Archive for the “Our Story” Category

how we got here by selling our graphics business, and where we’re going on to the next big thing

The rambling life takes some funny turns when you least expect it to, but less than two weeks after teaching dog lovers how to “Be More Dog” in the face of canine cancer, we’re now trying to take our own medicine.

Last week started out like any other in our full-time RVing lifestyle. We were wrapping up visits with family in Atlanta, Georgia, while preparing for a meandering trip out west for winter. But life had other plans

Thursday night, November 16 we noticed a golf ball-sized lump on Tripawds Spokesdog Wyatt Ray’s rear end. The lump seemingly appeared from nowhere, and it wasn’t bothering him at all. We pondered all of the potential things it could be; fatty tumor, impacted anal sac, ingrown hair follicle, while beating ourselves up for not seeing it sooner.

By the next morning, it was clear that Wyatt needed to see a vet; the lump doubled in size. On Friday morning, November 17, we found an excellent AAHA-accredited veterinary clinic near our RV park, Cumming Veterinary Clinic and were lucky enough to get an appointment at 8:30 am.

Full-Timers TIP: When you’re on the road with your pet and need a vet, always use an AAHA-accredited veterinary clinic; these practices continuously meet rigorous standards for hospital protocols, technology, cleanliness, etc. 

Preparing for the Worst, Hoping for the Best

The word “cancer” never even crossed our minds as we drove to the clinic, but after some poking and prodding by the excellent Dr. Heather Harkins-Barroso, a fine needle aspirate brought our deepest fears to light;

“Abnormal cells detected.”

As just 3.5 years old, it seems impossible that our Wyatt could be in for the fight of his life.

We’re holding out hope that the tumor is non-cancerous, but preparing for the worst; perianal carcinoma, which isn’t one of the easier dog cancers to face for both dog and human.

He’s young for this type of cancer, but as we’ve learned at Tripawds, cancer doesn’t always play by the rules, and even dogs as young as 18 months have been diagnosed with cruel cancers that typically only hit older dogs, like osteosarcoma.

The good news is, thanks to our nomadic lifestyle, we made an immediate beeline from Atlanta to Texas, where Wyatt can be seen by specialists at one of the best veterinary teaching hospitals in the nation, Texas A&M. Thankfully, the Aggies are within reasonable driving distance of Escapees headquarters in Livingston, so we’re back at our Rainbow Drive address for the foreseeable future, until we know what we’re dealing with.

With Experience Comes Strength

It’s eerie that almost six years to the exact day that our beloved Jerry G. Dawg was diagnosed with osteosarcoma, we might be facing canine cancer again. We  are trying our hardest to stay strong until his A&M hospital visit next Monday.

It’s easy to stay strong when we look into Wyatt’s intense German Shepherd eyes. That’s when we stop the pity party and remember that Wyatt is still Wyatt; he’s living life as best as he knows how; barking at strangers, calling out to dogs and taking account of anything that moves within his domain.

We are doing our best to stop humanizing him; Wyatt didn’t read his vet’s report, he doesn’t know what we know, he doesn’t care that a golf ball-sized lump on his body is getting worse by the day. He’s living life to the fullest, and doing what we need to do whether facing cancer or just living life. Wyatt is Being More Dog.

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September 1. We made it! Back in mid-June if you had asked me whether i thought we would survive our workamping summer, I would’ve told you I wasn’t sure.

Full-time workamping while running a small business on the road isn’t for wimps.

The last three months have been a non-stop, seven-day-a-week grind of keeping our balls in the air.

From the 40-hour a week ranch work to the additional 20 hours we’ve spent making sure our own business endeavors are humming along, we’ve hardly had time for anything else.

Well, except for the awesome Asleep at the Wheel concert that the Vickers generously treated us to with dinner, VIP seating and everything!

Learning to manage both gigs has been a huge physical and mental challenge.

But now that things are quieting down, I’m proud to know that we were were able to do it, without killing each other or pissing anyone off.

Oh, except maybe for the guest whose personal jeep I accidentally incorporated into the ranch’s rental fleet.

Sure, I might be two months behind on our business bookeeping, my writing projects have taken a back seat and my butt is a mile wide because I haven’t done a single running workout since Memorial Day, but that’s OK.

We made some money, we learned how to better handle stress and we’ll be on the road before the last leaves fall off the aspens!

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Just about six years ago, Rene and I had this big dream of selling our home and traveling the country in an RV with Jerry. We researched, saved, struggled and worked hard to make that dream come true. It wasn’t easy, but now we look back at the five years since we hit the road and couldn’t be happier that we did it!

If only we knew about the Dream: Reboot program back then, it may have been quicker and much easier to start living our dream life.

Dream: Reboot: 12 Weeks to Making a New Reality
is a 3-month boot camp in the art of dreaming big dreams
and the science of making them come true.

Nancy Sathre-Vogel knows a thing or two about following your dreams. She surmounted some serious obstacles to fulfill her own and has now bicycled 27,000 miles through fifteen countries with her family over the past four years. Her story has always been an inspiration for us to keep doing what we love. We were thrilled to learn more about Nancy’s dream and how she fulfilled it when we recently watched the new documentary I’m Fine, Thanks.

When we discovered Nancy now facilitates an intensive workshop to help dreamers make their dreams come true, we were more than happy to share the news with our readers. She sent us the following announcement and encouraged us to have anyone interested visit for complete details.

Do you have a dream?

Dream Reboot Lifestyle Design WorkshopIs there something stirring in the bottom of your soul calling you to a bigger life, a better life, an epic life, the life you know you were meant to live?

Perhaps it’s always been there, but you’ve been afraid to feed it. You’ve been told not to feed it.

Society has convinced you that big dreams and a life in technicolor is not for you.

And so you’ve settled for grey. You’ve settled for normal. You’ve settled for good enough.

But in your soul, you know that good enough is not “good enough.” Not for you. In the quiet place of your heart, you’re a Dreamer of Big Dreams.

What if we told you, “We know. We see it in you. And you can have your dream.”

What if we told you you can have that dream?

What if we told you that we care so much for YOUR dream and want so much for YOU to live your Epic Life that we’ll help you?

We’ll walk along side. We’ll be your cheerleaders. We’ll equip and empower you. We’ll encourage the hell out of you.

And if you need it, we’ll even give you a kick in the ass that launches you full throttle into your dream life. Sign up for the Dream: Reboot today!

Free boondocking in WyomingStop dreaming and start living the life you want!

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What a way to kick off the week. Today on, we are profiled in the Business section’s feature article titled “Office on wheels: RV-based workers telecommute from anywhere.”

MSNBC Business Location Independent Entrepreneur RVing News Story

NBC News journalist Vignesh Ramachandran contacted us recently, after he met two campground hosts while vacationing and became curious about how such full-time RVers make a living on the road. Our website caught his eye so he interviewed us and a week later, his NBC News story spotlights three different ways people earn income anywhere.

From a description of our location independent entrepreneur lifestyle, to a former full-time RVing work-at-home family itching to get back on the road, the story illustrates various ways that you can make money while traveling.

Yes you can work from anywhere!
Get free e-book chapter and download coupon here.

A big shout out to reporter Ramachandran for showing the world that it is possible to fulfill your dreams while you can still enjoy them!

To learn more about making money while RVing, download our ebook, “Income Anywhere!”

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We meet a lot of folks here at the ranch. They’re all on vacation, like our friends Lisa and Sean who visited us for July 4th festivities.

Lisa and Sean are former fulltimers who followed their hearts and left a place they hated living. They hit the road and for 18 months investigated towns where they might want to raise their kids, Ian and Caitlin.

Today, they are happily living in Fort Collins, secure in knowing that they made their relocation decision based on their heart’s desires, not because of money, or a job, or any other reason.

Like Lisa and Sean, Jim and I are also secure knowing that we are in our own happy place.

Right now, it’s being here at the ranch, working six days a week for good pay and awesome bonuses like free rent, and of course, fun co-workers.

Some days kick our asses more than others, but in September we’ll go to a new happy place, when we hit the road for more adventure.

Find the Fun, Crankypants

Each day while we’re here, we have the opportunity to interact with guests.

Oftentimes, they’ll ask Jim and I about our lifestyle, like the conservative, 50-something year-old vacationer who asked Jim what we were doing here.

Jim said that we enjoy coming back to the ranch each summer; not necessarily for the big bucks (hah!), but because it’s fun.

The vacationer looked at Jim and grumbled, “I wish I was at a point in my life where I could just go do something for fun.”

Jim wanted to say “So what’s stopping you?” but the expressionless appearance on the crankster’s face showed he had no desire to carry on the conversation. Maybe some day he’ll figure out that “fun” isn’t something you wait for. You have to go balls-out if you really want it.

Uncertainty is Half the Run 

Our days here are long, and we’re working six days a week which leaves little time for our regular business activities.

In fact, last time we worked here for an entire season, our online pursuits like Tripawds and Team Agreda were still in the infancy stages, and we had a lot more time to take in the beauty of the surrounding San Juan Mountains while spending our last few precious months with our Jerry.

Things are so different now. We really had no idea how many hours we devote to our own businesses, until we began punching a clock.

With just two hours or so left at the end of each long workday to check email, handle orders, manage our communities and write, our business “To-Dos” are being put on the back burner until our job here is done in September.

For a few weeks, losing my regular routine made me crazy. I felt terribly unorganized and was beating myself up for not staying caught up with my normal obligations.

One good mental melt-down was all I needed to remind myself that this spectacular place is where we were meant to be right now. Change is good, the unexpected is to be welcomed.

I also reminded myself that in no time at all, we’ll leave this routine behind, and get back on the road to our next great uncertain adventure.


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