Hi Everyone. Well, after 15 years the RV-Dreams Community Forum is coming to an end. Since it began in August 2005, we've had 58 Million page views, 124,000 posts, and we've spent about $15,000 to keep this valuable resource for RVers free and open. But since we are now off the road and have settled down for the next chapter of our lives, we are taking the Forum down effective June 30, 2021. It has been a tough decision, but it is now time.


We want to thank all of our members for their participation and input over the years, and we want to especially thank those that have acted as Moderators for us during our amazing journey living and traveling in our RV and growing the RV-Dreams Family. We will be forever proud to have been founders of this Forum and to have been supported by such a wonderful community. Thank you all!!

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Post Info TOPIC: Change in direction - slowing down the business


RV-Dreams Family Member

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Change in direction - slowing down the business


 It’s ironic, our decision to first down size in 2011 that led to a decision to full time RV in early 2012 was driven primarily by Dale’s art show business and our desire to have more time for life vs. work has led to a new decision, slowing down that art show business.  Why?  We’ve found that living FT in our RV is much cheaper than having a home, but also more logistically challenging and time consuming.

  In 2011-2012 we were participating in 15-20 art shows a year, travelling for up to a month at a time in our TT and spending weekends when we were home “catching up” on chores and errands.  That life didn’t leave a lot of free time and led to our decision to downsize and try to find a simpler, less complicated lifestyle that would allow us to have more “life”.  We had planned to continue the 15-20 shows a year while RV’ing and in 2013 complications related to getting the RV transported “home” and then getting the house sold, etc. caused us to cancel a few art shows.   Then in 2014 due to a death in the family brought about a huge change in our travel plans, we ended up cancelling all of our shows early in the year.  And now we’re finding we don’t need to do as many shows to maintain our lifestyle and what’s more, we don’t want to do very many art shows.  We like having our weekends free to explore, hike, bike, sleep or just enjoy life even if that means just sitting outside reading.

  So, we’re officially declaring Dale “semi-retired” and only planning 7-9 art shows a year, all clustered in 2 locations, AZ in the winter (Dec & Mar), Pacific NW in the summer, and leaving us with Jan, Feb, Apr, May, Oct & Nov as “free months” to travel leisurely up and down the West Coast.  We’re choosing to continue the most profitable shows and drop the ones that weren’t as financially rewarding or drop the ones that included a huge “hassle factor” and dropping all of the ones in the Bay Area as we have no desire to ever tow our rig in there again.   And of course, since Dale’s art show business has long been my second job, we’re freeing up a huge amount of my time from the bookkeeping, planning logistics, art show applications, booth planning, tax preparation, etc. etc.  Whoo Hoo, more free time, it’s a beautiful thingbiggrinbiggrinbiggrin

  I’ll continue my FT job for a few more years, aggressively saving for retirement, and then who knows, maybe I’ll be joining the ranks of the semi-retired as this life on the road continues to evolve into a more wonderful lifestyle than we ever dreamed.  I remember asking Howard at the RV Dreams Rally in Harrisburg OR in 2012 if anyone went on the road, working full time with the intention of more aggressively saving for retirement and retiring early.  Well, I’ve answered my own question, yep, it’s possible to save more on the road and enjoy life a lot more in this full time RV lifestyle.

 



-- Edited by NWescapee on Wednesday 11th of March 2015 02:43:54 PM

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FT - July 2013

 

2010 38TKSB3 DRV Mobile Suites

2012 Ford F450

 

Dale and Ruth Travelling with Tazzy Kat!

 

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RV-Dreams Family Member

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Once again you've proven that there are many different ways to "RV". And that it will evolve as we each find the way that suits us.

As we finish our second year we will be slowing our pace, less miles and less moves. We still love the Mexico part of our year and it has inspired our slowing down. Our RV life started as a sprint for us, we are learning to go at a slow jog now.

April and May will be spent slowly visiting and hiking the National Parks in Utah. We enjoy the longer more in depth visits to an area.

Our style may be evolving and I am grateful that our new RV lifestyle allows for changes. The wheels on the RV can move at any speed.

Life is good.

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Russ & Terri Ranger

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RV-Dreams Family Member

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Ruth,

That would be great for you guys to have more time for yourselves and to get to travel a bit more.  Here's hoping and praying that all of that comes about for you.

Oh, and as a side note, you are too nice to Dale by doing his bookkeeping for him.  Tell him he's also an entrepreneur, not just an artist.  You need some of your own time as well.

Terry



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Terry and Jo

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RV-Dreams Family Member

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Ruth, even though I have to stay in one place for a few more years, my DH and I have the same plans. No more S&B, finish paying off debts and then travel more. In the meantime I'll be changing my work schedule so we can spend more time together, I'm an early bird and I can work while he sleeps! We did a lot of traveling when we were full-timing and we're not in a hurry. Sounds like you have found the balance that works for you - maybe the jello has jelled!

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Dyana L. Smiley


RV-Dreams Family Member

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It is interesting that most people that STAY fulltiming learn to slow down and take things at a more leisurely pace. And it doesn't matter how often they were told to do that, everyone sort of has to find out for themselves that they really can't keep going in 'vacation' mode. We did 11,000 miles our first six months out - and I was EXHAUSTED. Luckily the light bulbed clicked on and we slowed down. I firmly believe that a lot of people who stop fulltiming in the first year or two never figure out to slow down but instead they burn out.

Barb


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RV-Dreams Family Member

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After I was laid off from a "start up" internet related company, we decided to travel within CA, NV & AZ and sell fashion jewelry at swapmeets, flea markets, fairs and other events. We did this for several years sometimes working 17 hours a day for 14 to 21 days in a row. What we found was by the time we paid for inventory and then sent in booth fees for shows (most wanted the fees 6 months in advance) and the travel expenses we ended up working for minimum wage.

We had as much as $18,000 tied up in advance booth fees.

It was funny, all of the longtime vendors would say something like "You should have been here in the 80's, we were making up to $3000 a day" That was before the internet, Walmart and dollar stores and cheap goods coming from other countries. Those vendors said now days they are lucky if they clear $250 in a weekend.

We did this for 3 years adding more and more shows hoping the profits would begin to roll in but it was actually getting worse. So I began to look for a corporate job. It took another couple of years to find one and I've been there 10 years and plan to stay until I retire.

In the meantime, we do our weekend travels and our 3 month summer stay at Chula Vista RV Resort... well she gets to stay there for 3 months, I get weekend visitation rights because I'm working.



-- Edited by The Bear II on Thursday 12th of March 2015 02:38:59 PM

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RV-Dreams Family Member

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Congratulations and hooray for you taking a step back and reevaluating. Does this mean Dale will have more art pieces to share with his RV friends::: wink. I mean the stuff has got to go somewhere right :)

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RV-Dreams Family Member

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Thanks all for your thoughts. It is true, we have learned to slow down, and enjoy life a little more.

As we've gone through our evaluation, we've also decided to discontinue certain items that he makes, which again will simplify things and help us to reduce the amount of art in the booth, art to carry around, etc. etc. Plus we have one gallery that we have trouble keeping well stocked, but they sell his art really well so maybe now they'll be able to have more pieces, especially in those months when we don't have shows.

@Bear - I know exactly what you mean by the booth fees, we have his first show in 2 weeks, right now we have booth fees for 5 shows tied up and 2 more booth fees for the June and August shows due next week. Which means we're out the capital for 7 shows before he even does his first show of the year, we're not quite at 18K yet, but it does tie up a lot of capital and he placed his first materials order of the year in January and that is always a chunk of capital. For us it's been a good secondary income, we know several artists that are really struggling to make it a primary income and it's gotten more difficult since 2008. We're blessed that he's been able to pursue this while I had a steady job with steady income and health benefits.

With a few less art shows it also means I reclaim a few more vacation days!! Yes, another fun benefit as we've had areas we wanted to explore but couldn't due to lack of connectivity for my day job. So now I'm plotting how to use more of my vacation time for fun vs. art shows!!

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FT - July 2013

 

2010 38TKSB3 DRV Mobile Suites

2012 Ford F450

 

Dale and Ruth Travelling with Tazzy Kat!

 

IMAG0142_zps070d30d8.jpg

 

 

 

 



RV-Dreams Family Member

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Great news. Sometimes life nudges us to slow down. I'm sure you will be able to make it work. 



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