Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Should Children Be Raised on the Road? Is Living Full Time in an RV a Healthy Choice For Kids?

I believe there is a place for full-time RV living, but I have some serious misgivings about parents who decide to raise their school-aged children full time in an RV. 
My Wife and I are in our early 60’s.  We’ve worked hard our whole life, paid into retirement and social security, and are now considering early retirement and full-time RV living.  We plan to sell our home, travel in our RV and see the whole country before we are too old to continue to do it.  We have the resources from the equity in our home, our retirement money, and of course, social security.  For us, the choice to live full time in an RV is a sound decision. 
But what about the children who are raised full time in an RV?  Don’t you think they are giving up a whole lifetime of experiences that they will never get back?  In my humble opinion, they might grow up with little or no social skills.  They will never experience going to school with children their own ages and never make lifelong friends.  And what about school dances, their first prom, going to football games, joining sports, joining the band, trying out for cheerleading, the list goes on and on.  None of these activities are available to them on the road. 
I’m NOT a big proponent of homeschooling to begin with.  Where will these children get the ambition to go to college, or to leave home to get a job?  Where will they get the skills and/or the knowledge to even go about being on their own in a traditional environment?  Most kids in a traditional home have chores.  Most kids grow up getting a job delivering newspapers, or cutting grass, it's how they learn the value of a dollar.  Where will these kids learn this lesson? Kids learn by example. Aren’t the parents teaching these children a way of life that may not be appropriate for them?
If I’m wrong, I’d love to hear from the adults who have chosen this life for their children.  I’d like to know why they chose this life for them, and if there are any children who have actually grown up on the road with their parents, kids who have been doing this for a very long time.  What effect has this had on them?  Do they feel deprived? Please send me your comments.  I would really like to know.

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Saturday, July 8, 2017

Choosing the Right RV/Camper

Which RV is right for you?  Million dollar question, right? Speaking as someone who is on camper number 3, and my wife really wanting camper number 4, this is a really tough decision.
Our first camper was a 20 foot Cabin A.  It had a very TINY bathroom, a full-size bed, and a very small sink with no counter space, and a refrigerator with a freezer that could hold maybe one pound of meat.  If you’re upgrading from a tent or pop up trailer, then this type of RV would probably be perfect for you.  If you’re only going to use it for the occasional weekend camping trip or once a year vacation, then this type of RV will work for you.  Even though it was small, it had a big closet, lots of storage, and it slept 6.  We were in our early 50’s when we purchased it and it was a little difficult climbing over people to get into the bed.  A young family would’ve really enjoyed this camper.

When we decided to trade in the Cabin A, my wife's main concern was a bigger bed.  She walked into what would be our second camper, a 25 foot Aspen Trail, saw a huge queen sized bed, and decided it was the camper for her.  She didn't notice that the bed sat very high, and it was a challenge to get in and out of the bed.  Also, we were now in our mid 50’s, and all the jacks and the awning were manual cranks, and it eventually became burdensome to set up, and take down the campsite.  It had a much larger bathroom, no slide-outs, and a “U” shaped dining table.  It had a nice sized refrigerator, and a separate freezer, which was pretty awesome.  As time went on, she felt the height of the bed was a pain, and she really did not care for the “U” shaped dining table.

That brings us to camper number three.  Again, she walked into a 30 foot Sprinter Campfire Edition camper, saw the queen sized bed, this one closer to the floor, a slide out which made the living area much bigger, a really nice couch, a huge bathroom, electric jacks and awning, and to top it all off, an outdoor kitchen.  So you’re probably thinking this one should be perfect right, so why is she looking for camper number 4?  Well, now we’re not just using it for the occasional weekend or yearly vacation. We are now thinking about living in the camper full time, so now she wants a little more space.  The couch is very comfortable, but not for sitting and watching TV for a couple of hours.  It's barely big enough for me, my wife, and the dog.  And I need a lot more storage space.  So, looking for number 4.

So, when you walk into that camper that looks just perfect, first decide what you’ll be using it for and what your needs are.  Do you want a camper, a fifth wheel, or a coach?  What’s important to you, a big bed, lots of storage, a big bathroom?  Walk into the camper, lay on the bed, sit at the table, stand in the shower, sit on the toilet, open the cabinets, take your time to imagine what you will take with you and whether there is enough room.  Go to a place that sells hundreds of campers and RV, not a small lot that doesn’t have a lot of choices.  Go to an RV show and look at all the options.  Then pick your camper or RV.  Don’t do like we did.  In the long run, it will just cost you a lot of money because you will be upside down on every decision.
Happy camping!!!


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Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Thinking About Full Time RV Life

As we get closer to retirement age, all sorts of ideas start running through my head, to include the freedom of traveling whenever we want, and living in the RV full time. All that stuff starts to hurt my brain. It can become so overwhelming. What shall we do? What first? It is certainly something I have never done before.

When I was younger I thought about living that lifestyle when I retired. It sounded great to me at the time. I thought to myself, what a great life that would be. Well, the time to do that is now fast approaching. Instead of retirement being years away, I'm down to just months away.

There are so many things to consider. For one thing, how the heck do we downsize? I have a lot of years worth of stuff. Then of course you need to sell the house. Get rid of all your bills. What about health insurance? If we retire early at 62 you can collect social security but don’t qualify for medicare yet. Where do we want our residency be? Where do we get our mail? What about friends and family? What do we do about doctors, dentists. How much does this lifestyle cost? What happens if we don’t like this lifestyle after a year then what?

As all this starts running through my mind, my head feels like it will burst. So, we need a plan.
Come join me as we start our journey into this lifestyle.

Our preparation begins now. I will write updates as we plan and discover new ideas on how to do this. I know a lot of you are already living the life, and some of you may just be considering it. If any of you have any thoughts as we move forward please feel free to comment. Your thoughts and ideas will help us tremendously as we try to figure this out.

Until next time, happy Camping!

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