Hey there. Can’t believe it’s already been two weeks since we announced our plans to stop traveling and move back into a regular house. Since then we’ve been in a holding pattern – sort of treading water – as we house hunt. We had heard from other traveling families that this transitional period is a difficult one – and it is. We find ourselves juggling many emotions – mourning the end of our epic year of travel, excited for the conveniences and stability of a house, frustrated with living in a small space when we aren’t moving and exploring often, and anxious to find the perfect house sooner than later.
We’ve toured about a dozen houses in the last couple months – but nothing feels just right, so we continue to look. We are all anxious to find something sooner than later – because we want to ideally be under contract and/or moved into a house before school starts September 6. We are running out of time for this to happen – but we also don’t want to buy a place that doesn’t fit what we’re looking for – just for the sake of being moved in before school, you know!?!
So how are we passing time as we wait for the perfect house to come along? We have been spending a lot of time finishing our homeschool curriculum – and TODAY is the last day of the official curriculum. Hooray! <insert happy dance here!> We are all VERY excited for this to be wrapped up and I’m so proud of the kids and Jeremy for following through with this curriculum to the very end. I’ll write more about that later – but this has been a major focus for us these past couple weeks.
We got a membership to the local KROC Center – which is a community center and gym – and we go at least 4-5 times a week. We swim in their epic pool area (water slide, lazy river, hot tub!) with the kids. Jeremy and I will workout while the kids go to the 7-10 club (ages 7-10) and Playcare (younger ages) – which the kids absolutely love. And we SHOWER there because we don’t have the best showers at the campground we’re currently at.
We go to the Couer d’Alene library every couple of days. We put books/movies on hold ahead of time and drop-off/pick-up items 3-4 times a week. The kids are reading a TON thanks to the summer reading program and we are really enjoying this season in life where the kids can both read on their own!
Many afternoons we’ve spent in downtown Coeur d’Alene at McEuen park – they have a wonderful splash pad and playground that the kids love (and it’s right next to the library). I’m taking advantage of all the extra free time and working as much as I’m able on my frugal blog and a few other business ventures I have in the works.
We are staying at a campground out near Liberty Lake, Washington (about 25 minute drive to downtown Coeur d’Alene) and there are lots of trails, a playground and a lake! Although the spots aren’t very big (no privacy) and the restrooms/bath house is NOT very clean or convenient – it’s been a wonderful place to stay multiple nights and there are lots of opportunities to play and explore outside. We have met some wonderful people here – especially an Airstream couple who follows our blog and JUST started their Airstream adventures this summer (hi, Larry and Pat!).
When we can, we are playing PokemonGo at local parks and spending lots of time with family. I visit my grandma as much as I can and my aunt/uncle who live locally have been a great support.
Hadley lost her first tooth and the tooth fairy found us at our campground and Liam had an orthodontist consult. Next week BOTH kids will celebrate birthdays and Jeremy will soon start coaching high school football.
Without full hook-ups and not the best facilities at our park –
dishes, showers, restrooms and laundry have been a bit of a frustration.
Mostly right now I think the hardest thing about this transition is not getting too discouraged. When you make the decision to move into a house and you’re no longer exploring in your tiny home – it’s a waiting game and things that were once very manageable before become annoying. Like having to do your laundry at a laundromat, showering/restroom use without full hook-ups, cooking in a small space – it all was part of the journey when we were traveling and exploring. But now that we’re essentially “stuck” in the same spot and we know a house is just a short reach away (a house with these conveniences) I find we’re frustrated more with them. Does that make sense?
Even though we are anxious for the next chapter in our adventure,
we would be foolish to miss the beauty in the present.
Jeremy and I have to stop often and remind ourselves that we’re still living the dream – still in a beautiful place, with flexibility, nature, family time and many of the things we loved about being on the road. This hasn’t changed – so let’s soak it up while we can because before we know it, we’ll be back in the hurried, scheduled and regimented world of school and work.
We’ll figure it all out and it will all happen the way it’s supposed to. For now we just need to be patient and appreciate the present instead of focusing on the next chapter that will surely come soon enough.
Do you live in the Coeur d’Alene area and know of great places to boondock? Do you know anyone who might be selling a house or have land that we can park on while we househunt?! We’d love suggestions or recommendations!
Kathy E says
Oh, I feel your pain! (Well, maybe not really, because I don’t have restless kids.) After 21 months of full-time travel adventure, I’m settling back down, looking for a job and getting ready to have a house built. It’s really funny how you can enjoy the journey so much, but living in an RV on a fixed site can be tough to tolerate sometimes (not looking forward to the Oly rainy season). We’ll all just have to “chin up” and be happy it’s temporary. Hang in there, and good luck finding the right home!
Hi Kathy – THANK you for you encouragement. I was feeling so discouraged and appreciate your note so much! Good luck to you on your next chapter!
Sending good vibes that you find your “perfect for you” home really soon. I can imagine how difficult it is to be stuck in one place with not all of the nice amenities that you had in other campgrounds. It does sound like you have found a nice library and park and the place with the Lazy River, showers and other programs sounds really nice!
I’ve been enjoying your adventures.
About the house: we have friends who had to relocate recently, and we saw the stress involved in finding an appropriate house. They ended up renting. Would that apply in your situation?
Hi Juliee – We considered renting but values are going up so quickly and interest rates are insanely low right now. The house we ended up putting an offer on would rent for $1400/month and our mortgage is just over $900/month. It was a smarter financial choice for us to buy an inexpensive starter home to transition back – so glad we waited until we found the right one!
Thank you Caro! I needed encouragement and appreciate your kind note!
Hello and thank you for the wonderful site:-)!
We are a family of five…I am 6″3 265 and we have kids the ages of 9,6,5.
We’ve located a 2012 34ft airstream. We won’t be utilizing full-time, only weekends, spring break, Summer etc.
Fifth wheels are much roomier, but aren’t built as well. And the airstream is $52k and fifth wheels we looked at can range from 60-90k! Either way, this will be our first RV!
We really found the Airstream to be plenty roomy for our family. And for being 6″3 – I think you’ll be surprised how roomy things like the shower can be in an Airstream compared to a fifth wheel. I recommend you check both of them out – walking through all styles until you decide what feels right. Remember that the value on Airstreams is so much stronger than fifth wheels. We could easily get almost what we paid for ours more than a year ago if we sold it privately now. That’s a big reason why we chose Airstreams – for recreational vehicles they really retain their value!
Pat pierce says
Larry and Pat here. We’re just turning west on our way home from our adventure, and we’ve often thought about you all as we travel. We have learned so much on this trip: our first inadvertent boondocking in Lewiston Idaho where we accidentally reserved a site with no hookups–and survived, in fact looked for Forest Service sites where we would have tented and (semi-) fearlessly backed in for the night, to the fact that what you pay for an RV spot has little to do with how good the place is. We’ve especially enjoyed following the Lewis and Clark trail through Idaho–what a beautiful state! And to think this will all be in your new backyard!
We’ll be home in Anacortes on Monday and still remembering meeting and talking with you, and hoping your Coeur D’Alene adventure just beginning is as wonderful as the year you’ve spent on the road. If you ever want to visit Anacortes, let us know–our neighborhood has a few RV spots right on the water we could rent for you. Just let us know. (I don’t know how to do off-blog communication, but I’m sure you do!)
Still following you, wherever you end up…
Pat and Larry
Hi Pat – So glad you survived your first boondocking experience! Sounds like your reservation experience was interesting but it all worked out (it seems to usually do that). Hope your trip back to Anacortes was uneventful and that you’re already scheming your next adventure. We will be back at Liberty Lake (in your prime corner spot) the second half of August as we wait for our house to close – hooray!
We are actually driving over Monday morning to stay in Liberty Lake and doing Silverwood among a few other things. I planned on taking my son and niece to the Pavilion Park and Rocky Hill Park for the playgrounds, if you had any other suggests? And maybe we’ll see ya around town 🙂
Hi Tabitha – Sorry I didn’t respond sooner! How was your trip? We LOVE Silverwood (going next week) and we love downtown Coeur d’Alene – especially McEuen park and the hike around Tubb’s hill. McEuen park has a great playground and splash pad!