Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Piles, piles, piles...But I still know where everything is!

After four stressful weeks, every item in my house has a new home (pile). This process has burned quite a few brain cells, caused more grey hair, and even made the temper flair a time or two. But...there were also many times when smiles crossed our faces while memories were recalled making it the most precious moments up to this point of running away. Each item was placed in one of nine piles -- garage sale (huge, huge pile), long term storage, storage in Cougar travel trailer, take in 5th wheel Bighorn trailer, Karl's, Paul's, Sylvia's, give to friends, or just plain trash. Every room in the house is filled with piles which doesn't do a thing for my organizational, put it in its place brain.

Of course, after everything was sorted, the garage sale items needed to be priced and placed out in the garage in a somewhat organized manner. Our garage is stuffed to the gills. Garage sale day will be several someone's lucky day for bargain hunting!!

Oops...I forgot another pile I had going which kept Randy well employed. We had several items laid aside to list on Ebay and then our big furniture we wished to sell on craigslist. What an undertaking in itself. We have become great fans of craigslist though and know exactly how we will refurnish a home when we settle down again.

I can hardly wait for the relaxed part of this great adventure...

It's Not All Up for Grabs

Okay, I am hoping this works as I am trying to add a couple pictures. Not sure how to put the caption on the pictures though. Guess I am ready for Blogger 101 and a half!!

After we had announced to the children our plans of full-time RVing, we hoped there would be some requests for items from the home that meant something to them. After all most of us have a since of nostalgia and want things to remind us of our past...the happy parts anyway. What we didn't expect was some home invaders, while we were gone, labeling the items with big signs that just couldn't be missed. This is only a couple of the items (TV and BBQ grill) but we discovered 10 of these signs placed on various items of furniture. What do you think, should I honor the requests?

Thursday, April 22, 2010

I Have Survived

Yes, going through my clothes and shoes to downsize was absolutely the hardest thing to do. I shed tears, snapped at my husband, and even said things I really wouldn't have if not placed in such a situation. I now only have a six foot length of closet for both Randy's and my hanging clothes. Oh, and did I mention that this has to include our coats also. I currently have all my wonderful work clothes on my dinner table waiting for a way to hang them in the garage for the big sale. Now I have to get serious about pricing the items for the garage sale. I will try to get pictures tomorrow!!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

The Bighorn Is Here!!

Yep, it is here. Well, there ... the dealer in Texas. The dealer has been very understanding with us and is storing it until the first week of May. We need to get this stuff in the "garage sale" piles ready for the big sale the first of May. Another big milestone of this whole project.

Just Do It...

Sorry, my first two posts didn't have a title. Just noticed that box. I am still in the learning curve!!

The sorting of the house has been more of a challenge than I expected. It is hard to look at each item (okay maybe not each and every one of them) acquired over several years and ultimately say, "It is no longer a necessity." Sure hope Randy ends up in the Bighorn as he is definitely a necessity for me!! Seasoned RVers say that eventually we will just look at it as stuff but that hasn't happened yet for me. All the things have memories connected with them and I just don't want to wipe my memory slate clean. Well, a week and a half later, I only have our bedroom (yep, all the clothes) to sort. I think I saved the hardest for last. Will let you know.
So, we came home to finish painting the kitchen cabinets and begin to tie up the responsibilities still lingering in Arkansas. We had a trip planned to South Carolina to attend the temple sealing of our granddaughter, visit Randy’s parents, and the Van Buskirks in North Carolina. The long road trip consisted of several discussions regarding making plans of preparing to sell our house and what do we do with our individual items. We would be driving along and one of us would blurt out the title to an item we own desiring the thoughts of the other one as to the disposition of the item. We have come to the conclusion there is one of five dispositions – long term storage, garage sale, short term storage in Cougar travel trailer, give away to children or friends, and best of all, pack in the Bighorn. We did decide to keep the Cougar as there are still plans of making a trip back to Alaska and feel it best to take the Cougar; besides we need a short term storage unit.

We used our two week trip to the Carolinas as a trial run for our new life style. We were overwhelmed with the support we received from several relatives as to our new plans and even a tinge of jealousy from a few of them. Little do they know we may be visiting them more often now that our home goes with us. On the way to North Carolina, we stopped at a Camping World to start getting supplies for the new rig. I bought a book titled, “How to Run Away after 50”. We started reading it on the drive and so far are right on track with our plans for our new lifestyle. While visiting the Van Buskirks, I got the idea of starting a blog so everyone can read of our jaunts, happenings of running away and we can stay in touch. This book also inspired our title to the blog with the help of the Van Buskirk girls. After 10 days on the road and lots of wonderful hours with friends and family, we know we can do this!!

We returned home to begin the final preparations. We started with putting the house back together from painting the cabinets which of course led to asking the question of what to do with each item I was to put back in the cupboards. The sorting has started – we are only putting in the cupboards what will go in the Bighorn. Another trial to see if we will be able to live with less toys in the kitchen; just at the time I have found a fondness of experiencing with baking and cooking. Ummm…. We then spent a couple of days, thoroughly cleaning the Cougar inside and out preparing it to become a storage unit. I know it doesn’t make since to spend two days cleaning something to be tucked away for a year but it sure does look nice. Besides we have to show it we still love it.

The real adventure won't begin until the end of May. More to follow...
Okay this has been written for awhile but I couldn't remember how to do a post. Here goes the attempt....

In order to share the adventures of the Runaway Smiths with so many, I have consented to start a blog. Thanks to Alexa and Casey Van Buskirk for the Blog 101 class and I hope I do it justice.

I guess I better start with an explanation of why we are now going to be called the Runaway Smiths. For several months, I have been trying to ignore the advice of several of my doctor’s about not working. I thought I knew better and would be fine with still working. After another severe setback, thru prayer Randy and I decided it best I quit. Now, as most of you know, Randy retired in November from the Air Force after 30 years of dedicated service. So, just what do two, older than 50, people do to keep themselves in shape; physically, mentally, and spiritually. Several long discussions and prayers were accomplished to try and come to a conclusion.

During a visit with my parents in Texas, all of us were sharing thoughts and stories. My mom just calmly stated, you need to go spend the summer with your daughter. I was amazed at how strongly I felt a confirmation thru the spirit letting me know that this was an answer to our prayers. I was not sure how Randy felt or even if he paid attention to the statement as we were all just rambling along while being engrained in our own activities and thoughts. It took only a short amount of time to learn that Randy had the same comforting feeling. Once this suggestion was out in the open air, our thoughts started centering around RVing fulltime. I began to reflect on some of the events of the past few weeks leading us to this moment of which I will share one. We had randomly decided to go to the RV Show in Little Rock just to “look around”. I started to gather pamphlets on 5th wheels; which I don’t usually do as I don’t want the pile of things laying around my house. Plus, for some strange reason, I decided to take them to Texas with us just in case we had some time to look at them. Well, I did pull them out for all of us to look at and to get some info on different models from my mom and others in the park. Well, within 48 hours we were owners to a new Heartland Bighorn 2011 (5th wheel) special ordered to include all the specifications both of us desired and speedily making plans to start our new life.

More to follow...