Monthly Archives: March 2016

Rattlesnake Saloon 

If your are ever close to the Tuscumbia/ Muscle Shoals/Florence, Alabama area, you MUST visit Rattlesnake Saloon! They have seasonal hours so make sure to check their website for hours of operation.

VIEW THEIR WEBSITE HERE!!

Last weekend there were over 400 horses here at Seven Springs Lodge. The American Trail Ride Association brought a huge group to town. In May, you can check out the 2016 Chuck Wagon Races. Take a look at their event calendar.

 
Have you ever been to a restaurant/bar under a giant rock? Yep, it was a first for us, too. But, yeehaw! It sure was fun!! We give it 5 stars and a MUST SEE!

CLICK HERE FOR VIDEO TOUR

We had a fun group tonight. My mom and dad, our daughter, and the owners of our current rental, and their son all went to dinner with us.

Here’s a fun family photo:  

Kelsey captured these beautiful pictures before sunset.  

  
What a beautiful night!

-Jodi

Categories: alabama | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Do you have to do yard work?

Time for another answer to a reader question.  Do we have to do yard work, etc?

The short answer is Nooooooooooo!  Since every house we stay in is meant to be a short term stay, the home owner has the responsibility for exterior home maintenance.

We do clean up after our dogs and pick up trash that may blow into the yard.  Anything further than that falls to the owner to do or hire to be done.  Honestly, I wouldn’t mind doing some outside work at some of the houses, but we’re can’t travel with lawn equipment and such items are not usually available at the houses.

Most of the home owners have hired a lawn maintenance company to do the work.  The rest do it themselves.  If there’s a fairly simple outside repair that can be done without spending money, we’ll do it ourselves if there is no monetary cost.

There you go.  Another question answered.

Brodie

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We answer some questions

  
Yesterday, Brodie asked if anyone had questions about the way we live. We have already received some great feedback. I would like to answer one from Jane. Here’s the question:

I have found your blog really useful as my husband and I have been considering doing the same thing in Canada, with the occasional dip into US. Most of my iterest is in how you decide where to locate yourself and where and how you select properties etc. Are there things you miss not having a stable home. We love the idea of doing all this but it is quite a scary thing to embark on as once we do it there is no going back. I doubt we could get back into home ownership market, or at least not to the level we have at the moment. But the thought of travelling and being free of all the things ownership entails is very tempting. Thanks.

How do we decide on locations?

We travel within my sales territory. Some of our location choices are based on work events in that month. Some are chosen due to projects that I have in the area. And sometimes, we are just interested in seeing a new area of the country. Of course, sometimes we choose a place because there is little available in other areas due to seasonal demand and prices.

As far as finding homes that are available, I rely mostly on VRBO.com. I have used FlipKey and airBnB a couple of times but not often. I look for single family homes that are dog friendly and have a King size bed. Those are the top 3 qualifiers that we have. The rest are just preferences. I ALWAYS speak to the owner by phone. There is no replacement for an actual conversation with another human. You DO NOT want to feel like you’re not welcome in the home you’re in which you’re staying!!!

Are there things we miss about not having a stable home?

This one is hard. I would first say that homeownership is no longer very stable. The investment of a home just isn’t a sure thing anymore. But, I would assume that you’re asking about lifestyle more than financial security.

I would say that the things I miss are kind of silly. I miss the couches that we chose and were comfortable to us. We never know how comfy a couch or bed will be in each house. But, we just don’t really care, now, because we know we’ll only be there for a month.

We do miss friends but we still see them. When we see them now, the time spent together is more valuable and cherished. Plus, they come to visit us in some pretty amazing places.

“If we do this, there’s no going back.” (This is my favorite part of this question)

This is a lie! Or as I like to say, “This is the devil.” You can always go back. What you are living now is the norm. You may feel like you could not recreate it but deep down, I know that you know that’s not true. Sure, it may be a different home with different furnishings but, you can always go back to homeownership. Plus, with all of the money you save living like a nomad, you could probably buy your next home with cash.

I promise you, the unforeseen challenges that you fear the most will turn out to be non-issues. I can say this because we had the same thoughts and fears. We just had to remind ourselves that we can change our mind and buy a home again at anytime.

Thanks for your questions, Jane! Feel free to reach out to us anytime.

-Jodi

Categories: Vacation Rental | Tags: , , , , | 5 Comments

Is this cheaper than owning a home?

We asked for reader questions on our traveling way of life and I’m excited to say that we got some.  We’re going to take each question as an individual blog post.

The first question was “is this cheaper than owning a home?

The simple answer is absolutely yes!  We owned a home in the East Cobb area of Marietta, Georgia.  Our monthly expenses included the house payment, normal utility bills, insurance, maintenance, repairs, taxes, hoa dues, etc.  The costs involved in owning a house can add up quickly and it can be difficult to account for every cost at times.

We no longer own a home and we don’t rent long term.  When we rent, the utilities and maintenance are part of what we pay.  There are no hidden or surprise expenses and we pay considerably less than we did before we sold our house.

If you own a house with no mortgage payment, then our way may not be cheaper.  In this case it would depend on the cost of utilities, maintenance, property taxes and hoa dues(if applicable).

I’ll answer the next question in the next post.  Have a question of your own?  Comment and let us know.

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Where we’ve been and where we’re going:

 
So, it’s been awhile since I’ve updated our travel map. I had to switch to dots because the stars were too big.

The red dots show where we’ve been and the green show future confirmed locations through August 2016.

Fripp Island, SC

Acworth, GA

Perdito Key, FL

Perdito, FL

Gulfport, MS

The Villages, FL

Gulf Shores, AL

The Villages, FL

Hot Springs Village, AR

Harker Heights, TX

Port Charlotte, FL

Port Saint Joe, FL

Augusta, GA

Tuscumbia, AL

Future Cities:

Acworth, GA

Ocean Springs, MS

Waco, TX

The Villages, FL

Whew! That list is getting long!

-Jodi

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What would you like to know?

We’ve been talking lately about our blog and the fact that we need to post more.  Here’s the problem, what do we write about?

We’ve been living in vacation homes and moving once a month for over a year now and the whole process has just become routine to us.  We’re still learning all of the time, but we don’t think about what someone would want to know about our lifestyle.

So, we have a favor to ask.  What would you like to know?  What are you curious about or what doesn’t make sense?  When we started living this way, it was all guess work.  We have made many adjustments along the way to get to where we are now and we really want to share our ideas and discoveries with others.  IMG_0121

 

Categories: Adventure, Moving, Vacation Rental | Tags: , , , | 5 Comments

Finding History

One thing we love about living in different places is discovering America’s history. Walking the dogs helps us get up close to the historic markers and really inspect the buildings and pathways.  

Today’s walk took us past the birthplace of Helen Keller.  Ivy Green is not open for tours on Sundays but we were able to walk around the property.

 
We’ve all read about Ivy Green in History class but it is surprisingly exactly what I had pictured.  

We also stumbled upon the first railroad west of the Alleghenies.

 
So, here we are in little ole Tuscumbia, AL. When we tell people where we’re staying they say “where?”. Yep, we said the same thing before we got here.

Get out there and go to some new cities that you’ve never explored. You might be surprised at what you find.

-Jodi

Categories: Arkansas | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Cane Creek Canyon Preserve

Take a walk with us at Cane Creek Canyon Preserve in Tuscumbia, Alabama.

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Great Hike in Muscle Shoals

The weather has warmed up a little here in Alabama and the sun is out again.  I love to hike and it looks like we’ll have plenty of opportunities here in the Tuscumbia, Alabama area.

  
We took the dogs and drove over to Muscle Shoals this morning to a nature preserve.  It had both improved and natural trails.  We mostly stayed on the improved trails because boogie was with us in his cart.  It can be difficult to go offroading with a beagle in a dog stroller.

I used the Alltrails app to find the hiking areas around us.  We did a 3 mile loop in close to perfect weather.  We’ll hopefully be able to go back and try some of the other trails before the month is over.

Brodie

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All Good in Alabama

Since our last update we are in Tuscumbia, Alabama.  It was a fairly uneventful drive from Augusta, so there really isn’t anything to write about.

We did the usual and got everything moved in within a couple of hours.  We’ve gotten pretty good by now at packing and unpacking.  We’ve also gotten better at prioritizing what to do when.

Anyways, we’re in the new house and we like it.  It’s an older, but comfortable, house the sits on the Tennessee River.  It’s cool to sit on the couch and look up to see a giant barge going by your back yard.

In this particular house we have moved back to a more rural setting.  Jodi and I have talked a lot about the benefits of splitting our time between rural, urban and in between.  We like parts of each, so there has been no perfect place.  Yet.

If you’ve been counting, this is house #17.

Categories: alabama | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

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