Yep, it has been a long time. We wanted this blog to be as “positive/happy/joyful” as we could make it. We do have a few post of complaints and negativity of course, but we really tried not to take out our life’s frustrations here.
Which is why we have not posted since June.
Long story short…
Since 1999 we have worked online as independent contractors for various online marketing companies and since 2004 we both worked for the same company.
I was laid off September 30, 2013.
Pauline made enough to keep us going, but not by much, so we weighed our options and decided to stay on the road with the idea of me volunteering for a site with her income paying the bills and maybe getting a few odd jobs here and there. It would be very tight, but we could do it.
That is, until Pauline was laid off on June 2, 2014.
We was very happy to be back in the Northwest when this happened. Had we still been in Arizona or elsewhere, it would be much worse for us personally.
The good news, we had already downsized prior to going on the road. We of course still had expenses, but not like we once had. So while it hurt to lose her job, (And it hurt, A LOT) we was still in a better position for this to happen now then had it happened 2-3 years ago.
We did find some temporary work, which required much more work, with much less pay, but at least we had some income. (And a big THANK YOU to our Doc for the work!) Pauline also did a masterful job of making all our payments on time and in full and we still have a savings account with a good chunk of change in there.
We both have been job hunting since June 6 (When the shock started to wear off). The very first place I applied to was on June 6. I heard nothing from them until mid August at which time I had completely forgotten about them and had already been to a few other interviews and had applied countless applications for other jobs.
In late August I took a test to verify I was qualified for the position, then I had a interview a few weeks later, then a UA test a few weeks after that and finally on September 3 I was offered the job. I started working on October 2.
I was unemployed for 1 year and 3 days.
I now have a job in a completely different field then I have ever been in, and I am about to start week 5 of 5 weeks training and so far, I like this job for many reasons.
The training has been really good. I’m being trained in multiple fields, and have earned many qualifications since I started with opportunities to earn more qualifications which I will be doing as soon as I am able. (After 90 days, which will be in late December).
Pauline just accepted a new job as well. She starts her training in a few days. She is also going back to school to earn another degree. This will help us in the long term and at some point, help get us back on the road.
Another negative we had to deal with was earlier in 2014, I ended a relationship with someone I cared very much for. But it was for the best and I have no regrets over ending it. I will of course miss this once close relationship, but toxic relationships are good for no one involved.
So that is the main reason we have not made any post. We just did not have much things to say that would be positive and now we do.
Our long term goal is to spend the next few years (3-5?) doing what it takes to pay off our Jeep and Admiral Ackbar as well as get everything we wanted to have when we started this full time RV lifestyle.
All the cool toys we didn’t have the income to get a few years ago like better camera’s, bikes, kayaks, maybe take some classes to be better prepared such as backpacking, survival, maps/compass etc. We will now have the financial means to get exactly the equipment and training we want.
We also will have to get another vehicle and have been looking, we are getting closer in making a decision on what to get, and with Pauline’s great money management skills, we have more then enough to make a huge down payment in cash which is something we have never been able to do.
Kermit the Jeep should be paid off in early 2016 as would the new vehicle and Ackbar would have a good chunk paid down as well and then we think we will be looking for a bus, which was originally our choice but we decided to get Ackbar. I can’t say we regret getting Ackbar, we just think a bus is a better choice for us.
We will be redoing the interior of Ackbar as well since we no longer have the need for a large desk area, we will get a new couch and dining table/chairs at some point.
We of course had to make some major sacrifices such as we will be stationary longer then planned, but we have many great friends and my BoyZ are all within a 90 minute drive.
We are already planning a few road trips when we have some vacation time saved up. Of course, we are going to see some National Parks.
We now live in the Everett, Washington area and I am now a Washington resident as required for my new job. Not saying this is “bad” but honestly, I LOVED being a Oregon resident and when we are able to get back on the road, I plan to get that back.
I also had to give up my favorite “vice” for the job as well, but that is a small sacrifice when compared to the big picture. It will be there when I am once again able to do it.
Life is good. Life has changed drastically of course, but life is good. Pauline and I are very thankful for what we have, what we have done, and who our friends are, as well as our stupid cats.
We wanted to say thank you to some of the great people we have worked with in the past year and who have helped us in our time of need.
Ranger Zimmerman and Lori and Ranger Terada and Don and Kevin at Fort Flagler State Park.
Ranger Cimmins, Ranger Lease, Ranger Spaulding, Ranger Curt, Ann, Rik, Danny and Amber at South Whidbey State Park.
Thanks to you all, you made our lives much easier in a time of great stress.
Much love to our Doc!
And last but not least, much love to Daphna and Allen. The Best. Friends. Ever.