Here’s another set of answers to “20 Questions for RV Families”. Shelley answered a couple of weeks ago, so presumably she and her family are on the road now! To have your family featured, please read the questions and e-mail your answers (along with a family photo) to info at wright on time books dot com.


Wright on Time Books: Tell me a bit about your family.

Shelley: We are a family of 4 with 3 dogs. Married in 2001 & first son born in 01, son #2 born in ’03. Husband is active duty USMC and I’m a stay at home mom. Well, I sub a bit here and there at the boys’ school, but I still consider myself a stay at home mom. We have 3 dogs, 2 large and 1 tiny. We’re active in church & sports & always seem busy.

Wright on Time Books: How long has your family (or did your family) live in an RV?

Shelley: We begin moving in Wednesday!!! We are moving from Florida to California in December. We bought a house here in Florida & have a contract to close November 12th, thankfully!! And decided an rv would be nice for traveling back and forth from California to Texas where our family members live & it would be more enjoyable to visit with our own space, let’s be real, 3 dogs aren’t welcome pretty much anywhere ๐Ÿ˜‰ We plan to live in the rv until we pay off the loan on that and the truck….I hope we will enjoy it so much we just continue!!

Wright on Time Books: What states/countries has your family traveled to?

Shelley: Well, not in rv travels yet, but we’re from Texas. We were stationed in North Carolina for 3 yrs. Danny was temporarily assigned to Maryland & we visited DC then. We spent 3 year in Okinawa & are finishing up a 3year tour in Florida. We have family in Oklahoma & we have spent a lot of time on road trips & I can tell you I am very much looking forward to a more relaxed rv traveling style versus hurry up in the car & trying to locate pet friendly hotels…NOT EASY!!

Wright on Time Books: Are you homeschoolers? Do you call yourselves roadschoolers? What type of homeschoolers are you (or do you prefer to not give your family a label)?

Shelley: We are not homeschoolers. Our kids are enrolled in public school and will remain in public school unless anything drastic changes in the public school system. Although we did homeschool our oldest his first half of Kindergarten (does that even while we were in Japan until we got back stateside because I did not like the school.

Wright on Time Books: How well does homeschooling work while living on the road? How do you get new resources (DVDs, books, audio books, etc.)? Are you able to use local libraries, or do you have to buy everything?

Shelley: Not applicable to us

Wright on Time Books: Do you have a โ€œhome baseโ€? This is especially important for legal homeschooling, isnโ€™t it? Did you sell all of your possessions, or keep things in storage?

Shelley: Not really applicable to us…I don’t think.. We will have a home base in California, my husband is still active duty military ๐Ÿ™‚

Wright on Time Books: What resources did you use both before you began your adventure and/or while you were on the road? Any particular books or websites that you couldnโ€™t have lived without?

Shelley: Atlas, maps & reviewing, reading reviews for great travel books with guides to camps & family friendly trips.

Wright on Time Books: How hard is it to deal with the maintenance of the RV? What are the most difficult aspects? Who handles what?

Shelley: ???We’ll soon find out!!! I hear it’s a great deal easier than a regular house, I guess just KNOWING what needs to happen is the main thing. We have a warranty on our rv for now but after that we will be researching any problems and become our own handyman at all times possible.

Wright on Time Books: How large is your RV? What is it like? We want to know where everything goes and where everyone sleeps. In an ideal world, would you have wanted a bigger RV, smaller RV, or something the same size but with a different configuration?

Shelley: We have a 35’8″ ’09 Dutchmen Denali 330xrv-5m. It has a master room with a full closet & dresser & a loft with a queen bed for the boys which includes 2 sets of cabinets and a trunk. Our rv is a toyhauler so it has a whole open back room which we use for many things but mostly “had to have it” because of our dogs. We have 3 slide outs & several outside storage bins & cabinets inside. In some ways I think , man it’d be nice to have a 40+footer, I could really put some stuff in that! And then I think, man if we had a super small rv we could really enjoy some awesome & exclusive campspots. In the end, our rv size was determined based on what our truck could tow, we got as big as it could tow & we could not be happier with the configuration, it will be an adjustment no matter what.

Wright on Time Books: How often do you move to a new location? Do gas prices and campground costs affect this? Where do you usually stay the night? Do you have a regular route that you repeat, or do you continually seek out new places to visit?

Shelley: Our plan is to fulltime in an rv park close to Danny’s duty station & on long weekends & vacations travel to different spots, mainly on the west coast but also to include at least a once yearly route back to Texas for family & hopefully for the family reunions.

Wright on Time Books: Who does the driving? Do you ever have issues driving such a large vehicle? Do you avoid cities or curvy/narrow roads up mountains, or do you take them in stride?

Shelley: Danny says it’s all on him. We’ll see how long that will last. It’s not the driving that worries me, it’s the getting on the road and the exiting. ๐Ÿ˜‰ We will avoid steep mountains due to our size, I’m just not sure we could make that. But other than something dangerous we’ll just hit whatever road we need to to get to our desired spot!

Wright on Time Books: How long have you been on the road/plan to be on the road? Has this worked out to your liking?

Shelley: We started planning this move this past summer. We officially begin our move in Wednesday but will not be fully moved in until the end of the month. We plan to continue full time rv life until we have paid off our truck and rv but I hope we enjoy the lifestyle and continue past that point…maybe indefinitely!

Wright on Time Books: How do you handle privacy issues while living in close quarters?

Shelley: Privacy…ha! I haven’t had privacy since I married & definitely no privacy with kids ๐Ÿ™‚ But as for marital privacy…the “master” bedroom has a sliding door that will be used & we’ll adjust accordingly, haha

Wright on Time Books: How do you keep in touch with friends and family? Do you visit them? Do they visit you? Phone, e-mail, etc.? What about holidays and birthdays?

Shelley: cell phones, email, personal sites (blogging, facebook, myspace), trips back home. We’ll send cards & small gifts through the mail.

Wright on Time Books: Does anyone ever get homesick for your old life? How do you deal with that?

Shelley: We’ve been travelers from the beginning of our marriage, even though not rv lifestlye. Sometimes I think about what it would be like to have roots somewhere & live in a community that everyone knows each other. But maybe that is part of what draws me to the rv lifestyle. Friendly people & a sense of community in the rv parks everywhere.

Wright on Time Books: How do you pay for your living expenses? How do you make money while on the road? Do you work full-time/part-time? Do you work certain times of the year and travel other times? Have any of your children had paying jobs?

Shelley: My husband is still active duty military, and when he retires he will receive retirement pay. I sub for fun. We’re not a full time traveling family, just a full time rv family ๐Ÿ˜‰

Wright on Time Books: Do you have a towed vehicle? Bicycles? Mopeds? Etc.?

Shelley: No, we tow the trailer with our ’08 Dodge Ram 2500 Diesel. We carry bicycles with us though.

Wright on Time Books: Do you have any pets that travel with your family? How do they like living on the road?

Shelley: We have 3 dogs and while they don’t care for road trips they enjoy nature walks and new places

Wright on Time Books: Where is the best place youโ€™ve been according to each member of your family?

Shelley: We really enjoyed our 3years in Okinawa Japan

Wright on Time Books: How can we find out more about you and your family? Website, blog, Facebook page, Twitter, etc.? Please tell us also what the next great adventure for your family is!

Shelley: Well, I have a blog that I keep up sometimes ๐Ÿ˜‰ and I do facebook & such. &

Thanks for asking it was fun filling out the questions!!

Related posts:

  1. RV Family — The Showalter Family from FL, USA
  2. RV Family — The North Family (currently in SD)
  3. RV Family — The Baehr Family
  4. RV Family — The Watkins Family from TX, USA
  5. 20 Questions for RV Families