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First blog post

Well finally I’ve made the first step to putting my crazy world out for all to see. This should probably come with a warning right from the start. If you fancy yourself part of the spelling and grammer police force, this will slowly kill you. This is my space so I offer no apologies. .. that’s right I’m starting to not apologize for every little thing! Oh and I swear, not like a trucker but like a mother with some attitude lol.
Now quick back story on me. I hate living in the past so let’s condense this to a tolerable amount. I was born into a small world. A little logging town and my parents were well respect business owners. I grew up playing hockey, riding horses and working my ass off for my father as a waitress and dishwasher. I was not the best behaved teenager but mostly just small shinanigins. The day I graduated I ran and never moved back. Ive had many jobs and careers and on my second marriage. I have 2 children from my first marriage almost 18 yr old son and a 14 year old daughter. We currently live 10 hours away from my ex and his wife and that’s where my 14 has chosen to run to stay. My current husband and I have a colorful and darling 7 year old daughter. At this current moment we live in a large city in a beautiful yuppy area in a large 3 level home. Our son has been accepted into a great local university and drafted to play football for a Jr team. He has earned some scholarships and will be paid to play ball. He also has a part time job at a grocery store that he’s held for 3.5 years. Oh and yes the yard has a “white picket” fence lol
Alright enough with the back stories. Let’s get down to the grit of why I’m blogging this soon to be new life style….
Shaun and I HATE this life style. Mowing the lawn to match the neighbour’s, washing the tiny concrete driveway and watching Harry the Asian neighbor vacume his long is frigin killing me. Ya skip me the whole hating and pouncing on me about first world problems… we have worked hard. I mean exhausting hours. No fancy trips, no super fancy cars, clothes or dining. We have just worked and worked. Last year saw us losing some very important people in my life. It got me thinking… what the hell are we working for? A half a million dollar house with NO view .. well unless you enjoy watching the neighbor lady behind us squirting her shitzu barking asshole dog repeatedly with a spray bottle. FYI NOT anecessarily effective shut the eff up technique. We have a truck that is as much as an asshole as that dog and an older suv….. stop the big jealous anytime lol. Oh and credit card debt and loans and my personal favorite – we owe my parentson $. Yes awesome life choices right? So birthed the idea that we need to change this up. We need to start to live. We need to start to work for life enjoyment not living a big fat lie. I need to borrow Harry’s lawn vacuum and suck up.this life and start again. Shaun and I have always loved camping, fishing, boating, hunting and skiing. Well I love horses as well but haven’t figured out.everything. ..

Welcome to our NEXT STEP…

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Well finally I’ve made the first step to putting my crazy world out for all to see.  This should probably come with a warning right from the start. If you fancy yourself part of the spelling and grammer police force, this will slowly kill you. This is my space so I offer no apologies. .. that’s right I’m starting to not apologize for every little thing! Oh and I swear, not like a trucker but like a mother with some attitude lol.

Now quick back story on me. I hate living in the past so let’s condense this to a tolerable amount. I was born into a small world. A little logging town and my parents were well respected business owners. I grew up playing hockey, riding horses and working my ass off for my father as a waitress and dishwasher.  I was not the best behaved teenager The day I graduated I ran and never moved back.  I’ve had many jobs and careers and on my second marriage. I have 2 children from my first marriage almost 18 yr old son and a 14 year old daughter. We currently live 10 hours away from my ex and his wife and that’s where my 14 year old has chosen to run to stay. My current husband and I have a colorful and darling 7 year old daughter. At this current moment we live in a large city in a beautiful yuppy area in a large 3 level home. Our son has been accepted into a great local university and drafted to play football for a Jr team. He has earned some scholarships and will be paid to play ball. He also has a part time job at a grocery store that he’s held for 3.5 years. Oh and yes the yard has a “white picket” fence lol

Alright enough with the back stories. Let’s get down to the grit of why I’m blogging this soon to be new life style….

Shaun and I HATE this current life style. Mowing the lawn to match the neighbour’s,  washing the tiny concrete driveway and watching Harry the Asian neighbor vacume his lawn is slowly killing me. Ya skip the whole hating and pouncing on me about first world problems… we have worked hard. I mean exhausting hours. No fancy trips, no super fancy cars, clothes or dining. We have just worked and worked. Last year saw us losing some very important people in my life. It got me thinking… what the hell are we working for? A half a million dollar house with NO view .. well unless you enjoy watching the neighbor lady behind us squirting her shitzu barking asshole dog repeatedly  with a spray bottle. FYI  NOT an effective shut the eff up technique. We have a truck that is as much as an asshole as that dog and an older suv….. stop the big jealous anytime lol. Oh and credit card debt and loans and my personal favorite – we owe my parents $. Yes awesome life choices right? So birthed the idea that we need to change this up. We need to start to live. We need to start to work for life enjoyment not living a big fat lie. I need to borrow Harry’s lawn vacuum and suck up this life and start again. Shaun and I have always loved camping, fishing, boating, hunting and skiing. Well I love horses as well but haven’t figured out everything. ..  yet..

 

Welcome to our NEXT STEP…

Trying to 90%

So today I feel it important to invite you into our journey because I think 80% of social media is bs. I’m sure I’ve portrayed our perfect life a lot. Reality most of the time really is that beautiful and great. Life is what you make it and Shaun and I most of the time make it pretty darn great! But let’s chat about this morning.

We awake childless and full of great dreams of a beautiful hike with Joey on a trail up a mountain we have been itching to see. Some coffee, some breakfast while watching Dragon’s Den and some excited chat over how great this truly is and what a gift to have an empty day. No house no yard no worries! I say hey quick clean up and off to wander a mountain ! I get those dishes started, wipe the counter, swoosh the tub while Shaun does a 2 minute vacuum- anyone remember the “10 second tidy” – oh ya that’s camper life. I go to straighten the cushions by the wall and my world shifts. Why does the wall feel cold and … wet? I rip off the cushions by the table and sure as shit – condensation has soaked the whole area. No mould but a swimming pool. FML. So I’m 90% chill and 10% freak show. ( k keep it to yourselves people, I left that one vague depending on how well you know me). I of course am pissed, 100s of dollars in dehumidifiers and they have one job. We are insulated and lacking air moisture- how the hell can we have a wet wall. Yes people it’s one wall but when the walls are closing in and your home is crumbling into a mushy mould mess …. k again a little over kill but stay with me in my moment please. As things are flying and hair dryer is working overtime my husband who knows no fight will be won if I’m in my 10% is trying to convince me it’s because campers aren’t designed for full time living…. WHAT, Wait, no shit Sherlock – marital bliss in the mountains is similar to everyone ELSES all over the world. They are still NOT helpful in the moment. Just let me stew about how the camper is plotting to kill us and I will banish the water assholes with the hairdryer ninja while thinking about ripping everything out and purchasing a table and chairs in Fernie (one store for that). I don’t need reason I don’t need a pep talk I need you to hate the engineers at Jayco trailers as much as I do. Rant, question their qualifications and defiantly agree their workforce are all idiots with shotty workmanship. Poor husband goes out and gets the mother of all dehumidifiers of which as I sit here I can feel the moisture being sucked out of my eyeballs. The original table still exists and everything is back in its place minus a new area for the water sucking beast.

Moral of the story if you are more than 10% ummm – not at your best … then this life is not for you. It’s far from perfect, it’s not as simple as we thought, there’s no place to escape when someone is being reasonable and generally a voice of love and kindness. Things go wrong and a lot of it usually has to do with the sewer in these places and not much of it is a simple fix. This is an adventure though, and life planned is boring so bring it on – look at me 90%ing!

Bitch or Brave Your Choice

So many people have asked why? I can tell though they want to ask how could you? They question how could we leave our extended families in Alberta, how could you leave your 2nd year university kiddo, how could you leave high paying jobs and a beautiful house. Can you sit with me in thought for a moment? Can you picture your perfect place. Where is it? Who’s there? What do you do for money? What does your home look like? A wise aunt once said to me make decisions like money is no option. This way you can free your dreams. Let me tell you I did not picture living in an RV lol. But I did see mountains, I did see a smaller town, I saw Shaun with a job he only works at half the year, I saw me at a clinic with great people, I saw Macey getting a top notch education and loving an active lifestyle. So in order to make some dreams happen, in order to make our lives simpler and most importantly embrace a change to make sure this is what we need to feel whole.

So many people stay rooted. Doing something like this seems to encourage others to open up about what they wish they could do or where they would go if they could. I have heard every reason possible for not changing their worlds. At first I was a tad offended. My favourite line I heard so many times was oh I’m so jealous! We would do that in a heartbeat if only we didn’t have responsibilities, which then the common list

– kids are set up in school

– can’t leave my parents

– can’t leave family

– mortgage

– work

– money

Blah blah blah

First of all we have not abandoned our responsibilities not even for a minute. If you truly want something you will work so very hard to make it happen. Lottery – doesn’t always work lol but damn I’m trying hard to get it. As far as family and friends they love you and I’m sure want to see you happy – some hide it way down deep lol. But ask yourself is it your responsibility to make someone happy above yourself? I’m not talking about our children cause yes it is our responsibility thats why we have wine lol. Of course there are times others must come first. I’m talking about doing something, going somewhere, taking some sort of brave step to change your path if only for a short time. We get one shot at life, and the older I get the more I realize it’s kind of a rip off, even if you live to a ripe old age. I mean by the time you get old enough to be brave enough to forge forward on an idea usually you are old enough to grunt and groan getting out of bed. Life’s so short. We make choices and open and close doors as we go. We aren’t trees, we don’t have roots, this is great news if you feel like maybe you need a change. Family will be there, the love doesn’t change and you can’t expect they will pick up and tag along on your dream. Maybe your dream is moving close to family on that note. Maybe they live somewhere that has mountains lol … Is it your job? Education? House… come on stop bitching and be brave. You get ONE life. You going to whine and regret or are you going to be brave and just do it. Failing is better than never even trying in my heart. Stop making excuses and be brave, you got this!

Happy Thanksgiving Tailgate style!

Last couple years we’ve managed to be out hunting so I have spent it cooking the bird in the camper, thankfully this year Dad cooked. I’m not saying Thanksgiving dinner isn’t possible in an RV – oh no quite the contrary. There is nothing better that the snow falling quietly around the woods, while overlooking a beautiful half frozen lake, no one around for miles while you await the return of the hopefully valiant hunters!

But truth is that feeling right there is only fleeting. Reality tends to be a bit different. First off the bird – needs to be more chicken size … or if you maybe bought one not remembering the actual size of your oven you must carefully and with great skill – chop the shit out of it and play Tetris in the roaster to get it to fit. Forget stuffing it. Let go of that dream – someone will probably die of hunger or food poisoning before the morning comes.

Now take serious note of what I’m about to tell you as it took 3 years for me to fully understand what was going wrong in my master plan. RV ovens tend to take longer than conventional ovens, like a lot longer! So if you tend to nip at the wine while creating the ultimate family dinner you must adjust to this cooking time difference. One must pace themselves a little better if you expect the bird on the table instead of yourself dancing on it. Nothing says I cooked you a Thanksgiving dinner in the trailer sweetie like falling down the stairs into your great hunter. May I also warn that somewhere during the cooking and not managing wine intake a large portion of the pie disappears as well. So it is truly is Step 1 in RV cooking. Step 2 – well I’ll let you know, I’m still mastering the art of Step 1. Thinking maybe next year to get an electric roaster prior to the big day.

After stuffing ourselves with Dad’s giant bird we were graced with leftovers! Stopped on the way back to Fernie in some random park to tailgate Thanksgiving 2nd dinner! So simple, I challenge everyone to do that with their leftovers! Find a great park, a bush spot, anywhere that you find peaceful and perfect – eat, play in the leaves and truly enjoy the basics.

Thank you for cooking this year Dad!

Happy Thanksgiving all!!

What is normal anyway…

I love the various looks I get when I tell people we are living a year in a ski town (WINTER) in our RV trailer. Ranges from pity, excitement, confusion to a concern for Macey’s wellbeing. All fair reactions, hell I feel almost all of that in one hour some days. The one that concerns me the most is of course Macey’s well-being. Shaun and I are committed to ensuring this adventure enhances her world. She’s enrolled at the top private school in the area. Ringette was not available here but huge hockey town so she’s out shaking things up with the boys! Of course girl guides in the area promise to be fun filled with outdoor life!

A mother who was camping here with her kids asked me if I was worried about Macey not living a normal life? First off, her kids were sitting in the park on their iPads…. they must have been 9 and 10 years old. Their trailer was literally 200 feet away. So mom is there watching her kids play iPads at the park …. I’m using the term watching loosely as she was on her phone when I arrived on scene. I hadn’t seen Moo or Joey for an hr thought I should check in. Macey and her dog were playing away and I sat to enjoy watching them. This is when I started chatting with the mom. She was serious about her question and I had so many thoughts run through my head at that moment haha. I just replied a quick nope we are very excited to provide this opportunity for Macey and wandered far away from her normal.

I’ve only had 19 short years to be a mom. I’m not actually being sarcastic when I say that either. Being a mother to 3 very very different kiddos has taught me so much. But it wasn’t till a family crisis forced me into a 3 month mental health course that I really understood what key parenting technique I’d been missing was. Hell, a key to being a decent human …. the art of shut up, stop fixing and validate what the person is feeling. A process that should take me the rest of my life to practice. I’m not saying the thick how to parent effectively novel that helps us discipline, provide for well being, coach, cheer, wipe asses and noses, and all the other million things we do for our kids isn’t important, it’s vital. I learned though you can provide the best schools, clothes, opportunities…. if the child doesn’t feel their feelings are validated then u might as well throw it all away. So with that said really I’m comfortable parenting in any living situation armed with these new tools. Am I living in a blissful bubble thinking well now it’s clear, parenting shall be simple!!! I know the key!!! Bahaha seriously- NO. So far from that but I’m really ready to stop believing that providing the best of everything and protecting them from things is the best way to go. Normal for us I’m sure is very different from other people’s normal. And what’s normal for us this year might not be next year. Stop worrying about what’s normal and do the very best you can do at this very moment. Recognize that your children are also doing the very best they can do as this moment as well. Living in this small space is giving me time to really hear what Macey is telling us – whether I want to hear it or not and whether I agree is a totally different ballgame.

normal Saturday morning….

Normal homework….

Normal sports…

normal I don’t want to do my homework…

normal before school…

normal sleepovers, play dates….

normal learning how to do life skills

normal I’ll do chores… for money…. to buy crap…

Haha looks pretty “normal” to me.

Disclaimer I’m not saying we are normal – I’m saying we appear normal.

Relax and enjoy the ride …. ya only live once 😉 STOP thinking of what normal is!

Down to Business.

So with adventures there’s ups and downs, it’s just life. Go through the bad and appreciate the good… of course said by people experiencing the good at the time. We said goodbye to Mr. Rads. Not ready to say much more than that except that time was always his enemy with his shitty breeding. Heartbroken, we all will need some time to move through this.

Hopping along to the business end of this post, time to buckle down and get ready for some serious mountain winter weather. Up to this point we’ve had numerous people enlighten us that winter does happen here lol. No shit hey. We are well aware of what we are going into. It’s still a learning process of which I’m sure many stories will come from but we are at least aware of what we are getting ourselves into lol. I’ve decided from this point on I will act so very surprised when someone excitedly explains there’s a ton of snow and cold and we could possibly most likely, definitely freeze to death!!! I’m tired of trying to convince them with all the preparations and research we have done and are doing we are confident we will atleast survive lol. I will from now on looked shocked, maybe frightened and completely stunned at how we missed this weather statistic in a bloody ski town!!! Maybe even mention starting a go fund me page for the amount of baileys I will need to drink to stay warm ( or think I’m warm).

We have ( k Shaun has) spent hundreds of hours reading, YouTubing and chatting with RV specialists on getting us ready for winter. Just the other day on a Facebook post someone commented to another ” winter camping is just like summer but you just turn the heat on”, dear gawd NO it’s not. We have an extreme package on this model and with our experience during hunting season, it’s not enough for Canadian winters. More and more products are now available for winter RVing probably thanks to the tiny house movement.

Many RV parks and campsites are targeting tourists to join them in the winter wonderland near popular ski hills. We are surrounded here by workers and families in the same boat as us – unable to find pet/kid friendly rentals in areas they aren’t ready to commit to. A few others I’ve chatted with are just not willing to pay the outrageous price for even a simple condo and spent their money on a nice park model. While we have no interest in doing this long term it is a brilliant way to keep housing costs low, try on a new area, enjoy more family time, declutter your life and learn to live without stuff for awhile. Many people say they are jealous of this lifestyle… that they would love the simplicity of it. Lol while I think some probably would not like it as much as they think lol I do find it interesting that most people feel over burdened by material things, overwhelmed by day to day events and chores and generally wanting a simpler life. Though most of these same people go off to Walmart for groceries and still are buying a ton of materialistic crap.

As winter starts creeping down the mountains here we are reminded we will soon be buried in snow and need to pitter patter get at it to winterize! Hate to freeze to death lol and prove all the haters right!

Step 1: get yourself a nice size propane tank. The 30lb ones that come on these rigs are not going to cut it. Most places deliver and will check and keep it filled. Average cost is 400 for year rental, delivery and pick up. Will keep you posted on monthly cost.

Step 2: We used deck blocks and 2×4 to make a frame to hold the insulation. Doing it this way was a bit costly but knowing just how much snow is on the way we didn’t want the insulation to buckle or get pushed in. We also didn’t have to put one screw into our trailer which is ideal. Step 3: We chose to use 2″ insulation board with plastic washer and screws. Total cost to date 1100.00 CAN. We did look into the fancy click lock skirting systems which cost started at 4000.00 CAN, we found it would cost us around 6,000 for the insulating ones we’d need and you still have to drill or glue on the trailer.

Note: Joey alarm system fully active and aware of impending threats…

More still to come but fire ban was lifted so a beer/wine and a fire happened lol.

Fairy Creek Falls

Well ma ass hurt wayyy too much to bike today – go figure I’m not fitter than I think. Bloody hell but NOT squishing into padded ass shorts oh noooo. So went hiking today, Fairy Falls was the destination. Said an easy 2 hour return hike and part of that was fair. Easy if you don’t have to squish into bike shorts but pack water, good shoes and a snack lol if you be a little fluffy. It’s a 2 minute drive away from the resort. Launch at the visitor centre for easy free parking ( haha kidding parking is always free here). But there’s only washrooms at that visitor centre. Trail is very well marked and wasn’t crazy busy – though was not a weekend. Pack a snack for kids and pack water. Rads and Joe were able to be off leash till a yappy little dog looked yummy for Rads. I gasped for breath for only 10 mins and Moo only panicked once over a crossing so I vote chubby and kid friendly!!!

Long weekend here at the ole resort so it’s packed! Macey has had tons of kids to play with, my personal favourite was a little guy named Jackson. They met at the park throwing a stick for Joe. He followed her and her bike around all night. Running after her holding her pop for her lol. He introduced himself – “hi I’m Jackson, I’m a millionaire and can run 55 miles at one time” . I replied “nice to meet you buddy I don’t run and welcome to our trailer”.. haha. He apparently started his own business and became rich – he’s 6. Wow look at him go lol. His mother however wasn’t aware of his wealth. ( I’ll include a picture of this great lad. ) Side note he had to leave which He was heartbroken but Macey was ok cause she was done with her pop.

The fires seem to still be active here as it’s constant helicopters with buckets overhead but the smoke is minimal so I have no concerns.

Crash Derby here this weekend … let’s dooo this!

Today’s Lesson: when rv living be careful of having a beverage while waiting for a pot of water to boil. Takes forever outside – the number of drinks can sneak up on ya…. grow up and be responsible.

Not without my Barbie house….

We made it!! We are tucked in our trailer overlooking the 3 sisters mountain and surrounded by beauty in every direction! I’ve had a couple days to unpack, organize and then repack and take to storage lol.

The final move was anything but smooth, it was a morning of complete chaos that seemed to take hours. Finally, as we stood sweaty and exhausted looking at the 2 tightly packed vehicles, we felt a sense of accomplishment and the start of a great adventure was beginning! The euphoria was replaced 15 seconds later when Macey starts freaking out saying “oh no not without my Barbie house”. Shaun and I pleaded, bribed, pleaded…. and there was no give on her end. This was a stand off and let’s be real, ultimately we would be the losers – if we forced her to go without it would be the worst trip. So Mr. Ubell knew we’d been beat … mumbled some explicit words and started unpacking the the back of the truck. After some random jumping out and dodging traffic for lids that had blown off and a flappy bbq lid that I’m sure the trucker hauling all those fancy new cars was about ready to run the dodge off the road, we arrive in Fernie! As we unloaded and the trailer got smaller and smaller I began to realize what I signed up for lol. We took a lot over to storage. Miss moo donated some more clothes and I realized the days of having a stocked pantry are over. Embracing and working with this totally new and foreign way of life is going to take some patience for myself. Learning what is a necessity and what is really just clutter is lesson one. Wanting to get to a spot in my life where shopping and collecting belongings is replaced by enjoying our world in a much simpler less stressful way. Are we crazy haha hell yes but it remains to be scene whether it’s in a good way!