It has now been a full year since we had a blog post, leaving you with the thought that we would not return to Winter Garden RV Resort again. (Spoiler, we do!) The CoVID-19 pandemic has changed many lives and created new routines for many including those that are digital nomads on the road.

In early March 2020, Jason was re-tasked from his IT job at the university to leading the university’s emergency management team through the spring 2020 pandemic response.  Then he was asked to lead a special task force to plan for the fall semester and execute the opening of the university with pandemic safety protocols in place.  And then again, finally, was asked to oversee the CoVID-19 testing for students, faculty, and staff at the university which he is still doing today.

Jason’s extra time and mental capacity were short on availability outside of work so we stayed put for most of the spring, summer and then headed out as soon as we could in the fall once the fall semester was purring along on its way.  Barb had lots of extra time over the summer to include Cece and family in our close pod of contacts.  We built an RV parking pad on Barb’s family farm so that we can call that our home base when we are in the area.  Many full-time RVers either bought land or stopped full-timing RV all together during the pandemic.

As a way to document for ourselves, and hopefully to catch you up on our 2020, we present you this photo roll blog post to document the historical year.

March 2020

We were positioned in Montogomery, Alabama, at the Woods RV Park when Jason made the decision that he should be physically on campus.  In three years of our RV full-timing, this was always a possible decision to be made and it had finally come that it was needed.

We made a quick ascent North from (1) Montgomery, Alabama, to Cracker Barrel in (2) Calvert City, Kentucky, and another Cracker Barrel in (3) Janesville, Wisconsin, before arriving in (4) in River Falls, Wisconsin on the third day. We could have probably made it all the way to River Falls but it was just safer to stop and stay over than to push beyond our limits.


Cracker Barrel restaurants are a great place to stay over at night. A great dinner or breakfast and when the restaurant closes usually a pretty quiet night. Check out the resources page to learn how we locate our overnight spots.


Ricco and Wheezy have adapted well to traveling, as long as we remember to withhold food beginning the night before travel. Although, at the Janesville, Wisconsin, Cracker Barrel they seem to be very concerned about the white stuff that was on the ground around us that morning!


We arrived back in the River Falls, Wisconsin, area on March 8, 2020. We quickly enjoyed some time with the grand-daughter but so did the great-grandma and great-grandpa Wingets!


Only another signal to us to plan differently in the future, the stark contrast of Wisconsin and Florida in March.


April 2020

The tensions around the pandemic were increasing and travel was being restricted in portions of the country.  The county and city had decided to not open the campground at the normal time and we were there as the lone RV. We were getting questions from people walking and driving by as to why we were there.  In April our cooktop failed and we had to replace it.

The most read sign in the month of March and April was probably the hand-written sign we put on the windshield of our motorhome. There were many fears about people traveling and carrying the virus, as well as the campground was officially not yet open for the season, compounded by our Florida license plates. Our contact at the city parks and recreation department suggested putting something in the window to reduce the angst people may have with us being there.


April snow is not uncommon in Wisconsin, but it seems to always wait for us before blanketing the area with at least a few inches or even sometimes a foot of the stuff! The motorhome does just fine with the snow and temperatures down to the lower 20’s before we need to worry.

May 2020

In May we all started to understand that creating social pods, social distancing and masks were important to prevent the spread of the virus.  We extended our pod to include the grand-daughter and family, ensuring that otherwise, maintaining the best that we could. We built an RV parking space at Barb’s family farm and moved from Hoffman Park in River Falls out to there for most of the summer.   We did transition back and forth occasionally depending on Jason’s construction projects and CoVID-19 team efforts.

Having the home pad at Barb’s family farm has been a great place to land, especially during the pandemic. With 50-amp power and access to water, it works great. We just have to run into River Falls to dump at the Hoffman Park every two weeks. In 2021 we plan to expand it further to have a little more wiggle room.


Sporting her penguin jammies, visiting with Oma Barb.


Visiting the farm with Great-Grandma Lulu on the ATV


June 2020

The grand-daughter celebrates her 1st birthday and Oma Barb was excited to be able to share that with her.

The little girl with all her attitude on her 1st birthday, with Great-Grandma Lulu!


July 2020

The spring was over, CoVID-19 response at the university was slowing as little new information was gained.  There was a lull for Jason at work so we seized the opportunity to head North to the Washburn, Wisconsin, area to spend some time in northern Michigan and Northern Minnesota.  We got some mud on the tires of the Jeep in the Chequamegon National Forest, but it was really just driving around in the woods nothing Jeepy about it.

The amazing thing about motorhomes is the windshield views! The July morning sunrise over Buffalo Bay from our campsite at the Buffalo Bay Campground at Legendary Waters Resort & Casino. The RV sites are for pay, this is not free casino parking. Some of the sites are pretty decent and others are just mushed together. What you don’t see are the three tents within 10 feet under our window. Regardless of those small issues, this is still our go-to campground for this area.


One of Barb’s favorite things is to spend time on the water. The windows rolled down and just listening to the water lapping the shore on Chequamegon Bay in Washburn, Wisconsin.


August 2020

Jason tries to electrocute himself while installing the Pepwave modem in the pantry and the antenna on the roof.  We celebrate the end of summer with the family.  We had to replace the water pump in the motorhome because it had died.

Cece wants to be the “spokesbaby” for Pepsi, but she doesn’t get an audition! We did though have a great family picnic together at Hoffman Park!


Post-installation of our new cellular WiFi setup with the Pepwave on AT&T and the MoFi router on Unlimittedville Verizon service. The Netgear switch connects the Pepwave WiFi access point also in the pantry on the ceiling and the other components we have in the coach including a Plex Media Server, Jason’s office environment which includes his Cisco Meraki Teleworker VPN device for connecting to the University. Jason almost electrocuted himself cutting into the ceiling for the roof antenna and cut into the main 50-amp shore service cable that is running over the top of the pantry to the breaker box in the bathroom. The route doesn’t make any sense beyond it must have been easy in manufacturing to take this route.

September 2020

In late August and early September 2020, Jason had many extra hours on campus.  He utilized an empty office space on campus to work full-time for the CoVID-19 response.  He put in many long hours early and late.  Once the semester was off to a successful start, and he transitioned back to a telecommuting 100% gig, we got underway for our 2020-2021 winter travels on September 26th.

Our first stop was in Cincinnati as we made our way toward seeing friends in the Washington DC area later in the fall.  We stayed at the FMCA headquarters campground for free and decided to extend for a few nights paying for the option.  Getting to the RV park from the West was a bit of a nightmare, it is actually much easier to go around Cincinnati and then come in from the Northeast to avoid the tight 1800’s built residential areas. There Jason continued to work but had to take one of his monthly furlough days so we snagged a reservation at the zoo to see the blue fairy penguins.

The grand-daughter is going to be a Jeeper in the future! She has associated her silver jeep with Oma and Opa’s Jeep. She loves to bring her Jeep to the Facebook Portal to show us. We love the Facebook Portal because it can be positioned at her level and allows us to interact well with her as part of her “screentime.”


It is great to get to the home base and to spend time with the granddaughter and the great-grandmother too! But it is hard to say good bye to the physical hugs and kisses too.


The summer was great for growing a vine of cherry tomatoes at the home base.


The Cincinnati Zoo was a vacation day after a stressful fall semester start-up for Jason. It happens to be one of the few blue fairy penguin colonies in the country, which made Barb very happy to see in their new enclosure.


The FMA campground is a perk that FMCA members can use when in the Cincinnati area. Located on the southeast side of the metro, it is in a good spot to hit any of the city sites. As a member you get 2 nights free then you can pay for up to 5 more nights. You have to book online in advance. The photo is of the “overflow” area and there is a more traditional site with grassy sort of sites.

October 2020

Early in October we did 10-day isolation and made our way to the Virginia / DC area to see friends in Manassas, Virginia.  During this isolation time, we were very isolated with a couple of campgrounds that seemed like a good idea but ultimately had some issues.  We moved from the Goose Bay Marina to Harbor View and ultimately to Pohick Bay.  Our favorite campground was the Pohick Bay regional recreation area, situated south of the DC beltline but nestled in the established woods.  October was a great time to be there for the fall leaf-peeping season.  Blue Ridge Seafood restaurant was one of our first dine-out experiences with CoVID and it was fresh seafood since we were within a stone’s throw of the ocean.

In Welcome, Maryland, it is landlocked out on the peninsula south of the DC metro. The Goose Bay Marina is remote and it was very difficult for us to level in this spot. Fortunately, our spot we were able to without being off the blocks, but our neighbors were 6″ off the ground using their jacks to level. Customer service is not focused on the “transient campsites” and we had to lead the transaction of checking in. Overall still somewhere we would come back to if we were in the area.


Harbor View RV Resort is a Thousand Trails property. It is about 1 hour from this park to the south DC belt-line. A nice campground, but not where we wanted to be, so we moved on early from here.


Pohick Bay Regional Park is one of these gems we are not sure we want to share online for fear of the word getting out on it! Given the location is a little off the beaten path, it was easy to get last-minute reservations here. What we love about it is that it reminds us of our favorite home base in Wisconsin at Highland Ridge in Spring Valley. You are very much in the seclusion of the woods here, and yet decent cell signal in most of the park for working.


November 2020

Last spring we booked four months at Winter Garden RV Resort, returning to the same campground we have been at for a few years now.  We felt it would be good to plan to be put during CoVID somewhere where we feel comfortable, know what our health care options are, and would be in one spot should a “lockdown” happen again.

November brought some frustration when we woke to the refrigerator beeping.  The coolant in the ammonia leaked out of the cooling tower on the refrigerator.  After looking all over for refrigerators at Lowe’s, Home Depot, and the RV dealer searching the country for a new RV unit, it was clear buying a refrigerator during a pandemic was not happening.  This led to just replacing the cooling tower later on.

November is strawberry season in Florida.


Our Jeep got ducked for the first time!


Thanksgiving day spent on the Lake Apopka Wildlife Drive with the top off the Jeep.


December 2020

Christmas in Orlando has many options with new opportunities due to the pandemic to see lights. We did go to Disney a couple of times but really avoided it with the busy times.  Our refrigerator was repaired finally.  Christmas day we spread the Jeep Duck fun by visiting all of the hospital parking lots in the Orlando metro ducking Jeeps.

We had great success on the replacement of our refrigerator’s cooling tower using Mobility RV Repair service. Fortunately, they were able to get a cooling tower in only about 2 weeks and got it installed right away. We had Mobility RV back for some other repairs and Jason Dailey was great to work with and we would recommend him. Not much left on this refrigerator to replace, the doors, the cooling tower, and the ice maker have all been replaced now! Why not a new unit? There was only one found in the country and that was even questionable. All of the new units are going into new RVs, they are not available for aftermarket.


A little bit of Florida Christmas at the campsite.


2 thoughts on “Pandemic

  1. WOW Jason, Nothing like the University giving you all kinds of extra responsibilities. Good Grief. I say that because the University of Arkansas is experiencing the same thing. I’ve been working at home since March. In July they rolled out Workday on us. Dear Gawd don’t let your university buy into that program. It’s the WORST and not really suited to University financing. Most of the staff are currently taking anti-anxiety medications. Your pictures are truly beautiful. Were those taken with an IPhone? Very nice. So if you ever happen to be rolling Down Missouri and I 90, there is a Cracker Barrel just off the interstate in Springdale Arkansas. Please contact me. I would love to see you guys and show you around the Ozarks as little bit. What is this about Ducking Jeeps? Is that a thing? I have a Neighbor with a 99 that he is re-building and retrofitting mostly for attending music festivals. It will be amazing if he ever gets it done. Give my Love to Barb.


    1. Hi Carrie, both Barb and I have Pixel 2 phones right now and we chose it primarily for the camera features. Looking for a new Android now to replace those, but a bit of a challenge to order phones while on the road. Ducking Jeeps was something that started in 2020 among Jeep owners to spread a little joy in a darker time. Look forward to the Ozarks and will give you a hollar when we head that way.

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