American Made Jerky

Sunday, May 8, 2016

5 Essential Travel Trailer Replacement Parts

By Emiley Malory

Owning a travel trailer offers people the chance to enjoy a few home comforts while traveling around. A travel trailer can save you a lot of money that would need to be spent on hotels, but you need to ensure that your trailer is well-maintained or it may cost you a lot of money in repairs in the long run. We take a look at the essential items that you need to keep a check on or that you may want to think about replacing.

1. Safety items

First and foremost, you need to ensure that your travel trailer is safe for use. Making sure that you own and maintain essential items such as fire alarms and carbon monoxide detectors can save your life. Always ensure that batteries are in your safety devices and have a check on them before you leave. Living in such a confined space and cooking in small areas can mean that you are more prone to fires, so safety first at all times.

2. Light switches and light bulbs

If you are planning on hitting the road for a long period and you will not be near any electrical stores, you will need to check all of your electrics before you leave and ensure you take spare light bulbs that will last you throughout your journey. Many travel trailer parts are specially made and normal household fixtures and fittings may not work. Light bulbs are not very expensive so it's always good to have them in stock.

3. Auto Sewer Flush Valve

It is not the nicest thing to think about, but looking after your toilet and sewage system is essential. You will be using your toilet and wash facilities a lot while on the road and you do not want you whole living space smelling. You need to make sure your water tanks are kept clean and using an auto sewer flush valve is very advantageous.

4. Silicone Rescue Tape

No matter how much you look after your travel trailer, problems are bound to pop up now and again on your travels. Having a stash of silicone rescue tape will serve you in good stead as a temporary fix for electrical faults, fuel line problems or damaged hoses.

5. Travel Trailer Solar Charging System

Not having to rely on a hook-up for power can feel very liberating and it enhances the sense of freedom the travel trailer brings. The sun is packed full of energy that can be utilized instead of using a generator. Solar power is very cost-effective and is much better for the environment too. There are many systems for solar charging systems to suit all budgets and they are a very wise investment however much you spend.

Maintaining your travel trailer will ensure that you enjoy many years of happy traveling in your home away from home and you will not be tempted to book into a costly hotel simply because you have not looked after your home essentials.

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Article Source: 5 Essential Travel Trailer Replacement Parts

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Mesquite Oasis RV Park, Odessa, TX

On a recent trip, my wife and I needed to spend a night in the Midland/Odessa, TX area.

Since we were just passing through and didn't really partake of all that Mesquite Oasis RV Park has to offer, I can only pass on a lot of the info on their website.

However, what I CAN comment on is our personal experiences and impressions.

The first thing I DO want to say is that the people we dealt with, over the phone, and in person, were great! Mesquite Oasis is a family-owned RV park, and, although the family was dealing with the health issues of an older member of the family, they went out of their way to make sure we had a place, even having someone drive to the park to check us in on a Sunday when the office was normally closed.

They ARE pet-friendly, by the way and have a playground for the kids. Shopping is within reasonable driving distance.

If you have never been to the Permian Basin area of Texas, do NOT arrive expecting sweeping vistas or breathtaking landscapes. There are vistas, of course, but, you are in the middle of what many would consider a desert. You are also amid oil fields, and, Mesquite Oasis, while a nice place to stay, appears to be home to many who work in the oil industry in the area.

Still, while you won't find the rich and famous living there, you will find hard working families. Everybody I came in contact with during our short stay was friendly and helpful.

The facilities and amenities of Mesquite Oasis RV Park may be a bit basic, but, they are many, and, it is obvious that the owners are trying to do as much as they can to provide them for their guests.

There is a fitness room, computer, laundry, bathrooms and showers, and a recreation room, all accessible by coded entry, in the main building. There is also WIFI access in the park. Hint: Don't forget to get the password, like I did. Oh well. It was just one night and I survived without the Internet.

Mesquite Oasis RV Park has security cameras strategically placed and recording for the sole protection of residents at all times, as well as a Grounds Manager on site who checks the park and facilities periodically through the night.

One unique thing about Mesquite Oasis RV Park is that it boasts a "catch and release" pond, complete with ducks, which has a lit fountain after dark and places to sit for a picnic or just to watch the ducks.

No, you won't find royalty at Mesquite Oasis RV Park in Odessa, Texas, but, they will try to treat you like royalty.

Fees were quite reasonable, by the way. Sites are roomy with plenty of room for more than 1 vehicle and a front porch area. Sites are 40' x 90', appeared to be pull-throughs, and are equipped with 30 amp, 50 amp, and a 110 GFI as well as a hook-up for Direct TV.

Mesquite Oasis RV Park
7601 W 42nd St
Odessa, TX 79764


Phone: 432-381-2707
If no answer call

Current Fees (I did get a military discount)

RV Site/Full Hook-up $35.00/day $210.00/week $750.00/month

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Places to Go in North Wales

By Julie A. Allison

As you may already know Wales, and especially North Wales is rich with history and heritage. Every year thousands of tourists from all around the world come to visit the many attractions that North Wales has to offer.

If you're looking for somewhere to go in North Wales then one of the best options is without doubt Snowdonia national park, where you will find the famous Mount Snowdon. Standing at 1085 metres above sea level, Snowdon is the highest point in the British Isles excluding the Scottish highlands. It is one of the most popular places in the UK for hikers, climbers and tourists looking to find a good view. Despite its height you do not need to be an experienced climber to reach the top. There are several paths of different difficulty leading to the top or if none of them take your fancy you could always just catch the train all the way up, where there's a cafe waiting for you!

However if you're looking for something more adventurous and challenging then there are a range of events that run on and around Snowdon. If you want a physical challenge and want to see Wales from top to bottom then you could try taking on the Welsh three peaks challenge. An adaptation of the British three peaks challenge, the Welsh three peaks challenge involves walking up the three highest peaks in Wales. Starting in the south on Pen y fan in the Brecon Beacons you will then move up to Cadair Idris before finishing up the mighty mount Snowdon and all this should be done within 24 hours!

Alternatively if you would rather stay in North Wales and fancy yourself as a bit of an endurance athlete then you could take on the Man vs Mountain race organised by Rat Race events. This event is not for the faint hearted as it covers over 20 miles from the bottom of Snowdon to the top and back down again, and to make it that little bit more difficult they've also thrown in some obstacles along the way for you to navigate. Man Vs Mountain is one of the highlights of the year for obstacle course racers and is and incredible achievement and experience if completed.

Whatever it is you decide to do there is no doubt that Snowdon and all the events that come with it is one of the best places to go in North Wales. Once you've visited Snowdon there's so much more out there for you to see and do. And don't forget about the many events and wonderful locations including historic castles waiting for you!

This article was inspired by Flint International Day, an event taking place on the grounds of historic Flint castle in 2016. The day is family oriented and interactive and a celebration of all things international and multiculturalism in the UK including music, dance, song, food, crafts. The event will also receive special guests and local community and fundraising groups will be present to spread word about their respective causes.

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Saturday, June 13, 2015

Our New 2014 Toyota Tundra

A lot of family issues have kept us from traveling as much as we would like, and, most of our travel, such as a recent trip to the Phoenix area, has been for the purpose of visiting family.

It has been our goal for some time to get an RV of some sort, and, after much discussion and research, we have finally decided to get a travel trailer. However, our little Prius V was not going to pull, or be pulled. Towards that end, we traded it in on a slightly used 2014 Toyota Tundra, shown below.

2014 Toyota Tundra

This decision to change our way of life so drastically was not lightly made.

One of the most difficult problems WAS getting out of our Prius and into a gas-guzzlin' highway more ways than one.

It can be hard to go from 43 MPG to 14 MPG, but, on the other hand, the ride in the Tundra is fantastic compared to the Prius V. This is a good thing as I am 70 and my wife is disabled, and spending the day in the Prius was distinctly wearing.

As an ex-OTR truck driver, I personally enjoy being back in a small version of a big truck.

Well, the next trip has not been planned as yet, but, we are looking forward to cruising down the road in our big silver truck, and, even more to adding the travel trailer to it.

Monday, June 30, 2014

Almost Missed Out on Citrus (Seafood) Bistro in Colleyville, Texas

The lady asked us why we decided to eat at the Citrus Seafood Bistro today, and we told the truth.

Turns out the restaurant we had intended to go to is closed on Mondays. Therefore, my wife did a quick search on her phone and found this restaurant nearby.

It was a happy accident.

Before I go further, let me point out that I am still slightly confused as to whether it is the Citrus Seafood Bistro, or the Citrus Bistro, but that's not really important.

The décor is relaxed and subdued but colorful enough to liven things up a bit. My wife pointed out that most of the colors were "citrus-y". Of course, I had to ask which citrus fruit is black (the color of the ceiling).

The people were very nice. We were greeted by Nanou Viriot. The chef is Didier Viriot, who has had an extensive career in Europe and in the Dallas area. The restaurant tries to present a high-class impression, but we ordinary folk (who sometimes stop at the Jack in the Box near our house for fast food for dinner) were relaxed with the staff who treated us in a friendly manner.

The Citrus Bistro presents itself as a French - Mediterranean restaurant which specializes in Seafood. There seemed to be a wide selection of food available, not all of which seemed to be French or Mediterranean, but, since I had been lured in by the word "seafood", I chose the "PAN SEARED CRAB CAKE Orange and Port Wine Reduction served with House Salad". My wife chose "CREPE DU PECHEUR Mixed Seafood Crepe with Lobster Sauce".

Don't get me wrong. The food was delicious, "plated" and presented well, and the prices were reasonable for the type of cuisine they serve.

However, I am a meat and potatoes, or at least meat with lots of veggies, kind of guy, and I probably should have ordered two crab cakes to actually satisfy my appetite. The spinach and baby greens salad did not quite satisfy me either, but, then again, I don't do leafy greens if given an option.

On the other hand, I probably would have been more satisfied with my wife's order, which, she assured me, was delicious and perfectly prepared. I'm jealous. I got spinach and baby greens, and she got grilled veggies...which she also assured me were delicious.

Overall, a pleasant experience and will probably be repeated so that I can test some of the other items on the menu.

They do have a wine bar and apparently sponsor or participate in events, and regularly have live entertainment. They have recently moved to Colleyville from a Dallas location they had occupied for several years.

5005 Colleyville Blvd#240
Colleyville, TX 76034
Tel. 817 281 6282

Hours of Operation:

Lunch • Monday - Saturday: 11AM - 2 PM

Dinner • Monday - Saturday: 5 PM - 10 PM

Brunch • Sunday: 11AM - 3PM

Happy Hours:

Monday - Friday: 4PM - 7 PM

Citrus Bistro on Urbanspoon

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Eating at The Spot on Eagle Mountain Lake, Fort Worth

I hate to knock a place that's trying, but The Spot on Eagle Mountain Lake in Fort Worth, Texas needs to step back just a little.

First of all, the people were nice, and I have no problem with the décor (beat-up beach), or the fact that there's a pool table and arcade games, although I wish the arcade games had been around the corner where the noise would not have been quite so intrusive. I grew up on the Gulf Coast, and such places were pretty common.

The restaurant has ample parking during the day, and, while I cannot say for sure, I can imagine it being a bit full on a busy night when the brew-sic and music are combining to lure a crowd. Inside seating is limited and is mainly rustic tables and benches (no padding or backs) capable of seating about six to a table.

My wife is disabled, and, if we had known about the seating, we probably not have eaten there. It's rough on her.

On the other hand, there is a good view of Eagle Mountain Lake with outside seating.

In addition to the bench seating, we went to The Spot based on their website ( which mentioned BBQ, but, when we got there, we learned from our server, Liza (who was very nice to us, by the way) that they no longer served BBQ.

The menu is mainly American food and about what you would expect at a local, lakeside restaurant.

Therefore, I went with chicken-fried steak with coleslaw and fries, while my wife chose fried catfish.

Before I go further, let me say that the food was delicious and the portions were large. I will be finishing my wife's fish tonight.

However, it took a long time to get our food, and my food was lukewarm, and my wife said that hers was warm, but not hot. My first cup of coffee was also just lukewarm, and REALLY on the strong side. The second cup was much better.

I would eat there again if I was in the area at mealtime, but would not go over there specifically to eat.

They apparently have live entertainment, local mainly, but I am not sure of the schedule. Although the menu on their website needs updating, there are some good pictures which will give you a feel for the place.

The Spot
9307 Boat Club Rd
Fort Worth, TX 76179
(817) 236-4600

The Spot on Urbanspoon

Saturday, July 13, 2013

The Great Ocean Road: One of the World's Best Drives

By Mark C O'Loughlin

The Great Ocean Road in Victoria's southwest is one of the world's most iconic drives. If you remember your junior maths you might recall the 3r's - reading, riting and rithmatic. Well, Australia also has its own version of the 3 r's. The Reef, the Rock and the Road. The Reef of course is the Great Barrier Reef. The Rock is Uluru and the Road is the Great Ocean Road.

The Great Ocean Road begins in the seaside town of Torquay and finishes near Warrnambool. It's a drive of more than 100 kilometres along perhaps the most spectacular coastline that Australia has to offer. At times you will find yourself driving along meandering roads which sit comfortably between grassed sand dunes and a calm sea and at other times you will be hugging roads which cling dramatically to cliff faces with raging seas beneath.

You never know what to expect when you drive along the Great Ocean Road. It is of course largely dependent on the weather. Beautiful, still sunny days will produce an ocean with an intense blue which is not often seen in other oceans and the sea can be very calm. The following day may be just the opposite, especially if huge Southern Ocean swells arrive. The Victorian coastline is known for its big swells. These are generated a long way away and roll onto our coast with thundering applause much to the delight of surfers.

I would think the major attraction of this road for tourists is the drive itself. If you are coming from interstate or overseas then you will probably be needing to hire a vehicle. What kind of vehicle you hire will depend on what type of holiday you want to have. There's lots of hire companies in Melbourne where you can hire vehicles. If you intend to take your time and slowly make your way along the road then you might like to consider a campervan. This will enable you to stop overnight at tourist parks along the way and there's plenty of them. This is an inexpensive option and then you then have your hard earned money to spend on yourself rather than accommodation.

If, on the other hand, you are fortunate enough to not have to worry about money, then you might consider hiring a sports car. The Great Ocean Road was built by returned ex servicemen from World War One and I'm sure they had no idea that they were building a road that seems almost purpose built for sports cars. Don't drive over the speed limit though. Indeed, you will have little chance because this can be a very demanding drive and gives little opportunity for speed. Happy driving!

The Great Ocean Road passes through a number of small seaside towns and you will find a large range of accommodation available to suit all budgets. We recommend you try Great Ocean Road Accommodation. This website lists a large array of accommodation venues and also has lots of information on things to do and things to see.

Article Source:'Loughlin