Gram Weenie

About Gram Weenie

Gram Weenie is a leader and an entrepreneur who's constantly taking on new ultralight challenges. She's been known to limit her international vacation suitcase weight to 25 lbs. She is sure she can shave a few more grams off that total.

So are you a tobacco farmer?

Last year I took one of my “detour” trips.  We’re still on our RV trip, but I needed to go to California for business.  I guess you could call that, a “trip within a trip.”  And since I was already off to CA, why not add in some sightseeing too?  So it turned into a “trip within a trip within a trip.”

I flew from New Orleans to Los Angeles, spent a couple days there, and drove the Pacific Coast Highway North to San Jose.

While I was in LA, I took a city tour with some Australian tourists.  When hearing I was from Northern Virginia, one asked “So, are you a tobacco farmer?”   He asked with a totally straight face, which was answered by a totally confused look on my face.  It got me thinking:  What do others picture when you tell them where you’re from? Continue reading

Publishing on the Road

JIRA Strategy Admin Workbook

JIRA Strategy Admin Workbook

It’s been a while since I’ve posted, and it’s because I was finishing up a large project.  One of the items on my bucket list was to write a book.  I started this project before we hit the road in November 2014.  It took two years, but I finally finished it and published from our RV in Port Isabel, Texas!  The launch was on day 557 of our trip.

Publishing from the road has the same challenges as working from the road.  It’s up to you to find the needed tools (ex: a stable internet connection) and to motivate yourself to complete the work, no matter how tempting the scenery is outside your RV door. Continue reading

Trailer Evacuation and Retrospective

Crystal River Spills into Campground Lake

Crystal River Spills into Campground Lake

It was a normal Monday afternoon.  We were both working on our computers when I glanced out the trailer window and suddenly saw water had covered the ground.  Water from the nearby Crystal River was rapidly spilling into our campground and overtaking the small lake on the property.  We previously walked the campground at lunch and determined there was no way the rising river water could ever reach the area where we were parked.  Wrong! Continue reading

Foods of the Florida Keys

Being in the Florida Keys for 7 months gave us a good understanding of the cuisine in this part of southern Florida.  One of the joys of traveling and this RV adventure is experiencing local and common foods of the area.


Lobster BLT at "Key Largo Fisheries"

Lobster BLT at “Key Largo Fisheries”

Keys’ cuisine is influenced by multiple cultures like early settlers from Spain, the Bahamas, Cuba, and merchants from New England.  The Keys are known for farming pineapples, limes, tomatoes, and melons.  Of course their location on the Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico brings vast seafood opportunities.

In the 112 mile long stretch, there are 1700 islands.  Some are well known (Key Largo and Key West), some are privately owned, some are part of Everglades National Park, and others are only accessible by boat. Continue reading

Unexpected Camp Host Duties

A camp host is someone who helps other campers.  This includes anything campground related, like: receiving guests, collecting payment, completing paperwork, or even recommending a local restaurant or bait shop.  The host answers questions and solves problems while the official camp staff is away.  You become the “go to” person when assistance is needed.  The camp host is either a paid or volunteer position and most camping jobs are seasonal.  You reside in your own RV and sometimes park in an official “camp host” spot.

Camp Host Chris


We wanted to stay in the Florida Keys through the winter, but were having trouble finding an available site for that length of time.  At the same time, our current campground was looking for a host for their busy season and had a site available for that purpose.  Kayak Chris agreed to become the camp host and we moved into the designated spot.

It was an interesting 5 months!  Now that the hosting gig is over, here’s a list of some of the unexpected things he ended up doing. Continue reading

Key Largo Sunsets

Key West boasts about its sunsets, but we think they are better in Key Largo.  Watching this daily occurrence is an official activity in Key Largo; so much that I often set an alarm, so we wouldn’t miss it.  Neighbors gather to watch the often stunning descent of the sun along with the colors that emerge afterwards (which are sometimes even prettier.)  It’s a great way to meet people and there’s no such thing as “too many sunset photos.”

Click image to enlarge.

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Continue reading

Finding Personal Happiness

Kayak Chris found the following article that’s a great take on finding personal happiness.   The premise is that staying in your hometown “severely limits the definitions you accept for what makes you successful. Oddly, most of the hometown definitions of success have nothing to do with happiness. They have to do with becoming what everyone in your past expects or desires given who you used to be.Continue reading

8 Things I Don’t Do Anymore

It’s day 180 of our RV adventure and there are few things I can’t or (don’t see the need to) do anymore.  They are:

1. Watch TV
Our travel trailer has TV hookups in the main room and in the bedroom, but we didn’t get one.  We figured with our laptops, smart phones, and tablet, we didn’t need any more screens to stare at.  We’ve gladly avoided: the political ads, the endless loop of negative world news, and paying a cable bill.   We still check the news, but we do it online.  We still binge watch a TV series on a lazy weekend, but we do it from a laptop.  Yes, I do miss a few of our favorite shows (ex: The Walking Dead) but I know that even if we can’t watch it today, we can watch it sometime in the future.  (Unless the world is overtaken by real zombies, it will be available to watch.) When I want background noise, I turn on the radio like it’s 1940.

2. Go Camping
I know how this sounds.  Yes, we’re in a campground right now, but living in a travel trailer and spending the night in a tent are two totally different things!  The trailer has a queen size bed, electricity, climate control, running water, a kitchen, and a bathroom.  One day a few weeks ago, I had the urge to go camping.  (That is, pack up the truck, and go to a different camp ground where we’d spend the night in our camping hammocks.)  That urge was brief and has since passed.  Avid camper Kayak Chris hasn’t uttered the phrase “Let’s go camping!” in months either. Continue reading