Extract Junk, Inject Living
Margaret and I planned a “regular” retirement. You know…work till 65, move to a retirement community, collect Social Security and Medicare, and take a vacation to see kids and grandkids a couple of times a year. But, along that road, we hit a few health and family-related bumps that caused us to re-think those plans. It no longer made sense to slave away in snowy Chicago while our best years and our grandchildren’s youth slipped away. Margaret shut her virtual assistant business, I retired from my corporate sales position, we moved full time into the Tennessee vacation home we’d owned for years, and we bought a motorhome to allow us to spend quality time with family spread between Des Moines, IA, Bend, OR, and Los Angeles, CA.
When we’re not traveling in the RV, we live in a great community where we spend a lot of time boating, golfing, dining and socializing with wonderful friends. Sort of an adult day camp, with alcohol! That’s all fine, and as I’m fond of observing: “Life does not suck.” We know we live a charmed life in many ways, and we certainly shouldn't complain. But the house is a lot of work, and living in an 800 square foot high-rise apartment for a while as we transitioned to retirement taught us that we really don’t need all the rooms and belongings we have here. We enjoy the lake and our boat, but we would also like to have the freedom to see more of the national parks and small-town America.
We can’t seem to tear ourselves away from tiny house and international real estate television shows or the many YouTube channels chronicling the lives of full-time RVers. Plus, while I’m enjoying being “retired,” I continue to catch myself daydreaming about new business ideas or opportunities to create. Quite simply, Margaret and I are torn, and we can’t escape the nagging sense that our most exciting adventures might still be ahead of us.
We hope you’ll follow us as we explore the possibilities that will reveal themselves in the months and years to come.
—Alan & Margaret
No introduction of our family and life could possibly be considered complete without a prominent mention of our 4-year-old Maltese-Poodle. Lucy was adopted into our family just a short time after the tragic and sudden loss of a Bichon-Poodle named Odie, who will live on forever in our hearts as one of the most loyal and loving animals on the planet. Lucy had big paws to fill, and despite being an ornery little cuss on occasion, she has somehow managed to rise to the challenge. Essentially, we bought our RV for Lucy to allow her to be with us on extended visits with grandchildren, and much of our daily life revolves around catering to her every whim and wish. In return, she is the cutest, perpetual-puppy imaginable, a world-class snuggler, and (she would undoubtedly remind us), we’ve yet to be burglarized or assaulted on her watch.