Friday, April 30, 2010

Hello Joan from Oregon

Hello Joan,  I answered your comment by adding a comment below it.  I am looking forward to seeing you blog up.  Making lists is fun and gives you mini goals to reach as the days go by.  It's also encouraging to see how fast the daily countdown seems to go.

Speaking of goals, I met with the roofing man on Wednesday, the gutter man on Thursday and have an appointment tomorrow morning for Craig and I to go over a preliminary proposal.  This is no ordinary roof!  The cost will probably be almost enough to buy a good used fifth wheel, but it has to be done.

Daily countdown:
551  days, or 1 year, 6 months, 1 days to go.  

Exercise Goal:        
1000 miles on the treadmill     2 miles   today.    
Total walked = 102.5 miles   I think I'm taking the weekend off!
         Someday I will be hiking in National Parks!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

100 miles, first rattle snake

While I still have 899.5 miles to go on my goal of walking 1000 miles on the treadmill, I have reached the first milestone and passed 100 miles today.  I used to walk all of the time, either on the treadmill or with the dog, but about a year ago I stopped because I had a sore knee.  I just never got back to it until I set myself a goal to get into better shape for future walks in our beautiful National parks.

I have a pedometer on order and when it comes in I plan on doing some outdoor hikes.  Much more interesting, but I will dearly miss my dog.

We have lived here for almost 23 years.  In all of that time I have never seen a rattle snake.  I have been told they were around, but I have always missed them.  Until last Saturday.

Craig and I were getting ready to do some work and opened the back garage we use as a workshop of sorts.  As he started cutting something I notice a brown blobish pile of something to the side of the open door.  At first glance it looked like a very large dog poop.  Then I realized it was a coiled up, probably sleeping snake.  A rattle snake.

Since it was obvious he wasn't going anywhere I went and got my camera.

Now what to do with him?  I got a leaf rake and Craig scooped him up and tossed him out onto the driveway.

As you can see, he was not to happy with being so rudely woke up.  That is a maple seed next to him.  He was not very big, probably about 2 feet long, and we counted four rattle rings on his tail which he was rattling like crazy.

He got to take a second flight (via rake toss)  down into the forest.  Glad I didn't find my first one while pulling weeds by hand!

Oh yes,  must post my Daily Countdown before I get started on today's two boxes of papers to sort for shredding.

552  days, or 1 year, 6 months, 2 days to go.  

Exercise Goal:        
1000 miles on the treadmill     3 miles  yesterday, 3 miles today!    
Total walked = 100.5 miles   My legs are getting stronger!
         Someday I will be hiking in National Parks!

(I've decided to count miles walked instead of miles to go.  It seems more positive.)

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Tidbits I've learned

In the last week or so I've learned a couple of things that I'm sure all of the seasoned RVers know.

One is that if you are a member of the Moose Lodge, you can park in lodge lots, and that many lodges have RV hookups.  We have several lodges in our area.  I am going to look into what else they do and see if we want to join.

Second, the National parks have a life time pass that seniors can buy.  I think it is called the Eagle Pass.  Since going to see the National parks is on my travel wish list, it is time to look into that as well.

The third bit of information is that interest on an RV loan is tax deductible as a second home.  We do expect to pay for the RV etc. from the sale of the house since by then all of our available money (except retirement accounts)  will probably be tied up in fixing up this place, getting an RV loan might be necessary.

 I want to buy a rig when the house is ready, or almost ready for sale.  That should give us a few months to take some shorter trips to get to know the rig and do whatever we have to it.  I don't want to buy one before the big projects are still undone, because it would be to painful to see it just sitting, and not be able to take it out because we had to stay home doing something on the house.   Craig does an excellent job on his repairs, it just takes him awhile to do them.

 If we buy used, we might want to start seriously looking when the house is "almost" ready.  Then if we find something we can get it and pay the loan off when the house sells.  We both hate debt, and except for our mortgage don't have any, but I think if we overlap it will be OK.

For as long as we have been married, 44 years, Craig has never been one to talk about long term goals or make plans.  I'm sure he has some, although he will deny it. That is just the way he is.  We do make decisions together, there just isn't much discussion.  So when he does say something pertaining to the future, I listen.  Recently he has said he would rather get a motor home than a fifth wheel and he thinks we should buy a used one rather than new.   When the time get closer, I know he will be doing his own research.

Daily countdown:
554  days, or 1 year, 6 months, 4 days to go.  

Exercise Goal:        
1000 miles on the treadmill     3 miles  today   906.5  to go 
         Someday I will be hiking in National Parks!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Why ... Because we want to explore

A few blogs ago  heyduke50  reminded me that one of our reasons for thinking about going full time is to explore this vast country of ours.   So I have added it to my Why page.

We know we want to leave the Bay Area and Northern California, but we don't really have any other destination in mind for retirement.  There has got to be somewhere that the weather is decent and the cost of living isn't as high as it is here!  We have no family in this area.  Our daughter lives in San Diego, but it too is very expensive and Craig doesn't want to retire there.  Visits are easy.  (I would like to live closer to her, but it probably won't happen.)

On the home front we had a busy weekend.  Craig got a little more work done and I did too.

This morning I followed thru with the first step on getting the roof done,  I called and talked to an answering machine.  

I'm going thru two more boxes of old tax records after I'm finished here.  Ugh!

Daily countdown:
555  days, or 1 year, 6 months, 5 days to go.  

Exercise Goal:        
1000 miles on the treadmill     2 miles  today   909.5  to go 
         Someday I will be hiking in National Parks!

I'm doing this to get in shape! 
 The daily log keeps me on track, otherwise it would be easy to just sit.

Sunday, April 25, 2010


I believe in hope, but I don't expect hope to turn my dream into reality. We need to do things to make it happen, or it will remain only a dream.

Today I sorted three boxes of yarns and bagged them, like with like, to donate to Goodwill. I also found some books of mine in the attic that I can donate. 

  I wish there was more I could do as far as the house repair work.

  Craig  told me to go ahead and talk to roofers on my own.  We tried last year and none of them wanted the job.  He said since I was successful getting the shed taken care of I should go ahead with contracting the roof work.   That is on my list for this week. It's a big job, the problems we had last year were that we had three estimates and three different proposals of how to deal with certain problems.  Craig wrote a counter proposal asking the companies to all bid on the same work and they just blew us off.   I'm going to try with just one this time.  I know what the ball park price is.  The same realtor who gave me the name of the guys to tear down the shed gave me a name of a roofer he works with.  We shall see what he says. 

Daily countdown:
556  days, or 1 year, 6 months, 6 days to go.  

Exercise Goal:        
1000 miles on the treadmill,  3.5 miles  today   911.5  to go 
         Someday I will be hiking in National Parks!

Friday, April 23, 2010

A "Why"

Ten years ago when Craig first suggested the idea of fulltiming, I was reluctant.  One of the things I did at that time was make a list of the pro's and con's.  I remember one of the pros I wrote was "Living in an RV for a couple of years will make a condo seem enormous."  We are realistic and don't think fulltiming will be forever.

Daily countdown:
558  days, or 1 year, 6 months, 8 days to go.  

Exercise Goal:     1000 miles on the treadmill     2.5 miles  today   915  to go 
                     Someday I will be hiking in National Parks!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Just a day

Tossed a few odd things from the one of the garages.  There's not that much that will be hard to part with in the main attached garage, nor in the tandum garage space.  The separate two car garage is going to be a nightmare!

Back to making small daily steps.

559  days, or 1 year, 6 months, 9 days to go.  

Exercise Goal:        1000 miles on the treadmill     4.5 miles  today   917.5  to go 
                         Someday I will be hiking in National Parks!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Doing research is not a waste of time.

As the days pass I have been sending some time each day doing "research" into things that will either be helpful to know when we are fulltiming, or helpful in getting there, or helpful in choosing the right rig for us.

I know that ultimately the decision will be made together, but since I have more free time these days, I am reading and collecting information.

Several people have given me names of manufacturers to consider.  That is great.  There are so many out there that if I can winnow it down, things will be less confusing.

When I was at that mini RVB show last week one of the salesmen suggested I start reading the users groups forums of brands I was interested in.  That seems like a really good idea and I will be looking into
them soon.

On the home front, I have been a bit slow in purging lately.  I was doing fine when I was making a list and committed to sorting something, no matter how small, each day.  Then Craig fussed a bit, and I think it was going to fast for him, so I stopped listing.  Then I lost my momentum.    I am going back to my one thing a day plan, but the list will be in my head.

Today I want to go back thru several of the bags of papers I have designated for the shredder company.  I want to look at everything twice before it goes out the door.

Do you miss any of your "gone" stuff?

Daily countdown:
560  days, or 1 year, 6 months, 10 days to go.  

Exercise Goal:        
1000 miles on the treadmill     2 miles  today   922 to go 
         Someday I will be hiking in National Parks!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

12 years in one park?

I don't know if spending 12 years in one park is considered a fulltimer or not!

I was getting my haircut today and of course the subject of RVs came up and I found out my hairdresser has lived in a 5th wheeler that  has been parked in the same spot for 12 years!

 I know where her park is and it is quite a nice little place.  There are some trailers and some mobile homes and some like hers, but all of them are more or less permanent.

 With real estate and apartments being so costly in California, I guess it is one way to live in a beautiful place.

 I just never knew.

She said she doesn't have a truck.  If she wanted to move she would hire someone to move it for her.

We plan to be more mobile than that!

What is the longest you have parked in one place?

Daily countdown:
561  days, or 1 year, 6 months, 11 days to go.  

Exercise Goal:        
1000 miles on the treadmill     4 miles  today   924 to go 
         Someday I will be hiking in National Parks!

Monday, April 19, 2010

So many choices!

First, hello to Gin and Sly.  May we meet up some day as happy fulltimers!

Last week I took a quick look at some rigs, and ever since I have been back on page one in thinking about what would be best for us.  Eventually it will be a decision made by both of us, but for now I'm the delegated "Research Department."

I keep thinking about how much more suited to actual living a 5th wheeler is than a medium size Motor Home.  Well, as time passes and I learn more, the right choice will come.

Dee has given me some of her opinions and experiences.  I expect I will have many more views to explore.

Mid May we go to a big show together.

I have a short list of top Motor Home manufacturers, but I wonder how do I find the top manufacturers of Fivers?   I guess a lot of reading in in my future!

Daily countdown:
562  days, or 1 year, 6 months, 12 days to go.  

Exercise Goal:        
1000 miles on the treadmill       4 miles  today   928 to go 
        Someday I will be hiking in National Parks!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

A great RV meal salad -Greek Sardines

(Something seems to be wrong with blogger)  

Personally I have never really thought of sardines as
 having the "yum" factor, but the following was really
 really good.

Craig is a bit of a "Foodie."  He can't seem to pick up a food
 section of the newspaper or a magazine without reading the
 recipes.  This months issue of Eating Well magazine has some
 really interesting salads. We tried this one last night and I 
thought, it would be a great RV meal.  Easy, quick to make,
 and ingredients that are easy to buy or store.

GREEK Salad with sardines 
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 3 medium tomatoes, cut into large chunks
  • 1 large English cucumber, cut into large chunks
  • 1 15-ounce can chickpeas, rinsed
  • 1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 1/4 cup thinly sliced red onion
  • 2 tablespoons sliced Kalamata olives
  • 2 4-ounce cans sardines with bones, packed in olive oil or water, drained
  • Wisk lemon juice, oil, garlic, oregano and pepper in a large bowl until well combined.  Add tomatoes, cucumber, chickpeas, feta,onion, and olives.  Gently toss to combine.  Divide the salad among 4 plates and top with sardines.  We divided it into two meal size servings and served with Stella Dora Bread Sticks.

Daily countdown:
564  days, or 1 year, 6 months, 16 days to go.  

Exercise Goal:        
1000 miles on the treadmill       miles  today      932 to go 
                   Someday I will be hiking in National Parks!

Friday, April 16, 2010

mini RV Show

I went to a very small "dealer" lot show today.  I knew it was going to be small from the information I saw on the internet, but I went to look around anyway.  As I expected from the list of manufacturers the inventory shown was mostly travel trailers with just a few Class As and Cs.  But I wanted to start putting a physical experience to go with some of the floor plans I've been looking at.  I needed to feel just how big 32' or 40' is.  I didn't take Craig along because I knew there wouldn't be much to see.

A very big show is coming to a nearby fairgrounds in mid May.

RV shows are sort of like Open Houses.  They give you a chance to look without feeling like you are taking some salesman's time.

What's the best way to start the decision process?

No walking today.

Just the countdown:
565  days, or 1 year, 6 months, 17 days to go.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Daily countdown only

Daily countdown:

566  days, or 1 year, 6 months, 18 days to go.  

Exercise Goal:        
1000 miles on the treadmill  
   4 miles  today   934 to go 
(watched the 2nd half of Titanic - A loooong movie)
                   Someday I will be hiking in National Parks!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Thank You for your comments

I just want to thank those of you who sent me comments on yesterday's blog.  Without wanting to seem mushy,  I really do consider you as winners.  People who are either reaching for their dream, or are there. I value your support more than you can imagine.

So, on with the steps toward a new lifestyle.  Yesterday in addition to taking care of some "tax" business, I took care of some business I had been putting off for a year, and I did some research and dug thru old paper work that resulted in my solving a financial mystery that has been pushed aside for a long time!  This is  important because I did it instead of putting it off!

However in the course of looking for the above mentioned paperwork, I had to look in the dreaded attic.  What's in all those boxes?  There are some boxes that have been moved at least twice without unpacking.  I recognize the moving companies marking.  Fortunately many of the boxes stored there are empty.  Craig has a thing for saving the original box from things like electronics and small appliances.  Which is good. These will be easy to deal with, it is the full boxes that are a new challenge.

On another front, since I want Craig to come to this in his own time and his own way, I try not to overload our conversations with tales from RV blogs.  Actually, I'd love to share every story with him, but don't. I find that by chuckling softly to myself from time to time  I subtly cause him to ask me what I'm smiling about. Then I can share a story.

Last night he asked when the RV show I had mentioned a few weeks ago was going to be.  He said he didn't want to miss it.  Not a chance!  I actually want to go at least twice.  Once with him and once on my own.  The show is May 14-23rd.

Today I cleared the Flea market table again.  Putting things into boxes for the future.  In the process I was able to send some things directly to trash.

Is it normal to feel a little thrill when you put something in the trash?

567  days, or 1 year, 6 months, 19 days to go.  

Exercise Goal:        
1000 miles on the treadmill       3 miles  today   938 to go
        Someday I will be hiking in National Parks!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

I feel myself changing

I don't know how this will end.  Full time, part time, smaller sticks ...  I do know I feel myself changing.  I feel stronger.  I feel that if I can be positive most days and do a little something towards reaching my goal, I will be able to choose to go full-time or not.  I will not give up the dream because someone or something (other than health failures,) make me give up.

This weekend someone very close to me has gotten into very serious trouble.  In the past I would have lead the charge to rescue or help him out.  This time I said NO.  We will not be drawn into someone's black hole.  Craig agrees with me on this. But saying no was incredibly hard.  I am growing.

Count down to ?

568  days, or 1 year, 6 months, 20 days to go.  

Exercise Goal:        
1000 miles on the treadmill  
   4 miles  today (all at one time!)  941 to go
                   Someday I will be hiking in National Parks!

Monday, April 12, 2010

A soggy weekend

I took a couple of days off from walking and tossing!  We finished taxes this weekend and went to a movie Saturday night.  Sunday it was so rainy that we read in front of a warm fire all afternoon.

Got back to the treadmill this morning and went to the pool as well.

Craig has asked me not to blog about the projects to fix up the house so I have taken some of them down.  I guess he was feeling watched and measured.  He will do what he will do, not any faster than what suits him.

Monday, and its pouring out again.  At least the California drought is probably over, but they say the rains are causing lots of fuel to grow for the later summer fire season.

Counting the days and the miles:
569  days, or 1 year, 6 months, 21 days to go.  

Exercise Goal:        
1000 miles on the treadmill  
   2 miles  today (Plus pool time)  945 to go
                   Someday I will be hiking in National Parks!

Friday, April 9, 2010

Why I walk

Hello to my new follower Katie,  We all have a long way to go and sometimes it helps to know others are doing the same and even better, many have arrived at their new life and are enjoying the success.

As I was walking on the treadmill today I was thinking that the exercise was not only strengthening my legs and heart, but was also a way that I could Physically Do Something  toward achieving my goal.  All of the sorting and purging in the world won't be of any value if I am not physically able to go on the road! Sure I could loose a few pounds, but being in better condition is even more important!

572  days, or 1 year, 6 months, 24 days to go.  

Exercise Goal:        
1000 miles on the treadmill  
   3.5 miles yesterday, 1.5 today (plus the pool) only  947 miles to walk.
                   Someday I will be hiking in National Parks!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Christeaster Flowers

Christeaster Flowers!

We have very good light in our living room, and Craig is very good at remembering to water plants!  We just don't have the heart to toss the Christmas flower when it is still so pretty.  Yes, that is a real plant, not artificial.  So now it has been joined by the Easter Lily which won't last nearly as long!

To those who commented on my blog yesterday, thank you.  It is fun to see that others have read my wandering thoughts!    I managed four miles on the treadmill because I did two in the morning and two in the afternoon.  I'm usually not very tired after two miles, just bored!  The reason I'm doing it is to get into better shape so I can do some hiking.  I used to walk with my dog, but when she got sick and couldn't go, I felt like a trader going without her.  She's gone, and I will start taking some local hikes again soon. But the treadmill is an easy alternative right now.  I watch TV as I walk.

To Jomama, I'm working on a diagram to try to show the "secret space."  I should be including it in tomorrows post.

574  days, or 1 year, 6 months, 26 days to go.  

Exercise Goal:  1000 miles on the treadmill,  
2 miles this morning and 2 in the afternoon,  954 to go

                       Someday I will be hiking in National Parks!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Catching up

I've missed a couple of days, but I still have tried to keep my eye on the long range goals.

Hiring someone to tear down the shed and haul away all that junk was incredibly empowering.

When the weather gets a bit warmer, and the rain stops, 
I have to go up there and power-wash the 20' x 24' slab that remains.  
It is at the end of it's own driveway, and if we could back up down the
 rather narrow winding drive, it would be a great place to park a rig.   

 Just another dream!

But, for this summer, we do have to do some clean up of the surrounding 
landscape to make it a bit nicer. Lots of downed branches and a large downed
Douglas fur are in the area now.

Well happy Easter,

Craig just got back from his hardware run and I have to go help him.

576  days, or 1 year, 6 months, 28 days to go.  

Exercise Goal:        1000 miles on the treadmill            4 miles today  960 to go
                               Someday I will be hiking in National Parks!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

A new month - shed

The men are still loading trucks with debris up at the shed site.  It rained pretty hard last night and it is all mucky and stuck together.  I'm sure glad we didn't have to do this ourselves!

I have some other work to do today, and tomorrow I have to get a new crown on one of my teeth.

But I have gotten my treadmill miles in.  Gets easier every day.  Next week I will again be able to get to the club for some pool time!  Looking forward to the hot tub!

580  days, or 1 year, 7 months to go.   
Exercise Goal:        1000 miles on the treadmill            3 miles today  964 to go
                               Someday I will be hiking in National Parks!