Friday, March 16, 2018

Something to think about...

I have been thinking a lot recently about happiness. I used to think I was happy, but after I started full time RVing and stopped working for the man, all that changed. What I thought was happiness was only a mirage, just a veiled thin layer. Don't get me wrong - I did have days and even weeks of happiness but mostly just dreary days and dreary days. I worked hard and received for my efforts just two weeks a year for myself and family. During those few weeks I went on vacations and truly enjoyed myself, free from distractions or my real life.

After about the first year off work and after starting my RV Inspection business I started to relax some and the worries started to fade. Now approaching a year and a half of my post work life, I started to realize what I thought was happiness was a myth. I looked back at my life and noticed I had 3 phases in my life. First was my life before marriage, second was my married life and now my post work life.

Phase 1 - life before marriage was difficult for me. I graduated high school and joined the marine corps. High school was a drag and I was glad to be finished with that part of my life. My time in the corps was also not all that pleasant either as you can imagine. After I was discharged I went about my life and no real happiness was found.

On to phase 2 - Married life is great when you are married to someone as perfect as my wife Caitlin. She has made me happy for over 22 years now. But that is not the happiness I am referring to in this post.  The happiness I am referring to is the complete happiness with all aspects of life.

We have been force fed the idea of working hard, getting married, buying a home, having kids and retiring. Though I have done all of those things (except retirement) and have found happiness doing them, I still wonder if all the long hours at the office away from all of that was worth it. Could I not have actually lived a great life and found happiness without all the time away from the things that made me happy. Could I not have focused on family, friends, fun, travel without the need to work all the time to afford only a few weeks a year of this. We are all taught that if we go to school and get a great job and make a lot of money and buy things we will be happy. I found that it was not true. Having less things, spending time with family and traveling and focusing on happiness is way more satisfying. I have learned how not to buy everything I think I want, thinking it will make me happy. Well it doesn't and didn't for me.  I learned that having less meant more to me then I ever thought it would.

Phase 3 - I am about to embark on an adventure of fulltiming and workamping. I am more excited to make $11 an hour than I ever was making 5 times that in the corporate world. Money doesn't equal happiness. Taking time to enjoy the world around me make more sense than ever. Have you ever thought "What would it be like if I had no money worries?". Well I have, and I'm doing it. I feel alive and free like I did as a child when my parents paid all the bills.

I started planning my fulltime adventure years ago and mostly revolved around having enough money to live the life style I thought I wanted to live. But after the last year and a half I figured out that money doesn't make you happier, it only makes life more complicated. Not to say someone should not look at finances when planning a major life change, but you can live on much less than you think. With the option of boondocking and cooking in the RV and entertaining yourself with nature instead of movie nights and dinners out, or even fancy parties.

I suggest you really look and what you want and not just what society says we should be doing. I have found that freedom means more than anything to me and having the opportunity to work at a KOA in Yellowstone means I will have the freedom to feel alive for the first time in decades. Remember when you were in college and you had almost no worries? You can have that again!!

I will be leaving Southern California May 1st and taking a 20 days journey to West Yellowstone boondocking and living my life my way. So if you are thinking about your life in the same way, I suggest you get past all the fear and do what will make you happy. You can always go back working for the man anytime you wish. Your misery will be waiting...

I suggest you take a plunge and join me.

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Life - Phase 3

OK folks, good news to share. I have my first workamping job starting in less than 2 months. I will be at the West Yellowstone KOA. I will be an ambassador and maintenance person. I am sure excited to be able to talk to people everyday about the place I love so much.  Caitlin and I have been visiting Yellowstone for the last 15 years or so and have fallen in love. It will be awesome to be in the area for the entire summer.

Caitlin has already found a few lakes in which to kayak while I'm at work. Stella will also love being up there chasing squirrels and birds.

I will continue to post more often to help others who want to workamp. 


KOA Campgrounds

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

6 month fulltime update!!!

So after 6 months a lot has happened to us. During the first few weeks our black tank started leaking and I tore the roof off and the awning. After 10 days in the shop and staying in a hotel we got our rig back and its been great ever since.

I also took an RV tech course and found it to be awesome. I also became a certified RV inspector and was hoping to start a business and a RV inspector and RV maintenance tech, as my last post stated. Everything is going well so far.

The freedom of being a fulltime is great. We are still in our home town until we save enough to go on the road. "Going on the road" is the next milestone we are looking forward to. Work camping seems to be where we will start. I am really looking forward to getting out of town. Weekend trips just don't do it anymore, but they do help.

One this i do recommend is everyone that will be going fulltime and inst rich is take the RV Maintenance tech course from NRVIA. Tell them I sent you! This will teach you how to fix most things on your RV in just a short week course.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

More news!!

So after getting laid off last August I have decided to start my own business, a RV friendly business. I am now a NRVIA Certified RV Inspector and maintenance tech. I have started Honest RV Helper.

I have just started and have already had one client. If you need or know someone that needs an RV inspection have them check out NRVIA. I would recommend all RV's either new or used be inspected before purchase. See you out there!

Monday, November 21, 2016

After a few months of fulltiming....

So it's been a few months since my last post.  Let me bring you up to date:

While moving our trailer from the front of the house after packing up I snagged a tree and ripped the roof.  Then a few days later we noticed the black tank was leaking and our batteries were bubbling.  We took the rig to the repair shop and after 10 days we were back up and running.  Insurance paid for the roof and awning, and our new warranty from Wholesale Warranties has been great, paying for the black tank along with some other stuff we found.

Another fun thing that happened is that I was laid off from my job of nine years the week after we moved to the RV park.  Oh well, life happens.  I still need to work for a while to save enough money to really get on the road.

Then to top it off, we had our house up for sale for over two months and couldn't get it sold.  We pulled it off the market, painted the inside and completely rebuilt the kitchen.  Now it's back on the market.  Wish us luck on that one.

[From Cait:  So far living in the RV has been great.  It's cozy and comfortable, with more than enough room for us, the dog and the cat.  It's not the same as fulltiming on the road, since I'm still going to my same job every day, and we're living very near our old home base, but the space is working out fine.  Even having purged most of our stuff, it turns out we really still have more than we need.  I'm sure that will get whittled down over time.  But this is actually a pretty good way to adjust to fulltiming one piece at a time.]

This Thanksgiving weekend we will be going to Joshua Tree dry lake bed for our first trip since we went full time.

Talk soon.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

294 weeks remaining.... Or wait a minute, we are full time now!!

We did it, we are now officially fulltimers. We moved out of our house last week and moved into the Montana on the street for a few days while loading all our stuff. We then moved into a local RV park about 4 miles from town. It was a tight fit for our 37 footer but I squeezed it in there.

I did make one mistake while moving this giant rig to our spot. I hit a TREE! Yikes. I tore off part of the roof and the awning. The entire roof needs to be replaced and will cost about $10k, all covered by insurance.

The house is up for sale and we hope to start getting offers this week.

Stella has already taken a liking to our new home.

FROM CAIT:  We did it!!  I'm so excited to be in our new love nest.  We're still getting organized and finding a place for everything, but we're almost there.  We've got plenty of room for the two of us, plus the cat and the dog.  Everybody's settling in nicely.

I thought getting rid of so much of our stuff would be much harder than it actually was.  I am very fortunate in that we do have a few places to display my favorite keepsakes, so I didn't have to get rid of absolutely everything.  My mom and sister were able to take my grandmother's furniture and family heirlooms.  And they'll store a bin or two of my things in their garages if needed (I've still got a few boxes left in the garage at the old house).

The mental preparation was probably the most important part for me.  Luckily I discovered the writings of Josh and Ryan from  That helped me view this process as gaining something rather than giving something up.  And I watched a lot of YouTube videos on organizing small spaces, and that got me inspired and excited.  All of that lit the fuse, then when I was ready to start it felt relatively fast and easy.

I like being in the RV so much, even just parked locally and still going to work every day, that it will be fantastic once we're on the road and living in beautiful, interesting, different places.  Fulltiming:  DAY 5!

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

296 weeks remaining....

We are really getting down the the last of our things, everything has either been sent to donation locations or given away. As of the end of this week we will have nothing left but what will go in the trailer.

The final touches were put on the trailer yesterday, a 50 amp surgeguard surge protector to keep our electric system safe. We pick up the trailer in storage Saturday morning and head out to the desert to make sure everything works as it should then return home and load up all the remaining items we own.

The house will be put up for sale later next week and we expect it to sell the first day. During the transition we might look for temporary location to setup camp or just move to the place we plan on living for the next few years.

We still have 296 weeks before we retire, I hope we can make it that long. Though I don't think we will. I'm sure our next post will be when we are "fulltiming".