good today!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

One day in Meridian and it’s raining!

We are tired today but glad to be here.  Today we are off to get another truck tire for the 5th wheel, look for RV parts for the damage that was done (will file an insurance claim but not sure what they’ll cover) look for Harley parts and pick up a few groceries. 

Eric did find another truck tire that will fit the RV which isn’t the same tread design but is the right size.  The guys at Les Schwaab didn’t want to talk about light truck tires on an RV…and said we should go to camping world.  Since we were going to Camping World for parts Eric had a look at the 5th wheels on the lot and “lo and behold” what did he see.  Light truck tires on four triple axle 5th wheel Toy haulers …maybe they are tired of having their trailer tires fail. 

Then…off to the Harley dealer for parts and a look see.  This is the biggest dealer we have ever seen with a huge inventory of bikes, parts and clothing.  I had a look at clothes but didn’t need anything and Eric got parts. 

Fuel, lunch at a Shari’s (very good) and then some groceries at ….you guessed it…WinCo! 

While dinner was cooking Eric decided to admire his new tires on the rig and noticed that remaining TowMax tire on the rig was separating too!  It is hard to spot unless the tire is in the right position.  Out with the tools and change the tire to the spare which is a new TowMax.    We now have one new TowMax that was our spare, two Carlyle and three light truck tires.  Hopefully we are okay for the rest of the trip. 

Researching all of this the Carlyle manufacturers say that you will get between 6 and 12,000 miles out of an ST or special trailer tire.  Just garbage.

So….dinner and bed.  What a ride!

Monday, April 21, 2014

Made it to Meridian

Hi all.  We made it into Meridian late today at 5:30 pm.  Long day!

Our travel day from Ely, Nevada to Meridian, Idaho did not start out very well.  We left the park at 7:45 am and about 1 mile down the highway Eric checked the tires and decided that another TowMax was separating so he was going to replace it with the truck spare.  Unfortunately after much wiggling and jiggling he could not get the truck spare down.  Something was jammed.  Much stress! 

Back to the tire shop in Ely for help.  Eric went in to see the guys in the shop and in the end decided to replace the TowMax tires with light truck tires and give up on the trailer tires. 



We need help.  Eric is inside discussing what to do.


Eric has done much research and is comfortable with his decision.  They only had three truck tires that would fit so three of the remaining four TowMax were replaced and the one that was left looked okay. 


IMG_0332 IMG_0333 IMG_0334 IMG_0335 IMG_0336

The tires are changed and we will be safe now.

IMG_0326 IMG_0327 IMG_0328 IMG_0329

While the tires were being changed I walked down the street and took a couple of pictures of the railroad buildings, the spring flowers and this old truck.

We will look for another truck tire in Meridian and we were on the road by 9:45 with 380 miles to go.  Giddy up! 


The angled street in McGill and this motor home rocked to the left and then….


straightened out.  Much more visible when you are actually there!


Ruby Mountains in the distance.


Long, lonesome highway.


Ruby Mountains up close.

The rest of the day was good, not too much wind, warm (78F) and we were into the Boise/Meridian Koa by 5:30pm which wasn’t too bad.  We even took our new route from Twin Falls along highway 30 which is a beautiful drive.  I was too tired by this time to continue with my picture taking.  Next year. 

It is expensive at the park in Meridian (almost $40 per night) but it is well run, clean, lovely and a preferred stop for us.  It is very central and has all the services nearby that we need.  Favorite grocery store (Wino) huge Harley shop, tire shops, RV services etc. etc. 

Beer, supper and bed.