Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.

Henry David Thoreau

On to Brighton Colorado to see Family

Wednesday August 6 – Sunday August 10, 2014
The Prospect RV Park
Wheat Ridge, Colorado


**My most recent post did not show up on anyone’s blog roll including mine until over 24 hours after I posted it.  If you didn’t see the last post from Scott’s Bluff on Walking the Oregon Trail and want to, click this link to go there.




Wednesday morning we leave early for our 200 mile drive to Brighton Colorado to visit my father, brother and sister-in-law

The drive is beautiful with the Wildcat Hills all around us.  But then we leave the beauty and hit the city.  I can’t bring myself to take pictures of that. 






I looked about a month ago for an RV park to stay in for 4 nights while we visited. I couldn’t find anything with even half way decent reviews on RV Park Reviews any closer than 19 miles away.  Wish we could have stayed in the Brighton Fairgrounds, that would have been great, but they won’t be open for all comers until August 15th and we have the necessary reservations at Rocky Mountain National Park beginning on the 10th.  


So here’s our spot with FHU for $37 a night.  Right next door is a city park with bike and running trails and a nice lake.  Although I doubt we’ll have any time to take advantage of that, it is nice that it’s there.  But the Duckies have a view of the trees and the fence.




The park is totally gravel with a small cement patio and nice picnic table at each site.  I wouldn’t call it a destination spot but it’s perfect for what we want.  They have good wifi, very clean bathrooms and showers and 5 washers and dryers, $1.25 per.   It’s way on the expensive side for what we normally pay but beggars can’t be choosers I’ve been told.  

My brother generously offered to let us do some driveway camping but with the weather predictions for temps in the 90’s we thought we might well need more than a 20 amp extension cord.




The rigs are lined up in a row.  The sites are tiny but perfectly designed pull throughs with exactly enough space for Winnona and her dolly on the back and Ruby parked in front of the patio and picnic table.  Each site has a wooden fence between it and the next site so there’s no doubt where your property begins and ends.  <grin>





We do the minimal set up and head up I76 to see my dad.   I’ve not been to his new apartment since he moved from Florida to Colorado.   It looks  like a very nice place.  With many things for the residents to do and what my dad says is great food in the lovely dining rooms.








David snaps this shot as I come into the door my dad has opened.  I have never in all my years seen my father in blue jeans.  Seriously, not once.   But today he is sporting a pair that my sister in law Cindy got for him and he says he likes them.   When in cowboy country………….




Found this in his bedroom on the dresser.  For sure!











We’ve been putting off getting a propane line installed to our Kozy World heater but it appears that the lows in Rocky Mountain where we will be boondocking are going to be in the 30’s.  So we call around to find a mobile tech to come out and put the line in.

I checked on RV Service Reviews and found a good recommendation.  David called him but he said after 30 years in the RV repair business he wasn’t doing any propane any more, only smaller things like appliance repairs.  He gave us another name, Golden Mobile RV Service.  Another call, yes they can do it, yes they can come out Thursday morning to the park.

What we wanted was to tap into an existing LP line to provide a quick connect port inside the coach for our portable Kozy World heater.  The gas heater would then need a flexible hose connection to plug into the quick connect port.



Luke arrives right on time at 9am.  He and David determined the simplest place to tap in to the existing LP was at the stove connection.   Together they go to the nearby propane store where there is a wide selection of parts and supplies.  Luke picks out all the stuff we need and they headed back to the coach.

In the process of installing, they determined we would do better with one more part they hadn’t gotten so David goes back to the store to get that part while Luke finishes all the other connections.

The work was done in two hours, including the trip to the store, but somehow Luke manages to stretch it to two hours and fifteen minutes by doing some cleanup that David told him we would do.

We have no problem with his work, it was excellent and his advice for where to connect and his knowledge of propane was what we were paying for.  But after seeing it done, David felt that this was a mighty easy job that he could have done himself and that it should never have cost what it did.




Therefore we want to advise, and will put on RV Service Reviews, that while we have no issues with the work they did, we felt their charge by the hour of $145 plus a $70 service call was extremely high. Let me call a spade a spade here.  It was outrageous.  We have never paid that much per hour even for dealer service.

Perhaps that’s the going rate for working on diesels but this was not a complicated issue.

Had we not needed that line within in 5 days and been unable to find another qualified mobile tech in the Wheat Ridge Colorado area where we happened to be, we would never have engaged their service.   Just one more thing I hate about big cities and their suburbs.  Can we call it gouging?

But it’s done, we’ll have heat when we need it and it a month or so our budget will recover.


The rest of the day was much more enjoyable.  We visit with my father in the afternoon. 



He and David have some spirited conversation about what’s wrong with the world and how fast time flies.


He looks pretty worried about it all doesn’t he?


David takes some pictures of the apartment including one of my mother’s grandmother clock that those of you who have been following along for YEARS will remember.  I had one heck of a time getting it sent out to Colorado when I was cleaning out my father’s house and dealing with David’s recent diagnosis in 2012.  The picture hangs over his sofa that I am sitting on in the first picture.  You can see the frame just out of the picture on the right.  It’s my brother and I at about ages 10 and 3.  Things have certainly changed.




We have a dinner date with my brother Dave and my sister-in-law Cindy so we leave my father just before time for him to go down for his own dinner in the dining room.





Dave and Cindy have picked a very interesting place for dinner.    It’s called the Huhot Mongolian Grille.  I neglected to take enough pictures of this fun dinner spot so I’ve borrowed some from the internet.

I haven’t seen my little brother since my father’s 90th birthday.  His 94th is in two months.  We live so far apart and had such busy lives that we have actually never been to each other’s homes. 

I’d planned a trip out west for 2012 but you know what happened to mess that up.  It’s good to see him and find out about his life these days.




I’m afraid this is the only picture taken during our dinner and sadly it doesn’t include my saint of a sister-in-law Cindy.  She was over checking out all the dinner fixings at the buffet when we came in.




I was a little worried when I saw the name HuHot.  I’m not a spicy hot fan and I was imagining WHEW HOT rather than HuHot.   But it turns out that you can have it your way to the extreme.

You pick up a bowl at the beginning of THREE buffet stands and fill the bowl with anything and everything you want.  You can come back as many times as you want so no need to cram it all in there.  I forget this as I go through the line.

  The first bar was the protein and noodle bar with 5 different meats, seafoods, tofu and 3 types of noodles.

The second bar contained more  vegetables and beans than I can name and was twice as long as the first bar which was standard size.

The third bar was a huge selection of sauces with descriptions and degrees of hot.  You can mix and match them if you want.  They recommend 4 or 5 ladles of sauces since when they pour your food on the grille all that liquid gets boiled away.


huhot bowl

HUhot buffet


You then take your bowl over to the bar around the circular grille and the chefs will pour your selections onto the grille where they cook them to perfection dicing and flipping as needed while you watch.    Then onto your plate and away you go.


Huhot cooking


My brother Dave gets the prize for smartest eating.  When I saw how little was on his first plate I was surprised until he told me that he would be going back several more times.  He wanted one meat bowl and he’d go back for a seafood bowl.  I mixed all of mine together and after one bowl could eat no more.  It was delicious and I’d go back there again in a heart beat.  Great place.  But next time, I’ll do it like Dave did.









Friday is a busy day.  Dave and Cindy meet us at Dad’s apartment.  They bring a really cadillac walker which Dave found used and needs only one small part.   Dad has been resisting the walker in spite of having serious problems being dizzy.   I’m hoping I can talk him into it.  I at least get him to try it out.  Perhaps having it there in the apartment will cause him to change his mind.  He says “he’s fine” in terms of getting around, but of course he isn’t.  However, when you are 93, you get to do whatever you want even if it isn’t in your best interest.

I show him how to use all the cool controls and how to sit down in it and even got him to smile doing it. 







Then we all pile into Dave’s car to take Dad out for lunch at Freddy’s Steakburgers,  his favorite “hamburger and fries” joint.  Dad and the gals in the back, the guys in the front.






David takes a few “family portraits”.  Getting these two boys to smile at the same time is a bit of a trick.   Boy do we miss my mom.








Everybody orders a burger basket but Cindy.  I didn’t see her order this custard sundae or you can bet I’d have had that for lunch too.  I doubt it’s any less healthy than what’s in these baskets we’re eating.





Sorry I caught you chewing Dave.  I have to take what I can get for the memories box.  Smile





By the end of the afternoon, we’ve pretty much worn Dad out.  We are going over to Dave and Cindy’s for the evening.  They live close to Dad’s apartment which is good for Cindy who really keeps a watchful eye out for him.  We can’t thank her enough for all she does.

The first thing I notice when I come in is their parrot Ruby.  Dave says they have a zoo.  But it’s really only 4 dogs and a parrot.   Cindy does a lot of caretaking between all the animals and checking up on my dad.

I love watching Ruby who in spite of my efforts to carry on a conversation with her says not one word the entire evening.   But she’s great fun to watch as she climbs all over everything in her area.






It’s hard to know what to bring as a present to folks who have pretty much anything they want.  So we just a little unique gift of Chokeberry Rhubarb Syrup from Dakota Berry in North Dakota.




Actually there is one other gift.  At Prospect RV, David meets someone from France who is just finishing up travels in the US and is trying to give away all the things they’ve picked up for their rental RV.  David wants to help out so he offers to take the toilet paper.  But when he brings it in the house I tell him NO WAY.  That paper should not be put in our black tank, it won’t dissolve.  Do men never think about these things?  He does the test on it just to make sure I’m right.  HA!  He puts a square in a jar and shakes it up and lets it sit overnight.   It is the same in tact square later the next day.  CASE CLOSED!

But, it is very soft, very nice TP for delicate hinnys so it seems the perfect thing to give to my little brother who once upon a time rigged up a speaker behind the sofa in our childhood living room.  He had wired it into the basement through the floor heat register and when my boyfriend brought me home from a date proceeded to listen in and laugh.  At first it was tee hee, but then it was serious HAHAHA.  Here you go Dave!




I neglected to get a picture of us all having the delicious pizza for dinner.  I’m not an olive lover but this pizza was so good David didn’t get to have all my olives.   But of course David did get a picture of the great beer Dave picked out for him.





As I said, Cindy has 4 dogs.  One is an elderly Irish Setter from her dog showing days when she had several that she took traveling to shows.  She has two small dogs the breed of which escapes me.  But the star of the show is the Bull Terrier named Fiona but they call her Piggy. 






Is that terrier or terror? Just kidding, Piggy!!  We know who is the boss around this house.  Look at her smile!




Cindy is a serious animal lover and has a business called Natural Pet.  It is Colorado’s Center for Natural Pet Foods and Pet Services.  The range of services they provide is extensive and includes Anesthesia-Free Teeth Cleanings, Massage, Acupressure, Nutritional Consulting, consultation for Allergies Joint Problems Skin Problems and Digestive problems.   This week in addition to spending time with us Cindy and her staff have been training a group from Korea in Anesthesia-free teeth cleaning.   This woman has amazing energy.

Dave has his toys too.  His work is in computer electronics but it seems his love is home theater.   The set up is amazing.




When you first come in the room you notice luxurious seating for 6.  The elevated back row has three generous size recliners.  The front row was a matching sofa that would easily seat 3 or 4 if a couple were small.

The entire room is soundproofed with a special wallboard and black velvet draperies that surround the screen and parts of the side walls.  There are two large sound absorbing pads on the side walls to create the optimal sound experience.  The equipment includes an Epson projector that can do HD, 3D and Blue Ray.  He also has blue tooth enabled 3D glasses for the 3d movies he has on his hard drive.  All his movies are stored on his 18 terabyte file server.  

The sound system has a total of 9 speakers I think.  Four tall 3-4’ speakers in the front, two on each side.  One behind the screen in the center and 4 more on the sides and back corners.   His amplifier can do Dolby 7.1. 

If the audio visual experience isn’t enough he has also installed under the seats something that causes vibration or bouncing experience when the movie calls for it.  This gizmo is powered by an old stereo receiver of the 1970’s vintage.  So you really get the experience of being in the action especially in the movie Dave chose for us.




We took up seats in the back row.  Cindy had the couch to herself.  Dave picked out Gravity with Sandra Bullock and George Clooney for the two of us who haven't’ been to a movie since neither of us can remember.   3D and amazing! 

Our verdict: It was just incredible, the most outstanding movie experience either of us have ever had.  I know that isn’t saying much given that we are such non movie goers but I’m willing to bet it would be the most amazing movie experience you’ve ever had too. The entire thing was perfect.  Fabulous sound and the seats were jumpin’ as George and Sandra banged around inside and outside the space vehicles!

It’s pretty clear that if we lived closer my brother Dave would have his sister and brother-in-law as a movie guests perhaps more than he’d like.  Smile

Hugs all around as we say good-bye.  Dave has to be at work at 5am.  YIKES!!

They have really shown us a great time with the wonderful restaurant and this terrific movie experience.  Thanks you two!  And thanks for all you do for Dad.  It’s a big job and I am so very grateful to you both.




Saturday morning we head out to Whole Foods to stock up for our nearly two weeks in Rocky Mountain National Park beginning tomorrow.

In the afternoon, we go for one last visit with my dad.
We stay until it’s time for him to go down for his dinner. 
It is sad to say good-bye since I’m never sure if I’ll see him again. 

No pictures of Goodbye, that’s not what I want to remember.


After four days in the suburbs even with full hookups I’m begging for boonies.  We start the pack up in the evening and will be out for an early start to climb those Rockies in the morning.


**As you can see this post is dated last Wednesday. I am posting this on Friday August 15 and we have now been in Rocky Mountain National Park since Sunday the 10th. The worst thing about being behind is missing whatever recommendations those who have been in RMNP and loved it might make to us. Please let us know in your comments what things we must not miss in our last 6 days here. I know this gives you two things to comment on in addition to the post. I apologize and offer my thanks for your help in all areas.


  1. Sherry it sounds like you had a very enjoyable time with your Dad, brother, and sister-in-law. That's quite a change for your Dad going from FL to CO. Usually seems like it's the other direction. LOL
    Quite an entertainment room at your brother's house.

  2. Wow. I'd say Dad is doing pretty well for 93! Good for him!


  3. Looks like you had a great visit! And, already 6 days in the mountains... looking forward to the next posts!

  4. What a wonderful family visit! The older I get the more I manage to enjoy the rare times * get together with my siblings - as time goes on you just never know when you'll get together again. Your dad sure looks great for 93!

    1. I usually proofread, but I guess I missed this one. "*" should have been "I".

  5. What a great visit for all of you. I have a feeling that your dad is fun to be around.

  6. My only suggestion about the park is to try to time your visit next time for October. The colors then are fantastic. A good visit with your family.

  7. awww. . .what a wonderful visit you had. I understand what you are saying about not knowing if you will see your Dad again or not. I feel the same each time I leave my Dad. . .gotta get those hugs in when we can.

    I know you are enjoying RMNP. . .can't wait to see your posts.

  8. Glad you had such a nice visit with Dad, Brother and SIL!! You are so fortunate to have such a great SIL and brother to see that Dad has good care. Just real glad you got to spend time with all of them:o))

    No suggestions about the park..never been to Colorado, so we will be watching and taking notes from you;o))

  9. What a wonderful time with your dad, he looks great! Never would believe he's 93. It's always nice to be able to spend time with your dad and I'm sure he appreciated it, especially getting to enjoy his favorite burger joint.

    $37/night sure was expensive, but being close by family certainly takes some of the sting out of that price. I pay the same when I go visit my son and family in Missouri. Now if I was able to stay a full month, it would only be $425.

    Your brother is a hoot, did they pattern the character in the Despicable Me cartoon after him? ;c)

  10. Hikes I liked were Emerald Lake and Mills Lake. Have fun!

  11. Enjoy a good snowball fight while you are there. That is a most amazing park in the Summer, with fields of grass and animals and the a deep snow covered overlook. Nice family you have, enjoyed the story. I have only done day trips there, so no suggestions other than enjoy the beauty.

  12. What a great family visit! So glad you got to spend time with all of them. Your dad looks great!
    HuHot Mongolian Grill looks awesome! Always fun to try something new :)

  13. I am curious to know what the heater looks like and where you will put it.Does it have a flex line? I agree with with you about the cost of the hookup but when you are not sure of what you are doing sometimes you have to bite the bullet. We just paid someone to take down a tree. After it was done I said "Heck , I could have done that and saved a bundle" LOL

  14. Your family really does have the proverbial zoo of animals!

    There's a Mongolian restaurant near my place, but I've never tried it.

  15. Family brings sweetness to the heart...hope Dad takes to the rolling walker!!! They're the berries!!!

  16. I am with your dad! If I would get to 93, I sure as heck plan on doing whatever I want if it is good for me or not:) I am glad he finally moved into jeans! I wore them all my life, whenever I could. Since I retired I never where them any more-go figure.

  17. I'm glad you got to spend some time with your family. Your dad looks great, especially for his age, and he seems to be pretty healthy. Good for him.

    We saw Gravity on a Redbox Dvd and weren't impressed with it at all. I'm sure it would have been a different story if we had watched it at your brothers home theater. That sounds amazing.

    Sorry it cost so much to install your propane line. If it helps you feel better, our old mobile Rv mechanic told us that in Florida at least, the licensing for propane work was very expensive, something like $6000 a year. He told us to make sure when we had anything done related to propane, to make sure the tech was licensed for propane work. Apparently, many don't have the required licenses and it can be dangerous. So, does that make you feel any better? :) It sounds like your guy was well qualified, but I'm sure David could have done it.

  18. What an interesting trip you have had this summer and so nice to spend time with your brother and father. I haven't posted but we are having a great many medical issues going on with my mom and its so hard to deal with. Thanks for persevering with Blogger I may not comment on each post but have found your detailed journaling so interesting.

  19. Yup ... you make it to that age, you get to do as you wish. Nice family time.

  20. Ever since the original "Incredible Journey" movie about the two dogs and one cat making their way back home I have had a soft spot for bull terriers - Piggy is precious! Your dad's place looks wonderful - so homey and bright - and he is rockin' those jeans :-) With their busy lives it's great that Dave and Cindy have a perfect place to escape right at home. I also haven't been to the park so am no help - but when you finally get to CA, then it's a different story! So glad you got to spend time with the family, the smiles tell the tale....

  21. How special to be able to spend time with your Dad and brother. He looks as happy as can be in his little place. That's terrific that your sis in law helps out so much, too! We've been to a Mongolian restaurant in Houston, and thought it was great. Love the food there!

  22. I remember when you were caring for David PLUS dealing with issues involving your dad. So much stress at that time - so glad to see him settled and seemingly content! We visited a Freddy's last time we were in Colorado - I think it was in Loveland. Pretty good if I recall. Sure am anticipating those RMNP posts crowds, rain and all.

  23. A whirl wind visit. My Mom loved her walker like that. Love Mongolian BBQ. I'd watch a good movie in that kind of set up. And now you're in the Rockies. Haven't been there in over 35 years.

  24. The TP gift was great! Hahaha. That food looked delicious at the Grille and the movie experience sounds amazing! Grandfather looks himself - at least you caught a few smiles. So glad Dave and Cindy are so helpful to him. It does look like he's in a nice place. Colorful parrot!

  25. So glad that you got to spend some pleasant time with your Dad and also Dave and Cindy. Cindy is a girl after my own heart. I think we'd get along very well! Dave sure knows about all things technical. The small dog on the couch could be an Italian greyhound- maybe, maybe not. I bet it was culture shock being in a town! Even I felt it as the difference between the vastness of the scenery in your last post and then BOOM civilization. XXXOOO

  26. Your dad looked very happy to see you, and you had some great family bonding.
    I too have a 96 year old mom who is stubborn just like your dad.

  27. It looks like you had a truly wonderful time with your family, Sherry. So glad to hear that all is well.


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