We’re selling the beast. We thought we had to have a behemoth if we wanted to go full time. Wrong. It’s just not us. So we’re cleaning her out and listing her for sale.
We’re going to be on the hunt for a 30′ Airstream, hopefully with bunks. If not, we’ll build some. We’re handy like that.
Spent the weekend packing everything up. We gave this motorhome some serious blood, sweat, tears and CASH. Hope with all the upgrades we did ($3500 new tires anyone!?) we don’t lose our shirts on the sale.
We shall see.
Well, now that we’ve sized ourselves out of some state parks, there are only so many we can wiggle our big tush into. Tuckahoe, thankfully, is still one of them.
We adore it here. It’s 50 amp and has a nice wiiiiide open water and dump area…excellent for not-so-tiny-heinies. The electric loop is perfect for little bike riders.
There’s a great recycled tire playground. What a smart use of old tires!
It was a fun, but cold weekend. We’ll certainly be back. Next time maybe we’ll rent a canoe and throw a line in the lake to see what we can catch.
Vader says, “Home Jeeves”.
I think I love our motorhome. Kind of. It’s incredibly spacious. Like dance hall spacious. Because it’s mammoth, of course. And because it’s mammoth, it’s sized us out of many state/national parks. I dunno.
I’ve developed a bit of an unhealthy obsession with Airstreams. Aside from my dad owning 3 Airstreams over the last 15 years (can Airstream obsession be genetic?), I’ve started following all these FTers in tin cans across multiple social media channels. I’m pretty sure these are My People.
Shan thinks I’ve lost my mind–especially after sinking a year and many thousands of dollars into the motorhome. But I’m pretty sure somewhere in that noggin of his, he’s digging the idea too. One (of many) problems is that a 2005/6 bunkhouse Airstream is hard to find. The new ones are FAR out of our reach financially and we don’t have the desire to rehab an old one. We want to sell the house and be on the road this summer.
And the motorhome is literally ready to go…
What to do? What to do?
More will be revealed.
In order to do this, we need to sell our house. Truth be told, we’d be selling our house even if we weren’t planning on RVing full time. Don’t get me wrong, we love our home. It’s big (2500 sq. ft.) with 4 bedrooms and 2.5 bathrooms and ridiculous amounts of closet space. It’s NOT a McMansion…it has architectural character and was built when homes didn’t get slapped together in mere weeks. It boasts a huge living room and family room with a big, cozy fireplace, a kitchen full of white cabinets and miles of granite and a wonderfully open floor plan. We have 3.5 beautiful, private, zen-like acres yet we’re in a neighborhood. There are climbing trees, a stream for racing toy boats, fields for running and hills for sledding. Sounds like bliss, right?
view from the back corner…pre motorhome.
Mostly it is. What it also is…is LOADS of work. We spend so much of our time working on the house, the gardens, the lawn that we don’t get time to enjoy it. It’s also WAY more space than we need. The boys share a room, so we have 2 unused bedrooms. We spend all our time in the living room, making the family room a glorified hallway. We have this massive basement that would make an excellent game room. There’s even an attic on the 2nd floor that would be SO cool finished.
It will be hard to leave this house. I’ll cry. When we bought it we swore we’d be forever. Times change. Needs change. Priorities change. We want less stuff. We want more time. More experiences with our kids. And the only way to get that is to move on. Literally and figuratively.
While the RV was mostly “move in ready” when we brought her home, we knew there were things we were going to want to fix and upgrade. And boy oh boy have we been hard at work dropping money on her. Here’s what we’ve done so far…
- 6 brand spankin’ new Michelins. She had yet to get new tires and on a rig that’s 7 years old, it was time. Holy cow…that was a lot different than buying a new set of 4 for a little hatchback. Whew! But, for safety’s sake, it was worth it.
- New awning and front door. Sudden gusts of wind are not your friend when the door’s open and the awning’s out.
- New custom upholstery on both the captains chairs AND the sofa. The old stuff was black (too dark!) and all peely and yucky. The new stuff is completely swoon-worthy.
- New mattress for the pull-out sofa.
- New Bed-In-A-Box queen mattress for the master bedroom. I’ll let you know what I think after it actually gets used, but I suspect I might be in love.
- All new hydraulic lines to power the slides. After years of use, apparently those lines can blister. So, again for safety, Shan decided to replace them all.
- New magnetron for the microwave. Whoop-ti-doo. But when the micro stopped HEATING anything, it was time for a new magnetron.
- New parts for the innards of the vents/fans in the ceiling.
What we still need to do is get a new kitchen faucet and a new showerhead and figure out storage…what will go where. The IKEA closet organizer thingy I bought didn’t fit in the master closet. Leave it to me to measure width and height but totally forget depth. Meh. Back to the drawing board. I was also thinking I’d recover the dinette cushions…but I kinda don’t feel like it anymore. I took down all the window cornices too…will be reworking and reupholstering those guys.
Our first scheduled outing is for 4th of July weekend. We’d better be done by then!
Well, we’ve had the rig since December 2014 and the only times it’s been out on the open road is to have some work done. That’s it.
No adventuring for us. We just like to gaze lovingly out the windows of our S & B home at our VERY expensive lawn ornament and dream of ONE DAY taking the d@mn thing camping! What we ARE doing (I use the term “we” loosely) is upgrading it, fixing it, tweaking it and making it way better than the day we brought it home. More on that shortly.
It’s a lawn ornament that gets the royal treatment. A complete buff’n’wax.
At least she’s a perdy lawn ornament.
Some people chose these. Adorable.
I’ve had many experiences that prove to me how important it is to have health insurance. If we’re not working full-time remotely on the road for a company that offers employer subsidized health insurance, we better figure something else out, right?
Well, after an eye-opening call with RVer Health Insurance, a broker specializing in health insurance for full-time RVers, we have an answer. Or at least some potential options and answers. We’re now thinking that upon moving into the RV and out of the sticks & bricks (S&B) we’ll be changing our state of domicile to Texas (yeehaw!) in order to purchase some pretty rockin’ health insurance that’s mobile-lifestyle-friendly. The change to Texas will also benefit us in mail-forwarding and roadschooling ways as well (more to come on that). I can’t even imagine us as Texans. At all.
Plenty more research to be done, but so far, my money’s on RVer Health Insurance and their awesome options.
That’s one of the questions we’re asked.
The short answer is…”we dunno.”
The long answer is a work in progress and ever-changing, frankly. I’m in marketing/writing/editing and Shan is in electrical/mechanical/PCB/engineering. Both occupations can pair excellently with living/working remotely on the road. Since we’ll be roadschooling the boys (which will be darn-near a full-time gig in itself) and the purpose behind this adventure is to get out and SEE and EXPERIENCE this country, we’re hoping to snag some part-time gigs.
Surprisingly, full-time RVing is NOT cheap. People like to say “wow, you’re going to save so much money doing that!” I suppose that might be true if we were both keeping our current salaries. But we’re not. In fact, our family income will likely drop by at least 70%. That’s considerable. Gas and campground fees will be hefty (we need some solar power so we can camp for free–boondock), as will health insurance and groceries for growing boys!
If we’re not able to get some part-time jobs in our fields, we’ll likely be workcamping (a free campsite in exchange for work around the campground) and/or travelling to find some short-term contract work for Shan in his field (which is a big thing).
Yup. We spilled ’em.
Telling people that we intend to sell 95% of our belongings, quit our jobs, pull the kids out of traditional school, live in the motorhome and hit the open road indefinitely elicits all kinds of responses. So far they range anywhere from “you’ve lost your ever-lovin’ minds” to “OMG, I’m so jealous…take me with you”. Happily, the VAST majority have been supportive and excited to follow our upcoming adventure.
Telling our family has been the hardest. Mostly. Telling my dad and step-mom was easy-peasy. They’re nomadic Airstreamers at heart, having done similar to what we’re planning a few years back. And they intend to get out west with the Airstream again soon. So, they were ALL IN. Telling my mom and Shan’s parents was a bit more nerve wracking. I mean, my mom, newly widowed, uprooted her life in another state to move 5 minutes away from us (and her grandsons) and here we are planning on taking off. Sheesh! And to Shan’s parents, their grandkids are everything to them. So, we tried to tread as lightly as possible when we spilled the beans. But as one would expect of awesome, loving parents…they’re responses were wholly supportive. Of course they have had plenty of questions…some of which we can answer, some we can’t (like, “when will you be near *insert desirable geographic area here* so we can come visit!?”). But…as someone I loved dearly used to say…”More Will Be Revealed”.
Next up will be spilling the beans to our employers. Oy.
You know, I think we’re going to have to name this thing.
Our new-to-us Georgetown 379
We came full circle. This is the first motorhome floorplan that piqued our interest…in the earliest stages of adventure-planning. Also the EXACT motorhome…turns out it was still for sale. We started talking to the owner (again) and everything started moving very quickly. In, what felt like, no time flat we had our airline tickets to Tampa FL to go “see” this baby. We were fairly certain we’d be driving it home. And we did.
What a shakedown trip that was…from just above St. Pete’s in FL to northern Maryland. We sure did work out some kinks including, but not limited to, a massive gushing and terrifying leak in the bathroom shower, entry steps that decided to stop working and the glass turntable inside the microwave flying out and shattering all. over. the. damn. place.
But we made it. He and I are good adventurers together. The kids LOVE it. It has a separate ROOM with bunk beds. Not bunks in the hall, like most. A ROOM (the size of a rather small closet, but still) with a door.
See that “walk-in-closet” triangle? There are bunk beds in there!