Tuesday, December 8, 2015


At a time of year when many are making their travel plans for the holidays, Tim and I have turned our attention to plotting our itinerary for 2016.  Finally, come January we'll be on the road to our first Habitat for Humanity construction site. Along the way we must line up campsites where we'll stay. 

Booking a build is easy if you check out Habitat for Humanity's Care-A-Vanners web page.  As the page says, "Care-a-Vanners is a volunteer program for anyone who travels in a recreational vehicle, wants to build Habitat houses and have fun doing it.  RV Care-A-Vanners welcomes people of all ages, from all walks of life who want to pick up a hammer and help change lives."

That description fits us to the T.  We are excited about this "second" career of ours which will give us a purpose while we travel the country.

The schedule for participating Habitat builds is listed on a link from the Care-A-Vanners' site.  Usually builds are listed 6 to 8 months prior to the event.  Not every Habitat affiliate participates in the Care-A-Vanners program, but several are planned in the southern states during the winter months.  Of course, summer is a fine time to head to builds up north.

Right now we are signed up for seven builds.  January we'll travel to where's it's warm.  Fellsmere, FL will be our first build.  From there we'll venture on to Fort Myers and Sebring, FL in March.

Along the way we'll try to tick off as many Floridian sights as we can from our book, Places to See In Canada and the USA Before You Die.  There are also several areas in Florida that are under the auspices of the National Park Service.  I'm hoping we may visit some of these.  I'm as bad as any kid; I want to add a stamp to my National Parks Passport.

We can already mark the Everglades off our list.  We visited that park in 2005 when Tim had an interview week in Fort Lauderdale.  For much of Tim's FBI career, he served on the agency's interview team, vetting those interested in a career with the FBI.  Interview weeks were held in 8 major cities around the country, one of which was Fort Lauderdale.  I was fortunate to travel there with Tim during a spring break from my school.  We used his free afternoon to drive over to the Everglades where we took an amazing boat ride through the preserve.

Come April we'll head west to Hobbs, New Mexico and then up to Santa Fe.  That will put us closer to the family farm in Kansas where we plan to help with June wheat harvest.  July will find us in Brookings, SD and in September we'll be on a construction site in Kalamazoo, MI.

That should keep us on track to meet our personal goal of assisting on eight builds during 2016.  We'll try to sign up for the 8th one when locations for the fall are posted.

Meanwhile, we are reserving campsites along our route.  A couple web sites have proven to e invaluable:  Allstars, Big Rigs Camp Directory, Passport America and RV Park Reviews.

So, we're booked!  Now all I need to do is learn to build.  More on that as our year progresses.

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