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  • Dana R Thomas

8 Months Full Time RV Family of 8 - The Adventure So Far

We tried to grab a quick family picture at our church Christmas party. This was the best one we got! Does show how crazy Team Thomas really is! :D

Our Offer

So we have been living in an RV full time for over 8 months now. We have not been blogging on a regular basis so this is the deal we offer. We plan to write quick, yet hopefully exciting, blog articles to keep everyone up to date here on out.

The plan is to sum up all the adventures somehow in this article and as we keep you updated we hope to create blogs about specific adventures we have had these first 8 months. We will see how this goes! :D

The Start of the Journey

I got my first full-time Agile Coach role. Jeremy (my best friend) and I flew to California to drive the RV across the country in a few days. We had to get any RV carpentry done, get out of our rental, and into the RV between Monday and Thursday so we could have three days to drive our new home/RV and family to Minnesota! What a whirlwind. It was like an old fashion barn raising. We had helpers from all over the place doing all kinds of tasks. It would not have happened without everyone. My wife knows how to organize people to accomplish the impossible.

The First Month

Thomas Children Collecting Eggs on Farm

Our oldest children helping gather eggs in April in Minnesota on the CSA Farm we were living at.

The first month reminded me of the first time I moved away from home. I went to college. It was so far away I flew there. It was the first big lifestyle change I have ever had. You don't know anything when you first start. Where is the dorm, laundry, cafeteria, classes, administrative buildings, etc etc. Apparently I enjoyed it.

Moving into the RV was the same in a lot of ways. What is a 50 amp plug? How are we going to manage our laundry? How often can we get groceries before we stuff the RV? How do we use this instant hot water heater (yeah...that took two weeks of cold showers to figure out)? What are we going to do with our hang up clothes? How do you explain your lifestyle to people in a fun, exciting way? We would just keep communicating what we need, prioritize those items, and start working on them. There was not a lot of just hanging out the first few weeks but we adjusted quickly. One thing was surprising, not one person asked to go back to our beautiful red home in Goochland (we miss that home and especially our friends of course). Everyone seemed on board with this new great adventure.

5 Months of Adventures

The new five months was just chuck full of adventures close by and further away that we took our entire HOUSE with us on. Here is a list of adventures we had while in Minnesota:

  • Living on a Woofing CSA Farm

  • Dodge Ball and Broken Pinkie Finger

  • Laundry Mats

  • Playing on the Mississippi River

  • Como Zoo

  • Mall of America

  • Homeschooling Education Symposium, First time Driving RV out for fun

  • Parking near our Church on weekends

  • Afton State Park

  • Mother Day Cruise

  • Litter of Kittens Raised by Hand

  • Water Kefir Explosions

  • Cedar Lake Park Exploring

  • Hannah and kids to Utah without Dad

  • Fishing

  • Bear attacks minivan

  • St Cloud Best Swimming Hole Ever, The Quarries

  • Big Prairie Storms

  • Little House on the Prairie Pageant and Leeches

  • Learning about Prairie Life

  • Old School Merry Go Round and Playground

  • Valley Fair Amusement Park with Grandparents

  • Tire Trouble

  • Nauvoo Festival and Site

  • Kolacky Days Festival Fail, Almost

  • Exploring a Firefighter Station

  • County Fair

  • Largest State Fair ever

  • Experiencing the WORST mosquitos Ever!

  • Fishing with my co-workers (See video I Caught My First Fish)

  • Lake Superior and Boat Tour

  • Weekend trips to friends

  • Fort Snelling

  • Finding out why under ripe figs burn your mouth

  • Looking for the next contract so we can move and continue with our goals

  • And other small adventures along the way

Phew! That is a lot. Wait! That only gets us caught up to when we moved from Minnesota to Phoenix Arizona. That's right. So my first contract caught wind that I was going to start looking for another contract in order to move away from Minnesota's winter and to increase my contract rates so we can ultimately make it on that sail boat. In short they agreed to let me work from their Phoenix office and would give me a rate increase. Wohoo!

Saying goodbye is never easy. The family was feeling anxious to get to another location and even better that we will be near family this time.

Phoenix - 6 Weeks was Not Long Enough

Beautiful sunset at Phoenix Botanical Gardens. Phoenix has its own unique beauty.

So we moved to Phoenix Arizona for warmer winters and proximity to family. My sister and her family live in Gilbert AZ. Hannah's Dad and wife live in Surprise AZ. Both just outside of Phoenix. We found a perfect place to park in Mesa AZ on a great family's property. We were like family the first day we got there. It is amazing how many adventures we went on in such a short time here:

  • Coyotes

  • Goat TV

  • Dinner with Family

  • Scorpion Hunting

  • Phoenix Botanical Gardens

  • Commonwealth School

  • Church Halloween Party

  • Olive Farm

  • Sudden Storms


  • Soccer games with Cousins

  • Chocolate and Chile Festival

  • Ghost Town turned Tourist Trap

  • School Pioneer Production

  • Mining Apache Tears

  • Thanksgiving with three great families

  • Thanksgiving at GrandBerry and Grandma's

  • Job offer we couldnt refuse!

  • More Goodbyes...just too early

Scorpion hunting! All you need is a black light flashlight and heart of courage!

On to Texas

So, I got offered an opportunity I simply could not refuse. I will not bore you with the details of work stuff but I was extremely excited about the work I would be doing and the pay increase associated. That means, on to Texas!

We have been in Texas for a short while as of this post. I love the work I am doing as expected and who doesn't enjoy a healthy pay increase (we are really excited to pay our debts down to free us up for other adventures).

So far Texas geography has been an interesting mix of central Florida and Virginia. Everyone we have met so far has been great and have enjoyed our time here so far. Just the start of another great adventure to be sure!

How long will we be here is another interesting question? What will be our next adventure, both short and long term?

We will be sure to keep you updated. Hopefully you enjoyed this article. Feel free to watch our videos so far, add comments, we love questions and interacting. Until our next adventure!

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