Tuesday, December 04, 2012

Maybe the Time has Arrived

I've read in past blogs that for some RVer's, unexpected events took place that led them in the direction of fulltiming in an RV. For me the unexpected event may be taking place. I mentioned a few posts ago about the changes at my job. Well this week with each meeting things changed and as usual everyone has to have "their" meeting about the situation. It's actually fun to watch these people "tap dance" and each with a different spin on whats happening.

Abruptly my contract will come to a halt December 31, instead of April 2014. I can keep the same job and just switch to the company that has taken over the contract for my job. It's a company I don't like and they would pay me less for doing the same work, the same stress, the same daily bs.

Or I could stay with my current company, as they try to place me and another person they just hired 3 months ago in a different positions outside of finance. Problem is, finances/money/numbers are my thing ... not PowerPoint slides, boring meetings, written reports, etc. I love working with spreadsheets and analyzing budgets / expenditures.

So you see I am kinda between a rock and a hard place. OR I may be in a very very good place because it might just be the situation to move me in finding a trailer sooner and hit the road.

To keep the job I like ... I have to work for a company after December 31 that I don't like.

To work with a company I like ... I may have to go to a job that I don't like, also by December 31.

Have I confused you?

I noticed yesterday the house down the highway a 1/2 mile finally sold after being on the market for only about 6 months. The house was in terrible shape and the asking price was higher than what I would have asked for mine. So I am kicking myself for not making a decision last summer of putting my house on the market. I couldn't make up my mind on whether to keep it or not and it may have cost me a sale.

Now with my current job situation the thought of selling is a little more stronger and I actually see being on the road a much better option, than staying here and working in a situation I don't like but would only do for a paycheck every 2 weeks after December 31.

Maybe this recent job situation is what I needed to kick me in the ass and get me moving in the direction of pulling up stakes while the weather is still good and getting out of here before the weather gets cold and snowy. Whats the worst thing could happen? I could find out I don't like living fulltime on the road and I need a house so I would end up in the western USA where I want to stay anyway and either buy or rent a place out in the boonies somewhere in a small town.

All this I have thought about for over a year but it looks like "an unexpected event" has had to happen to move me into action.

Sunday, December 02, 2012

Sebastian

This link hit home tonight while I was reading it. I've had a couple of friends tell me a lot of the same things. It was written a few years ago but still states the same thoughts I've had for over a year now.

The post here hits home: It sounds loud and clear!

No Progress

Just like before ... a burst of "I'm going to clean, downsize and sell", then back to the normal routine of work, watch ballgames, sleep, eat, work, watch ballgames, sleep, eat. Anyone else go through the up and down roller coaster when they were trying to decide what to do? I warned you that I had a college football and basketball addiction.

Email traffic is leaning towards "always have a base camp" and I see that more and more from the blogs I follow. That doesn't mean my base camp has to be in my current location. There is one thing I have noticed in my search of small houses in off the grid towns in the west ... much more expensive for what I live in now. I could buy at lower prices and then spend to upgrade to livable conditions. While I would be fixing up a new SB, that would also take time away from traveling. These locations that I am looking at are small towns in the SW, near larger towns such as the location I live in now ... only difference is the weather of course.

I was never much of a pack rat anyway, but I have still downsized a lot and am basically living in this house with the bare necessities.

It's too long of a story to go into but I found this past week, as of the end of December due to reorganization, my current job will change. My job is not going away, but due to approved changes, for me to continue to have "access" to the financial system that I currently have in performing my job I would have to change to the company that has that contract. I am not going to do that since I work for a great company and they have slotted me for a different position in the same department.

When I heard the news last week of the December 31 deadline, I thought for a short time it might be the right time to pack up and leave and get a taste of living on the road in the SW for the winter. I found out that I like my house, the land that I live on, a structured environment, with the ability to get away when I want even if it is just for the day. Also I have to admit, my hounds have a great routine and a great field to roam in.

So like a friend told me after my last post, "things can always change" ... it might have changed back to my normal routine this past week.

On the subject of downsizing I have a funny story just as an example on why it is so hard for the American public to resist the continuous buying.  Besides all of the junk email, TV ads and a few regular mail of coupons to save ... I bought 2 (TWO) things yesterday at 2 different stores. I bought a pair of shoes at Dick's Sporting Goods and a DVD recorder at Best Buy. For that I was handed the following by the cashier:

Dick Sporting Goods - a receipt that was 17" long!!!!  $10 off on my next purchase for filling out a survey. "Special" Holiday Financing offer.  They were shocked when I said I would use my debit card to pay.

Best Buy - a receipt that was 14" long!!!  For ONE item.  Same type of offers, surveys and a threat never to lose this receipt if my "disposable" DVD recorder were to stop working and I would want to return it. They seem to only last around 6 months anyway, thus the name "disposable".

Sorry the blog is boring, so up and down and no travel decisions but I'll take it one day at a time and see how it goes.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Boondocking and Isolation

Those two words in the title never seem to leave my thoughts and today came back into the mental scene like a high speed storm. Sell everything, hit the road and figure things out on the way.

How's that for a wide range of thinking?

I have 4 days off from work after tomorrow, the 21st, and plenty of time to shampoo my carpets, wash down the walls, a thorough cleaning, more downsizing and put that brand new "for sale" sign in the front yard. Yes, I know it's the holidays, I know its winter and maybe it will not sell during this time ... but at least it's a start and if I were to get lucky with a sale, then I hit the road.

I am not sure of the reason for the sudden change in thinking.

My favorite college basketball team is #1 until they get beat and they will get beat eventually ... maybe tonight. Yet, I know I can watch them anywhere in the USA with my Directv dish and transfer my service.

All I thought about today during a slow day of work ... was boondocking and sitting somewhere with warm weather, a slight breeze, sun and 3 hounds napping outside on a rug.

So we will see. I think I am going to be very productive these next 4 days and that will get me back in forward motion of clearing my house out, selling it and hitting the road.

What if it doesn't sell?  After a period of time where I give it a chance to sell, I'll buy a trailer, head west and see what the future brings.

RVsue's story has always been very interesting as well as her current blog posts. When I read last year, the reason she decided to sell out and hit the road I could see we had similar reasons.

Stay tuned.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Is Sadie a Hold Up in the Decision?

As much as I love my hounds, I wonder sometimes if my 80lb bloodhound Sadie is subconsciously keeping me from making a decision. Two "low level" basset hounds are much different than 2 basset hounds and 1 large bloodhound. Plus a "hound" is much different than those smart never run away shepherds. I would have to have all 3 of my dogs on 3 different retractable leashes because even with the older Winston (8yrs old), when they get on a scent, they are off and all 3 can run much faster than I can.

I know this from past experience in the hayfield walks in the afternoon and an unexpected deer shows up within their scent range ... and I know how slow I am chasing them.

So when I see pictures of other travelers hiking with the dogs unleashed, and they stay around without running off, I know that is not possible with the noses of my hounds.

With a tow vehicle that I am currently driving daily to work, that puts me in the range of a small trailer. The more I think of it, the more I could see me and 2 basset hounds doing it comfortably but that 3rd 80lbs of fumbling tumbling hound INSIDE something only 16'-18' makes it seem hard to imagine.

So that is why I asked, if Sadie, my big bloodhound has been the reason I have not been able to make a decision, when I am use to making decisions pretty quickly on other topics.

All through my google searches over the past 13 months, I have not found anyone RVing full time with a bloodhound or even a large dog with 2 other dogs. Definitely not inside a smaller trailer.

Based on weekend observations, my hounds sleep A LOT during the day while I am at work and also while I am around on weekends. Those naps could be on a rug inside a portable fenced area like RVsue uses for her two smaller dogs but when the winds are howling and the rain is flying, the big girl with the 2 basset hounds and I would seem to be pretty cramped inside a smaller trailer when I think about it.

Does that move us back to a Class C or a 32' - 34' Class A?  Even in times of $4 gas?

I have done all of my gas estimates with different types of RV's at $4 per gallon fuel in the past year. I am pretty close to an estimate of 8,000-9,000 miles traveled in a year, maybe less if I stay in places I like longer. Having lived in the west in the past for 20+yrs, I have seen a lot of Calif, Washington, Idaho, and Arizona. So I see myself doing less traveling than maybe some others I read about.

Still, I keep coming back to traveling full time with 3 hounds and 1 of those hounds being 30" tall at the shoulder, packing only 80lbs and a tail that can clean off a coffee table with a couple of tail wags. I will not even get into the drool stories....lol

I could do a Class C or A and used my current tow vehicle as my toad.

More and more to think about.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Nothing New Except the Morning Temps

As you see on the left side of this post, I follow a few blogs of others either snow-birding, RVing fulltime and a few that camp when they can get time. I follow more than what is listed to the left in Google Reader, so I do have a wide range of travelers and a wide range of ideas and thoughts.

Still, I remember to remember that each of us has their own situation in doing what we do.

Over the past month I have had time to think of what a typical day in retirement would look like if I chose to stay here in this house on a fulltime basis. A couple of days off during the week plus weekends gave me a glance into the future and one that turned out quite boring. I had thoughts asking myself "is this what you really want to do?" when I decide to retire and stay in this location? When imagining doing what the people do that I read daily about I asked myself the same question "is this what you really want to do?" I saw more positive images and thought "yes" to that question about traveling.

That thought process led me to take a look at the way I am always changing my mind more than I like in making this decision. Add in the comments on this blog, the stories of others in their blogs, the few private emails I receive about what to do and it keeps me in the mode of not making a decision.

I realized over the past 13 months since this urge of RVing fulltime hit me, my mind consistently changed with the change of seasons, situations at work and/or when I was just plain bored. Tired of the same routine that I and others in the workforce follow.

So really the answer is in all of this analysis I have been going through, I will not know until I just do it. Seems simple.

I have decided instead of jumping in 100% feet first by selling everything and hitting the road with my hounds and just the bare necessities and figuring it out as I go ... That I will keep my house, continue to downsize, buy a trailer and hit the road.

The date to hit the road is still undetermined but the search for a travel trailer is on as well as buying the things I will need to be off the grid in my travels.

I do know that the temps (20's) I wake up to and drive to work in makes it so tempting to buy something soon and leave but I don't feel like I am fully prepared to make that move yet.

Through my reading I am seeing more pulling off the road and staying in one spot longer. Are the fuel prices this past summer a factor? I know that fuel cost are very flexible and can be controlled by the amount of movement from one camp site to another. I have no doubt that I will be more of a boondocker than a traveling tourist.

In my case when comparing the 2 options of keeping the house and traveling or selling the house and traveling, my NET monthly expenditures are within $200-$300 of each other. Not a big difference. In either case I already have my tow vehicle.

As one friend told me "you only need shelter".

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Feeling Content

I have to admit that the fall season is one of my favorite seasons here in southern Indiana. Great daytime temps of low to mid 70's and night time temps down in the 30's. There has been just enough rain to make up for the lack of last summer, so there is still the yard mowing every week. Attending football games at IU is great. Not a lot of wins but it's great being outside in good weather watching one of my favorite sports and teams.

During this change of seasons, I noticed a change in my urgency to "sell out" and hit the road. I didn't feel that "rushed" feeling of getting a bunch of things done so I could put the For Sale sign out in the yard. I'm still downsizing, took another huge load of clothes to the goodwill just last Monday and have disposed of a lot of things that I had not used in years. So the downsizing is still progressing. A couple of blog followers emailed me to tell me they thought all I needed more than anything was a vacation away from my home and local area. I thought about that on my daily dog walks through the field behind my house. They might be right. I haven't had more than a day or two vacation days off from work in 7 years and that includes the time I was working at home with my online business.

I also noticed a trend in the blogs I read. More and more people were saying how they were either looking for or had a 2nd location so they were not traveling every week or two constantly. Some had already returned to their winter locations where they will stay in their RV's or trailers until next spring and then travel during the spring and summer. A few that I follow are traveling and will travel full time during the winter, moving to different locations every few weeks.

I liked the honesty recently in a few blogs I follow. They each brought up things in my "con" column on my analysis spreadsheet for which of my 4 options to choose. I have always wondered how much I would be willing to compromise while living smaller on the road. I have always wondered about my short attention span and how that would affect traveling on the road full time. How soon would I tire of it and want to do something else? Or would I tire of it at all?

So I think I am back to my original plan that I had even before the thought of full-timing and RVs were ever a thought in my mind. That original plan was to keep my house that is paid for as a "base camp", and travel in warmer climates during the Midwest winter's or travel when the urge hit me and for as long as I wanted. Then follow whatever I felt like doing.

I am still wanting the travel trailer/truck/SUV combo.  I'll decide on either a Casita, an Escape, Bigfoot or the Lance 1575 towed by my H3 and visit the places I have been to in the past or the new locations I read about on my blog list. During those travels I believe all the questions I have had about what to do will answer themselves and only then will I know if I should "sell out" and hit the road full time or keep a couple of locations to stay at.

I am still sure that when I do travel I want to boondock more than anything and get off the grid as far as possible. With 3 hounds possibly my largest quantity of my supplies will be drinking water...for me and them. Who would have thought that water would be possibly the biggest quantity of all the stuff I would take with me? Yet it would have to be based on the water consumption of myself and 3 big dogs. (granted 2 of them are short but over 60lbs).

Thank you for the Amazon stories, I now know I would never want to work there.  :)

So in summary, not much going on here. I feel the "hibernation" stage approaching. In some ways I am like a bear once winter hits.

Next week will be 2 years ago when I read about Glenn on the Yahoo Business page and started my curiosity of RVing full-time.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

At This Point in Time

I survived my grueling hours of watching college football yesterday. My favorite team lost as usual but they made it exciting after coming back from being down 27-0. During all of this viewing, the thought of "bordem" floated through and I wondered if I watch that many hours because there is nothing else to do in the area I live, and what would I be doing if I were in a different location....like on the road.

In today's tv land, and I am not a big time tv watcher, I could (can) watch a ballgame live anywhere I have an internet connection on my iPhone or iPad or iMac. That opens up a lot of possibilities. Yet, I remember a few years back when the NFL was on strike and games were not being played, I spent every Sunday (weather permitting) outside doing something. I did not miss the games as much as I thought I would.

So maybe the massive amounts of time I spend watching ballgames is more about my location, being bored at times, except when my favorite team is playing.

How does all of this rambling tie in with RVing full-time?

I found out yesterday (again) while watching too many hours of football, that I would rather be parked out in the "boonies" somewhere, outside enjoying the environment around me rather than being inside vegging out on the couch watching football. The thought of sitting in the dark night around a campfire, in a jacket for cooler temps, sounds much more enjoyable than sitting inside a house bored.

So as the title of my post says today ... At This Point in Time ... I prefer the Truck/SUV and a small trailer combination. Right now, and I know it could change in the future, but right now I need to get as far off the grid as possible and for as long as possible. I can do that best with a 4x4 and small trailer.

That desire of being off the grid and the blogs/pictures I read/see on a daily basis, keeps my desire strong for selling all I have an hit the road full-time.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

The Mind is a Dangerous Thing

It all started last night when I was organizing all of my bookmarks, deleting the old/unused ones, when I ran onto some older bookmarks leading me to RVs for sale.  Some of these were on eBay, Craig's List, Mfg Websites, etc. I started searching travel trailers then moved to the Class C's. The Class C looked like a large house after spending the past months looking at different travel trailers. When I jumped to the Class A's, they looked as large as a mansion on the inside. All that additional room scrambled my brain cells.

I then remembered a comment on one of the blogs I read "A Class C can go anywhere a truck and trailer can go" when boondocking. That comment scrambled more of my brain cells (what few are left).

My mind turned to being dangerous, thinking back to my original plan of a Class A or C and towing a 4x4. I stopped looking or thinking and logged off for a few hours of sleep.  You cannot get a lot of hours of sleep if you are a night person like I am, so it's always just "a few" hours of sleep.

So this morning with a couple of cups of Seattle's Best Coffee, the thought of a Class C pulling my H3 popped back into the possible plan.

I spent the rest of the morning updating and adding new email addresses to my Facebook account, so the email would tie into this blog domain name. I guess I have a few new ideas after last night, all leading in the direction of full-time living on the road. I might try a few new ideas online for producing some monthly income. Working online fulltime from 2005-2010 makes you always remember how nice it was to work at home and not going to a job.

The rest of today and night (Saturday) will be spent satisfying my addiction to college football with almost 14 hours of viewing pleasure. At the same time I will see if my dangerous brain cells will calm down a little bit about what to buy.

Did anyone else have this much trouble trying to decide what RV, truck or trailer to buy?

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Escape Travel Trailer

I spent some time tonight on a forum of owners that travel in the Escape Travel Trailer. These are made in Chilliwack, BC Canada. You have can have them made to your specs and even some owners had the factory install different accessories they bought from companies other than Escape. I am interested in the 19' model along with the option of having a large range of ideas they can install. Highly recommended by a friend that has years of experience in full-timing in small fiberglass trailers "off the grid".

Looking at the pictures of where these people are camping, got me motivated back into action. Just like the decision of tow vehicles, I can feel the options of different trailers narrowing down to 2-3 different ones, the list is getting shorter.

On this forum I also saw people my age that were full-timing, telling others that were on the fence trying to decide when to retire, and start the travel journey ... to do it now, don't wait.

I have heard that before from some of my readers.

It gives me something to think about while at work tomorrow. The end of my fiscal year at work is coming to a close soon, so the pace should lighten up a little to where I can do some thinking at work about how to get out of here.  Maybe even a little online research on trailers.

Maybe I could get a job as one of those part-time NFL officials.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Still Alive

I have had a few people email me asking me if everything is ok since my blogging seems to have taken a vacation. At the end of August I had huge amounts of motivation and action. Then Labor Day weekend hit with a lot of plans to get closer to putting the house for sale, downsizing and hitting the road after finding a tow vehicle and a trailer.

I hit a gigantic wall that weekend.

Did nothing on my list, watched a lot of college and pro football, mowed the yard once, did a lot of thinking, reading and looking at pictures of different setups and spent time around the house with the hounds.

I haven't done anything since.

I've been looking at google images, reading forums and talking to a few people that fulltime or have in the past with an SUV and a small trailer. As far as trailers I have narrowed it down to the Escape made in BC Canada, the Lance 1575 and the Bigfoot 17'-19'...possibly a Casita.

While I am still able to with good health, I want to travel to locations that are way off the path. It's the only experience I have in camping, but those were short stays, camping in a tent after backpacking in the Cascades in Washington. Still I want to be able to take a trailer/SUV as far back as possible and stay there. Also have the ability to stay on BLM or National Forests.

I chose to trade my Mini Cooper for a H3 Hummer, even with the low towing capacity of 4,500 pounds.  I am using the 75% of the max weight to find the trailer that will fit those limits while traveling in the west. I don't mind going slow in the truck lane, but I liked the comfort of the ride and if needed they can climb anything. It has low mileage, serviced regular at the dealership and in my price range. Currently just driving in the local area not towing anything, I am getting 19.2 mpg. The Toyota FJ Cruiser was my other option and a hard decision to make but I couldn't find one with less than a 100,000 miles within the price that I wanted to pay. Each has it's pro's and con's.

If I get out on the road and decide all of this does not work, then I'll go from there and buy something bigger. This combo gets me out on the road the fastest and without touching my savings. Also I have never wanted to take a bunch of stuff with me and fit the rv/trailer around what I was taking. I have wanted to buy the trailer/rv that I want and then decide from there what I would take. I have always said I can and have traveled light.

What about the hounds??? They are going with me just as it has always been the plan. Once I am on the camp site I will not be spending a lot of time inside the trailer. Bad weather sure, we all will be inside until it passes, it will be much bigger than a tent!! They don't take up a lot of space inside based on their sleeping habits. From the people I talk to that live full time on the road with dogs, they say a trailer 17-19' will be ok. I have done some testing here at home by using the smaller 2nd bedroom I use for my office/bicycle trainer/dog kennel and two desks, just to see how cramped that space would be with the hounds. It's doable without any problems.

I know it's a big change than what I have looked at, wrote about and questioned in the past 11 months but everything feels good in this.

All is good here in the tropics of Southern Indiana!


Tuesday, August 28, 2012

I Clear Out More I Find More

Since my last post telling you about test driving different potential tow vehicles, I have moved more things to recycling.  I have pulled more clothes from the closet for my next Goodwill run to the larger town 25 miles away. During this time of doing a room at a time, I find more things I would do to the house if I were staying here. So I really need to do them and I think some things can be done while the For Sale sign is in the yard.

I am not a "pack rat", never have been nor will be ... but it is amazing how one person can collect so much stuff over the years. I do a lot of downsizing on an annual basis, so this is why it is so surprising to me as I move through each room, just how much stuff has accumulated.

The next thing to sort are books, my music collection and my IU sports collection. What do I do with them? When I say books, I am not talking a lot of books but these are the books that survived the last time I went through and cleared out books. My music collection is nothing more than obnoxious. Ranging from LP's (vinyl), to cassette tapes (over 300 ea), to CD's (close to 400), a dvd movie collection and a collection of IU football and basketball games on VCR tapes and DVD's, dating back to the first VCR player/recorder in 1985.

So I guess I am at the hard part of getting rid of some things that I really like, still listen to, still read or look through ... I am not sure what to do with them ... storage is not an option.

Throughout my busy day at work and the time home in the afternoon, one thought kept moving through my head pretty consistently. That was, a Toyota Tundra Pickup, with a cab high bed shell and a trailer. Still when I went back and looked at some Class C's along with the BT Cruiser that I had bookmarked.....I like the advantages of them and wanted them just as much as a truck and trailer. LOL

Even though I have gotten rid of a lot of stuff this weekend, I still have a lot to do and it's like a never ending battle. I did sell one of my bedroom chests within hours of texting the pics to my friends. I am having no luck selling my spare set of wheels and tires on Craig's List, except the Nigerian that wanted my name, address and phone number so his company could send me a check and his shipper could stop by this small out of the way Midwestern town to pick the wheels and tires up. In a reply to his email I just attached a link of his name that I found on google showing he was from Nigeria...never heard back from him.

Someone at work today asked me if I thought you could RV full-time on a "shoestring budget". He and his wife would love to do that but being cash strapped due to life, I'm not sure it would be a good idea. I told them I have no experience in RVing so I couldn't answer that but to me traveling in anything across the country on a full-time basis, on a "shoestring budget" is pretty dangerous. I told him to talk to another co-worker that had the huge Chevy dual axle pickup and the 38' 5th wheels for the RV experiences, not the monthly expenditures.

So, the thought of the day ... do I want to get on the road the fastest way and that is buying a truck and a trailer for less than I would spend on a Class C. Or do I need to wait? I don't want to touch my savings, like I have said before. Now I do have a savings for just RVing that has been increasing, but the best way to raise cash is selling the house.

Truck / Trailer or Class C towing a small 4x4 vehicle? Or just a Class with no toad?

I wish I would really make up my mind ... very very frustrating.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Test Driving Tow Vehicles

After taking a load to the local recycling center, I headed to Bloomington IN about 25 miles away to test drive some Toyota Tundra's, FJ Cruiser, Ford F-150 and a H3 Hummer.

One thing was consistent about all of these vehicles ... I found myself staying at the speed limit with ease ... something I don't experience a lot in my Mini Cooper. That was a good thing!

I started with a 2008 Tundra Crew Cab that had an long bed, something you don't see a lot of. Drove with the comfort of the Cadillac while I headed to the lake down a road that was narrow with hills, curves and blind spots. It had a 5.7 Liter V8, 6 speed transmission. A whopping wheelbase of a 165". Loved it but a few things bothered me, over a 100K in miles, the crew cab seats pulled up and would have been a pain to set up some sort of bench for the hounds to lay, sleep or sit on while traveling. Tow capacity of 10,200 lbs, new tires and new brakes. Clean carfax. Thinking after I left, it may be a little bit more of vehicle than I want/need pulling a smaller trailer.

Out of curiosity I drove a 2007 Toyota FJ Cruiser. A friend has one and has 4-wheeled everywhere, literally, in it and has pulled a small trailer. She warned me it did not have enough cargo space and hard to see out the back and both of those warnings were true. Yet, it drove really nice, I loved it, could have bought right on the spot .... still reality was...not enough room for cargo storage and traveling with the hounds, if I chose a trailer. Plus it had come from NJ, showed a lot of rust in the engine bay and underneathe the truck. I am assuming that was from all snow removal on the highways with salt and sand in the winters, that's also a favorite combe here in Indiana.

Stopped by the Ford dealership to drive a 2009 F-150 ... basically just didn't like it period. No offense intended for any Ford owners reading this.

Stopped by just to talk, with the owner of the lot I bought my Mini Cooper from. He had a nice 2007 Toyota Tundra 4x4 I was interested in driving but it sold on Thursday. I told him what I was wanting to do and what I was looking for in a tow vehicle. Possibly a Tundra like he had last week. Most of the trucks he had on his lot were dual axle, couple of Fords for $35K, a couple of Dodge Ram 2500 & 3500's, a H3 Hummer and a FJ Cruiser where someone had spent the money to max it out on 4-wheeling accessories.

I picked the H3 to test. It was rated with a 112" wheel base, 9" off ground and a towing capacity of 4,500 pounds. The tow package was trailer ready with a 7 pin connection for the trailer lights etc. It road better than the FJ, a little different ride, felt better on my bad lower back (important). I have to be honest, I like this vehicle as being one to tow a smaller trailer, enough 4x4 to get me a little further off road (just not to the end of the earth) and enough room to store cargo for a solo traveler and some hounds. For the hounds, the back seats slid forward and then you had the choice of folding the backs forward or leaving them up. If I had that vehicle I would change the roof rack and buy the 3/4 length one to hold more storage on top. My old '63 VW had a great rack like that just for the VW bus. It had a 2 owner clean car fax, 74K on the odometer.

So that was the range of my test driving today. A truck and trailer is a big switch from what I had been thinking a month or so ago, with the Class A pulling a Mini Cooper, a Class C alone and then towing a toad of some sort. I have always had the urge to be able to get a little further off the beaten path in my stays.

The Big News is ... I bought a new stand to attach a new "Home For Sale by Owner" sign to.  The last one I had up for a short time last spring was destroyed by one of those high speed winds and thunderstorms you see in the Midwest. I am not sure how far down the highway it flew before it was slammed into the turf.

The more I think, even for full-timing as a solo traveler with some hounds, the rigs get smaller. RVSue has been on the road for a year in a Casita, seems to love that set up. A couple of others have been in a Casita for over a year and they all like their set ups. Maybe that's something to think about. Really take the minimizing your lifestyle to a whole different level and still see the same beautiful country a 40'er does.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Truck and Trailer

I am back on the Truck & Trailer kick this week.  I keep thinking of all of those pictures I have seen and in some cases hiked, where you are only going to get back in there with a 4x4 Truck. Thinking of a 17'-21' trailer and a shell over my truck bed for storage and a crew cab for the hounds to lay down or sit up while riding. 

I know I could buy something bigger and tow a 4x4 and that has been analyzed....and tempting....but I don't think my pocket book wants to do that.  See, I want to make this transition without touching my savings.  I want to do it with cash raised by selling everything (downsizing) and selling my house. I know that once I spend time out west that I will not want to come back to Indiana. I lived in California for 10 years and Whidbey Island, Washington for 10 years....loved it all. 

I still can't get the thought of warm weather this winter out of my mind and to do that I should hit the road no later than November to beat the bad Midwest weather.

I'm back to the plan of cleaning out, selling what I can and donating the rest as I wait for that 1 buyer of my house.  Once the house is sold, buy the trailer and the truck that is going to tow the small trailer. Will put the Mini Cooper up for sale soon and will use the proceeds of that to buy my 4x4. Then I will drive my '94 Chevy PU until the house sells. Once the house sells, my friend buys my '94 pick-up, that he has been waiting to do for years and is still waiting for me to give it up.

Then I will hit the road with a truck trailer combo, all bought with cash from the house sale and will not have to touch my savings.  The feeling of having that savings for emergencies feels better than using some of it for a bigger motor home.

A lot to do this weekend. More stuff to drop off at the goodwill, more trash for Wednesday pickup. I plan to get down to what I would live with on the road as soon as I can, while working and waiting for the house to sell.  I have verified with my HR dept, that a 2 week notice is all I need and all vacation time and salary is paid up the day I leave. 

I have more "stuff" in this house than I thought I did .... unbelievable.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Looked At RV's Today

I took time on Saturday to hit the road, looking at RV's on 3 different lots. The closest lot was small, family owned but only had travel trailers and 5th wheels. Drove around the lot and did not see anything worth getting out of my car for. I then headed 45 miles east to Indianapolis to Colerain RV's and Camping World because I knew with their large inventory I could check on about every RV and trailer that I have considered.  That proved to be the case.

Just as I planned, I was fortunate to walk both lots without a salesman and only my iPhone to take short notes on what I saw. Sure, I looked at the 2013's but with no intentions of buying them and not even buying anything. With cars I am too impulsive but not with RVs.

I was able to see 2 Class B's, both 2005's. The Coachman Concord and the Gulfstream BT Cruiser both had slides, 27' - 29' and believe it or not had enough space for me and my hounds or more space than some C's. I liked the BT Cruiser better, it was 29' and I had it rated higher for having enough room for me and my hounds. For a smaller rig I have always liked them.

I looked at 3 different Class A's. 2 of them were 30' long and the old old Fleetwood Southwind was 34'. I looked at that not only because I wanted to see an older model with no slides but also it was the same model my friend had full-timed in as recently as 2005. The other two were both Winnebago's Sightseer. Of course they felt bigger inside than a 29' Class C because they are higher and appeared to be a little wider. Yet, when I sat in the driver seat and compared the feeling of sitting in a Class C or Class B ... it just seemed too big and not something I would want to be driving in the places that I want to be going.

I looked at 6 Class C's. From a 2002 - 2012, 28'-31' and even checked out a 23' just to see if it would work with my dogs. The best and favorite of all of the C's was the 2012 Jayco Melbourne. It had 2 slides, was 30' and had every feature that I wanted but was listed at $105,000, more than I want to spend. The 2007 Forest River Sun Seeker really had a good floor plan but really nowhere to install a computer desk by replacing a couch or a kitchen table. The 2002 Jayco Designer had a great floor plan and it must have been a good RV because it had be used and used a lot. It was 31' with a slide but the overall condition was not something I would want to deal with.

The last 3 C's I looked at were all Thor's. I am not sure of the reliability of their reputation but I liked all of their floor plans and have even when seeing them online. The 2012 23' surprised me with the room it had and while I was sitting there looking around, walking around I really felt that it might be a possibility with 3 dogs on the days that we were stuck inside due to weather. I might be wrong after I get out on the road, but if the weather is good, I plan on being outside most of the time. It proved to be an option to look at later. The 2005 Thor 4Winds was in really great shape, the entertainment center was in the overhead compartment, was 30' long with a couple of slides. The 2013 Thor Freedom Elite was 28', had the best "trunk" storage I had ever seen and of course being a new model, had everything you would need. Looked great.

Then as a lowest start up cost option, I looked at a 2012 Jayco Feather Travel Trailer and believe it or not I could see that working with dogs and me. Had a queen size bed in the front, kitchen in the rear. At the same time it may not be made for 365 day rving. The other Jayco trailers I looked at were great but to go that route I would need to buy a 4x4 truck to tow it with.

On the way back I had about 90 miles of country highway to cruise and think, unlike my trip to Indy on I-70 was more like a high speed race and no time was allowed to day dream. It is beautiful scenery in southern Indiana and the highway I travled felt like times I driven cross country. I wanted to see what kind of reaction I had when I got back to my small town and the house I have lived in since 1997. I wanted to see if these past few weeks of saying I am packing up and leaving or in my recent posts, talking of selling everything but the hounds and hitting the road, would make that feeling different as I drove up the drive way to the top of the 80' hill.

In the past, after day trips like these, I was always happy to get back home and it felt good, even if the snow flew or the sun was out and it was hot. I noticed today it was different. I have really had no attachment to this town living a few miles outside of it and knowing no one ... and I didn't feel any different driving through town today either. The town is so cliquish, that it has created it's own privacy with me and that has been that I liked while living here. I am more of a loner than people I know, think ... so it may be a huge reason I have stayed in this location for 15 years. As far as the house, it felt like it was time to go. All I could think about was what I needed to do to put it on the market and things I needed to do to sell everything that I am not going to take.

Didn't surprise me with that reaction but it was different than in the past.

So today was a good day, a recycling run, more clothes ready to be dropped off at Goodwill tomorrow in a town 25 miles away, sun was out all day and I was able to check on floor plans of every kind of RV I had been looking at online. So I am now in the stage of clearing out the house by selling, donating or throwing away and preparing to sell the house by owner.

I am thinking of putting the sign out tomorrow afternoon in case I find that buyer that would rather do their own improvements (ie: painting interior in their favorite colors) rather than not putting the sign out until I have everything cleaned out, painted and pretty well empty before showing it. It only takes 1 to buy and the highway I live on gets a ton of traffic.

As always your thoughts and comments are appreciated and very helpful.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Is My Job Making the Decision For Me?

After the 4th day in a row this week .... yes, I know, it's Thursday night as I write this, so that is 4 out of 4 days.....my job seems to be getting worse and worse.  A job that at one time I really liked but with some major changes out of my control,the past year has made this job a big pain.

I am beginning to think this job situation is "part of the solution" as in motivating me enough to get me out the door and soon.  Long time readers will say, "we have heard this before". Yes you have, but this time it is much different. I have contacted 2 different people about their interest in my home before I stick the sign in the yard. The last 2 people that were interested last spring, first part of summer made different decisions on location. I already know without any doubt what I am finally taking and what I am getting rid of. I am going to be very very busy this weekend.

My RV spreadsheet to analyze different options was important in this process by showing me, that yes, it is ok if I leave after I sell my house or rent it out but one of those two things must happened before I can hit the road due to the reduction in my monthly income. (temporary) Still I have enough pension coming in monthly that I can survive ... and travel ... listen to the waves at the beach for a few days ... feel the warm temps this winter instead of freezing and complaining about it on this blog and seeing some of the pictures from blogs I follow, in person instead of on my monitor.

This job thing is not just something that has taken place to where some readers may think I am acting irrationally or impulsively.  Some of this "circus" has been playing since I got there. In the past, the job was new, I had a different attitude than I do now and I had no plans 2 years ago to retire anytime soon...so I decided to put up with it.  Now I have decided I no longer need to nor want to. Life is too short to put up with daily bs that is out of your control.

It's going to be a Class C, that I buy and one that I pay cash for. I have a few manufacture names that I like and will look for. I am not going to be taking all the stuff I thought I was. I am taking only things that I needed. The rest will be sold or donated, nothing will be left in storage. I am going out Saturday morning for a short trip to a RV dealer just to look at some floor plans of C's. This is a small family owned lot where they personally drive all of their inventory from Florida to sell in Indiana.

That is a BIG change in my downsizing philosophy.

I am not having much luck selling my spare set of wheels and tires from my Z4 on Craig's List so I guess I will go where I have been successful at in the past, enough success where I sold fulltime from 2005-2009, and that is eBay.  I know it has changed a lot in the past couple of years but it still gets a lot of traffic for selling used items. I am going to follow Glen's plan where he got rid of most of his stuff on eBay and Craig's List and those small dollars added up.

Any way not much to say other than, after today I realized it was never going to change if I stayed where I was. That is job and location. I am finally going to change them after a lot of years thinking about it but never doing it.  Only the past 10 months of those years of thinking considered the RV lifestyle. Tonight I was back full steam ahead in downsizing and having a specific plan to get this plan in action.

I think the more I looked at my spreadsheet, showing me actual expenditures and income of RVing full time for me or staying with a house and retired, made me decide to go for it now and not wait for May of 2014. A vacation is not an option. These thoughts of leaving the job and area have been going on for more than a few years.

Back to not having enough hours in a day/night to get everything done!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Some Days it Just Hits You

I just spent wasting an hour and five minutes of my life, mowing the yard. There's nothing hard about it but not something I will be wanting to do in the future, or even now. My job is going downhill fast. I have never seen so much confusion, "duh moments" in my life and the sad thing is it deals with more money you would want to think about.  I had the urge to retire last year also but thought I'd stick it out but now that feeling is back stronger than it has been in a while. I almost resigned yesterday.

Strong enough feelings that I had an idea hit me hard today, something I had thought about in the past and an idea that was suggested by a friend of mine with a lot of experience in that type of environment.

A Crew Cab Pickup Truck and a Bigfoot Trailer.

I like the Toyota FJ Cruisers myself, always have, but had 4Runners in the past. So I am going to clean up from my yard mowing job, kick back and look at Tundra's, FJ's or Pickups along with the Bigfoot Trailers.

The hounds ??  Like I said previously ... when I am at a location, most of my time will be spent OUTSIDE, I need a place to hide when there is bad weather, to sleep, fix meals, play on the computer, watch a ballgame and store food.

After a great meal of (TOW) Taste of the Wild dog food, no grain, Bison Meal, Chicken, Chicken Meal .... all three hounds are passed out on their blankets within a 6' area....the bloodhound is snoring at 5pm....unbelievable. It doesn't matter where my couch or bed will be located, any kind of RV, Tent, Trailer...the bloodhound will make it her's.

Why??


Bloodhound Property Laws

If I like it, it’s mine.
If it’s in my mouth, it’s mine.
If I had it a little while ago, it’s mine.
If I can take it from you, it’s mine.
If it just looks like mine, it’s mine.
If I saw it first, it’s mine
If you are playing with something and put it down, it’s mine.
If I am chewing something up, all of the pieces are mine.
If it’s mine it must never be yours
If it was yours, get over it, it's mine.
If it’s broken, it’s your fault, but it’s still mine.


Saturday, August 11, 2012

Back To The Original Plan

Back in October 2011 when I read an article on Yahoo Business page about Glen living full-time in his van, that led me to blogs of people doing this full-time in all different kinds of vehicles. I have followed a lot of those blogs since that time, learning a ton of information about the RV lifestyle on the road.

After my blog post last night, thoughts started literally bombarding my mind. Clear thoughts, a lot of thoughts....to the point I wondered if I should go back and delete that post because of all the indecision I had written about. A couple of things struck me as quite clear.

1.  What was my original plan back in October 2011?
2.  What caused all my excitement to the point of an obsession?
3.  WHY ... yes, why was I wanting to do this?

When I answered those three questions, I had my clear plan once again and my "to do list" was out visibly so I could check the items off and get closer to a departure date. Like anything else, when you stray from a plan, confusion, indecision and 2nd guessing come into play.

All of the answers to those 3 questions were applicable 10 months later.

So, with it being a cool sunny morning here in the "tropics" of Southern Indiana, I am having one more cup of coffee then hitting my list of things to do and back to my downsizing expedition.

Friday, August 10, 2012

A Week of Thinking

It's hard to believe that cooler temps have hit the Midwest here in southern Indiana. It's 68 as I sit here writing this. Just last week it would have been in the mid to high 80s now at this same time. So, the windows are open, with no fans running.

Like this post title says, it's been a week of thinking, also getting more information about different types of boondocking and camping from people that have a lot more experience than I.

A few things are pretty consistent over these past 10 months since this "rv urge" hit me. Of course everyone has a different type of rig, different maintenance, different lifestyles and experiences. Each has a different rig set up, some have animals, toads they tow, or toys they ride ... all different circumstances.

I have come to the conclusion being on the road will cost me no more than I want it to. As living in a house, with a job and unexpected expenses, or spending money on entertainment .. my costs per month are pretty set.  I don't think it will change much living on the road. Sure, I will be able to save monthly but then that savings will be used later for routine maintenance or unexpected repairs on the rig I choose. Just like living in a house.

One thing I did decide this week, it's not the ability to afford major repairs that pop up on occasion but what I am willing to spend. After a lot or re-reading information I have saved, the Class DP is the most expensive. There are a couple of friends of mine that have these and have never had any kind of problem with them. Yet, some of the blogs I follow have them and describe some expenses they have had to pay, in amounts that I don't want to deal with.

So I think of me and wonder, which side of those stories would I be on. If I am on the expensive side is it worth it to me to have a Class A DP.

More than a few people with large Class A's have told me privately they wish they either had bought a smaller rig or will when they will buy their next one. Hearing something like that, makes me think.

The Class C from what I understand in most cases can be worked on at a service center of the type of engine. A Ford or Chevy dealership, local garge. A place easier to find than a speciality diesel shop and a little less cost. The number of slides you need are nice, sides work for some all of the time with no problems and others have had problems. So is the extra room for comfort worth it?

Do you look at the comfort level more than what it would take to be on the road with minimum cost? Could I spend less on a rig, find it dependable and get on the road without the initial expense I was planning on in making the purchase and be just as happy? I will only find this out when I do it.

Smaller rigs can get into more places boondocking.  Boondocking is what I plan on doing the most of. Free stays as much as possible, that has always been the plan. Seasonal movement more than a tourist on vacation movement.

The hounds, they can adapt to anything I will buy. Right now they are all sleeping together on their favorite Mexican blankets within an area of 5'. They do that a lot throughout the day. So does it really matter if I am sitting in a 36'-40' rig at night while on a computer, watching a movie or reading a book after thinking I needed a bigger rig for the comfort of my hounds and I?

I envy Glen over on To Simpify because he can live in such a small space (A great Chinook) has stayed full-time longer than he had originally thought he could. He travels to some great country and does so with only minor repairs over the course of a year. Yet even in that rig there are places I want to go and stay, where the Chinook could not get me there. Yet, he has some wonderful "front yards" in his travels and easy to find a place to park his home.

Then I analyze what year of rig to buy. Everyone has different experiences with the years they have now or have had in the past. Would I have good repair luck spending less to buy an older model? Or would I be the one that has a 1-3 yr old rig that has repair problems one after another. Some in this range of age have no problems at all. Just like buying a car or truck, new or used. I have/had both with different results .... so that is a moot point I guess.

The problem I have and have mentioned before .... I like them all!!  No matter what class of rig I look at ... I like them and want them. Everything from a small fiberglass trailer to the Earthroamer.

That right there makes it really hard for me to decide on what to buy.

What about a 4x4 Pickup pulling a trailer. There are a lot of people doing that for a number of years successfully. Some pulling a 16' trailer and having a blast of their life while other are boondocking with a 35' 5th wheel. Some of those 5th wheel towing rigs have been towed for repairs while others are great. Wandrin' has been traveling that way for 12 years or more.

Just like owning and living in a house.  Some are "money pits" while other are just general maintenance. In my case living in the Midwest, what you put off in routine maintenance in the summer could be costly in the winter. That is the part, the time spent in that type of preventive maintenance, where I am getting tired of and would rather be sitting in my chair in front of my rig somewhere, watching the sunrise, soaking up the rays or watching the sun go down.

So, you can see where I am at in trying to decide what to buy and when to leave.

I have absorbed a lot of information and looked at a lot of pictures of different setups, heard a lot of different stories and opinions.

I know a lot of what I have written tonight has been mentioned before. I can only guess that when it's the right time to happen, everything will fall into place and I'll sit back and think "that was easy, why did I take so long?".

The range of thought this week was wide. From a Class A DP towing a 4x4 jeep all the way down to traveling in my Mini Cooper with a rack on top with my camping equipment and the hounds in the back.

You can see that my mind is very similar to scrambled eggs right now. Tons of thoughts and not even a clue on what to do.

For those that have posted comments or emailed me their thoughts on all of these lingering questions I have all the time ... Thank You!

Now,back to your blogs, RVs for sale sites, and google images, while I hear the coyotes and crickets outside my open window.




Sunday, August 05, 2012

I Started Looking at Smaller Class C & B+

Yes, I moved my search away from Class A's to the Class C 27-31' and even some 27' Class B+ .... I LOVED them!!  I could see me getting away to locations that a Class A may not get. The main thing was, the repair cost. Class A diesel repair compared to a Ford engine Class C or B+ (with sides).

Sure I have the 3 hounds....but I tried a little trick in my house. I measured the living space of a Class B, put the hounds in that area and took a look at what I might be looking at. In a way, I think I could do it....reason is???

If I am parked somewhere out in the boondocks, BLM, Federal Parks or Corp of Civil Engineering land ... I am going to be OUTSIDE!!  Even if Im in a chair looking at the sights, reading or napping. ..... outside!!  I just need somewhere to fix my meals, sleep and watch games on the tv. I can do all of that inside a Class C or B+ and 3 lazy hounds.

What do they do now when I watch games ... they sleep.

I know the tanks are smaller, could decrease the number of days I am out but are larger tanks and more storage space a good reason to spend more for a larger Class A???

I am traveling light ... seriously.  When I was working at home a few years ago, I lived in a pair of jeans in the winter, shorts and tshirts in the summer.

I really like those Dynamax's.  I also like the Jayco Melbourne, like John's.  I can almost see a Lazy Daze, with half of the back room my computer desk and the other side the bed.

Blast away with comments ... I know ... always back and forth

Saturday, August 04, 2012

A Crazy Day ... House Repairs

Saturday started out normal. Sunny and 84 degrees at 8am, waiting for the grass to dry so I can mow the yard. Cup of coffee and reading blogs. Just sent an email to my dad and a few minutes later, I lose power here at the house and as the overprice iMac plus the 27" monitor try to reboot there is a loud explosion outside at the transformer. It was nothing like I have heard before, even in the worst storms.

I go outside to make sure nothing has blown into the transformer, even though it's a perfect weather morning. Then look up on the roof where the main power goes into the fuse box, looks good there.

I check out my fusebox expecting some breakers to be popped ... and not a one ...not one. I called a couple of neighbors and a landscaping business nearby on the owner's cell phone.  Power completely out.  About the time I start to walk back inside, the transformer has a huge explosion!

Power is out for almost 4 hours and kicks back on just as the outside temps had hit 97 degrees. Yes, it was hot inside, outside etc.

In the meantime inside I smell a "slight' aroma of that infamous electrical burn smell. Even though the power is off, both surge protectors where the computer is  .... no lights, completely off.  I check my living room, one surge protector mounted into the socket is fried and "brown explosion" marks are on the wall.

Remaining calm and already in my mind thinking my HD large tv is history as well as the overpriced Mac's. Not being an electrician, I start my process of elimination. 2 fans plugged into different outlets are running so I'll plug my computer in that one directly to see if my worst fears are real or not, or will the overpriced Mac bootup????

Plug it into the wall outlet that I know is working .... computer boots up!  Shut that down and plug in my overpriced large Mac Monitor ... looks good. Both surge protectors are FRIED. (must have been that burnt smell).

On to the living room. One wall outlet is fried. I look at the other outlet with the wall mounted surge protector that I had my DVD player and PS3 plugged into due to the length of the cord. Due to those lengths, I had to plug my Directv DVD, my large TV into the fried outlet. Using an extension cord to reach the good outlet, I plug both tv and the DVR directly into the good outlet, both turn on. DVD says "starting up will take a few minutes".  I figure incorrectly that if I have a screen then both the tv and DVR are good....Call the tech help at Directv (she was great), we determine that the receiver is fried and she is sending out a replacement. We tried connecting to the tv with new HDMI cables, then the component and video cables ... no good.

An interesting thing that makes me think my tv is wasted. Maybe a reader with more electrical experience can enlighten me.

Each time I moved the component cables (red,blue,green) and the video cables to a different port (AV1 or AV2), the port it was plugged into would disappear from my tv source input list. Same thing happened when I tried 4 different HDMI ports...whatever port the cable was plugged into, that port would disappear from the list.

So, I head to Walmart for 2 new surge protectors, have my computer, ipad dock, modem, printer and desk light all working normal with the new surge protector.

I'll spend the rest of the night trying to find out if I can plug and play a DVD player and PS3 into the tv, one that is not getting a tv reception signal from the DVR, or will I need some sort of antenna signal to get the DVD player or the PS3 to play.

As for RV's ... It was a week of reading about a lot of problems with what some people had. A few LARGE repair bills ... much like my day today!!!

The yard was mowed but I kept thinking as I mowed, that I am so tired of house and yard upkeep. After some of the bill totals I read about, I am not so sure my house repair bills will be a lot lower than RV repairs.

There always seems to be some doubt in back of my mind about RVing.....and those HUGE repair costs is what keeps me wondering about the future. I have cashed saved for house emergencies but the more I save the tighter I get in spending it.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

One Less Obligation

For those of you that have been reading my blog for a few months, you may have remembered that I spoke recently of being chosen for an accounting position different than the one I presently hold.  It was a potential new project, with more responsibility, thus higher pay and a longer obligation. Even though the job has not been given to my company yet, I let my future project manager know on Thursday that I had changed my mind and would not be accepting the new position.

This does a couple of things. It does not lock me into working for another 3 years and I can actually leave within 30 days after my house sells.

I feel that is just one more thing checked off the list that gets me closer to full-timing sooner.

Of course I have spent the time since my last post here, reading new blogs, new RV information, reading some of my old boondocking information and looking a RVs for sale.

I am also pretty sure I am going to buy a Class A. With the hounds I don't have much choice in that matter .... We need the room. There will be those times where due to weather or other unexpected things, where you will be inside longer than a normal day. It's those days the extra room and storage will work better than a Class C. Plus, the more I look at the Class A, the more I like them. Now if I were traveling solo, I would probably lean more to a Class C than I do now.

I have been surprised that I have found so many Class A's in good condition and within the price range where I can pay cash. Which leads to the discussion, is it really worth buying more RV for more money when I would need to finance some of the sales price, thus adding a monthly expense of RV payment. Then leave a home that is paid for, with no mortgage payment. Sure, I can write off the interest of the RV loan but is that really a good enough reason?

All I know is, like some of my readers have commented here and through emails, when the time is right everything will come together and it will happen. In the meantime all I can do is keep preparing to leave and keep checking off things on my "to do" list.


Saturday, July 21, 2012

The Snowball is Starting to Pick Up Speed

Amazing how after a period of time of indecision, things start falling into place or different bits of information are found and different opportunities / ideas start revealing themselves.

In the past couple of days I have been able to release some things mentally that have been holding me up/back from rv'ing full time. It's been only 9 months since I read about the guy on Yahoo business page living in a Chinook. Then finding more and more blogs to follow and finding out just how many people of all ages are living full time on the road. Thus this urge to RV fulltime for the first time in my life practically took over my life in October 2011 and I was spending every waking moment to learn how and what it took to RV full time.

I tried a couple of times to "push it away" by ignoring my feelings, justifying how I liked my job, house and soon to be mortgage free. Then trying to not even think about it....but after a few weeks the feeling of RVing would come back and I'd start reading my blog list, looking at RV's etc and the urge was just as strong as it was in October 2011 when it was an obsession.

Now that I have "cleared" those mental blocks I have had, that prevented me of moving forward I can feel a ton of action by me is right around the corner. I have a few thing I want to do before I put my house on the market, nothing that 2 or 3 weekends won't take care of. I've been downsizing a little here and there and there is note much left to do in that department.

I have decided I am going to buy an older RV for cash, one that is top of the line for the features yet within my budget and cut my expenses bare (have already did that in my current living situation). I know what type of boondocking I want to do and which RV will be too big and which rv will be the right vehicle.

So that search for the right rv is on 100% right now.

The house will be painted inside and a couple minor wood repairs will be fixed, so the For Sale sign will be in the front yard within the next 4 weeks if not sooner.

I will give my 2-3 week notice at the time my house sells. (I think it will sell quick).  If there is a longer time to sell, like I said before I will leave and rent the place out  while its sitting for sale. I do have a person wanting to rent it by September if it doesn't sell.

This blog post really got me thinking hard this morning after spending most of the week at work thinking and wondering about the same stuff.

I'm outta here!!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Took a Break and I'm Back

Has it been 6 weeks since my last post?  Hard to believe and just shows me how fast time is moving.

First of all, nothing exciting to report as far as RVing purchase or traveling, yet. I did have some progress though in the form of plans and a couple of answers to lingering questions.

I don't think my absence was intentional but about the time I started to ride my bicycle again to get in shape plus I missed an old hobby of mine, was about the same time I stopped not only posting on this blog but also stopped reading my blog list or any information about RVing.

A couple of weekends in June were used to help my dad out. We drove 3 hours to pick up a car he had bought off of eBay. He's 83, so I thought it might be an adventure with the trip back in his "new" car. We made the 3-1/2 hour trip home with no problems, other than he making it home on fumes because he was reading the wrong gauge for the fuel. Close call....LOL

The third weekend in June we both headed back up to the town I grew up in and the school my dad taught and coached at for the annual "basketball" reunion. These men played high school basketball from 1961 - 1969, myself included and many interesting stories were traded that afternoon. My close friend in high school has a 36' Winnebago Southwind that he full timed in for 3-5 years mostly in the SW. He has been telling me about the Workcamper News and sending me listings that he thinks might interest me.

After talking that afternoon a little about RVing, I could tell on the drive home, the "feeling" to full-time was coming back and also showing me a way I could tie in my bicycling (road bike) with RVing full time. Still I spent a few weeks staying away from any RV news/info.

I've always wondered since October of 2011 if this RV itch is real with me or just another one of my ideas that come and go. I left the subject some last spring and the itch didn't go  away.

July 4th weekend I drove over to a local state park to meet up with an old friend of mine and his wife in their 36' Monaco. They were returning to their home in Florida after visiting his parents in Indiana. It gave me a chance not only for a great visit, good food and some cold beer in that 104 degree heat that day ... but also talk RV's. Through the years as his family grew, this couple had experienced RVing from a pop-top camper, to a Class C, a trailer and now their 2nd Class A. He had a real good idea what they liked, what worked and what didn't for what I am wanting to do.

That day also proved to me that I MUST be able to follow the weather. This heat in the Midwest is not fun in any type of homes, SB's or RV's.

Before I left that day, we made plans for me to fly down to their house in Tampa and go to Lazy Days to look at RV's and possibly make the purchase. He recommended buying from there, no matter where I live...that their program was great for a RV "rookie". So it will be in the Feb/Mar time frame, when he thought prices would be the best and there is a large RV show in the area during that time period.

I saw a lot advantages of the Class A, that day. It was a 2008 model, in great shape and had a lot of things I would want in an RV.

Still, even today I can still see myself in something smaller, even with the 3 hounds. The indecision NEVER STOPS!!! when it comes to what type to buy.

I have also found out these last 6 weeks that my house will be easy to rent if I want to keep it for a while to see if RVing is for me and may be just as easy to sell, if I chose to go that route. I have someone wanting to rent my house now, her lease is up in September. I am leaning more to the selling side rather than the renting side. I believe that once I got back out west, where I lived for over 25 years, I would not want to live where I do presently even with no mortgage.

So that's it....still progressing toward my future RV plans.

Did any of the fires give you problems for those readers that are RVing out west?

I'm headed over to my blog list and spend the rest of the day catching up with what all of you have been doing.

Thanks for reading!

Monday, June 04, 2012

Fridge Fixed .. House Cleaned ... Good Weekend

With my accounting degree NOT being a factor, I did a little "reverse engineering" on my fridge Sunday and not only fixed the lingering past problem but it also looks brand new on the inside. (cleaned)  Massive ice build up under the freezer floor and also a frozen drain tube.  As I reloaded the fridge and uncluttered the house, I put more items in the bags and boxes going on the next trip to Goodwill. After 24 hours the fridge is like new!

I am basically down to 2 closets to clear out in my downsizing evolution. They are small closets and I already know what I want to get rid of, so it will not take much time to do both of them.

I still don't know what to do. Some say keep the house and rent it while I am gone. The rent could pay my RV payment if I financed on or go into the bank if I buy an RV for cash. A few say workcamping jobs are available if I choose to work. Some people say pack up and leave now but I need to buy an RV first ... lol

Lately I've been thinking of an older Coachman, or Monoco and even a converted bus that was in good condition. Late last night I even went back to looking at Class C's. The number of dogs (3) I have tends to lead me way from the Class C's. Some that have 35' or longer RVs tell me they would rather have something shorter.

So, a lot of different opinions, a lot of different ideas ... and no answers ... just like I was in October 2011.

I think the weekend of the 16 or 23rd I am going to rent a new Class C and take it to the local State Park on the lake for my first RV trip. I think that will help A LOT in the decision making process. The local RV park (different than the state park) near the area where I work is packed for the summer, near the lake.

I am thinking probably the best thing I can do is keep the house, rent it out for as long as I am gone (months or years), keep downsizing, buy the RV that I have thought most about and hit the road heading northwest from Indiana within the next 2-4 months.  If I would have a deadline I would work my "to do" list faster.

Why all these thoughts today of packing up and leaving???

This morning driving to work through some beautiful 12 miles of land, I was wishing that I didn't have to stop to work but could just keep on going. It was early morning, the sun was just coming up and the traffic was light on a US highway.

Plus, I am in a "rut" with my current situation.  Even with a job I like, a house I like and good income ... I feel like I need a change and have a powerful urge to travel again.

Saturday, June 02, 2012

I Could be Boondocking on BLM Land

Instead of boondocking, I slept later than normal today in my house and then started washing my car soon after getting up, with no other plans. Car washing was NOT on any list of things to do today. With the temps in the 60's, a slight breeze and some sun ... washing the car led to waxing the car, which led to cleaning the inside of the car which was already clean. Go figure.

The car looks great ... still, I could have spent the day, kicking back in the silence of BLM land out west with no one around except the 3 hounds, clear blue skies and nice sunshine. Maybe hiking the local area. Then with enough solar power stored to run my TV satellite dish I could watch a baseball game tonight if I wanted or I could just spend more time sitting outside with a fire enjoying the evening.

As it stands now, that is all wishful thinking because I have a house to "unclutter" tomorrow, a corner of my gutter to clean to keep the rain going down the spout instead of over the side of the gutter and a refrigerator to defrost in hopes of fixing the current minor problem it has.

A day of house related maintenance. Not my favorite thing to spend time on.

As I read all the blogs on my list, people I keep up with and their travels, my mind wanders even more than normal today. All had great pictures of places they are, most are finished with any RV maintenance I have read about the past few months. The ONE thought that keeps me thinking .... ALL of them that are RVing full or part-time, can wake up in the morning, change their scenery and by sundown have a different view entirely when they are looking outside their window or sitting by a fire.

Where I will wake up Monday morning like all my Monday mornings dragging myself back to work.

My spreadsheet analysis of my monthly revenue and expenditures tell the real story. It looks like I really only work to earn income just to preform house maintenance, yard maintenance, pay for my house and car insurance, buy dog food, some clothes and a very little entertainment. My biggest expense?  Gas going to and from work, only a 25 mile round trip commute.

On the road I know I would end up doing something online to generate income, or maybe workcamp if I found a job in a great location because that is just the way I am "wired'. I have to be doing something. Maybe not all 12 months but at least part of the year. I have worked full-time online before but the niche I was in changed drastically after 4 years, so I went back to work instead of finding something else to do online to generate income. So online income is always a possibility if needed.

I guess what I am trying to say is, my spreadsheet of monthly expenses shows me that I have enough monthly pension right now to live on full-time RVing ... without a job...without this house.

I read something tonight on someone else blog, where it was stated on a forum something to the effect ... even if your house is paid for there is always money spent for upkeep, maintenance, unexpected repairs, insurance, yard maintenance.

So is that what I am really working for right now?  Just to pay my house off (I'm very close) ... just so I can put more money into it in the future to keep it in good shape ... instead of waking up tomorrow and changing my scenery because I feel the need to move somewhere else or see the next great mountain or canyon while I am boondocking out west on BLM land "enjoying the good life" as John says.


Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Hot and Muggy in the Midwest

I survived this past weekend of extremely hot temps and a little humidity here in the midwest. Most of the time during the heat, my mind wandered to the BLM land of mountains, sunshine and cool temps of the western states. 

From the last post, I did finish the small landscaping job of redoing my flower beds and upgrading a couple of others. Took me a weekend and a couple days after work, so that was completed before the weekend. Not what I could call enjoyable but looks nice.

I have a couple of new people interested in buying my house, but they are not sure about my small town. Basically all I have to do is let them know it's for sale. For me, that seems like a hard trigger to pull. I'm not sure why because I have sold my Z4 sports car, my Toyota 4Runner, gave away a lot of clothes and appliances that I no longer used or wanted. I am basically down to just the bare essentials and even some of that can be either stored or sold when I decide to leave.

Maintaining a home is more work now, whereas years ago it was fun ... something I enjoyed. That is a sure sign to me that I need to sell and change location. I don't mind the hot weather but not a fan of the humidity. I know I would enjoy living back out west, warm in the winter and up in the mountains or northern states in the summer. I have lived in Washington, Colorado, California in the past and have traveled through most of the states by car, bicycle or train. Really have no desire to go east of Indiana nor south.

I am meeting up with a friend and his wife July  4th weekend that has a 36' Class A Monaco. It will be a short visit but an informative one. Steve and I went grew up together. They have a couple of years before he retires and they RV full-time, but they do a lot of traveling in their Monaco and through the years have used every type of camper/motorhome there is as far as types and classes.

Needless to say, we have discussed a lot of RV information over the phone. 

That is about all I can update.  I read my blog list daily, have learned a lot from them, enjoy your great pictures of where you have been or where you are at. Yes, I have the urge to leave.

Even the RV maintenance stories from the blogs I read are quite interesting. Yet, I have two maintenance things possibly on the horizon ... a fridge is acting weird and central air conditioning screaming for a new unit.

So ... "it's a money pit" seems appropriate for both homes on land or on wheels.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

After A Day of Yard Work

I did some things yesterday that I would put under "house maintenance", that I would not be doing if I were RVing full-time. I am sitting here, almost 9am, feeling the heat building from the outside ... wondering if I can spend another day working on my latest yard project.

Through a suggestion of a friend a few years ago, I laid River Rock in the flower beds in front of my house, with no border. Yesterday I bought what border was left at the local landscaping biz and had enough to do one section in front of my house.  Wasn't bad, dug out only dirt, inserted the brick borders and covered with Cypress mulch around my Yews I put in last fall.

Now the work begins. I have 25' x 4' of River Rock bed to take out and move to the back side of the house. Then dig out to put in the brick border, level them and dig out dirt from the bed and level that. Put the black material for preventing weeds  (does the stuff ever work) and then cover with more Cypress mulch.

It's going to be 90 today and yesterday 86-88 felt like the end of the world while I worked outside.

At different times of taking breaks, drinking lots of water and even after a 2 hour mid-day nap ... I kept thinking what it would be like if I were boondocking in my Class A RV (not bought yet) and sitting outside with the hounds in a nice mid 70's atmosphere with little humidity. Wondering where I would be this time of year.

Also wondering what I would do when I become bored while RVing.

What do you full-timers do when boredom hits  you while you are on the road?

When I am bored here, I usually hit the local college town (25 miles away), for bookstores, camping stores and my favorite watering hole for the 12" Stromboli sandwich and then cruise back home to the spot outside of a small town, with 15 acres of hay behind me.

What would I do if I were bored while RVing full-time?  Let me know what you do while traveling and boredom hits.

Well, its shade on the west side (front) of the house, so off I go to start my day of more landscaping.

I wouldn't be doing this if I were full-timing already .... would I?   (laughing)

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

A Lot of Updates

Well it has been an interesting month or so, since my April 14 post. A few major changes, somethings on my list checked off and a potential huge one (house), if I decide to sell.

1.  I traded my Toyota 4Runner for a gas saver and my future "toad" ... 2009 Mini Cooper

2.  While at the car lot closing that deal, I was talking to a friend of the owner of that car lot, that liked to trade cars as much as I did, leaning against his Hummer, when I asked him if he would be interested in my Z4. Sold it to him the next day after he saw it.

So since last November I have gone from 3 vehicles, an old '94 Chevy Pickup, a Toyota 4runner that I had mentioned here I did not want to sell or trade and a Z4 that I thought I would never sell ....to just 1 vehicle .... the 2009 Mini Cooper.

I still have my 3 hounds and they are going with me when I decide to RV.

Then last week, a single mom, co-worker is looking for a house to buy or rent. Didn't know if she wanted to live in my small town closer to work or stay in the better college town 25 miles away.  But she loved my rent price and/or my "for sale" price and knew up front that she would have to change anything she wanted on her dime ... since I had adjusted the sales price for those upgrades.

Still a possibility on the house as of this morning.

So what's the hold up???

Back in early April I was approached by a manager for the corporation I work for and was made an offer that I could not refuse.  I mean that. No way possible could I turn down what they were offering on a 3 year contract.

So once again, whats the hold up???

For me to have that offer, the corporation has to win the contract it has bid on and the result will not be known until sometime in June.

The co-worker joked that if I sold her or rented her the house, "you will have 30 days to get out" ... then laughed.  I told her I would be out in 2 weeks.  That would be some FAST selling and downsizing.

Downsizing was on my list last winter.  I am happy to say that I have gone through closets and drawers and threw out or gave to goodwill everything I have not used recently in the past year or longer.  So the only stuff left, is things I will no longer need in my travels.  I know how to travel light. You don't go on 10 month deployments on aircraft carriers and not know how to travel light ... so that experience will help me in deciding on just what I need. 

I had a mail flier from CampingWorld in Indy in the mail the other day, showing all of their Memorial Day sales.  Prices are dropping a lot, even on 2012 models, if I decide to go that way.

So I guess the June information will decide if I leave in 2015 or leave sometime this summer. 

Maybe that Memorial Day weekend to June 1 will be a MAJOR source of information in making a final decision.

I have thought of selling / renting my house to the co-worker friend and moving into an RV while I finish my current job, while training my replacement.  They have a great RV park within a few miles of where I work and great rates.

I actually think things are coming together on this RVing full-time idea .... finally!!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

A New Direction

While I had the Reds game on in the background so I could hear and then see them blow another extra inning game ... I spent the night looking at RV's.  While I was thinking again and when that happens, it could be dangerous.

Bottom line is, I think I might be going about this decision making process all wrong.

I've been trying to decide what to do and what to buy. A few months back one of my readers emailed me and told me to basically quit messing around, buy a 40' diesel, tow my 4Runner and hit the road. I think he was somewhat right, with some modifications.

I know I want to do this eventually after playing it safe for a couple of more years. I know though if I had everything sold, and leave, I still have monthly income coming in and enough to live on with no problem. So why wait 2 more years???

Anyone have a thought about that?

Here is what I was thinking tonight while looking at RVs and spending another week at a job that I am liking less and less as time goes by.

Put the house, Z4 and possessions for sale. Who really knows how long that will take. I personally feel with the area I live in, the house I live in, things could happen pretty quick. I don't think my Z4 would last a weekend sitting down by the highway in the yard "For Sale".

If both of those things happened soon, then I would HAVE TO scramble to downsize my possessions, give a 30 day notice at work and find my RV to buy and move into.

And IF they don't sell ... I keep working for a while, find and buy my RV, then rent the place out.

I am thinking I need something to move me in the direction I want to move and putting the For Sale sign in the yard for the house is just the ticket for me.

Also the RV is becoming clearer and clearer ... Class A - 32' to 35" in length, diesel.

Then head west!!

Sunday, April 08, 2012

Thoughts Are Clear and Definite

First of all .... Happy Easter!

Things haven't changed much with me about the decision to RV. I go back and forth on what to do, what to buy, what to sell. My thoughts on what to buy are pretty consistent. With the 3 hounds and from what people say that have had both C's and A's, the A's at feel you have more room. I like the thought of being up higher with that big front windshield for viewing.

I have also realized since my last post in February, there have been times I have intentionally stayed away from the RV blogs I follow, the RV for sale sites and the forums. What I found out during those times, the thoughts of hitting the road never leave. I was caught up at work last week, so much that by Friday I spent most of the day reading RV blogs, looking at all of the great places people were boondocking and checking out what was for sale.

I could tell I was in the right direction. I am also finding that I feel pretty good about selling everything when I do decide to leave. Yes the Z4 sports car, the Toyota 4Runner and the house that I have lived in for 17 years. The 4Runner "newness" has wore off, to where it is just another vehicle that I have owned in the past. The Z4 is a great car and really enjoyable to drive with the top down and cruising the back roads. The house .... I am finding out this spring that where I use to enjoy mowing every week, has lately become a dreaded chore. Only takes about an hour with a push mower, still it's hard to take the time to mow.

I was thinking the other day while mowing, if I were to travel just for months at a time I am going to need all 12 months in the year to see what I want to see in this great country. I am not going to want to pay to have my yard taken care of while I am gone. I am not going to want to be enjoying the night sky in the desert while in back of my mind wondering if my house is being broken into ... is everything ok?

I am going to want to have the feeling of pulling in that secluded camp site knowing that is my house and the huge yard around me does not require maintenance of any kind. I want the feeling that when I have the urge to pack up and leave for a new location I can and will.

The hounds??  Well they basically do 3 thing in their daily schedules .... sleep mostly, eat and short periods of playing plus the daily walk, so that is 4 things. They hang out just like I do, not requiring a lot of room. Still, there are 3 that have to be considered and I feel that keeps me in a Class A.

Plans have become pretty firm:
 - Sell everything
 - Pay cash for the RV
 - Arizona and Southern Calif for the winter
 - Utah, Colorado, Washington, Dakotas for the summer
 - Leave no later than May 2014
 - Go back to downsizing NOW!
 - Exit plan will be living in an area nice winter weather

For all those blogs I read ... your pictures, your words, your experiences keep my dream alive.

Monday, February 20, 2012

The "itch" to Full-Time Travel is Back

I just finished up a 3-day weekend not doing a lot, but thinking, reading different blogs, glancing at RV's for sale .... and did I say thinking?

That feeling to travel full-time is back stronger than a few weeks ago and increasing. I can't see it any other way when I think of what I should do after I retire or even sooner. I feel my time is up here and it's time for new adventures, new towns, and new people.

Otherwise, it is my belief that I will continue the same "rut" I have been in for what seems like forever. I have had some good times at this place, but it's not one of the best places I have ever lived. I've lived across the street from the beach in Carlsbad California, to Whidbey Island Washington, ten months living in Breckenridge Colorado during ski season, back to Whidbey Island until 1995 when I moved back to Indiana.

It's strange that I have such an attachment to this place.

Is it the chance of mortgage free living? Low cost of living? Near a large college town? I keep wondering what it is that keeps me here.

I can sell my house, my Z4, my Toyota 4Runner and buy a good used RV for cash. That's mortgage free living isn't it? Low cost of living could still be maintained with solar panels, tanks large enough to boondock and I could visit about any large college town that I wanted and even tailgate on Saturdays if I wanted to attend a college football game.

That kind of paints a different picture doesn't it.

I stepped out of my house the other day to hook up my bloodhound to her 80ft climbing rope I have anchored in the field behind my house. If she isn't tethered she would take off at the first smell of a deer or rabbit and being 100ft from a RV traveling US Highway, her life would be short lived.  I would hate that ... so I tether only for short periods of time when she wants outside. She knows where that 80' ends, someway.

So, as I started to say, just as I start to connect her collar to the rope connection, my basset hounds start baying loud and they are off the to races. I glance up and deer are scattering everywhere in the field behind my house. Going in different directions. Maybe 15-20, too many to count and too fast for me to get inside to grab my camera. They must have been grazing in the hay field before we came outside.

The hounds eventually stopped and stared. Some of the younger deer stopped and stared back.

That's one of the nice things about living in this area, the wildlife, unannounced appearances.

Still, I could get the same thing camping out in the Cascade's or Rocky Mtn state parks.

Basically, I need at least two things:

1. The freedom to move when I want
2. Solitude

RVing full-time is the only way I can get those two things ... in my opinion.

P.S.  .... It would be nice to get rid of the year-round allergies I have.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Back to What to Buy and What to Do

Sunny, blue sky and 28 degrees.

Just returned from a dog walk, the hounds and I were getting "cabin fever" and the ground was hard enough to take the trip through the field. It has been wet most of the time with the temps hovering around the freezing point give or take a few degrees.

The past few weeks I've been keeping updated on my blog reading. People boondocking in the desert, out in Santee, down in rainy Texas and some up by Las Vegas. The stories and pictures keep the flame lit to travel full-time.

That has always been my plan, boondocking as much as possible. Following the weather, SW in the winters and up through Utah, Colorado, the Dakotas, Washington and Oregon in the summers. All places I have been to in my past travels but not far enough out in the "boonies". With no schedule on how long I stay at each place.

With that in mind, the perfect vehicle would be a diesel pusher, large tanks, solar panels and my large screen tv for sports along with my 27" monitor.  Along with my 3 hounds, would all that be attainable in a 16'-17' camping trailer pulled by my V8 Toyota 4Runner? The easiest way would be a 33'-36' Motorhome, downsize both my cars to a smaller SUV as a toad. Rent my house if it didn't sell ....

Then hit the road full-time with no obligations behind me.

My exit plan would be a smaller place to live somewhere in the SW USA or eastern Southern California. Somewhere the temps are good year round. At the age of 62+ depending on when I would stop RVing and single, a smaller house would work in that area.

The nomadic lifestyle excites me, whereas the thought of retirement and staying here makes me feel bored and restless.

Instead of leaving as soon as possible, I am going to change my departure date to May 2014.

Now, back to my laundry, watching basketball, reading some blogs, continue my downsizing and looking at RVs for sale.

Saturday, February 04, 2012

The Fulltime RV Buzz Seems to Be Gone

That major RV obsession I had from October - December seems to have left! Not sure why.

There have been a few changes I guess that could have help in making the change. My job became much busier after they implemented the new operating system, that took over 3 months of "downtime" to complete the conversion of different systems into one. So now instead of bored out of my mind where I spent practically all day looking at RV's and reading blogs, is now busy enough where I don't have the time to even get online during work.

This winter has been warmer than I can ever remember. It's been great weather until today (rainy) for the Super Bowl week in Indy. So maybe the lack of a reason to escape the freezing temps made the RV urge to decrease.

As far as the house, I started having doubts about selling everything and hitting the road. So I pulled up the for sale sign, to be used possibly in the future but not right now. Instead of thinking of my list of things to do before leaving, that list changed to things I wanted to do to improve or add things I would like if I were to continue living here.  Plus I have been paying extra on my mortgage payment, so that payoff date looks to be about 7-8 months away.

So with my contentment, my mind was not running all over the place at breakneck speed.

I continue to read the blogs I follow every day. Those give me so much information to think about. I continue thinking about driving down the road in an RV and never coming back the majority of mornings that I make my 12 mile commute through the country to work. I still wonder if I will be as bored at home retired as I am at times during long weekends where my job is closed for a government holiday.

I do look at RVs from time to time but nothing like I did a few months back. During that time I would look at RVs for sale and read different forums or blogs until 2-3am every night.

So ...  I've been thinking that I might be leaning towards my original plan even before the RV bug hit me big time in October 2011.  Keeping my home as a "base camp", travel when I want for as long as I want and then come back if I need a break. The house would be sitting here free of charge.

I guess I will know the answers on what to do when the time comes.

Thanks for reading and following my blog, I will try to post more this month than I did in January.