Monday, June 29, 2015

It is HOT.

With near record breaking temps this past week and a bit, it's been a heck of a thing trying to not burn up. I even have a few proof pics of the 36C/97F temps. Thankfully, we live near the ocean now! That water is cold for a moment, but its better than sweltering in this heat.

I got back to the RV late last night, around midnight, as I have some work to do in a clients office, and it was a muggy 25C/77F with still air. That makes it feel even hotter than it is.

Before I left, I put my daughter to bed, and told her I was going to be going to the mainland for a day, maybe two. She grabbed hold of me and said, "No. Stay." Talk about breaking my heart. She's only two, and doesn't understand why daddy has to go away for a couple days at a time. All she knows is that daddy is gone.

After I'm done my work tomorrow, I'll be heading back to the Island. Then coming back in a few days to put the RV in storage for a bit. My wife is going to be giving birth to our son any day now, and then I'll be spending more time at home for a little while.

I'm starting to wonder about this whole GoFundMe thing in order to launch my webhosting and start being the family man I want to be. What am I doing wrong in not being able to attract someone to help out a bit? I need to launch my site, and I can't until I complete the final phase. I've plastered it over Facebook, I don't exactly use Twitter, so that's pointless. I'm not sure how I'm going to get this off the ground any time soon...

Anyways, with all this heat, my wife is thinking that we should consider looking into getting a boat instead of an RV. That way we have the water right there to jump into anytime we want. haha Wouldn't that be an interesting thing?

Monday, June 22, 2015

Help me out? Even a bit?

So, I have mentioned it in passing in the past, but I am trying to build my webhosting up so that I can finally bring in extra cash, and eventually replace my work for someone else career.

The biggest thing preventing us from properly fulltiming and living our lives is that my job requires me to be in a general location. We can not ever leave where we are as long as I work for someone else.

I started this project a couple years back, and it got put on hold as my daughter was born, and my money and time needed to go to more immediately important things.

Well, in the three weeks since my family and I moved to Nanaimo, I've been out with them spending time once. That was yesterday for Father's Day.

I don't want to do that again. I want to be there with my family. It is the one driving factor in my life that makes me truly happy.

A lot of people want to be able to spend more time with family, but few have the ability to properly act on it. I do.

My webhosting is focused on a niche', but it open to all. In order to fully complete, and launch the webhosting, I need to be able to finish purchasing the remaining domain names I need. Sorry, I can't say what they are. I don't want them bought out from under me, and then offered back to me at $2000 a pop like once before. I was once stupid enough to mention an idea and a domain name that worked which was available. Someone bought it for the $10 it was worth, and asked for $2000 for it. Needless to say, he could keep it.

I'm offering rewards through my GoFundMe page for anyone interested. There's also a simple $25 donation for no reward if so inclined. Heck, if anyone is so inclined, they don't even need to collect the rewards I have.

Have a look, share the page, and help a family man out if you can! Every little bit helps.

My GoFundMe page to change my life.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

A look at the new countertops

So, we finally picked up the new countertops for the RV before we moved to BC, but they were first in a moving trailer, and then in storage until today. So here they are! I'm very excited for the new updated laminate to go in.

They are full pieces without holes, and get cut afterwards when the proper measurements can be completed and I'll use the old countertops as a template, however I'm thinking of changing out some things. I'm currently looking for a new sink and faucet for the bathroom, as well as a new sink for the kitchen. The kitchen isn't that big of a deal and could use the same one we currently have, but I'd really like to change the bathroom out. I honestly don't care much for how the thing is set up. It's really not laid out for full time living in the RV.

People can handle a weekend, or so with such an awkward positioning to the sink and faucet, but full time, I found myself using the kitchen sink to wash my hands instead.

This is the new kitchen counter, and the table matches the design as well. It's a laminate, but higher quality than the 36 year old stuff in there now. It's also far better looking in my opinion. This stuff wasn't cheap either. As it turns out, we chose the highest quality laminate, which is also why it took longer to get since it was a special order.

We also had the edges rounded better, and a bit of a larger lip on them. For the table, this means I'll need to potentially increase the height of the seats to make it stay flat when it's in the bed position. This is ideal for me anyways as sitting at the table to work was a pain. The current set up has the table higher up than the seat and my arms would start to ache from the weird lift I was doing. I was basically taking the cushion from the other seat and doubling up in order to make it more comfortable.

Since the seats only house the two fresh water tanks, there's really no need to get in there very often, so adding some custom height won't be a problem for us, nor any future owner.

The bathroom counter is a different design, as we wanted to change things up a bit with it being a separate room. It's darker, and more marbled than the kitchen. 

I'm considering some sort of bar sink, and potentially a gooseneck faucet so that it's possible to wash your hands without dumping the water all over the counter, as that is what currently happens. I looked for RV faucets when I happened to be in Fraserway RV a couple months ago, and the ones that are in stock for RV's are seriously cheap crappy plastic things that I wouldn't want anywhere near my RV.

Overall, I'm quite happy that I didn't get the counters before I left Alberta in March. If I had, these issues I have would have been made permanent into the new counters. After several months in the RV, I am able to see what works and what doesn't.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Settled into our S&B

It's been two weeks now since we moved into our rented S&B (Stick & Brick) and we're getting settled. I still have some things to grab from the storage unit, but we're almost fully moved in. 

Mylaela and I were talking about our plans the other day, and we think we may have something set up. It's just a matter of getting the budget in order, getting the debt's paid off, and saving at the same time.

I'm opening up an account with Tangerine, which is an online bank, similar to our Presidents Choice bank account. There's no fees, so we are already saving money that way. The good thing about these banks, is that we can create as many accounts as we like. So, I'll be creating a "rent" account, which will be able to still transfer money to and from without a wait time. This way, when we look at our bank account, we don't see that money, and there's no accidentally spending some of that money on other things, thus falling short on our rent.

Same goes for a "bills" account. Thankfully, the only bill we pay in this S&B is our internet/cable bill. The rest of the utilities are paid for in our rent.

The current plan (and I say "current" because Mylaela changes her mind often) is that we will be saving for our bunkhouse fifth wheel. 

I'm also still working on getting my web hosting up and running, but it's a slow process as I need to buy no less than 150 additional domain names before I can launch. This will prevent me getting screwed over by some jerk who decides to buy some before I can, just to sit on them, and demand $1000+ per domain name. Which would effectively kill my business plan. (No, I can't tell you the type of domain names I need to buy)

Slow and steady. That's the name of the game...

Sunday, May 31, 2015

So, we have a plan.

Previously, I mentioned that with the new baby boy coming soon (six weeks!) and the current RV being far too small for a family that we would be setting up shop in an actual stick and brick. not my favourite idea, and I'm a little defeated because of it, but logic and reason are that we do this.

We're renting a house in Nanaimo, BC for a year long lease, and thankfully, my wife's mother is offering $5000 towards rent which is $200 shy of four months rent now that she's sold the house in Calgary. I'm still hesitant until we actually see the money in our account as she like to change her mind a lot.

In that year, we're planning on aggressively saving so that we can put down a decent downpayment on a fifth wheel that will house our family.

My wife mentioned to me the other day that she had anxiety about the idea of even buying a house, knowing that both her and I don't like being stuck in one spot for a long time, and that buying a house would cement us to a specific location.

So, the new plan is to buy the fifth wheel we like, a bunkhouse model, and stay where ever the hell we feel like it. She's been sharing posts on Facebook about families doing the same, and living better than they did in their "American Dream" lifestyles with mountains of debt.

I'm excited about it as I really don't want to go back into an S&B.

We'll see how it all goes.

For the meantime, renovations on the RV will continue as I still want it to look awesome, and I REALLY want to get those new countertops in.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Interesting article that really makes you think harder about this lifestyle

I was surfing Facebook as I do often, and I came across this article regarding being "House Poor".

Real estate woes: The secret lives of house poor Canadians

It's interesting to read particularly because it's not something that you read about often in the media, just on blogs. This couple had several setbacks as they were building their dream home, and now worry about losing it.

"Edgerton estimates she and Camus spend 43 per cent of their combined income paying down their $418,000 mortgage and covering other fixed housing expenses. Once they pay the rest of the bills and buy groceries, "there is nothing left," she explains. She describes their existence as living "hand to mouth.""

This is how so many people live. This is how I have always lived, and how my family lives now. Your fixed housing expenses should not exceed 35% of your income, and I don't know too many that meet that 35%, they all exceed it. Recently, because my wife and I are expecting our son within the next six weeks, my wife wants a stick built home for the stability and security. Her and I are of two different minds when it comes to stability and security. We don't have a large enough RV to live in right now as a family so the extra space certainly makes sense, but we're over doubling our living costs. That's the part that's hardest for me. An extra $1000 a month going into renting a stickbuilt rather than savings. If something happens and I end up out of work again, we run the risk of being evicted and having no where to go.

Luckily, the idea of getting into an RV isn't off the table, it's just delayed (again). I still want to try and save to get that bunkhouse fifth wheel that we saw back in August of 2014. Brand new, it had a price tag of $59,995 brand new, with just under $500/mth in payments. Now that it's "last years model" with the 2016's coming out, who knows, maybe a good deal is to be found.

We just need to collect a good down payment on something like that, which is a heck of a lot less than a down payment on a house. If we can manage to save even $400/mth out of our wages, we could have 25k in three years. If I ever get any bonuses with my work, we'd be putting that into savings as well, and I can currently get a maximum of $25,000 in bonuses every year.

Working hard towards those bonuses, but man it's hard when the work is slow here currently. It's starting to pick up, but it's still slow, and I still have so much to learn.

Monday, May 25, 2015

My family is with me in Vancouver!

It's been just over a week since I flew back to Calgary, grabbed a 6x12 uhaul trailer, loaded it up, and drove my family out to BC.

I've been very busy because of this, and work, but things are moving along now.

Getting back to Calgary was good, and the weather wasn't terrible. It was however, cooler than I was expecting, and stepping out the airport startled me! I guess three months in Vancouver's warmer climate has made me something of a wuss! 

I spent the next couple days visiting with friends, and snuggling with my family. I wasn't able to grab the trailer until Friday morning at 11am. I then worked at getting it packed until about midnight, and then I was back up at nine in the morning to finish so we could get on the road. I think I may have broken a one or two laws of physics in this pack. Seriously. I packed half a garage, and two bedrooms into the trailer, and the back of the truck. I also added a couch, and loveseat, as well as a dining table that I wasn't really expecting.

Once we were packed up, it was time to get on the road!

Princess is excited and ready to go!

But she didn't last very long... 

Quick pitstop to change a bum, and stretch legs.

Princess enjoying some yummy blackberries!

We made it to Rogers Pass, undoubtedly, the most dangerous section of the highway in wintertime. Good thing we're travelling in the spring.

we stopped for the night just outside of Revelstoke at this awesome Chateau called, Three Valley Lake Chateau. We've always driven past it, and always wanted to stay for a night. With a two year old, the days of travelling the entire trip in a day are gone. No toddler will sit for 12-14 hours solid. Ever. We got a great deal through Expedia, and stayed for the night.


The chateau is surrounded by mountains, and all of the rooms face into the courtyard. It's immaculately maintained. The rooms are a touch dated, but from what we heard, ours was one of the more recent renovations. We had leather chairs whereas others had something else apparently.

Princess even made a friend of a three year old guest. Her parents were pretty cool too.

It's tough to see in the picture above, but there's a waterfall coming down the side of the mountain.

An indoor garden for the more gloomy days. only thing it was missing in our opinion was a water feature. 

Princess really loved this moose.

This tree is still alive and well, and the building was built around it. 

I seem to be missing the pictures from our visit to the Ghost Town, so I think they're on the Nikon, rather than my phone. I'll get those uploaded soon. I'll continue on with the trip in another post soon!

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