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  • Writer's pictureJeff Temple

How Did This All Get Started? (According to Jeff)

My name is Jeff, I’m 42, have 3 kids under the age of 5 and I have, what I call, hobby ADD. What is hobby ADD you ask? As long as I can remember, I have enjoyed exploring, trying new skills, hobbies, and jobs. Something random will spark my interest in a new activity and I will dive head-first into it to learn as much as I can. I watch videos, read books, take classes, talk to experts, and digest as much about that thing as possible ‘till I finally get to do it. It's in that initial learning that I really thrive. Once I have taken the mystery out of the skill or proven to myself that I can do it, I like to move on to the next thing.

My poor Lily just shakes her head when she gets up in the morning, and before she’s had her coffee, I have obsessively researched a new hobby and say something like, “Good morning babe, have you ever thought about traveling the US in an RV?”

And that is how this whole dream started about 3 years ago. I was exploring YouTube and stumbled across a channel called Keep Your Daydream. They were a family that had packed up their house, sold almost all of their possessions, purchased a travel trailer and set off to have a grand adventure acr

oss the US. I was immediately curious about why they were doing it, how they were going to make it happen, and the successes and failures they would face along the way. I started following their journey and talking Lily’s ear off about how exciting it sounded. I think at first she thought I was insane, but I guess I wore her down over time! Pretty soon I was following multiple “Full Time Families” – families that live full time in their motorhome, fifth wheel, or travel trailers. The more I learned about these families and what inspired them to choose RV life, the more I saw similarities in our life. Lily and I were working hard and Brooks and Georgia were in daycare all day, only to come home exhausted and cranky to parents that weren’t much better.

Lily, although she may roll her eyes at me at first, is always willing to listen and consider my wild ideas. She wasn’t totally opposed to the idea of trying out “RV life,” but being more of the planner (that’s putting it mildly) in our marriage, she suggested we wait about 5 years or when the kids would be a bit older, and that maybe we make it a sabbatical in

stead of a permanent move. There were a number of roadblocks that initially made waiting seem like the best option. We both had great jobs with benefits, if we went now the kids would be too young to remember a trip like this, and we were talking about having a 3rd baby, so although I was anxious to shake things up, there were a number of good reasons to stay put. Time passed, but we didn’t let the idea totally die.

Through my work I was given a life coach, David Onks (shout out to Sparked Coaching!). I told David my dream of making this RV trip happen and he gave Lily and I some tools to facilitate discussions, organize plans of how we could make something like this come to life, and served as a sounding board for what we thought would be the major challenges. At his suggestion, one of the first things Lily and I did was make a list of “big hairy questions.” These were the roadblocks that we would need to solve before a trip like this could come to life. Our list had things like, “Do we take our dogs on the trip? What about health insurance? Do we sell the house? How do we make money? Do we make money or just take time off? What kind of RV do we need?” These became a list of conversations to have and problems to solve. Lily and I worked on this list when I first had the idea, then set it aside when we agreed we would wait for a better time. It would surface now and then, but never in a substantial way.

Fast forward about 1 year. Lily gave birth to our 3rd baby, a girl named Laramie, in July of 2022. We both took parental leave, and I had hoped that time away from work and together as a family would spark the decision to quit our jobs and go on the big adventure. But as parental leave goes, it flew by! Lily worked so hard to be able to breastfeed Laramie, special diets, long nights, and just when it was all starting to come together, she had to return to her career. Lily was heartbroken, the thought of all that effort and now having to put Laramie in daycare where she would have bottles all day while Lily pumped instead of nursing was too much. So we agreed that Lily would leave her job and focus on the baby, and we would reduce the hours that Brooks and Georgia were in daycare.

I was also feeling ready for change. I loved the team I had at work, but I had been at the same job for 5 years and had been hankering for a change for some time. When we entertained the idea of Lily leaving her job the RV adventure came back up. We agreed, we had this small window when we could actually make the sabbatical happen. Brooks would be turning 5 in March of 2024 and would start school in August of that year.

So, if we were going to go for it, now might be the perfect time. Once Lily said “I think we should go for it” it was off to the races. I had a new fire in me to make this dream a reality and Lily and I started planning. In coming posts we will share more about what that process was like. The ups, the downs, the self doubt, the excitem

ent, the connections, and the journey we are going to take. As I type this we are just 2 weeks away from our launch date, July 9th 2023! Thank you for taking the time to be a part of the adventure with us!

Fifth Wheels Up!

Jeff & Lily

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