Archive for the 'fulltiming' Category

Dutch Oven

July 21st, 2011

When we down size, probably next year, I would like to have a dutch oven (camp oven). We will probably be cooking outside a lot more than we do now, and I think that one will come in handy. I have never used one before, but I have a definite idea of what I want in one. First, it must have legs so that it can balance under it’s own measure. Next, it should be stainless steel. I would consider a clay pot, but I don’t think they make them nor do I think they will handle the heat for years to come. A recessed lid is important. I want to be able to stack coals on it with ease as I will use it for baking.. a lot! Also, I should be able to lift the lid off with a hook from a distance. Speaking of handles, the side handles must have a metal wire running between them. That wire needs to be able to support the weight a full pot while hovering over a fire for an extended period of time. The side handles should also be large enough that you can use them to carry the pot. I think that’s it. Lol.

Has anyone seen such a beast? I thought I ran across one a couple years back, but I haven’t been unable to locate another.

Our Rainbow Gathering

July 8th, 2011

July 4th Rainbow on Arches Trail

A July 4th Rainbow and Hoodoos

Another Independence Day has passed, and we still haven’t made it to a Rainbow Gathering. This year, the rainbow came to us. While hiking Arches Trail in the Dixie National Forest of Utah, this wonder appeared in the distance.

I hope everyone had a great holiday. Happy belated birthday, United States of America.

 

 

 

 

But She’s Not Broken

May 22nd, 2011

This is serious business

She knows something's up

I’m not looking forward to altering my dog. Unfortunately, spay day is fast approaching. Sigh.

*the spay link is graphic… pictures of innards.

I know it’s against the grain and might ruffle a few feathers, but in general, I am not for “fixing” dogs. At least not mine.

I have always felt that it is our responsibility, as her owners, to make sure that she doesn’t get a chance to become “with puppies”. I’m not saying it’s not the boy dog’s owners responsibility too, because it totally is, but first and foremost, it’s ours. And really, it’s pretty darn easy to prevent. Dogs come into season on a (mostly) regular schedule. In general, they start bleeding least a week before they will accept a male. At that moment, you slap on the diapers and put the pup in 24/7 lock down for the next month. Completely doable. Been there, done that. Heck, Rain’s first estrus happened while we were at the slabs, a place notorious for roaming males and unplanned pregnancies.

On the verge of being obsessed

Not interested in growing up

We started discussing the pro and cons almost immediately after she came into our lives. We researched and talked about the increased risk of cancer (osteosarcoma, hemangiosarcoma, etc.), incontinence, weight gain, possible mood changes, and surgery complications if we do modify her. The pros are mostly obvious. It would mean less stress for us, a lower chance of breast cancer, no chance of her dying from pyometra (an infection of the uterus), and of course a 0% chance of an unwanted litter.

In addition, Rain requires more run around outside time than my previous dogs who were quite happy chilling and snoozing until it was time to go hunting. It feels cruel keeping her on lock down for the length of time needed to guarantee 100% that there wont be any pups. This reason has more weight than almost all of the others. What good is a long life if she has to spend 1/6 of it on restriction?

We had decided, when she was about two months old, to wait until she had had her first reproductive cycle and was a year old to spay her. It seemed to be the best way to negate the negative effects. But, now that time is here, and I am not happy about it.

We Are Still Floridians

May 20th, 2011

Highlands Hammock, FL

Highlands Hammock State Park

I posted the following in response to the comments I received on My You’ve Got Mail post. I decided to make a post out of it, in addition to the comment, as it will most likely get lost otherwise.

Wow! Seems like, if you are going to get a South Dakota address, MyDakotaAddress is the way to go. Not a negative review in the bunch. Thanks to everyone for your feedback.

After running all of the numbers, we have decided to remain Florida residents. For us, it all boils down to the points noted below. We calculated the following figures using American Home Base as our Florida address and MyDakotaAddress as the South Dakota address.

  • It turns out that our $1000ish a year auto/camper (Florida) insurance would only be reduced by about $80 a year in SD. Not the 1/2 price reduction everyone else experienced

  • Our registration would go down significantly. It is currently $185/yr in Florida. It would be $75/year in South Dakota.

  • We would have to find a new health insurance provider. Humana doesn’t do business in Madison, SD. None of the comparable plans that with providers that do service in that area were any cheaper than our current ones.

  • Our mail service, while HIGHLY recommended, would cost us $36 more per year.

  • We would have to travel to Madision, SD sometime within the next year.

So as of right now, the $230 savings are not worth the hassle nor the 1400 mile trip from our current location to Madison. If/when we do pass through South Dakota, we will most likely make the move.

Thanks again to everyone for your input. I am sure this post will be helpful to others in the future as they contemplate making the same choices.

You’ve Got Mail

April 26th, 2011


An unusual mailbox in Miami, FL
I have always been a resident of Florida. I had always planned to be. That is, until I realized how much I could really be saving as a resident of South Dakota. Turns out, my car/house insurance could be cut in half. Neither Florida nor SD have state income tax or yearly vehicle inspections so that’s a wash, but it would cost half as much to register my truck each year in SD. Unfortunately, all the stuff we heard about health insurance being cheaper doesn’t seem to hold true. The prices were comparable to our current plans in Florida (which btw have gone up 50% in the last three year w/o any claims.).

We have been pretty happy with our current mail forwarding service. They are only $15/mo for up to five mailings a month whether they are scheduled or on demand. They discard all junk mail and only send us items that are first class or higher. We can also call and see what mail they have for us at any time of day. We are bit leery of switching to another. As far as I know, there are seven mail forwarding services to chose from. So, now we get to the true point of this post: Are any of our readers residents of South Dakota? Do any of you have experiences or opinions on the mail forwarding/residency services in South Dakota.

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