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A long time ago, I was a child. (I started out as Cathy First from Colon, Mi.) For the past several years I’ve been an adult. A lot of things went on between those two stages of life; probably no more or no less than anyone elses. My husband and I moved to “da U .P” from southern Lower Michigan several years ago (yes we were trolls at one time). We owned and operated and operate Clementz’s Northcountry Campground and Cabins just north of Newberry, Michigan until May 2015. We have grown kids and grandkids (who all live downstate). My passion is life and all that Nature has to offer us and trying to photograph it in unique ways. Our intention in life is to see all that Nature has to offer us. We hope that you will be a part of our adventures as we cruise through our lives together. Come back often!

Sunday, March 06, 2011


Yesterday was a gray and overcast day in our area, but north of us there had been flood warnings out.  Later in the day the flood warnings were extended to our area.  We weren't concerned where WE are because the reservoir is still a LONG way from being full.  But there were some HUGE rain drops which meant we had to turn the TV volume up, and up, and up.  And it went on most of the night.

We knew we were fortunate when that storm came through last week with the large hail.  The truck wasn't damaged and it didn't appear anything had happened to the 5th wheel.  I was concerned about the ceiling vents with their heavy duty plastic covers, but they made it through.

But when I got up this morning, from under the covers Dan announced "The toilet seat is up.".  I thanked him for the warning and asked him why it was up (we've been keeping the lid closed too). 

Well, that ceiling vent above the toilet apparently couldn't take the weight of the heavy rain drops OR possibly a pine cone fell just right so now there is a little triangular shaped hole in it.  The plastic that broke inward is still hanging there.

Later today Dan will have to get out the handyman's helped (AKA duct tape) and go up on the roof and tape it from both sides.  We'd planned on leaving the 5th wheel off for some minor things that need to be fixed so we can add this to the list. 

The reason for the toilet seat being up was any drips from that hole lined up perfectly with the toilet!

I goofed when I told you the dogwoods are in blossom...it is blooming pear trees!  They are awesome!  We were told they don't produce any fruit (so why they are called a pear tree I don't know).  But we have noticed the magnolias are in blossom.  I would love to get a photo of one close up...but I don't think Dan would actually pull into someones yard so I could ring their doorbell and ask for permission to photograph their tree.  Although several years ago, before we were married, when we'd been fall mushroom hunting, I noticed a HUGE fall mushroom in the yard of some people that were customers of the bank where I managed at the time.  I asked Dan to pull in and I'd ask if they minded if I picked their mushroom. 

Dan was hesitant about it but DID pull in their driveway.  I rang the doorbell and the Mrs. came to the door.  She remembered me from the bank so I said "My daughter is doing a science project and I see you have a very large fungi in your yard.  I was wondering if we could take it off that tree?"  She said she didn't mind at all and that they have them all the time all over the yard and wondered what they were.  I didn't tell her "THEY ARE TO CLEAN, ROLL IN FLOUR AND FRY IN BUTTER!!". 

Dan had to get out of the  truck to help me get the FUNGI.  It was THAT big.  He asked me if they didn't eat them and I told him that they had no idea of the treasure they have growing in their yard!

Yesterday, we took Bubba (our pickup) in for his oil change, new fuel filter and to be checked over before we head out in about 3 weeks.  It was suggested to us that since we do tow a 5th wheel, it was probably time to have the transmission fluid drained and changed and check the rear end too.  So, that was a chunk of change to get out of there, but it's one of those things that you have to keep on top of.


  1. Now how perfect is that - a drip plopping straight into the toilet bowl. And it sounds like a chicken mushroom you snagged off the tree several years ago ... am I right?
    Sunny in the U.P. this morning.
    'hugs from afar'

  2. you are nicer than I am...I just jump out of the truck, sneak a photo and jump back in and tell P. to hit the gas.haaaaa Sometimes he is embarrassed but I do it anyway. ha

  3. What luck Cathy, about your drip...I hope you have good luck getting it fixed too!

    Joan, I would do the same thing...I can't tell you how many times my friend Cheryl have done something like that! we have a mutual friend that is mortified everytime we do it too! sometimes we do it just for her reaction!

  4. my roofs got a hole in it!
    The Serendipity Singers

  5. Anonymous10:02 AM

    Changing the trans and rear end fluid is not required. Save your money since there is a higher liklihood that the dealer will screw it up than prevent any future problems.

  6. Cher, it was what we call a sheeps head or cauliflower mushroom. Maybe the same thing??

    Retired One, pretty much every one around here carries a sidearm of some kind! I guess I could take their photo as I beat a hasty retreat!

    Amy, Dan just needs to get up there and tape it for now. We'll get it replaced before we get home.

    Tractor Guy...YOU GOT IT!

    Anonymous, why do you think this? Just curious.

  7. Cathy, my husband said the same thing as Anonymous, he is a backyard mechanic and has worked on vehicles since he was 8, i realize this is no degree/certification/license...but he said the fluid in the rear end does not go bad, and when you take apart a rear end, those gears and that have to be specifically gauged a set width apart, if they are not, it will break your rear end, (we just went through this with my new truck, the previous owner told us that the spider gears went out, when they had it replaced the dealer that did it, did it wrong, two weeks after we got it, we had to replace the rear end, there were chunk of metal in the old one when my husband pulled it apart, we just went and got a completely different rear end)
    He said the tranny flush is fine, just not a rear end flush, cause they have to open up the rear end to get the fluid out and there is a chance things will get jostled and then be out of whack leaving you on the side of the road, should it break...don't know what anonymous reasoning was, but that's his! lol good luck!


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