Hey there Harry Up and GO fans and followers! So I know that we have been fairly quiet on the blog recently. Well we have a really good reason…we have been VERY busy! Our Facebook friends and family have been seeing us selling our things – they may have been wondering, “What the heck are they doing?!” Over the past year, we have sold our rental house, a piece of land, our home, furniture, toys and most of our possessions . We’ve sold stuff on Facebook & Craigslist, have held 2 huge yard sales, and have made countless trips to Goodwill, Purple Heart and other charities.
Sooooo….the big announcement we have been dying to make, but needed to make sure that all our ducks were in a row is…..
We are moving our family of seven into a 357sf travel trailer!! We will be exploring our beautiful nation via our RV! We will be home or “roadschooling” all 5 kids along the way. Our plan is to commit to “fulltiming” for at least one year, but we are leaving the stop date open ended so that we can see how it goes, and let life take us where it will. How about them apples?!
About 7 years ago, Dean and I both got the bug to move or do something different. We had submitted some contracts on houses and even explored moving to other states to satisfy this urge to move. Here are a few of the ideas we scrapped along the way:
- Old dilapidated compound on Taylor Rd. in Street (WHAT WERE WE THINKING?)
- Cool house on Mark street right on Harford County parks and rec land
- Very strange but interesting house with 6 bedrooms on Choate Rd. in Fallston
- Three house compound (homes for my sister and parents also?) on Bottom Rd in Baltimore County
- Move to the Charleston/Myrtle Beach area of South Carolina where homes are oh so inexpensive!
- And most recently, build a home next to my sister on our beautiful 14 acre piece of land right in Bel Air (after paying a bazillion dollars just to build the driveway)
So the point of all that is to say that we have big dreams, but none of them were ever “THE” right thing for our family. And I’m of the camp that believes that when you know and feel that its right, then it IS. So this one idea of full time RV’ing kept popping into our heads. Time after time, in between all these other ideas, we kept saying, ‘lets just travel in the RV- all the time!” WE know that we love going camping in the trailer. Whenever we were at the campgrounds with the family, I felt that we were truly happy. No worries, just good, honest, wholesome family fun time. Then we learned that there is a small movement of families that actually DO what we were thinking about: living in the camper and traveling as a family. So many people save this lifestyle for retirement, but we kept thinking that we wanted to experience the fun WITH the kids. We could actually turn this crazy idea into something real, learning from the other families who have paved the way for this lifestyle.
So about a year ago we really started planning, researching and figuring out how we would make this happen. All the kids have always been on board and are really very excited to get started on our journey.
I know that this probably sounds unconventional and a bit strange, but I’d like to share with you a few of the reasons WHY we are doing this:
What’s missing? I like to think of myself as a person who is constantly trying to improve my life. I can’t say I was unhappy, but I couldn’t shake this feeling that something was missing or that I was meant for something more or bigger. I still don’t know what that is,but I do feel like on our journey around the United States, I may figure it out.
Busy Busy Busy! This was our life – does it sound familiar? Baseball five nights a week for one child. We have one toddler full time at home, one in preschool, two in elementary school, one in middle school; each having daily pick ups and drop offs at 3 different times. Then add in after school clubs, religious education, My Gym classes, Fundamentals classes, birthday parties, gymnastics, class parties, PTA events and meetings, blah blah blah. I know that we chose all of these activities, but i feel like there’s no way to leave this stuff behind with the lifestyle we are currently living. I needed a drastic change – Would we get it this way by moving into the RV and traveling? We are going to try.
NO MORE CLEANING! Another REALLY enticing reason is … I’m going to be going from cleaning a 2800 square foot house to only 357 square feet – ONE BATHROOM! Now I’m sure my kids can trash a small camper quickly, but I am imagining it only taking 30 minutes to clean it – I’ll keep you updated on that one. I’m very much looking forward to the simplicity of having much less space and things to take care of.
Quest for happiness *** I started really looking at my life and contemplating…when am I truly happy? While on vacation, camping with the family, doing outdoorsy things like hiking, swimming, berry picking…Why not try to do that all the time? We, as a society, feel the need to do everything like everybody else – go to college, get a job, get married, get a house, have some kids, get a bigger house with a bigger mortgage, retire…whats next? I want to buck the system a bit on the quest for true happiness. We will let you know how it goes!
What about work? Dean has worked his way up the corporate ladder at his job and has been successful. But the adventure and wanderlust has grabbed us – he wanted to be able to spend more time with these beautiful children we created together. So he has opted to become a sales agent again and will be on his own, not managing anymore.
So all these things started eating away at us & we ultimately made the decision to start putting a plan in place so we could fulltime as family. We purchased our tow vehicle, sold our old small camper and purchased the newer macdaddy camper with fulltiming in mind.
Here are a few pics of our home for the next year or more!
What do we feel this life change will accomplish?
- Give us time to be with and raise these great kids – I recently realized I only have 6 years left before our oldest might go away to college! Boo Hoo!! We want to help our children grow and experience things they might not otherwise be able to do – but we want to experience it with them
- We want to see the country and cross things off our bucket list
- We want less stuff to deal with – no mortgage, only one bathroom to clean, less toys to clean up, no lawn to mow, etc
- Spend way less money
- Figure out where we want to raise our family. We love Bel Air, but need to see what else is out there before we purchase a house again – explore other states
- Figure out what is our calling?
- Help reduce the technology use for everyone in our family and get back to nature /make screen free time a priority
I’m sure we cant even begin to fathom how much we are going to miss our friends and family. But we have to give this dream a shot & we hope that you all will follow along with us on our blog and on social media. Sign up for email notifications at the bottom of this post so you are sure not to miss any of our posts. Facebook only shows a small percentage of my posts in your news feed so be sure to add your email address so you never miss anything. Please share our posts on social media – maybe we can inspire others to give this nomadic lifestyle a try!
So what’s next? Right now we are living with family while we let the kids finish school. We are heading to the Jersey Shore for a few weeks to get our feet wet locally with fulltiming, then heading home for a previously planned family vacation. Then at the end of July we are off to explore! We will make our way out to Mt. Rushmore with stops along the way in Cleveland, Michigan, South Bend, Chicago, and Milwaukee to name a few. Please share with us any “must sees” that you know of along this route!
One question that we often get, I’ll answer right off the bat: How are you going to make money? Well, after 15 years in the business, and 10 years in management, Dean is heading back into the field as a direct life insurance sales agent. This opportunity will enable us the freedom and flexibility to travel. Over the years he’s helped many friends and family as a trustworthy and honest source for life insurance and money/retirement 401k rollovers. You can support our family and our adventures by calling Dean to evaluate your coverage and by recommending him to anyone who might be in in need of insurance. To get in touch with Dean please message him through Facebook Here.
So that’s our story. What do you think? Do you think we are absolutely nuts? (but don’t hurt our feelings!) Are you jealous and want to hitch a ride? Do you want to meet us somewhere in the US? Do you have any suggestions for where we should go? What questions do you have for us?
Thanks for following us! Stay tuned for more details about our adventures while we Harry up and GO!!