My friends look at me a bit strangely and with a bit of that….well ok, we will see….. type of look….when I explain our rationale for wanting to divest ourselves of a full time big house, of paying high property & school taxes (yes, they are separate here in NYS), working full time and spending our precious off work time and money just to maintain and keep up the property. There is never enough time and it greatly takes away from our time of doing what we love to do which is camping and travel. Don’t get me wrong, some folks get sheer pleasure and enjoyment out of gardening, cooking in a full tricked out kitchen, fixing this and that and doing home improvements. I am happy for them, if they are happy. Been there, done that—about 25 years ago–and yes, it was fun and rewarding, but not any longer.
It might help readers to understand that from about 1983 to 1999 my first husband and I were totally into “fix and flipping” houses–long before the HGTV phenomenon hit. I moved, with small children way too many times and well, that took the wind out of my sails. I also owned and operated a B & B for time in a huge 5000 sq foot 210 yr old farmhouse. I had to get it out of my system too, and after four years of up at 4 AM to bake muffins and to bed at 11 PM after the final laundry was done (and working part time and full time during those years)…I was done.
At this point in my life (late 50’s) I am totally done with all that. Once my father, who had been living with us, passed away about 18 months ago, we took stock and realized that Kevin and I are literally using three rooms (about 600 sq ft) in a 2500 square foot house. And best part is..we are good with that small living space. Very comfortable, not crowded. It is crazy to pay for and maintain a space you no longer need just to house your “stuff” that you have amassed over the years. We both have good jobs, but work lots of hours and have minimal times during the year when our work allows us to both take time together. Our children and grandchildren are out of state (VT and AZ) which means planned trips away. We covet our time for travel, visiting family, and being together exploring historic places and the open road. We also enjoy researching full timing RV life from others who are doing it currently. YouTube has a plethora of great bloggers giving good, real life tips and tribulations. Its the life we want to lead…..
These are REAL folks doing amazing things that Kevin and I love to learn about, study and digest for how it will work for us. There is no doubt in our minds…this is where we will be in less than 10 years.
Here is one of the several Vlogs we subscribe to and watch religiously. This is Steve and Courtney and they live currently in Tucson AZ and in their mid-30s have decided to forgo the traditional homeownership life for an “Airstream Life”. I was quite honored when Courtney answered some questions for me and liked our FB page and this website.
Several years ago, we owned an entry level Class A motorhome for about five years. We traveled in it quite a bit and loved it, but it was aging and becoming a money pit so we sold it. We did not realize until it was not in the driveway ready at our beck and call for a getaway just how much we missed that lifestyle. So, about two years ago we started looking again. After going to the Hershey PA, huge RV show we realized how we loved the Airstream look and how much more bang for your buck you can get with a trailer versus a Class A. We love the Tiffin Class A’s but lets be honest, when i retire, I do not want a big monthly payment over my head, so we ruled those out. Along the way of discussing and researching trailers, we literally stumbled upon the Avion brand of aluminum, curved style camp trailers. They are no longer being made and the best years of production were 1972-1977. Airstream actually sued the company for design infringement, but lost. We loved the quality build, the stylish aerodynamic look and function, and well…we started doing all sorts of research, combing Craigs lists nationally and getting on to some blogs and chat lists about them. We found our ’73 in VT. But I digress….this entry was really supposed to focus on why we want to full time in our RV. Whether it will be in this 1973, 28 foot Avion, our Pewter Palace, or not, the fact remains we simply are really engaged in pursuing the living simple, small and somewhat mobile when we retire (or before!). Trust me, if we lived in a climate that allowed full time trailer living we would be living in her right now and commuting to work for sure.
Every time we (well, actually Kevin) has to haul out the snowblower for the 15th time, or climb onto the porch roofs to hook in the storm windows (yes, circa 1950 and they work like a charm as long as you don’t mind heights getting them into place) or mow the lawn after a long day at work we realize there are many other things we would rather be doing. The upkeep of a large house and yard is just overwhelming at times and we do not make enough money to hire out someone to do this like some of our friends do. Its all us…or nothing. So we even are starting to look around the house, make piles here and there of what we want to keep and what is going to be going to auction in the spring. I have enough to tempt some auctioneer to want to take our stuff. Figure that is more expeditious and less tedious than trying to do all of this by tag sale. I do not want to spend my summer weekends doing that for sure. I want to be on my Avion, enjoying life. We have even started looking at townhouse apartments in our area for the purpose of downsizing our living space and saving money and upkeep time in the process. We figure if we start the process now, then bit by bit things will become so easy to live tiny, simply and enjoy life rather than amass possessions. Kevin cannot WAIT till he can sell the lawnmowers, snow blowers, lawn tools, etc. etc. that alone has him salivating for the day!
I am going to be posting some more links to full time bloggers, etc. in this “Full Time Life” section as time goes by…thanks for reading! Hope we provided some inspiration too!