A writer's observations about creative life on the road.

Waldport, Oregon

Activities: Visit OSU Hatfield Marine Science Center.  Visit Oregon Coast Aquarium, beautiful coast and Yaquina Bay Lighthouse. Kayak Beaver Creek Wetland Area.

Just south of South Beach State Park, where you can dump/fill RVs for free.  Water is first!  The sign for clean water is just at the RV dump, turn in.  You can’t see the spigot but it is right there, trust me.  After you get your fresh water, you can continue on to dump your tray and black tanks.

We stayed at the McKinley’s RV Park East of Hwy 34.  This is not free camping.  It cost $97.20 for a week of cry camping, the only benefit really being a good water view, wifi, and garbage.  We’d been told they had showers so I didn’t sneak into the state park for a shower on the way down.  Sometimes one just needs a long, hot shower, ya know?  Well, turns out McKinley’s has a pay shower where you insert quarters, starting out with 4 quarters for the first 4 minutes.  Down right insulting.  So I took a leisurely shower in my own rig.  We were surprised the trash cans weren’t coin operated.  GPS: N44.431265, W124.053499

Tillamook, Oregon

Dry camping next to the airport off Highway 101.  Going South on Hwy 101 go through Tillamook and past the blinking yellow light at the intersection to the Air Museum.  The next left will be to the airport and RV park.  This is not free camping but it is only $10 a night which is very good for the Pacific Northwest.  Lots of Grass, raised, level and graveled spaces for RVs and a tent area as well.  Good site for family reunions.  Managed by the Port Authority and more specifically by Warren.  If you want to book a group, he will probably let you camp there for $5 a night. Great guy. GPS coordinates for campground: N45.4187611, W123.8204

Things to do:  Tillamook Cheese Factory, and the Blue Heron Cheese factory for free cheese and great wines.  Take the Three Cape scenic tour for great trails, a very old lighthouse, and a brewery with the best burger and salad I’ve had in a long time at the Pelican Brewery at Cape Kiwanda.  Home brew was good too.  The steam train from Garibaldi to Rockaway Beach is great fun.  Shopping at Rockaway Beach requires Cash.  Downtown businesses are closed on Tuesdays in Garibaldi, so I’d advise taking the train on another day.

Ocean Shores, Washington

Quinault Casino offers dry camping in a gravel lot South of the Casino Parking lot.  No RV parking in the paqrking lot or sea wall.  Fee is $5 each for Fri and Sat night.  Sun-Thursday free.  GPS: N47.0400972, W124.1704778

Close to:  In Wasington, the beach is considered a state highway, so vehicles can be driven on the beach, including RVs but I wouldn’t recommend it.  Very easy to get stuck.  Lots of Scooters for rent in Ocean Shores, and even they have a hard time in the sand.  Do your laundry elsewhere, the local laundromat is very expensive.

The Benefits of Local Produce

Today is the summer solstice, the longest day of the year here in North America, and the official beginning of summer, the best day of the year for solar panels.  This is also the time when those seeds you started indoors in March and put outside in May are starting to pay off with the fruits of your labor.  And the local farmers’ markets are starting to bloom and will continue to do so until the fall.

Now, here’s the deal.  You have a wonderful opportunity to make the best of this season.I’m sure you’ve either read the book or seen the movie “The Accidental Tourist”.  Well, I’m kind of an Accidental Survivalist.  I inadvertently fell into a lifestyle that I came to take a lot of pride in.  I’ve learned a lot.  I cannot praise self-sufficiency enough.  My advice to city dwellers is not to drop everything and go off into the wilderness.  My advice to you is to incorporate into your homes in suburbia a few things that will make your own life safer, more reliable, If you don’t want to invest in a good solar panel or two and few deep cycle batteries to run your bare essentials in emergencies, I suppose you can go with out electricity for awhile should the shit hit the fan.  I mean, face it, a solar panel will not provide you with a/c.  It will provide you with some lamps, your laptop, and a 12-volt fan during the day, and what your batteries will produce at night.  And those $10 “brighter” solar garden lights at Walmart are worth their weight in gold, should you ever need light at night.

But today we’re talking about food.  This summer you have an opportunity to buy as much LOCAL and organic food you can, some from your own back yard, the rest from farmers’ markets.  Buy what you can every weekend, eat what you can, then do something with the rest.

Here are your choices:  Canning.  This is great if you have a great cellar to store a gazillion glass jars.  Freezing:  This is great until that time the electricity goes out and everything in your freezer suddenly falls into the “use or lose” category.  My suggestion:  dehydration.  Dry as many fresh local fruits and veggies that you can this summer and store them anywhere the rest of the year.  Not only is this practical and efficient but you’re ready to go hiking at a moment’s notice.  Invest in a dehydrator, they are not expensive.

When winter comes you will not have to buy produce from some South American country that has been picked way too early so it can withstand the boat ride here.  You’ll have dried produce with TASTE.  Just soak or boil.  You’ll have apple slices for winter pies.  You’ll have a variety of veggies for winter soups and stews from onions, celery, to tomatoes and peppers, and everything green in between.

Instead of carpe diem … carpe season!

Reblogged from tinyhousedarling  32 notes

tinyhouseamerica:

5 Room Apartment in 60 Square Meters

The artwork turns into chairs!!!!

"It’s not about money, but about ones outlook on life."  What I like about this small apt is that after one opens the glass sliding door, one’s living space becomes the balcony.  This trend towards uncluttered and efficient small spaces reduces "stuff" and clutter and acknowledges that for active people, most of life takes place outside and not where you sleep at night. This is a lifestyle for people who get out and do things, active people who don’t sit at home watching TV and collecting stuff. Clean efficient minds require clean efficient living spaces.  Smaller spaces also allow the expense of very high end and efficient appliances.  I love and support this trend, especially for single people.