Monday, June 05, 2017

We DID It!

Today was another incredibly productive day. Michael staged things, while Stacia and I bought groceries AND made another trip to ST Vinnies. We bought all their blankets - don't try the one on Q street if you are looking for blankets.  Blankets are great to wrap around furniture. They do have a great Instant Pot for $20 - missing the seal(4.50) and liner (19.95) both available on Amazon. I wanted to buy it - but "saner" heads prevailed. NO EXTRA BUYING until we are in Alaska. 

When we got back to my folks',  Stacia put away groceries, Michael and I climbed in the attic and got down the girl's coffee tables and end tables, and began wrapping and loading furniture. Will dropped by around lunch. We enjoyed a bit of a visit and he helped Michael and Cory with some lunky items. 

Cory (below left) got off work at 0900 and joined us around 1030 to pack the rest of the trailer. This involved a lot of juggling as we had  big furniture items and a distinct shortage of things to "stuff in cracks."  Cory had helpfully brought some boxes they had packed which helped to make a "tight fit."

They did fit in MUCH we hadn't expected to get in. ๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ˜€
My elliptical fit!!!! Barely...and the oak mirror right at the back door....
They did it! This is how we bond with son in laws. 
 By 2:45 p.m. we were loaded. We COULD put some clothes from BreZaak in the cracks.....but none of us really want to unload things to fill cracks at this point.  We'll probably repack in Olympia with the clothes BreZaak gave us to take up. 

The plan is for the Kayak and 2 or 3 bikes to ride on the sides of the trailer. The others on the Jeep.  
Can you read the Kayak? We plan to do some more inking. 
We zipped across town for Yuuki to get the certificates she needs to add Canada to her list of  countries traveled.

Michael left one of our trailer tires to be mounted for a spare last week when we bought new tires. He went to pick it up and they'd LOST OUR TIRE. They gave us a brand NEW tire free. We have spares for the jeep, spares for the trailer, extra gadgets and such for the RV....I think we're ready.

We asked BreZaak and CoRielle if we could have a "family meeting."  Family meetings were a "thing" Michael and I instituted years ago. Lately, we've been hearing from the older ones that they disliked them. Ah well - what doesn't kill you makes you stronger. ๐Ÿ˜ Michael and I tended to wander in those meetings, we don't do that so much these days. We often addressed behavioural or character issues in those meetings.....because it was easier to lay the base line in a group and then work one on one. We still have family meetings with the younger three - they seem much funner than the earlier ones.  I think we've grown in our 32 years of parenting. ๐Ÿ˜€๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿ˜›

That's the back story. The kids were eager for this FAMILY MEETING.....we discussed the logistical details of having 7 extra people move in with our 5...and merging 3 distinct family units....We know which rooms they want. We have somewhat of a  plan for meals. We brainstormed where to put big items and discussed the merits of wood and carpet flooring. That sort of thing.  WE LOVED Izaak's suggestion to have a weekly family meeting to make sure we're all still on track! Way to go, son! You've got it! ๐Ÿ˜€๐Ÿ˜€๐Ÿ˜€  We reminded the girls they are adults now; these meetings will not be about character training. They may have been doing a bit of groaning and gnashing of teeth.

Added benefits of this meeting were seeing Bella and Gideon, and praying as a family before we began the trek north and they finished their last weeks here. Michael and I decided NOT to leave in the  morning. We will have a "down day," I will take Mom to a neurology appointment, we'll rest and start out on Wednesday instead.
Granna and Gideon

Grandpa and Gideon 
BreZaak bought Bella her very own backpack. She LOVES it. She'll be able to carry a couple of things...which is helpful in an airport.  
Izaak and Bella
  She is READY to go places! 

Bella is sweet with Gideon. She DOTES on him and watches very carefully over him when others are around.
Gideon and Bella 
 Of course Bella wants Auntie Arielle - why would Uncle Cory try to compete with that???๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜‰๐Ÿ˜
Cory, Arielle, Bella and Baby S too. 
 Bella has learned a new word, "Hi." She uses it quite freely. We were saying goodbye, and she leaned over Bre's shoulder, looked at Gideon and said, "Hi, hi!" He isn't greatly responsive at this point. ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

We said goodbye, "See you again in Alaska!"

The TRUTH About RV Sites

Many envision the full-time life to be one of constant moving and beautiful sites in nature......and that has been the case, at times.  We tend to focus on the positives, and beautiful sites are a POSITIVE, but I also try to present a realistic view of our life - be that homeschooling, chaplains family, military life and now full-time RVing.

We've stayed in some great spots......spots we'd like to visit again. 

Beale Fam Camp 

Armitage Park - Eugene, OR 
Shoreline RV Park - Crescent City, CA - that's the OCEAN out our windshield

St Vrain CO State Park 

Buckley Fam Camp 

Massacre Rock ID State Park 

Ollalie - USFS campground

These are the types of places one dreams of when they consider RVing full-time. We've loved it. Unfortunately, most of these places have time limits. That's great if you are a full-timer who moves alot.  When moving we've stayed in friend's driveways, we've boondocked, urban docked and mooch docked around on each trip - always with express permission. We have NEVER been like the 11 parked around the Eugene Wal-mart. ๐Ÿ˜

Neighbor's Crescent City

Truck Stops 


 Some sites we paid for were terrible - like the KOA in Rock Springs, WY that was little more than a mud hole.  It was ONE night and hardly an issue......but these spots do happen in a full-timer's life. 

We planned on being the type of full-timer who moved every 2 - 4 weeks. Due to our health issues, family situations and Mom's cancer,  we have had extended stays at Beale Fam Camp, a park in Crescent City, CA and most recently 7 months in Eugene, OR.  Since most of the beautiful state and USFS parks won't allow you to stay more than 14 days a month.....and the best rates for RV parks are monthly....we ended up paying monthly.....and living where our neighbors are VERY close to us......though one can walk across the campground and see some beautiful nature.

Maybe now you understand a bit more of why Michael wanted SPACE when we began to look for a home in Alaska. ๐Ÿ˜Š

We ARE going to miss being full-timers!  We probably have a month or less left to claim the designation. It's been a great two years.  We plan on taking extended trips in the future.....the kids can watch the house. ๐Ÿ˜›๐Ÿ˜ฎ๐Ÿ˜œ