Friday, March 2, 2012

One Year ago today…



2011-6-18 a rought day fishingMarch 2, 2011… the day we left College Station, Texas as fully retired individuals in a four year old motorhome leaving our house behind. What the hell were we thinking? We must have been crazy? That is what many of our friends thought. Why would they think that? Well for starters this was going to be the first time ever that we were taking the motorhome on a road trip and spending the night in it. Yes it is true, we retired, bought a motorhome (even though we had never RV’ed in our lives before), sold all of our Key West 096possessions (except what we took with us), put our house up for sale, and took off on our first camping trip the day after we retired.

It was back in the year 2000 that I was in earnest trying to figure out the best way to retire by age 55. The steps we took back then allowed us to be where we are today. In August of 2009 we started talking about where we wanted to retire… Florida, the southwest, and maybe even becoming expatriates all were explored. Then in October of 2009 we created our bucket lists of things we wanted to accomplish in our retired lives.Noticing that many of these items were travel- related the idea of buying an RV and traveling to see many of these places came up. The more we talked about buying an RV the more convinced we became that this life style was for us.

2011-08-02 Making hah in Toms Brook VA 053

Camden Mount Battie 039Are we crazy??? Maybe… but as of right now we have absolutely no regrets! So here we are 365 days later after spending one year on the road and we are still loving our decision to do so… What are some of our highs and lows of this year in our fulltiming lifestyle?

The Highs

  • Watching every fastpitch softball game of our Daughter’s final year in college
  • Finally selling our house in July
  • Living in the Florida Keys
  • Meeting new friends on the road
  • Spending time with our new friends in their house in the Shenandoah 2011-09-13 Cape Cod NP 001Valley
  • Seeing old friends in the New York Adirondacks
  • See Penobscot bay from the top of a mountain in Maine
  • Visiting Acadia National Park in Maine
  • Spending a week visiting Cape Cod
  • The Pennsylvania Amish Country
  • Spending four months visiting many different beaches in Florida
  • Bonita Springs, Florida and the fact it could be a future home for us
  • Visiting the Everglades

The Lows

  • Leaving our friends behind in College StationKey West and Shark Valley 025
  • Not being able to tow our car when we first left
  • Getting our first scrape on the motorhome at Long Key, Florida
  • Storms and hail in Spartanburg, SC
  • Hurricane Irene in New Hampshire
  • Having to unhitch the car the first time at a gas station
  • Driving through Atlanta

As you can see the highs outnumber the lows and the lows really weren’t all that bad… As a result we are ready for Year 2…. so bring it on…


  1. Congratulations on getting the first year under your belt. When the highs outweigh the lows, you know things are going your way.

  2. Considering that you started with no rv experience, it's amazing you had more "highs" than "lows." I'll be interested in hearing if you prefer wintering in Florida or somewhere out west.

  3. Congratulations! We agree that this life has more pros than cons and we are coming up on year 2. It will be fun to see where this next year takes you.

  4. We're almost-one-yearers together - we took off April 21, 2011. Seems we've already done a few of your "lows," and have probably added some new ones, so I'm glad we don't have to do those again.

    The Good Luck Duck

  5. We remember the first day you hit the road and almost met you guys, we were in Willis Texas that day. We have been fulltime now for over 6 years and just can't seem to get enough of it. Glad you are enjoying the lifestyle! Someday we will meet I am sure.

  6. It seems to me that you had a pretty good first year! There will be many more to come:)

  7. You made the right decision to hit the road. You accomplished so much in just one year, and your cmaping lows seem to be just minor bumps in the road. Congratulations on your 1st year of camping anniversary. I hope I will be in the position to retire and travel in the future.

    Travel Destinations

  8. Who could look at those pictures and think you're crazy? Its a great life!

  9. Congrats on hitting the one-year mark! We'll be coming up on year two in a couple of months and love the lifestyle!

  10. Congratulation on the first year. Wow time is going so fast,hope to join you soon..

  11. HAPPY ANNIVERSARY! We been with you only a short time and have enjoyed the ride! ~wheresweaver

  12. Although we'd been tent campers for years, Extended vacation tent campers at that, we too had never driven a motor home before we bought one and set out. But we weren't wise or lucky enough to have done it at 55. Congratulations on both counts!!

  13. Isn't it GRAND! Loved the list, and congratulations on all counts--retiring early and making a great decision! There are always the lows, but the highs more than make up for them, we think! Best wishes and safe travels for year #2, and hope to see you guys again!

  14. Congrats on your 1st anniversary! I remember when you were wrapping up things before hitting the road. I'm right where you were 372 days ago... We leave in exactly 7 days and the house must be empty before we go! Know you guys are loving life helps give me strength to get through the last of it!