A Favorite Getaway

Payne’s Prairie Preserve State Park in Florida is about an hour and a half’s drive from our home. It’s a favorite camping getaway because of its quiet, natural setting. Fall weather gave us the perfect excuse to camp there this week.

We introduced our friend and new RV owner, Mike, to the park. He camped across from us and joined us for meals in the shelter of our Clam screen enclosure. (There were mosquitoes) In my opinion, we scored two of the best sites in the campground, not that any were bad.

The preserve is a 21,000 acre savanna that once marked the northern edge of the Everglades, back in the day before air-conditioning and development. It is also a National Natural Landmark. Camping there gives us a taste of long-ago Florida. Wildlife abounds, and the nearby historic town of Micanopy charms.

Besides eating, we enjoyed hiking a couple of trails, visiting the nearby lake, and the visitors center and observation deck. Because we travel with our Shihtzu, I stayed behind on the trails that prohibited dogs. Unfortunately, I missed seeing the wild horses and bison Butch and Mike spotted on their trek. But I saw many deer.

Although the campground preserves as much of the natural setting as possible, it offers clean, modern bathrooms, laundry facilities, dumpster plus recycling bins, water and electric hookups, and a waste disposal station for emptying RV holding tanks. The boat ramp for non motorized boats, children’s playground, and picnic areas are connected to the campground via an ADA-compliant paved path.

If you’d like a taste of Old Florida in the days when Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings wrote The Yearling (her home is nearby and offers tours) and when much of Florida was unspoiled swampland, camp at Payne’s Prairie Preserve State Park. Reservations can be made through ReserveAmerica.com.

Mixing it Up

The Dixie Pixie has limited space for cooking, yet preparing our meals is one of my favorite reasons for traveling in an RV. Especially during the COVID19 restrictions, it’s safer to cook your own food and keep your distance from others in crowded restaurants.

No wonder there’s been a surge in RV sales. Camping is the best way to travel while observing social distancing. But cooking in the tiny Dixie Pixie can be challenging, and I’ve had to reassess what tools I need.

In an earlier post, I mentioned missing my Vitamix and our daily smoothies. Now I have a solution! Vitamix offers an immersion blender. The wand-style blender takes up about as much room as a curling wand, an easy fit in my galley drawer.

With the Vitamix immersion blender, I can create a smoothie in a cup or large-mouth jar, anything at least 3” in diameter. I can thicken soups or blend sauces right in the cooking pot.

Vitamix blenders are not a camping necessity. I’ve managed thickening soups using a potato masher and smoothing gravy with a whisk. But if I can have the convenience of a powerful blender without sacrificing space, I’ll take it. I call it my Dixie Pixie Mixie. 😉

For information about the Vitamix Immersion Blender, visit their website at Vitamix.com.

https://www.vitamix.com/us/en_us/shop/immersion-blender

More Dixie Pixie Decorating

We’ve been grounded since early March, which has given us a chance to make a few changes to our Dixie Pixie. We removed the blinds from the side windows and had dark window tinting applied. We didn’t change the back window, at least not yet.

The window mural provides privacy while allowing light inside.
For now, we’re keeping the back window blinds.

Next, we settled on a patriotic cotton print for curtains and pillowcases. I sewed them and Butch installed the hardware for the curtains.

It’s a work-in-progress as I bought sufficient fabric for throw pillows, too. We may decide to recover the cushions someday, ya never can tell. Nova approves. She didn’t like the blinds and bent them trying to look outside.

Our Dixie Pixie is ready for a camp out and so are we. We’re meeting family for a week of fun. What better way to visit at a safe distance than camping?

Tie backs for travel.

Camp Driveway, anyone?

The global Coronavirus quarantine got you down? Is cabin fever consuming you? Then consider this (I can’t take credit for the idea. It came from a Facebook group of fiberglass trailer enthusiasts): #Campdriveway.

Here’s the idea: Let’s have a huge, cross-country, cross-continent Pod Rally. We can name it CAMP DRIVEWAY.
Anyone who has their camper at home, let’s do a sleep-in on Saturday, March 28. We would have the potential of being the biggest rally ever! (For those who don’t have their camper at home, join us anyway!)

It will be so much fun to post pictures of you and your families on social media enjoying this nationwide, continent wide event.


Are you in? See you all next Saturday, March 28! #CAMPDRIVEWAY

#CampDriveway

Mississippi: A Sure Bet for Fun and Food

We recently joined our friends at the Boomtown Casino RV Park in D’Iberville, Mississippi (near Biloxi) for a midweek getaway.

Butch, Judy, and Dave enjoying the mild Gulf Coast weather.

Dixie Pixie had full hookups at the RV Park. We enjoyed walking to nearby casinos and along the bay, getting plenty of fresh air and exercise for us and Nova. The Scarlet Pearl, where we ate our Valentine’s Day dinner, and Pepe’s Bosque Mexican restaurant, where we celebrated Butch’s birthday, were just a short drive away.

Happy birthday, Butch.
An authentic King Cake served as Butch’s birthday cake.

The Gulf Coast was celebrating Mardi Gras, and Casinos were decorated accordingly. While typically associated with New Orleans, Mardi Gras originated in Mobile, Alabama, and is still observed all along the Gulf Coast.

Butch and I by the Mardi Gras tree in the Palace.

We returned home well rested and well fed!

Land of Enchantment

We’re home after a two week adventure. We headed west from our north Florida home without an itinerary and just wandered. What fun! We revisited old favorites, like Joseph’s in Santa Rosa, but mostly picked out destinations new to us.

First new stop was Hot Springs, Arkansas. We hadn’t spent time in Arkansas, just traveled through, and decided it deserved some love. Beautiful state. Check out our photos page.

After a stop in Oklahoma and the Texas Panhandle, we spent about a week in New Mexico, truly deserving of its nickname Land of Enchantment.

Thank y’all for following us on our latest adventure. I hope you enjoy the photos in the Pages section. Don’t miss our last page from our “abduction” in Roswell!