Tag Archives: Living Life Outdoors

A Rebel’s Wish List

25 April 2019, Thursday

Greetings from our family to yours and Welcome to another TrailMagick89 missive,

As a class project a few years ago Sweets and I were to write a business plan about opening a restaurant, bar, and boarding house rooms; for part of the plan we had to design the lay out and more specifically the decoration, lay out and design of the front of the house. The best part we have always held on to those ideas and over the years we have realized that we could take those ideas, scale them down and put them in a tiny house.

For the exterior of the building we are going with the Americana style. Most of the exterior will be corrugated steel; we are in love with Old Glory so that the roof will be barn red, the eaves, corner trim, and wains-coating will be egg shell white, and the window and door trim as well as the upper walls will be Navy blue. All of the windows will be double hung with emergency exit window in the bedroom.

Some of the other ideas to go with that are: walk-in showers with a bench, using alternative energy (solar, thermal, wind), wind turbines for the outlets to charge rechargeable devices, a wind turbine for water pump, metal roof, using reclaimed materials, single story, covered porch, Vardo style bed with surrounded by book shelves with hand made mattresses, futon/double beds with hand made mattress,

Indoor storage for trikes and bikes, full sized double sink, reuseable water system, under the bed storage, lots of windows with working shutters, exterior slider doors, window boxes, rain water collection, stove with oven, emergency exit by the bedrooms, steampunk themed, use natural edged wood, Sawyer drinking water system, wood floors, using a fifteen feet double axle 10,500 pound trailer, using a combination wood/propane heater, arched roof, six leveling jacks, red, white, & blue Americana color scheme, On-Demand water heater, many secret storage places, and a dish rack over the sink.

After making such a list and realizing that this sort of thing would be possible even with a smaller trailer. In the state of Michigan living in a tiny home year round is illegal because they are consider RVs (Recreational Vehicles). Though if we went with a long trail of say sixty-two feet long at eight feet four inches wide or even a slightly smaller trailer of eight feet wide then the tiny house on wheels for the homeless would meet the manufactured housing requirements and then they would have year round housing that was legal in every state in America.

Gee, housing for the homeless what a novel thought. And that would be a rebellion against the system while following their stupid rules.

We appreciate that you stuck around until the end. If, you have found any value in this post, make sure to hit the “Like” button and “Subscribe” to TrailMagick89 blog. Please feel free to share your thoughts below. You can also find us on Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest, Amazon, and of course WordPress.

Semper Fidelis, Elroy & Sweets

Trail Magic

23 April 2019, Tuesday

Greetings from our family to yours and Welcome to another TrailMagick89 missive,

I’m not quite sure why I didn’t think of doing a missive about what trail magic is and could be before today, alas I have finally gotten around to it today.

What is Trail Magic to you?

The definition of Trail Magic is…unexpected acts of kindness. The thing is it means different things to different people. A few different possibilities are:

  1. Sharing a hot meal,

  2. A couple bottles of water, flavor packets and power bars,

  3. A ride into town,

  4. A tent,

  5. A bed roll,

  6. A mess kit,

  7. 3 days worth of food,

  8. Fresh clothes, and

  9. Fire starter.

A little over a year ago we found out that the above list are all examples of trail magic, something that Sweets and I had been doing for nearly ten years. I first experienced it in August of two thousand and eight in Lansing when I was homeless for the first time, Sweets experienced it for the first time less than two years later. The best place at the time back then to see the definition of trail magic in the homeless sense was to go to Central United Methodist Church in downtown Lansing.

Miss Chris and Mister Dennis were modern day heroes to many, many thousands of homeless that went through the doors of the day room that they operated out of the basement at CUMC. It was by their examples that Sweets and I were open to receiving such a blessing. You see at that time we were deep into religion and going to church.

Cajun, Sweets and I were heading to church on morning and even after a week of can-dogging we were no richer on Saturday night than we were the previous Sunday. We had made a deal between the three of us to tithe ten percent of what we made. Well, I can tell you that ten percent of zero is zero.

So Sunday morning we were off to church with empty pockets when we three came upon three pennies and that is what we ended up tithing. And that following week we received trail magic, six thousand dollars worth of trail magic; we had bedding, clothing, tents, food, feminine products, cook pots, and utensils. We were given the charge of handing out at store house of supplies to those in need.

The local police departments came out to our sanctuary with community people that had been living it rough under bridges, on park benches, in doorways, at bus stops, and anywhere else they found them and dropped them off to us. We ended up gaining nearly a dozen new people just from the local shelters that had been kicked out for one reason or another, in the first two months. We did not care if you stayed in our camp or you moved on to another, we just wanted to help.

That is when I first realized that we each walk our own trails through life. A movie called “End of the Spear” and a documentary called “Beyond the Gates of Splendor” that came out a few years to me being homeless were about five murdered missionaries that went into the Ecuadorian rain forests and met their fates. The families of those men continued their work with the Waodoni tribe and the thought that was conveyed to them was “Will you follow His trail?”

At that time I wanted to but at the time the movies came out I was not ready but by two thousand eight He put me right where I needed to be to do just that. Religion had finally taken a back seat to my spirituality and yes it has reared its ugly head a few times since then; but by following His Trail I have been a better Jesus Freak. And I think that is real trail magic; being like Jesus without religion being in the way.

We appreciate that you stuck around until the end. If, you have found any value in this post, make sure to hit the “Like” button and “Subscribe” to TrailMagick89 blog. Please feel free to share your thoughts below. You can also find us on Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest, Amazon, and of course WordPress.

Semper Fidelis, Elroy & Sweets

Be Prepared: P 38


Good Afternoon from our tramily here at TrailMagick89 to your family for a dispatch,

Have you ever been in the kitchen preparing a meal; you have gathered all the ingredients, all the bowls, pots, and utensils or so you thought and just as you are about to finish you are missing a key utensil?

That is what it is like for many thousands of homeless each year with their first experiences cooking outdoors. Some kind person has been generous enough to bring by cans of food, pots to cook it in, maybe even a bowl to eat out of; the problem with each of those items is that they are not complete in and of themselves. The bowl needs a spoon or spork, the pot needs a pot holder or a pair of off-set pliers, and the cans of food need a food old fashioned can opener.

The can opener style is very important for the lifestyle of living unsheltered; a US Army P 38 Can Opener is compact, durable, and fits on a dog tag chain or key ring and I can tell you a P 38 will far outlast the person using it. If cost is a concern for you, you can pick up a dozen of them on Amazon for roughly six dollars. I have seem them even cheaper at military supply stores.

Now be careful there are a few people when they here that you have a P 38 for them to open their soup can they will think you are talking about a Walther P-38. I know it sound far fetched and some of my stories do come across that way, however; Cali did just that. According to Captain Catherine he was only eighteen years old. However, as Cali told it he had already spent four years in the United States Marine Corps, most of that on secret missions in the special forces.

He was interested in how we opened cans of food without wasting all the food inside the can. Please be prepared.

Have a great week everyone and God bless,

Semper Fidelis Elroy and Sweets

Extra! Extra! A New Beginning!

Hello Everyone,

We know many are celebrating Easter or Resurrection Day and we are not getting into the debate on the historical debates that surround this special event. To us it is a day of special beginnings. For us this year it is for us to begin a countdown to Pentecost and our grand adventure across Michigan serving Jesus.

Also, recently we have realized that we need to apologize to many people as Scripture dictates in Matthew 5:23 & 24; Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee; *Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift. It is not a matter of whether we are at fault or others are at fault it is a matter of someone having an issue with us and we need to make it right.

We are taught that we should not burn bridges with the people that we come in contact with, rarely have we heard that we should try to rebuild those bridges that we have burned, so this our attempt to make right and apologize to those that we have wronged or offended over the years. Some of the ministries are places we have been to here is Clio, some in Durand, some in Port Huron, and some in the Lansing area. If you get a chance and the Holy Ghost is leading you stop in and say hello.

Seeing that the wrong that we have done to each of you is of a personal matter and we are not sure how to reach you otherwise we would like to apologize to you if we have offended you in some way.

~ Semper Fidelis, Elroy & Sweets


In the Lansing Michigan area:

Capitol City Baptist Church

Community Faith Church

New Hope Church

In the Durand Michigan area:

First Congregational Church

Faith Baptist Church

Light of Faith Fellowship

Bethany Bible Baptist Church


In the Port Huron Michigan area:

Griswold Street Baptist Church

Blue Water Christian Church


In the Clio Michigan area:

City Church Clio

Life-Line Church of God

Landmark Baptist Church

Messiah Lutheran Church

Vertical Life Church

Cornerstone Pentecostal Assembly of God Church

Freedom in the Truth Ministries


And finally in Dowling Michigan:

Country Chapel United Methodist Church


We could have found better, easier, gentler, kinder words to use when confronted with the situations that we encountered. We love each and every one of our brothers and sisters in the Lord. We ask for your forgiveness and we are sorry that you were offended by our actions or our words. 


We thank you for your time and have an enjoyable day.

Semper Fidelis, Elroy & Sweets

Glo–ry! Hal–le–lu–jah!

19 April 2019, Friday

Greetings to all of you on this glorious Resurrection weekend from the TrailMagick89 family to your 40th blog post,

Father God is Miraculous!

Lent has turned out to be one of the most interesting times for us this year. And the weeks leading up to Pentecost are going to be just as wonder filled we believe. Usually the posts you find here at TrailMagick89 have some Christianity sprinkled throughout the posts – this blog will be LOADED! We were blessed the first few days of Lent, then we were blessed again repeatedly the first week of Lent, then we were blessed yet much, much, much more the second week, and it keeps going and growing and going and growing.

Jesus is Miraculous!

We felt the Lord nudging us to simply, “Go.” At first, like in the past it was like a quiet whisper, on the breeze, from the Holy Ghost. As those first few days progressed though the quiet whisper became a bit louder, as did the breeze that carried it. That breeze became a blustery wind carrying Spring’s first tree buds to the ground as they began to pelt our living room window. I vividly and clearly remember waking up early and audibly asking the Lord ‘what would you like to discuss today Lord?’

The Holy Ghost is Miraculous!

I have been waking up early each day since and talking to the Lord, meditating, reading scripture pretty much whatever I am feeling led to do. I went from going to sleep at 4:00a.m. or 5:00a.m. to now waking up between 5:30a.m. and 6:30a.m. Evidently, I need to get used to being up early to be out on the road early to get to where we are going to get to the people that we need to meet that day. (Five weeks ago I was sleeping on a third shifters schedule, and I was fine with that – four weeks and six days ago I switched over to first shift over night.)

Father God is WONDERFUL!

Our blessings have come at us in a furious flurry. Sweet’s sleep doctor was the first to suggest, to encourage, and to support the idea that we get out on our trike this Summer. We went with the idea to our primary care physician and she was excited about the idea and proceeded to direct us on what we needed to do to make it happen. I for the first time in years am on a first shifters schedule as Summer is approaching.


We spoke with our current landlord a couple of days ago and he informed us that when we get up North that he recently purchased an apartment building and to give him a call when we arrive for a possible apartment. I am 8 year marijuana & cocaine free; 2-1/2 years alcohol free (Sweets is also celebrating being alcohol free as well), and going on one month tobacco free. Sweets did not do drugs or tobacco, however she is alcohol free for 30 months now. On Resurrection Sunday I will be headache and seizure free for one month.

The Holy Ghost is WONDERFUL!

On top of our primary care physician and Sweets’ sleep doctor approving this adventure my neurologist, life coaches, and counselor/therapist have also approved this trip as well. The blessings keep coming. Since the blessing started coming we have been able to share our belongings with others such as my clothing with a couple of men that were low of clothing because of life.

Father God is AWESOME!

Along with a pair of leather work boots. We were also able to bless another couple with some furniture that have been in need of it. Blessings all around.

Jesus is AWESOME!

I was able to bless a man who had lost his clothing with a wardrobe of clothing and new work boots. I thank God for the blessing of being drug, alcohol, and tobacco free. It is a miraculous healing of Jesus, my Lord and Saviour, Master and Messiah.

The Holy Ghost is AWESOME!

We are leaving Clio in June; heading East to Port Huron, then North-West to Bay City, North some more to Petoskey, and then South to Houghton Lake.

We are very grateful to you for your continued readership. If, you have found any value in this post, make sure to hit the “Like” button and “Subscribe” to TrailMagick89 blog. Please feel free to share your thoughts below. You can always find us here as well as on Amazon Prime Smile Pinterest Facebook, YouTube, & Instagram all set up for TrailMagick89.

Semper Fidelis, Elroy & Sweets

Hike for Homeless Awareness

18 April 2019, Thursday

Greetings from our family to yours and Welcome to another TrailMagick89 missive,

We have been spending more and more time looking at being more active this coming year, than over the last two years combined, and to do that we of course have decided to do a few items on our Bucket Lists as you may well know, for those of you who already follow this blog. So, without further ado let’s take a look at why we want to backpack the Michigan Shore to Shore Trail.

Sweets’ Reasons:

  1. See a different part of the state of Michigan that I have not been to before.

  2. To take pictures of whatever catches my eye.

  3. It’s another adventure with Elroy.

  4. To see the sunrise and the sunset over Lake Huron and Lake Michigan.

  5. I want to see more of Michigan whether it is by foot or by trike.

Elroy’s Reasons:

  1. Doctors said I will have to slow down do to Epilepsy, and other doctors said I would be in a wheelchair by the time I was 50.

  2. To see places in person I have only seen in pictures or on YouTube.

  3. To show Sweets that there is so much more out there to explore.

  4. I miss living outdoors and I want to develop into a better blogger and adventurer.

  5. I want to hike for Homeless Awareness.

Our lists are very simple. They give us insights into the reasons that will keep us on the trail when we are having a rough day and just want to quit. The numbers on people backpacking the National Scenic Trails; is about 90% of the people that start each trail quit before they reach the half way point due to lack of motivation, health, or finances and an additional 5% quit between the half way mark and the last tenth of the trail.

Some trails are short like the Michigan Shore to Shore Trail and is a state trail unlike the Appalachian Trail which is a multi-state trail. One is a bit over 200 miles where the other one is over 2000. So to have a list to motivate us to backpack even a shorter trail like the MI-S2ST is important in that we will develop deeper feelings and reasons for wanting to backpack the larger trails.

What are some reasons that you take for your adventures? Make sure to leave a comment below about the last great adventure you took and what reasons you gave yourself to ‘Never Give Up, Never Surrender’ (Galaxy Quest another great movie).

We had plans of beginning our first hike this year and yet again life is going to be getting in the way. When we first got our apartment we were told that we needed to get our mindset changed from living on the streets to living indoors. Well, every three to four months, instead of once a year the housing organization is doing surprise inspections, and the very first inspection we nearly lost our apartment because the tension bar and the storm door was to loose. Yeah, you read that right, the tension bar was to loose and needed to be adjusted. Then the next reason to fail us was his paperwork had our grandchildren living with us (we don’t have grandchildren) and there was not enough bedrooms. The following time we nearly failed because the inspector had trouble getting the sliding patio door to lock properly, we don’t have a problem locking it, but he did.

So if we are to get the thoughts of not living out on the trail out of our heads then why make failing a housing inspection so difficult. Let me tell you it is easier to be homeless than to follow the stupid rules. The good rules are easy to follow but to be a disable vet living on assistance that is difficult. I was informed by my doctors (to be approved by all of them) to return to work: I have to be one year seizure free; yet I can not make one month do to the stress that triggers them, because of stupid rules.

I look forward to the day that we can be the captains of our destiny, not some bureaucrat deciding which rules to enforce and which ones to ignore.

We appreciate that you stuck around until the end. If, you have found any value in this post, make sure to hit the “Like” button and “Subscribe” to TrailMagick89 blog. Please feel free to share your thoughts below. You can also find us on Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest, Amazon, and of course WordPress.

Semper Fidelis, Elroy & Sweets

Caution: Construction Zone

16 April 2019, Tuesday
Hello Everyone and Welcome to this your 39th TrailMagick89 missive,
Isaiah 28:16 says; “Therefore thus saith the Lord God, Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation a stone, a tried stone, a precious corner stone, a sure foundation: he that believeth shall not make haste”. So what we are about to share how could we possibly be even a little nervous. Thank you all for following us on our continuing journey.
Last week if you noticed we posted on Facebook and Instagram that TrailMagick89 was under construction. I figured that y’all may want to know what is going on with that. Well we have big news. HUGE NEWS. BIG BIG HUGE HUGE NEWS!
We are leaving Clio Michigan, sort of.
We are leaving our apartment in June and riding on Max the Rover. The idea is to head to Port Huron from Clio to visit friends then up to Bay City where we bought our trike at Ray’s Bike Shop for its annual check up then on to Petoskey. It is kind of an unofficial bicycle route across lower Michigan as a shore to shore.
I heard about it two years ago from a cyclist friend that rode from Muskegon to Port Huron as a Lake to Lake ride, he informed us that there is group of riders that take a ride from Port Huron to Petoskey each Summer and that we should join them, because “the more the merrier”. We are basically going to cycle around Michigan following where God leads us stopping in the various towns and cities chatting with the homeless, lending a hand when asked, sharing a story or a meal, staying a few days, and moving on. We are going where the Lord and the road takes us. As Winter approaches to whichever town or city we are in we will find a storage unit to store the trike in and find an apartment, a hostel, a pay by the month hotel and stay until Spring and then hit the road again.
You may be wondering why the construction sign. That would be our apartment; we have been going through our belongings, we have been blessed with everything we could have possibly have needed since moving to Clio, and so in turn we have shared that wealth with our friends here in Clio. We will be keeping our doctors, our bank, and our church.
Some of our furniture is already gone to friends that definitely needed the shelving and desk. The blinds have gone back up as the curtains will have a new home this week at the Coffee Shop. Most of our clothing will be going to Life-Line Church’s Clothing Give-a-Way very soon.
We have had the most busiest past week as we have confirmed with doctors and life coaches that we could leave at the end of our lease to legally leave without losing any benefits. A few years ago I applied for pastoral certification and last week I received an email reminding me that I was approved on February 15, 2013 and where could they send my documentation if i would like it? I was floored, I felt so blessed.
Back in 2008 I was finishing up two years of attending Bible institute and Bible College simultaneously while one suggested that I volunteered my time for hands on experience in the pastoral field the other required that I received experience in the pastoral field as well as volunteer work. So needless to say we are following God’s leading; we are EXCITED! So needless to say our lives are under construction thanks to our wonderful Lord.
Our apartment is a mess. Our belongings are dwindling in to manageable piles. We have been blessed from our time here in Clio from the different ministries here such as Celebrate Recovery ran by Pastor Jon Keeling out to New Covenant. As well as the other places mentioned in this missive as well as many, many, many more.
We appreciate that you stuck around until the end. If, you have found any value in this post, make sure to hit the “Like” button and “Subscribe” to TrailMagick89 blog. Please feel free to share your thoughts below. You can also find us on Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest, Amazon, and of course WordPress.
Semper Fidelis, Elroy & Sweets