Third time is the charm, right?

This is the third season we have done the “pull a trailer across the country and live in it for half the year” routine. One would think that this would mean a smooth move in.

Despite having quite a bit less stuff crammed in this year, we seem to have finally sorted out what comes and what stays (except cups. Completely forgot those.), settling in is not without its struggles. This trailer was not designed to be lived in, so storage for things like pots and pans, or for seven people’s worth of food is almost non-existent. Perhaps by the end of this season I will have my pantry sorted out.

And an odd thing happens every year. Those little people who didn’t take up much space take up more space. It seems the reduction in stuff has been offset by an increase in flesh. And noise.

If all of that wasn’t challenging enough, let’s add 9,000 ft to the equation. Last week at this time we were sitting at a 18 foot elevation, you could practically swim in the air. Up here just getting out of bed can make you breathe heavy. I know I’m not that old! This means headaches and irritability and the need for a nap halfway through the day. And that’s just the adults.

Shortness of breath is a terrible thing for anxiety by the way. It’s like a panic attack without the panic. Which in turn leads to a panic attack. That was fun.

The kids seem fine. They love it here, especially the snow, which for Florida kids is a complete novelty. Even in the cold, they spend most of the time outside, building forts and climbing things. This is great for us, because they sleep. Oh man, do they sleep out here.

If you ever want your kids to sleep, send them outside.

And take away their internet. You will notice a slow down in my posts these next few weeks. This is due to super spotty phone service on this side of the mountain. This is bad. And good. Bad for blogging, good for forcing one’s self to make the most of life. Especially kids. They could spend entire days sucked into a screen if you let them.

Which means they don’t sleep. And sleep is good…


Not That Sacramento

We made it!!

Not much of an exciting last day. The roof stayed on, after I applied nine more strips to it.

Overkill? I think not.

There honestly isn’t much to say except that it is great to be back in familiar territory, even if I’m in a new position…

Tomorrow (today I suppose) is unpacking and repacking day. Let’s see if we forgot anything 🙂

Texas. Just Texas


Texas is huge. Too huge. If Texas wasn’t so huge we’d be in New Mexico by now.

I kid. But only slightly. Seriously, why is this state so large?

Day four began with an exorbitant expense. Roof repair tape is not cheap at the only open place in town (no one buys rvs on weekends?).

I patched the roof, got the horde rounded up and fed, cleaned up some of the accumulated trash out of the vehicles, and hit the road around noon.

The roof patch worked for about… 20 miles. Thanks to the blazing hot sun the goo of the tape just kinda melted and the tape began to slide. So much for having a “wide temperature range”. Grr.

I added a few more layers of tape and we proceeded with caution.

Then the license plate began to slip. I swear, everything melts in Texas! Now our plate is tied to the ladder of the trailer with a zip tie and a couple of pieces of clothesline. We look classy.

Texas is not only huge, it’s also humid. And with no ac, it is a sweaty drive. I hung out in a gas station just to soak up the air. A sunset and the cooling of the air it brings has never been more welcome.

Also Houston. Lol no, it’s not THAT big.

We made it to Junction, a town with no phone service. That might be the only notable thing about Junction. The roof needed a bit more rubber cement and a push on the tape. I think it will hold up. I hope.

It’s day five. Lord willing, this is the last day of driving. By tonight our smelly, dirty, bloodshot-eyed, little wagon train should be in New Mexico!

And So It Happens

If there is one state I will be a total tourist in it’s Louisiana.

Across the Mississippi

As soon as we hit the border and I get my Community Coffee at the welcome center, the Zydeco comes on and I immediately begin my search for boudin.

I have roots there. Both my parents were raised there, and on my mom’s side several generations populated the state and gave it it’s Cajun culture. I spent many weeks there in my youth soaking up the heat and humidity.

So yeah, I may have a bit of a bias.

But not all of yesterday was blissful. Not even boudin can fix what happened just before Houston.

I noticed a small bit of plywood layer float down from the sky. I knew immediately what it was. The roof repair had failed and the roof was peeling back in the 60 mph winds. I pulled my wife over and after some frantic discussion we limped along the interstate for three more miles to the next exit.

A new layer of tape was added for temporary measure but the rubber cement would take too long to cure to allow us to drive much further. As much as I make fun of Texas for having service roads, I was very thankful for them last night!

We limped along for 30 miles to the Flying J and called it a night. Hopefully the rv parts place nearby will have a ton of roofing tape. We’re going to need it!

Some Friends and Some Work

I tried for bigger piles..

We made it to Mississippi… I mentioned yesterday that we might not get far, I was correct.

We met up with some friends and spent our day playing with a chainsaw, fires, children, and chihuahuas. Two of these things are not like the others.

I made a friend

We weren’t really planning to work, but when someone has a giant tree cut down in their yard, and you have a chainsaw you have been itching to play with… You get the picture.

I made seats

2030 rolls around and the question comes up “hey, weren’t we going to leave?” “Yeah, I guess we should…” Followed by another 30 minutes of child wrangling, route picking, and cat crate loading.

At 2100 we were finally on the road and headed to the first of three stops. It wasn’t supposed to be three, but when you are relying on truck stops for sleeping space you sometimes end up with a dud. The third time was a charm and after some yelling about water “I’m firsty!!” from the three year old, we managed to get some rest.

I almost forgot how nice it is to drag your home along with you. I actually longed to go to bed last night. It wasn’t just because I was weaving a bit on the road from exhaustion either. People think we are crazy to cram seven people in a 27 foot travel trailer. Maybe we are, but it is home to us. And strangely, it’s more home than our brick house.

Perhaps I will give you a tour when we settle in for the season….

Head West, Young… People?

A bit later than we had hoped but we made it on the road!

We are traveling lighter this time, probably because our packing was not nearly as rushed as the last two times. And unlike the first two times, we are actually traveling together. Third time’s a charm, eh?

It’s funny, all the worries of the past few weeks melted away as soon as we got on the road. Everything turned out, and everything seems so small in retrospect.

Of course now anything can happen…

Shut up, brain…

Two-thirds of this wagon train

We stopped for the night at a friend’s house near Pensacola. Maybe we’ll get out of here before tomorrow. Stay tuned!

A Day Late and Few Dollars Short

Well… It’s Tuesday afternoon. And we’re still here. Thanks to an Amazon Prime snafu the tape to fix our roof didn’t arrive until today.

She fixes roofs too!

As soon as it arrived, on it went. Now we have to wait for it to cure.

The whole thing was probably a good thing since I noticed that the plate on the trailer was expired. It seems we forgot to renew it back in December. Woops. So now I’m sitting here paying the government for permission to have a trailer, which leaves us with a bit less gas money. Good times.

At least the DMV is a great place to people watch. It’s almost as classy as a Social Security office. Almost.

I feel ya, kittie…

Exhaustion levels are pretty high right now. We aren’t even on the road and I feel like curling up for a nap and sleeping until the summer’s over.

But alas, there are things to pack and miles to cover. So stay tuned, mayhaps we will actually get this show on the road tonight.