Wednesday, December 29, 2010



First let me say, we love our Cradlepoint Router set-up & it has been doing a flawless job for us.  No complaints….well, except for one.  When trying to decide the right set up for our two computers between Cradlepoint & Mifi a couple months ago we overlooked one very important, & for us, crucial factor.  The dreaded Verizon 5 Gigabyte cap!!!!  Despite our best efforts over the past couple years of trying to stay under the Verizon 5 Gigs, we blow the lid off it every single month while traveling.  We are not ‘You Tube’ people nor do we download music, play games on line, open jokes or cards or watch movies & videos.  We are not web cam people, casino junkies, or online card players, nor do we waste our time with all those Gigabyte eating Facebook applications or game requests!!  Yet, every month we exceed our 5 Gig limit big time & that costs us mucho $$$$!!  As of today for example we have over two weeks left to go & we are already two thirds of the way through our allotted Gigs.  The $$$$ we would have had to pay for exceeding the cap again this month has already paid for the Mifi Modem:))


By switching to Verizon’s newer Mifi system we can increase that 5 Gig cap to 10 Gigs & it is going to be significantly cheaper than the $$$$ penalty we have been having to pay each month.  Kelly spent a fair bit of time with the Verizon folks again today hammering this all out & as I type this, a Fed-Ex truck is on it’s way with our new ‘refurbished’ Mifi Modem thingy direct from Verizon.  As with the UMB175 Modem we are now using with the Cradlepoint, we bought the Mifi Modem outright with no signing of contracts!!  For you folks who don’t have a problem with blowing through your 5 Gig limit, your Cradlepoint set up will be just fine. 


Despite downsizing all the photos in my posts every day I am sure it is the blog that is one of our main Gigabyte eating monsters.  But, sometimes ya just gotta do what ya gotta do & assign priorities.  We don’t have fancy schmancy cell phones etc so we do not have the expenses in some areas that other folks do.  And, we are always aware of how much money we save each & every single day by staying out of RV Parks so sometimes that is how we justify the odd expense here or there:))


Kelly questioned me about putting this Cradlepoint/Mifi topic in the blog tonight because it was going to make us look like a couple of Willywonka decision makers but I figure it’s just as important to write about mistakes, poor decisions & failures as it is to write about successes.  As you all know, I am no slouch when it comes to backing up & admitting a poor decision or two now & again:)) 


Now, what to do with our 3 year old UMB175 Modem & 6 week old Cradlepoint Router.  The guy at the 3G store suggested keeping the router in the system for reception boost.  We may do that or just simply sell the Cradlepoint Router which of course is in perfect condition.



Somebody noticed in one of our rig’s interior pics a couple days ago that we have a curtain rod with curtains pulled across the driver’s & passenger section of our coach.  We close these curtains at night & that helps hold the heat in.   During warm sunny days they help keep the windshield heat out.  We seldom, if ever use our front cab seats for sitting on, except while driving of course.  Very rare for us to have company so we don’t really use them as furniture.  And would you believe that we have never ever used the oven in our stove.  Nope, we just use that space for storage.  Fortunately for me Kelly isn’t into baking or I would have trouble fitting through the Motor Home’s door!!  The BBQ is our main cooking tool.



It was fun to see a few ‘nickname’ response’s to my post yesterday with people commenting about their own pet names for their Pals.  I think KAREN IN THE WOODS takes the cake with a name she had for a Sheltie one time….Kasha-Burger-Dip-Dog-YoyoHead-Spaghetti-Brain:)) 


Upon reading Tuesdays post Checkers walked over beside my chair this morning, flopped herself down & looked up at me asking, “Dad, why didn’t you tell the readers why you call me the Swamp Dog.”  Well OK, guess I overlooked that part.  Checkers loves the water whether she’s back home swimming in the 5th largest fresh water lake in the world (LAKE HURON) or going out of her way on a trail to walk through the nearest muddiest mud puddle she can find.  We have a pond near our house in Bayfield & Checkers likes to get in there when we’re not looking some mornings on our walks.  One time a few years ago on a hot summer day she slipped into the pond for a cooling splash.  The water surface was covered in Duckweed so she came out of the pond looking like she had just crawled out of murky swamp somewhere.  What a mess she was.  Well, you know the rest:))


GROANER’S CORNER:((  Ever wonder what would happen if you got scared half to death….twice!!

Q: How many psychiatrists does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Only one, but the light bulb has to WANT to change.

There was a duck that went to a local store to buy Chapstick.  The clerk asked if he would pay cash and the duck said, no, just put it on my bill.

Tourists see the world, travelers experience it.

The only thing better than right now will someday be the memories of right now...... AL.


  1. I also have a Cradle Point sitting over here in it's box wondering if I made a mistake also.

    I think it better for both of us to treat it as a "learning experience". Now we have a router for backup when we need it. Then we will be able to say sure glad we have that spare router.

    Happy New Year to you both.
    Mac & Dianna

  2. Thanks for the shoutout on my dogger's nickname. Yes... that was all one long name, even my five year old at the time could rattle the whole thing off!

    I wonder why your blog would use up so much bandwidth? I do a lot of pics on my blog too- but Steve and I combined never go over the 5gb limit? My laptop is usually on 24/7 and he most evenings on ebay and craigslist browsings. We are usually between 3 and 4gb a month.

    Karen and Steve
    (Our Blog) RVing: Small House... BIG Backyard

  3. live and learn!..thanks for all the information..we were just discussing Verizon tonight and cell phones etc..trying to figure out the best way to still be connected!

  4. We never went the Cradlepoint route, instead opting to get wireless internet through our Pre Plus's Mobile Hotspot feature. We also have the 5 gb cap, but we've never exceeded it. We have, however, heard of people calling Verizon and pleading their way into getting the overage fees waived.

  5. Bird Lady here...must point out that the first cactus wren is really a Western meadowlark. The second, head shot, is a cactus wren. :)

    I've been waiting for some of your ice shots this year. Not that I wished you cold weather, but I enjoy the patterns you see in ice.

    Traveling solo, I guess I don't need to worry about routers or that mifi thing??

  6. You guys are definitely 'giga-monsters' for sure. I agree that you've sometimes just gotta do what ya gotta do to give you the best combination of service and cost. The 10GB service seems to be what you need and if it reduces your total bill then all the better.

    The mifi can be connected to your existing Cradlepoint Router and it will act like a modem to still create a wifi hotspot but with a much wider range than the mifi alone.

  7. Look at it this way Al, it may have costs you a few bucks one way, but your getting the bigger 10gig service so you will save there.Personally I wouldn't think of it as a bad decision, most of those techie things you learn by experience anyway. We have been trying to decide what we will go with when we hit the road and now you have helped us save money and make the choice, I see a Verizon MiFI in our future, I also like being able to use more than one computer at a time and that solves that problem too. So Thanks Al you helped us save money in the long run, That's surely not a bad decision..Be safe out there, Sam & Donna....

  8. Al, I am pleased that you have shared your experiences and decisions regarding this topic. I did not know the MIFI option was available with the 10GB limit. When Ellie and I are away from home, we must continue to administer our businesses, and the 5GB restriction has at times giving us some anxiety. Thanks for the good information.


  9. We're dyed in the wool Mifi fans! Oops. it's after 7:00am -- gotta run to the propane booth and get it set up! See ya later!

  10. "We are not ‘You Tube’ people nor do we download music, play games on line, open jokes or cards or watch movies & videos. We are not web cam people, casino junkies, or online card players, nor do we waste our time with all those Gigabyte eating Facebook applications or game requests!!"

    Nor am I, however I was also bumping up against the Limit. I disabled Flash and have not had the problem since. Many sites have a very small Flash 'running' on the page which was eating up a lot of the Limit.

  11. Let's just say...we have made a few, well ok, LOTS of fact, we're kinda proud of how clueless we can be!..I only use our Hiker oven to reheat pizza or bake the Pillsbury Grand Biscuits for our B's and G's (that's biscuits and gravy, for you homegamers)...Stay warm and safe!!

  12. I've got the Millenicom advanced plan that now allows 20gB/month. The usb760 modem would work with your cradlepoint. (I'm still deciding, but will probably just use a linux system as a router, or buy something to run openwrt.)

  13. So when you buy the mifi without a contract, can you cancel it at anytime?

  14. Love the "Vertical Bird Pic" Never saw them captured quite like that before.

  15. Hey Al, you gotta do what you gotta do for what works best for you and Kelly. Not everyones situation is the same. Good Luck with the new Mifi.

  16. Like you, we have the Cradlepoint PHS300 and a UMB175 aircard with 5g Verizon plan. Last month we went over the 5g and found out why. Somehow Bridget's laptop was set on automatic update downloads, prior to last month we use around 4g monthly. I looked at the MiFi but couldn't find one with an external antenna port.

    Stay Safe

  17. Sounds like the MIFI will do the trick. I guess we'll know more once you've had a few days to work with it.