Friday, January 27, 2012

Getting noticed!

Just a quick note to acknowledge eight new followers to my humble blog.  Welcome to Joe and Betty, Nan, Merikay, Susan and Bob, John and Ellen, Russ Krecklow, Michelle (my daughter) and Michael Ultra.  Thank you for signing on.  

I have read a good portion of each of your blogs and look forward to many more.  It appears that RV Full Timer blogging is a great social network for meeting interesting people with similar interests.  I think it would be great to meet all of you at some time in the future if our travel paths should cross.

Nothing new to report on our preparedness journey except our meeting with a realtor.  We should be putting the house on the market in February.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Update time.

It has been awhile since I wrote anything.  That is because not much is happening yet.  I would say we are “hibernating” here in the Idaho winter, but the fact is that it is 42 degrees today and there is almost no snow on the ground.  Very little snow and/or cold weather in the 8 day forecast either.  This is not really hibernating weather.  Global Warming maybe?Just kidding

Got over to the rig yesterday and Tim (my new RV repair shop friend) measured the camper for new carpet.  I need to get a remnant 12’ wide and 33’ long, plus the same amount of high density padding.  Rosie and I will do some shopping over the next couple of weeks and we plan to get started on the recarpeting project in March.  I will post before, during and after pictures of the carpet project.  I also gave Tim some data on 2 Xantrax 600 watt inverters and a 125 watt solar panel I found on the internet.  I already have a smaller solar panel a long time friend gave to me years ago and we will include that in the project.  I also purchased a  XM Satellite radio and installed it in the truck.  Now all I have to do is get another car docking kit and install it in the RV and we will have satellite radio on the road and in the rig.

A friend who is a Realtor is coming over tomorrow to talk about listing the house, so that aspect of the plan will be taking shape.  We have packed up most of the personal collections, photo albums, and other memorabilia and stacked it in the basement.  A 5’ by 5’ storage space is going to be more than adequate for all that stuff.  We still have a couple of large paintings we want to keep so I will need to find some “mirror boxes” for them.

Trying to you informed of our progress.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012


Deciding to enter full time RV living is only the first step.  Now the work begins. 

We are in the process of sorting, selecting and packing.  We are keeping only those things that cannot be replaced; such as photo albums, personal collections (my extensive collection of shot glasses, for instance), art items, gifts from family and friends that are important to us, etc.  We have checked out storage places and discovered that the smallest space available is 5’ by 5’ by 10’ tall.  So I have marked out a 5’ by 5’ area on the floor in the basement and we are placing packing boxes in that area.  It appears that a 5’ by 5’ area will be plenty adequate.  I had a box full of video tapes transferred to DVD’s.   About 25 tapes reduces to 6 DVD’s in a small case about 3/8” thick; our life from about 1985 to about 2003 reduced to a very small space.  Rosie and I have been watching some of the video and we marvel at how many places we have been and how many activities we have enjoyed.  We have also been throwing out stuff that has no resale value, is too big to take along and hasn’t been used by us for years.  I had 2 boxes of 3.5” floppy disks; how long has it been since those have been in use?  We are keeping only 3 items of antique furniture; a table from Grandma Sathe; a chest of drawers from Grandma Doering, and a child’s rocking chair that was mine as a toddler.  Everything else will be sold in a giant moving sale in May.  Anything left over will either go the our church for their annual rummage sale; or get hauled to the dump.  Rosie decided that she really didn’t need to keep her car, so that will be sold; one thing less to worry about storing.  I really admire her for that decision.  Her car was an important symbol of independence for her.

Other decisions have been made as needed.  We are going to maintain Idaho as our State of Residence.  We will get a mailing “address” at the local UPS Store.  I checked with the DMV and we can use that address on our Drivers Licenses.  They said something about an “RV” stamp on the license to identify us as resident RVers (seems a little odd).  The local court system will hold us accountable for jury duty, but if we are called, we can self determine a specific week in the upcoming 12 months when we would be available to show up for jury duty.  We are getting dental work scheduled before we leave that perhaps could have been put off for longer.  E-mail and phone contact on the road will be readily handled by Verizon.  They have a smaller version of an I-Pad that is also a mini-WiFi spot; so we can access both of our laptops to that WiFi and both be on the internet at the same time.

I have been researching Government campgrounds and private campgrounds in the western US.  It is amazing how much BLM (Bureau of Land Management) and Forest Service land is out there where camping is either very low cost or outright free.  Then there are State Parks, County Parks and City Parks that have low cost to free camping.  Anyone interested in those web sites, e-mail me at and I will send you the links.  Most of the really free or low cost campgrounds don’t have electrical hookups; so we are looking at installing a solar panel system with a partial inverter system to power our electronics, like TV and laptops.  We have a generator and a bank of 4 batteries, so we shouldn’t run out of power and still have a comfortable lifestyle.  We have already redecorated the interior of our camper with new paint, a chair rail wallpaper border and new trim.  We plan to replace the carpeting in March.  We met some new friends that own an RV Service and Repair Shop.  We are really happy to find someone that will do good work on our future home at a reasonable cost.

There is a local private campground that has sites with full hookups for a monthly rate of $425.  We plan to move into a space there in mid-May.  It will take about 4 weeks to leisurely sell all of our stuff and clean up the house before departing stick house living.  That will be an interesting, and probably emotional, experience.  So around mid-June we should start wandering our way east.  I have already made reservations for 6 nights in Custer State Park near Rapid City, SD; which will include the 4th of July Holiday.  July 5th, we will travel from Custer State Park to the family reunion in Colome, SD.   June, July and most of August will be spent in South Dakota, Nebraska and Colorado.  We will return to Idaho Falls area for 3 weeks or so in early September before we head for the Oregon Coast and ultimately wend our way to Ventura County in So. California for the Thanksgiving and Christmas Holidays.  After that, we want to experience Quartzsite, AZ for the annual gathering of RV people.  Then who knows where we will go.

Life is good.