top of page
  • Writer's pictureTil Further Notice

The Big Leap - How We Came To Live The RV Life

Updated: Aug 20, 2021

Grand Design Solitude 390 RK-R 5th Wheel and Ford F450
"Tag A-Long" and "Tilly"

It’s hard to believe but In a few short weeks, Tammy and I will be celebrating the one year anniversary since we moved into “Tag Along”, a 45’ fifth wheel we pull with a truck named “Tilly”. We were both in a bit of shock as we locked up the 10 x 10 storage unit, the possessions we couldn’t part with staring us in the face like forgotten family members as the door closed. Then we turned in the keys to our leased townhome, climbed into our newly purchased 2016 Ford F450 and drove across town to the rv storage yard where we parked our new to us 2020 Grand Solitude 390RK-R for a month to stage and load. Once hitched and on the road out of Denver the thing we remember most about that hot July day was that the four of us (including our fur babies Gracie and Jasper) and all of our worldly possessions were rolling down the road at the same time. We survived the trip two hours south to Tammy’s parents home where we would complete the fitting of the rig and visit with family one last time before heading into the new and unknown horizon.

The process of taking progressively larger leaps of faith began over a year earlier when we decided that we would sell our home and art studios in exchange for freedom from debt and a hope of living a more adventurous and active life. At the time Tammy had just recovered from her sixth major re-constructive hip surgery, her seventh was scheduled and we wanted to have the move from our 3500 square foot home into a 1300 square foot apartment behind us. The process of downsizing the first time was overwhelming. Everything that we had accumulated over the years was put into one of four piles. Sell, give away, throw away or keep were our options and we knew that anything we kept would continue to weigh us down so we discarded things bullishly

The anticipated relief of selling the home, moving into a rental and returning to a simpler life was elusive. I had blown out the meniscus in my knee carrying heavy loads in the move and would require a second surgery. I also continued to struggle with a chronic auto-immune disease that I’ve had for a few years. Tammy went through with her seventh hip related surgery and she continued to cope with a long list of health disorders that had troubled her for years. And then in early 2020 as we both worked on physical therapy, we watched our sources of income slowly dry up as the pandemic hit. It was then in the cold and dark of the Colorado winter that “Til Further Notice” was conceived.

Yep this really is how we decided on a fifth-wheel!

Together we decided that to delay the pursuit of the adventurous life was no longer an acceptable risk, that if we wait for someday, someday may never arrive. Out came the white board once again and we begin plotting out the next leap of faith. Our cash flow projections gave us the confidence that we could pay cash for rig and live a modest life for a year or two while we re-invented our livelihood. The plan was to live a more active life. If we could manage to stay healthy enough to travel and explore we knew that the inspiration to create would follow.

Southern Oregon beach waves in winter
"Moment of Truth" ~ This was our back yard! (printable digital image available in Image Gallery)

Our leap was a big one. The kind where your feet leave the edge of the cliff as you lean into the abyss with your wings spread wide. The kind where bridges to the past have been dismantled piece by piece so there is no easy u-turn. One Year later we are happy to report that we spent our first winter of RV life exploring the wild and natural beauty of the Southern Oregon Coast and we are now immersed in the watery magic of the Puget Sound in Washington State through the summer. As artists we both thrive on adventure and our creative energy is through the roof.

On any given day Tammy is artfully weaving our stories about RV Life into videos to be shared on our Youtube Channel and I am busy adding to a portfolio of landscape photography and I continue to grow as a painter. Tammy is in charge of social media and I am tasked with creating a website and blog. It is our hope that we will inspire others to take their big leap of faith, whatever it may be. Hey if we can do it you can too!

1 Comment

Jul 03, 2021

Amazing and brave!! The expertly-written journal will likely inspire others to take this leap of faith! Yes- I am Mom- and I miss you. But I would never trade the chance to see my offspring living life to the fullest.

bottom of page
RV Trip Wizard