1st Year FULL-TIME Rv’ers Ken and Julie Davis tell us about their first year on the road

1st Year FULL-TIME Rv’ers Ken and Julie Davis tell us about their first year on the road

June 8, 2021 Blog Couples Drinks News Partners Real Estate Testamonial Travel Vacation 0

Lisa RichartHernandez
friends welcome back to RView and this week we have a great show for you. It is our interview with Ken and Julie Davis, who are full timers and have just completed their first year. So they’re going to share with us their pros and cons and what they’ve learned in their first year of being full time RV years.

intro
Welcome to RView with your hosts George and Lisa Hernandez each week listening as George and Lisa talk about their RV and travel adventures all around the world. GEORGE And Lisa travel in their 40 foot Class A tip and motorcoach and tow their Jeep Wrangler, always looking for fun and adventure.

Lisa RichartHernandez
Hi, welcome back to RView podcast. I’m Lisa RichartHernandez.

George
And I’m George Hernandez.

Lisa RichartHernandez
And today we have with us Ken and Julie Davis. They are our first year full time RV years and we’re going to they’re going to share with us any tips and insight that they have welcome Ken of Julie, tell us a little bit about yourself.

Julie
Hi, Lisa and George, how are you guys today? Well, just to tell you a little bit about ourselves. I’ll tell you a little bit maybe let can chime in as well. We’re, as you said our full time our viewers, we’ve been doing it almost a year to the day now. We left Connecticut which was our home base on May 30 of last year. And we’ve been married. September will be 24 years now been together 28 I believe going on 28 and yeah, that’s that’s that’s where we’re coming from. We’ve just been doing this for about a year now. And before that we were weekend warriors with various different rigs from travel trailers to fifth wheels to a gas motorhome and now we have a diesel motorhome.

Ken
Hi, I’m Ken and we’ve been doing 20 years of RV This is our first year full timing and we started out with a 26 foot Travel Trailer 94 for wins from there we went to a fifth wheel I think 2000 cat 5th wheel sorry. And from there we went to a gas a 36 month gas motorhome and then from there we upgraded to a 09 diesel Tiffin

Lisa RichartHernandez
was I think we when we met you guys in Key West at Boyd’s campground. I think you guys were in your gas RV.

George
We still had the gas one. Yes, we started the gas one. Wow. Wow.

Lisa RichartHernandez
So for this past year that you’ve been in there full time even in the tiffin

Julie
we spent, I’d say about half of that time. So we left Connecticut in May of 2020. You guys in July and q s and then shortly thereafter went to Tampa and bought the tiffin diesel didn’t actually pick that up or get that into our possession until September. So we’ve been in the diesel since September of last year.

Lisa RichartHernandez
Okay, so tell us where you both retired? Are you still working? Um, uh,

Ken
a retired firefighter. I did 25 years with the City of New Haven, Connecticut as a firefighter professional. Right now, I’m currently retired.

Julie
And I am somewhere in between semi retired, I guess you would say I’ve been, I took some time off from a job that I had for about 15 years with a private university and took some time off to settle our house, get that sold, get it out, get it on the market, get it sold and on the road, and just recently was contacted by that former employer. And I’m going to be starting some temporary working on part time doing it remotely, which wasn’t really an option when we initially left. But you know, thanks to COVID and everything that’s been going on, they’re a little more flexible and willing and able to take it on some people that are working from different areas of the country, which is great for me. Wow, that’s

Lisa RichartHernandez
awesome. I guess. There’s all kinds of little silver linings, I think from COVID. And one of that, I mean, even affected me in my business as well as just being able to work remotely and people expect it now more than more than they used to, you know, just even just over a year ago. So

George
I think it’s gonna be the norm for a lot of businesses. Yeah, yeah, I definitely think it’s gonna be the norm for a lot of businesses.

Lisa RichartHernandez
Yeah. So you told us that you’ve been our viewers for, I guess, what, over 20 years now, so for a long time, what made you decide to go full time? Where do we start?

Ken
Where do we start? I think a lot of it is just we we’ve decided that life’s too short and that we want to start seeing this country Julie And I have traveled abroad, not so much abroad but out of the out of the continental United States. And now it’s time that we kind of want to see the national parks and what this country has to offer for us.

Julie
Yeah, and we’ve also just we’re born and bred, New Englanders lived in Connecticut born and raised and kind of tired of the rat race there and the weather, especially in the winter time and wanted to just be where it was warmer most of the time and not have to deal with snow and all that fun stuff.

George
Well, the good thing now is if you can move around, Avoid the cold.

Lisa RichartHernandez
So what have speaking of moving around what have been your favorite places that you’ve been to so far? And tell us a little bit about where you stayed this year? And what kind of things you’ve seen so far.

Ken
Few of the places that we really enjoyed was when we were down in Key West where we’re actually we met new guys. And then we’ve traveled from anywhere from Key West all the ways up to Acadia National Park and Bar Harbor, Maine, was the farthest north we’ve done so far. And I say, Acadia National Park is just gorgeous. If anybody gets a chance to go and see it, do it. It’s just so gorgeous.

George
How far ahead was how far have you guys gone West? Tennessee is the farthest we’ve gone West. Okay, so you’ve been focusing on the east coast.

Ken
Pretty much this year, we have been focusing just on the east coast and that’s our plans for supposedly coming soon that we are thinking maybe heading west and seeing what like start making our way towards the west and seeing out the

George
West. It’s beautiful out there.

Lisa RichartHernandez
Yeah, we just

Julie
gotta pick your guys’s brain at another time about your trip out there and get some get some tips and pointers?

Lisa RichartHernandez
Yeah, same we this we were hoping this summer to make our trip up the East Coast also to the up to Maine and we wanted to go up into Nova Scotia and stuff so we’re kind of holding off on that until we can get into Canada which I don’t think we can still do right now very easily.

George
No I don’t think

Julie
Yeah, I don’t think they’ve opened it up yet. No, no Yeah. But and that’s one of the one of the joys of full timing or any travel with the RV I guess is you have to be flexible our original plan after we made it down to Key West and spent the winter in Florida was to head back up to Maine but through a different route rather than back up the same the East Coast that we went down we were going to go up through Alabama, Tennessee Kentucky but they were having so many crazy tornadoes and other weather events that we just decided it wasn’t worth the risk. Yeah and that we would hit those states at another time but we did it we did eventually make it inland on the way up and and see a little bit of Tennessee in the Smoky Mountains National Park which was beautiful as well. So we got a little bit inland but not the original route

Lisa RichartHernandez
that we had planned. So Alright, so let me ask you this. You’re like okay, we just sold our house and we’re gonna live in our RV full time. And here we go. Did you have like a game plan like did you have reservations in Florida Did you had Did you plan out your first year or did you sort of just wing it as you go?

Ken
So we kind of our first year we went after we sold the house and everything a lot of it was going back down to Florida going down to Florida and domiciled changeover are domiciled where we live and register our vehicles and all that. And then why we were in Florida. Waiting on a few things. We decided to go down to Key West. And then on the way back up. We just kind of enjoyed Florida that we said why don’t we just stay for the winter. So it wasn’t kind of a planned thing. It was more of a we were originally going down, registering it and then moving on. But it was more we decided this to hang out in Florida for the winter and see what it took. What how it took us.

George
Let me ask you a question. Wait. So you just decided to stay in Florida for a couple months? How difficult was it to find a place to stay? And is that what you guys are doing like picking a spot and staying for a couple months at a time?

Julie
Really the Florida spot was the only time that we really spent an extended period of time and we did five months there. And it actually wasn’t as hard as you might have. You might think it would have been because we did kind of wait till the last minute said make that decision and pull the trigger. I think one of the things that helped us out is the fact that the Canadian border was still closed and a lot of Canadians tend to come down and Snowbird, in Florida in the winter. And so those spots were available to be snatched up. So we kind of got lucky. I think on that front. I don’t know if that would be the same case in other years. So that’s another way that we kind of benefited, I guess you would say from from COVID.

George
Yeah, not as many people out

Lisa RichartHernandez
what was what was the place that you stayed in Florida? Where was it? for fun?

Julie
It was a Sherwood Forest RV park in Kissimmee, Florida. It’s part of the 1000. trails network.

Lisa RichartHernandez
Okay. Can you just just for our listeners, give us an idea of like, how much does it cost to stay there a month?

George
And did they give you a monthly rate?

Lisa RichartHernandez
Like do you save money by staying longer? How does that work?

Julie
Yes, yeah, yeah, absolutely. Do we, they had, if I remember correctly, different programs, I think you could do like a three month program five months or six months, or then an annual. Obviously, the more time you stay, the better the discount gets. I don’t have the exact numbers in front of me. But I think it was somewhere around 800 or so a month, based on what we did. We did a five months. So we did just short of you know, a half a year. But it

Ken
ranges because when we looked at places to stay for the five months, we looked at all different other places. We wanted to check the place out because if we’re going to be there for five months, we wanted to make sure that it was comfortable, comfortable. It was decent enough. The amenities were decent, and it was clean. But there’s other places you could be 1314 $100 for the month. Yeah. So it’s, you know, with us, it was all our budget, what we wanted to spend four or five months as opposed to doing 1314 $100 a month.

Julie
And everything with me not working at that time. We obviously wanted to keep the costs a little lower as well.

Lisa RichartHernandez
Yeah. Yeah, that’s, I mean, I’m sure people that are thinking about going full time, their biggest question is, can we afford it? You know, and I know when we did our cross country trip, we we kept really good track of all our expenses. And it was pretty expensive trip to do. But we figured the reason is because we spent so much money on fuel, because we only stayed at each place maybe three to five days, where we said, you know, if we were full time, he maybe would stay longer. And it would, you know, it would be much more reasonable. on a long term basis.

George
Yeah, we were also doing the World Wind tour, where we already said that next time we go back West Coast, we have a couple places that we want to go to. And that’s it. We just go there, hang out for whatever amount of time we want to hang out and enjoy it.

Ken
Yeah, when before we had gone full time, we were doing a lot of weekend warrior stuff, where we just stay for the weekend. And this and that. And Julie and I are first year with the first gas with the gas motorhome. We did a trip down to Savannah Savannah. Savannah back up. And I just felt like we didn’t have enough time. We learned from that that. It just felt like every time we were somewhere I would say all right, I got to drive tomorrow. I got to get back in the seat and drive.

George
Absolutely. Yep.

Ken
So we were the second time we went down, we actually did longer have a trip down and did more time in spots as opposed to bouncing from spot to spot. And that kind of we learned from that, too, when now when we travel. It’s also a little more flexible for us because we can say Alright, we’re in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee or this place. We want to spend a couple extra days we have that flexibility where we don’t have to be back to something.

George
Yeah, exactly. That’s nice.

Lisa RichartHernandez
I think that’s probably one of the biggest maybe sort of Rookie rookie mistakes because I know we made that mistake and is over planning. Like, okay, we’re gonna be here for three days. And just like you said, one day has been setting yourself up and you’re waiting to check in and then you get there and then you’re like, Oh, crap, tomorrow, we’re leaving. Again. It’s sort of like,

Julie
and it’s still a struggle. It’s still a struggle. And I think it gets easier with time. Yeah.

Ken
And I also always say it when even if you’re like, I don’t know who, when you’re when you’re a weekend warrior, or you’re traveling as full time. You lose at least one day of camping. Just got he got to figure it that way. Yeah. Between driving there setting up and then breaking down and driving back. Yeah. So our our driving so if you’re doing just a weekend you lose actually one day of camping.

George
Yeah. Yeah. Yeah, one full day when you put it all together, and that’s how I feel. I loved our west coast trip, but for me, I felt like I was alone. Always behind the wheel. Because like Lisa said we the longest we stayed anywhere was Moab, right? Yeah. Where we stayed for five days, everything else was two to three days. So it was like setup. And then I’m breaking it down again. Drive setup, break it down drive setup. So yeah, you guys said what, three or four weeks or something? 45 days, five days?

Lisa RichartHernandez
Yeah, six weeks.

George
So every third day,

Julie
like a lot when you’re, by me think when you say it, but then when you actually put it into practice?

Lisa RichartHernandez
Yeah, I mean, when you consider we went all the way up from you know, Charleston, South Carolina to Seattle, Washington, and all the way down the east, west coast, Oregon to California and all the way back across. I mean, really, it’s 45 days is

George
a lot in those 45 days. And I love that trip. But I’m really looking forward to going back out there and actually picking a place and spending time, wherever it is that we decide to go.

Ken
Yeah, and that’s, that’s one of the big things with us traveling is we decided that we’re looking for our forever place. As as maybe, as we’re traveling around, we’re seeing all new places saying, well, maybe we want to settle here, or maybe we want to settle here, when we feel that we can’t do this anymore.

Lisa RichartHernandez
Yeah. Okay. That’s a that’s a really good question. Because, you know, I’ve got some people that are on the other end of of this full timing, I feel like for a lot of people that I’ve talked to, it averages out to be about seven years is the average amount of time Seven Year Itch. Yeah, that people are full time in the RV, some go a little longer, some go a little less. But it seems to be that part where they start looking back and going into like a permanent home again, and they call it sticks and bricks, back to sticks and bricks.

Julie
Or at least a home base where you’re where you’re, you know, writing your your motorhome and then going off. Yeah, different places from there. But yeah, one of the big things for us is we wanted to see as much of the country as we can before we say, Oh, we want to settle here and then realize, well, maybe this wasn’t really the best place for us. Or maybe this isn’t exactly what we want. Right? Well said, we’re gonna settle down, let’s see as much of it as we can and make as much of a educated decision as we can by seeing many places

George
and you get to experience it. You’re actually living there and you’re part of the community and you can get a true feel for that area. Where if you go on vacation, you’re there for a week, maybe and you’re trying to do all the touristy stuff. Yeah. Yeah.

Lisa RichartHernandez
That’s that’s funny, because what George and I concluded after our 45 day cross country trip is that we want to own places and for different parts of the country and live in each one for three months because we couldn’t decide you know, like, we want to be in Florida in the winter. And you know, Moab in the fall and Hilton Head in the spring.

George
But exactly in all reality, I mean, I know it sounds crazy, but that is to me just such a good plan if we could pull it off. Because then you got three places. I would love to have one on the west coast, one in Florida and one somewhere on the east coast and they just move around. And like I said before, run from the cold Run, run whatever whatever you always find you follow the 70 degree weather That’s right, that’s right chase the sun as they say.

Julie
Yeah, okay, let’s all go in on a few houses you can take you know a few months that one will take a few months and another will swap Yeah, I’ll be great.

Lisa RichartHernandez
Yeah, I also like I love there’s some really nice RV resorts that have like casinos with them or whatever so you could like keep your coach parked there and then have a little bit of extra living space I really like that. That feel so what is your favorite place? Would you say it was was the National Park in Maine so far that you’ve been to or where was your favorite place?

Ken
so far? I would have to say mine would be Acadia National Park so far. We did the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and that was another gorgeous place. There was just something about doing it Yeah, yeah were you you’re on the top of the mountain and you’re looking out over into the Bar Harbor Bay and all the all the lakes and everything. It was just gorgeous.

Julie
Some of the just some amazing views and it was right there pretty much in our backyard growing up but I never went to a Katy I mean not in our backyard. Maybe a six hour trip from us but I had never gone as it as a kid I’ve been to Bar Harbor that net to the park itself in the park is just incredible. It’s just beautiful.

George
Okay, so that sounds like your favorite place to visit out of your year of travel and stay in a different places. So Far, where if when you, when you call it a day, have you come across a place that you right now would say, you know what, this is a nice place to live by? That’s the tough one.

Ken
Yeah. Yeah. I mean, coming from the East Coast being a Northeastern, I’d have to say probably, like, Savannah or even Charleston or Mount Pleasant where you guys are or are that area? You know, just because of the heritage and being close to the water and stuff like that. I’d have to say, that would be on the East Coast, a place for us to settle down.

George
Right. We’re a little biased, but yes, this is awesome place. We kind of love it. You know, we might stay here for a while.

Lisa RichartHernandez
Yeah. That’s why we’ve one of our home bases.

George
Just a quick side note, I came here in 98. To check it out. See if I liked it. Still trying to figure it out. All right.

Lisa RichartHernandez
So you guys tow vehicle. Is that correct? Yes. A Jeep?

Ken
Yes, it’s an O seven Jeep Wrangler.

Lisa RichartHernandez
And how do you like that? And have you always had a tow vehicle or did you just do this when you went full time?

Ken
I actually had the Jeep before we had the drivable. So I’ve had the I’ve had the Jeep before we had the the gas drivable. So we’ve always told a vehicle, okay, and I love my jeep, I would probably always own a Jeep Wrangler, just because I used to ride motorcycles. And I like the openness of the top but the doors off. And that freedom. Yeah, I have a little more around me now with the Jeep than the motorcycle, but

Lisa RichartHernandez
that’s what still gives you that still gives me that feeling of freedom. Basically. Gotcha. Have you had a chance to take your Jeep on any like off road or off roading or anything like that?

Ken
Not yet. I’m waiting for when I go out west. The East is tough. Because when you see some of these trails, all I think of is the bushes and the scratches going down the side of the Yeah, the jeep. Yeah, it’s going out. Yeah, when you go out west, you have a little more open area. Yeah.

George
Yeah, that’s the only have boulders the size of houses. Yeah.

Lisa RichartHernandez
That’s where we had so much fun out in Moab in Utah and stuff that was that’s where we need to meet with the jeep. That’s I was wondering. Um,

Julie
so we haven’t gotten to any of that yet. But I think definitely when we start heading out west, that’s gonna be part of the plan.

George
Let us know we’ll meet your Moab. So definitely.

Lisa RichartHernandez
What do you think is the best part about living in the RV full time?

Ken
I think for me, it’s the freedom able to move around and see, see different places and the people we met. You know, we’ve met some amazing people that just to listen to their story and how they got into it and what they’re doing, and everything like that, whether they’re full time or just weekend warriors and everything, but we’ve met some amazing people. Yeah, that’s very true. I

Julie
agree. 100%. I mean, I enjoy the travel and I enjoy seeing new places. But we have met some some great people that we stay in contact with, my new guys included, we had some great times in Key West with you guys. And then, you know, stopped by to visit in Charleston on our way back up. We also met a couple in Daytona while we were down in Florida that are from Dallas. And they’re making their way up to Acadia and they’re going to be stopping here in Connecticut for about a week starting next week. So we’re going to be they’re going to be staying around the corner from us and we’ll be hooking up with them. And we’ve just met some incredible people.

George
I’m glad you said that. We found on our trip that we’ve met the coolest people and everybody’s like minded you’re doing the same thing. You’re enjoying the same thing. So you’re gonna get along we I don’t think we’ve come across anybody that we’re like, oh my god. Let’s go and hide. Yeah. We’ve gone out to dinner with people. We we went a couple out for their birthday and Oregon. It’s just it’s such a nice community.

Ken
Yes. You know, what else to about the community is if you’re having a problem with your rig, or else is having a problem. Even though you don’t even know that person that’s right next to you, your somebody is always there to say help you out and try figuring out what’s going on with your rig or stuff like that. Yeah,

Julie
yeah, they’re always willing to jump in and we’re the same way you know, so a neighbor here could we might not have met them but they could come knocking on our door right now. And If they need help with something or or there, there’s anything we can do we have a part if we have a tool we can we can just offer our, our time and assistance, then we’ll or we’ll gladly help them out.

George
That’s how we met the couple in Oregon, the husband came over and asked me if I remember how to reset the code for the door. And I said, I think I have it somewhere. Let me look it up. And next thing I know, you know, we were looking everywhere. We’re looking on the internet. Now we’re having a beer, and we’re talking and it was his birthday. And we ended up going out to dinner with them that just from asking one question. Yeah.

Lisa RichartHernandez
I love that about the whole RV community. I think that’s probably one of the coolest things about it to me, just like you said, is I love being able to meet new people. And so that that that leads to a question YouTube been married for a long time. So it seems like he must still like each other. How does that go? Like, from moving into from a house to all of a sudden you’re living in basically 600 square feet? Like, has that affected your relationship at all? I’m sure that’s a question that people would want to know. Like, I don’t even know if I can live with my husband. For a year what, you know, how is that relationship?

Ken
It hasn’t actually, we’ve actually been really good. We came from a small house, our, our sticks and bricks was only 900 square feet. But I, I also always say that my schedule, when I was a professional firefighter kind of helped our relationship because we weren’t always together, there’d be some days where I’d be coming off at night, and she’d be going into work. And we’d just be ships passing, right. So we didn’t have that constantly, always at each other every day or something like that. We’d be days where we wouldn’t even see each other.

Julie
But at the same time, it also made it a little bit more of a challenge when we jumped into. Well, before we jumped into, I guess you would say because he retired a couple of years before we did the full time thing. So going from that crazy schedule where we weren’t seeing each other a lot to suddenly, us being him being home all the time, I was still working. So it was kind of a gradual, I guess you would say adjustment from him retiring to me still working to us going full time and both being in the rig all the time. It definitely made for an adjustment, but it really hasn’t been too bad. No.

Lisa RichartHernandez
Yeah, there’s not really any, any we haven’t killed each other yet. there’s not very many places to get away from each other.

Unknown Speaker
With with the bigger rig to is like, we have the door that you could close off between the bedroom. So we do want separation. I could go outside and tinker with stuff outside while she’s inside doing stuff. Or she could go in the back and watch television or I could go in the back and watch television. Why the other person so there is ways of making your own space. Yeah, then you take off and run Aaron. Yeah.

George
Yeah, that’s funny. We, we kind of do the same thing without consciously doing it. Like, I’ll just go outside and turn the TV on or below the leaves or do something or at least Oh, go. It’s funny. I think we all we all know when we need a little bit of space. Yeah, just do it. It’s not like, Okay, I need space. You need to go here. Go there. Yeah, we haven’t had that yet.

Ken
Yeah, yeah. All right, get away from me. And the other thing too, is anybody that owns one of these rigs, or a camper or something always knows that there’s little things that need to be done on it. So for me, I go out and I tinker with the little things that little projects that I need to go whether it’s general maintenance, keeping up with making sure the stairs or lubed, or the you know, little stuff like that, yeah, to keep up with the general maintenance on it, that I’ll go outside and tinker with that, why she’s doing whatever she’s doing in here doing cleaning or laundry

Julie
or Yeah, you know, cooking a meal or something. And we kind of, kind of somehow it’s worked out where most of my stuff, I kind of focus on the interior stuff. And he focuses on the exterior stuff. We help each other out. But for some reason, it just kind of shook out that way. Yeah, we

Lisa RichartHernandez
kind of always do that.

George
So we’ve we’ve talked to a couple people, and there seems to be like a lot of people do full time. Have a maintenance day. Do you guys do that? Or do you guys do it as you need it?

Ken
And I do it as I need it, but I try to keep up with it. So I know okay. We have a Google calendar that we kind of keep everything in because half the time I don’t know where I am or where we go next because of traveling right? So I kind of keep in there. Okay, I changed out the filter. thurs in the AC intakes and on this day, so I’ll go back into that calendar as they, oh, it’s been a month,

George
it’s time to do it again,

Ken
need to do it again. So kind of keeping up like that, you know,

Julie
yeah, we just recently started tracking the maintenance in that calendar, it used to just be kind of our schedule of where we’re going to be and when. But we started finding that, oh, we couldn’t remember when we did this last maintenance item. So let’s start putting it in there as another task or an event or something so we can go back and look, I think that’s a

George
that’s a great idea. Yeah, I

Lisa RichartHernandez
think that’s a great tip to use the Google calendar for that

George
kind of Julie’s use helpful.

Ken
Yeah. And both of us can see the calendar too, because we’re both in a shared calendar. So yeah, we kind of know, okay, I could say, hey, Joel, put in this in the calendar. And I can go back now. And see, okay, I changed the filters are, I loved the steps and the slide, the slides. So little maintenance like that i do i don’t get into the big maintenance, I’d rather bring it to somebody we like the engine, and that type of stuff. But little stuff like that, just to keep up on it. Right. Yeah. So that’s also linked to Oh, sorry, I

Lisa RichartHernandez
know that. Well, I was just gonna say that kind of leads me to the question, again, that I think a lot of listeners will have about, like, how much does it cost? You know, like, is maintenance expensive is like, what have you found? I mean, obviously, there’s a cost of maintaining a home? Would you say it’s more or less? or How much do you need to budget for that kind of thing? Do you have any insight on that?

Ken
I mean, it’s hard to say because this that we’ve only been in this, this rig since September. So a lot of the little maintenance I do myself. So I haven’t brought this yet in for IT service, but which we will, which I will do why I’m here. In Connecticut, we stopped back to see family and friends in Connecticut. So I will have it done why I’m here. But it’s hard to really say because it’s I don’t know.

Julie
Yeah, I think that’s something that we’re still kind of figuring out like he said, since we we’ve only had it since September, this will be really the first maintenance we’ve done on it. Since we bought it Yeah, yeah. For

George
new listeners or people who are thinking about doing this, when you say your service, what does that entail? Are you doing a full checkup service? Or what are you what are you doing,

Ken
I probably would bring it to Freightliner just to have them go through it because we are going to be going cross country and making sure like the the oil is good or tab and change the oil the fuel filters out and make sure the belt is good. So I don’t have trouble when I’m back out and in wet out west on the road. So basically just a general preventative maintenance on it. Right? Is it the easiest thing to say? You know, make sure the generators running at top shape and

George
right and a lot of times of stuff a lot of RVs most RVs if not all of them have a certain mileage where you have to bring it in and they do a complete service of everything to make sure that you’re good. Have you done that yet? Yours might have been done prior to you purchasing it. How Many Miles do you have on your RV? 53,000. Okay,

Ken
so I’m thinking it might have been done? I don’t know. Exactly. And I know a lot of like, the forums that I’m on for tiffin and stuff like that on Facebook. A lot of them say yeah, they usually bring it in once a year for it to Freightliner to have service done on it. Right. Yep. So I’ve added a year

George
yeah, and you’re doing the right thing. Like they always say preventive maintenance is a lot cheaper than a major repair. Yes, yeah.

Lisa RichartHernandez
So what would you find was the biggest challenge like I can I can’t really like I mean we You are a 900 square foot house so I guess there’s no way you could have had so so much stuff to get rid of. You’d be surprised. I mean, what did you do with all your stuff? Did you just get rid of everything? Like do you miss it? What do you miss? Like what’s what are that what’s the biggest challenges that you’ve had? Yeah, yeah,

Julie
I mean it’s funny that you say that cuz that was the note that I had for myself or for us that was that I I’d say the biggest challenge we had was purging and you know figuring out even though we did have a small house we did have quite a bit of stuff and like anybody else and part figuring out what to purge what you’re really going to use what you’re not going to use. We essentially sold or or gave away all of our furniture You know, kept kitchen items and things of that nature and just kept a small storage unit with essentially collectible philia. And, and pictures and collectibles and stuff that we’re we haven’t quite figured out what to do with yet. But the purging and determining what you’re going to use, and then after that just organizing what we do have, we’re still in the process, we were still figuring out how to organize the original rig that we left in, and then we bought this one. And now we’re still, I’m always constantly buying new things for organization trying to tweak things and just make them work better for us and store better and be able to access them better. So that’s, that’s a challenge. But it’s kind of kind of fun in a way too, because when I do get an area, organized to the way we like it, it’s kind of a fun project. It’s also done.

Ken
It’s also like a scavenger hunt when we first got in here, because it’s where we put that we know the feeling Yeah.

Julie
We told you how scattered our move day ended up being with some of the things they had to fix on this rig. So we just kind of it didn’t get the move did not go as planned. So Things just got thrown in different corners in areas and then we spent months trying to figure out where we were, where we put everything.

Lisa RichartHernandez
We it’s funny, at least you don’t have to do because half the time we’re in the RV, and we’ll say where’s this? Set the house? And then we’ll be at the house, we’ll say where’s this? It’s not the RV. So at least you know, it’s somewhere in there. Remember those days? Yeah, I mean, we went through that quite a bit. Yeah.

George
Yeah. It’s amazing how in such a small little place, things still disappear, disappear. There’s still a couple things we haven’t still haven’t.

Ken
I always tell a funny story with our gas rig. I lost a pair of readers last them. So when we bought our gas rig, we had a screen for the I was missing the screen for the driver side window. So I had the dealership build a new one for me because they they couldn’t get one and this and that. So I’m looking all over the place for these readers that I lost. Then I looked behind the couch. And I’m like, oh, there’s a screen underneath the couch. never even knew the bottom of the couch after like five, six months, maybe almost a year that the bottom of the couch pulled out. And there were storage. In your new one. There was the missing? No, no. And the only one. There was a missing screen. But I did. I did eventually find the reading glasses. Not there. But

George
yeah, it’s amazing how things end those couches do eat everything. Yeah, if something’s missing look under the couch first. Yeah, that’s my my tip to our listeners. Look under the couch first. And if you don’t know, you can open up the whole couch. And there’s a huge storage space underneath the couch. Yeah,

Ken
yes. Well, I don’t know. If they’re all like that. It’s like that missing sock? washer and dryer.

George
Yeah, it’s under the couch. Yes.

Lisa RichartHernandez
Um, so what about like everyday things like things that you don’t really think about? I know, you said that you went down to Florida to establish residency. How do you handle your day to day things like getting your mail when paying bills and corresponding with people and that kind of thing?

Julie
Yeah. So prior to us actually becoming full timers, friends of ours who were full timers had turned us on to a service called St Brendan’s Isle, they’re out of green Cove Springs, Florida. And there’s some similar other companies throughout the states, I think one in Texas, some maybe South Dakota. And I think good Sam also might offer something but we opted for st Brendan’s isle. And they are a service that essentially you pay money to almost like an EZ Pass where they pull money out as needed, they will scan our they’ll scan the outer portion of the envelope for us. So we kind of, we usually have an idea of what that piece of mail is just from that. But if we opt for it, we can have them, open it up and scan the contents. And then from there, we can have them shred it, send it to us at a campground or wherever we might be. Or you can physically go there and pick it up if you’re in the area. And it’s pretty reasonable service and it’s super helpful. We don’t have a lot of mail going there. But we do have some stuff going there. And you know, every so often we need to get a tax form or, you know, a new credit card or something of that nature and then we’ll physically have a package sent to us and that’s super helpful, but most of our bills are done online. Right. So pretty much everything we We can pay online

Ken
so that we don’t even get paper, a lot of paper stuff anymore of our credit cards or our payment on the rig or stuff like that. It’s all done online. Yeah.

Julie
Either and physically go online and pay some and then there are other ones that we just have automatic payments for.

Lisa RichartHernandez
So like, and use that as an address for like people if people need to mail you something. Yes. Okay. And then you, you said that you established residency in Florida? How did like, how do you does that? Is that through that same service, like, I guess, you know, as far as like taxes and things like that, go, how do you work that part out? Exactly, yeah. So we,

Julie
I think initially, before we went down to Florida, we started sending a couple of pieces of mail there. Because I believe, if I’m not mistaken, we had to show a couple pieces of mail when we actually went to re register the vehicles. So we went down to Florida with our jeep and the old gas rig. And we went to the Clay County tax assessor’s office, essentially where they do all of that. And just using that address, we changed over our registrations for both vehicles, and we both got new driver’s license. The interesting thing about that, though, is that we assumed that they would use our address for St. Brendan’s Isle, which is a certain street address, and then essentially almost a peal of personal mailbox number, like a unit number. Green Cove Springs, Florida. But what they did was they use green Cove springs, and the license plate of our big is the quote unquote address on our license.

Lisa RichartHernandez
So it’s very odd. That’s interesting. That’s funny. Yeah,

George
that kind of makes sense. In a way. I mean, that’s Yeah, that’s your home.

Julie
It is where we’re living. Yeah, we just just didn’t realize that that was the process. We assumed it would be the address that we use with our mailing address. Yeah, yeah. Yeah. So if we ever need the license plate of our rig, and we can’t remember it, all we have to do is pull out our license.

Lisa RichartHernandez
Wow. So you said your your travel plans for the future you guys want to head out west? Are there any places that you have on your bucket list that you’re specifically looking forward to heading out west?

Ken
I have a couple. I’ve always wanted to go to Zion National Park, and arches over there in Utah. Those those those have always been even like Grand Canyon when we used to, we’ve flown out the Vegas multiple times because we have friends that live out there. I’ve always wanted to go out the Xi’an and Grand Canyon and stuff like that, and we just never made it. So that’s kind of on our bucket list to do.

Julie
Yeah, definitely the national parks. I mean, that’s not going to be our sole focus. But there’s so many great parks out there. And we’ve heard so many great things from that we want to start including you guys and just want to hit some of those some of those areas out there. And it’s going to be so different than what we’re seeing on the east coast.

Lisa RichartHernandez
It’s incredible. It’s almost like being on a different planet. I can’t wait to hear. Yeah. And what you’re what you experienced in that. So how should join us? I know. They’re gonna go to Moab. We need to get out there. I’m telling you, George. posted.

George
She said to me right now, let’s load up the RV and go. I would be driving by three o’clock this afternoon.

Ken
You just may have to wait for a month or so. Yeah, that’s when we kind of leave Connecticut a month or two. Rolling Connecticut so we can meet you.

George
Yeah, yeah, absolutely. Let’s do it. We’ll do a podcast from

Lisa RichartHernandez
Moab in August is very hot though. Yeah.

George
All the parks out there. I mean, it is absolutely beautiful country out there. It’s so different than the East Coast. Oh my god. We absolutely loved it can’t talk enough about it.

Ken
Yeah, well, we figured out we survived the summer and in Florida. So we’re hoping we can survive a summer out whack.

Lisa RichartHernandez
Yeah. In the in the desert. Humidity. Yeah. It is a bunch of crap. I’m just gonna tell you Yeah.

George
110 is 110 Yeah.

Lisa RichartHernandez
You can’t see the sweat does not mean it’s thought Oh, so how long I get it. How long in your minds? Do you think you’ll live this lifestyle? like is this just a temporary kind of a couple years thing or you’re just gonna keep on going until

Julie
we never really truly discussed it and put a deadline or a timeline on it. I think our both of our feelings are kind of like as long as we stick Enjoy it, you know can still do it physically. And it up until we find our quote unquote, you know, forever home or or retirement location, so to speak. And I don’t think there’s any real. We never said two years, three years, I think it’s as long as we’re still enjoying it and doesn’t get too tiresome. And we haven’t found that place that we’re like, oh,

Ken
this is it, you know, we, we don’t need to go anywhere else. And I think even with finding like the forever place to stay, we may just park the rig in an RV lot and live there and travel for the weekends and just kind of do keep doing that until basically until we can’t do it anymore. Yeah, is how I look at it.

George
That’s a great plan. A lot of people that we’ve talked to that have given up the lifestyle has been because of that they’re getting older, and it’s becoming a little more difficult. And, you know, we’ve talked to a lot of people who have been doing it for 10 years. And after 10 years, they’re just ready, and they’re ready to go back into their in their late 60s. And that’s what I mean, it just gets harder as you get older. You know, there is a lot to do to keep that rig running. And it just, they just 10 years is a long time. Yeah. Yeah, yeah. Yeah. But nobody, nobody that we’ve ever talked to has any regrets about doing it. They love the lifestyle. They actually hate that they have to give it up. But

Lisa RichartHernandez
you know, yeah, yeah, generally, I would say that’s true. So what I would I would agree, what, just kind of to wrap it up? What are what would be your biggest words of advice after your first year? And I’ll ask that question from each of you. So, Julie, you go first, and tell me what are your biggest words of advice you’d give anybody considering going full time in their RV?

Julie
Well, I we say this to people all the time. I mean, I say if if it’s something you’re even remotely considering, don’t wait, you know, let’s do everything you can to make it happen and just enjoy it. Life is too short. I think our only regret is that we didn’t plan for this sooner and didn’t jump into the full time lifestyle sooner. That I think that’s our only regret. It’s it’s really, it’s been really great. So far, we’ve we’ve had a lot of great travels, met a lot of great people. And I just wish we had started doing it sooner.

Lisa RichartHernandez
All right. What about what about you? Ken that leave you anything?

Ken
That I know, I would say just don’t wait, you know, I mean, the the people that we met and the places that we have seen and we’ve only done the whole eastern seaboard so far is just amazing. people we met we’ve are now lifelong friends with and it’s, it’s too short of a time that you’re on this planet that you I tell a friend I don’t want to be 7080 years old saying I wish I should have coulda woulda I want to be Do you remember when we did this? Or do you remember when we did that? Or do you remember when we drove cross country? It’s just do it. Life’s too short, is the biggest thing. You know,

George
that’s such great advice. And so somebody said something to me one time and I’ll repeat it to you guys. On your tombstone is your birthday, and the day you passed away. And that little line in between is your life. And it’s it’s so crazy when you think about it that way that we have such a little bit of time in this planet. And we should just enjoy every minute that we can. Absolutely,

Ken
yes, yes. I mean, every day is getting one day closer. And it’s just let’s just enjoy what we have and do it. You know what I mean? Yeah, absolutely.

Lisa RichartHernandez
I think we kind of learned that even. The other thing is, there’s so much to see in this beautiful country that like there’s so many places just like all these national parks, like you said, we learn that just from our 45 days on the road was like, Oh my god, there’s so many things to see. I can’t believe it’s taken me 50 years to see it.

George
You know, we did 45 days and we didn’t even scratch the surface. And there’s so many places that we had to pass on because we were like we just don’t have time we got it. We’ll come back to this one. We’ll come back to Crater Lake. We’ll come back to this. Well, it was just there’s so much to see. Yeah,

Ken
absolutely. Yeah. And that’s the thing is, I hope when people say we will come back to it, that they actually do go back to it. Yes. Because sometimes you Sometimes I know I say, Oh, well, I’m just going to go up here. And on my way back, I’ll stop and look at that. No, stop. Yeah, I don’t

George
know, regards.

Lisa RichartHernandez
Alright, what kind of Julie, thank you so much for your time today, we really appreciate it. Maybe we’ll have to check in with you again next year when you’re on your second year and see if you have any other new words of wisdom from your cross country trip, or maybe we’ll check in with you. Well, while you’re while you’re doing your West Coast tour and see how you’re doing over there, get some advice for our listeners.

Ken
And maybe if we if you do that you could be sitting next to us instead of on a That’s right. That’s right. We’ll have

Lisa RichartHernandez
we’ll have to rendezvous, so we can do it in person podcast together. Yes, yes. Yes. Well, we’ll put any information that we had on our show notes and you can reach out to us if you have any questions at RView, podcast com And we look forward to seeing you again soon. Thanks so much.

Ken
All right. Thank you guys

George
Bye.

Julie
Bye bye.

intro
Thanks for listening to another episode of our view. Don’t forget to drop us a line at RView podcast.com. That’s the letter R view podcast.com. And like, subscribe and follow us so you don’t miss out on our next adventure.

Transcribed by https://otter.ai

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