Planning and Plotting

It’s out! The word, that is, about my departure from the Arts Alliance. I am also deeper in the planning stages of our tour. After some dramatic back and forth with Judy, I have learned that the Carpenters booking hasn’t gone as planned. So we have two gigs in September, hopefully followed by a performance at Contact East, a booking showcase in New Brunswick. After that, we leave New Hampshire. Whoo-hoo!

Our itinerary is purposefully loose right now. My brother lives in Kalamazoo, MI, so if it isn’t too cold yet, we hope to drive through upstate New York (or maybe Canada) and visit him. After that, we will head toward Iowa to visit our friends. Depending on the weather and our mood, we will stay for a few weeks or even a month. After that, we continue south. We will stay in Arizona for December, primarily the Phoenix and Tucson areas if everything aligns, and then I’m thinking the San Diego area for January, which is typically the coldest month. Plus my sister lives there! After that our options open up as it warms, so our exact path can be adjusted based on booking and our interests. We also may need to visit Florida to become residents there at some point….time will tell. We’d like to make our way towards CO, OR and WA in the spring or summer as we think there are a lot of towns with potential there.

This adventure requires a lot of faith…particularly in my own abilities to pull this off. It’s a good thing I have never lacked for self-confidence….

In the coming weeks, we need to start pitching ourselves to local campgrounds…discounted site for program add at Jean’s and maybe a bit of work is the hope. Keep us in your thoughts, and thanks for reading!

The Big Reveal and the Beanie Baby Purge

Well, it’s done. I gave my notice at my full-time job. While I am not yet ready to announce my RV plans to the world yet – we need to wait until the summer so I can keep my church job – I am delighted to announce that after May 29, I set arts administration aside, at least for now, and can focus on other things.

Am I excited? Ridiculously so! I wouldn’t say a giant weight has been lifted yet – much of the weight was definitely caused by financial stress – but for whatever it’s worth, I am not as tired or quite as stressed. So yay for that.

I am also happy to report that last night, as I ran a purchase by my mom (fleece t-shirt quilt to use all my old tees) and talked about how much progress I am making with purging old clothes and my grandmother’s beanie babies, she sees genuinely happy for me. She encouraged me, congratulated me on my progress and asked thoughtful RV questions. I am so glad I got the telling her part out of the way to give her room to do her mom thing. She’s a good mom, even if she doesn’t always understand my way of thinking, and she’s usually right about things. 🙂

Handling Ross’ finances is proving to be exciting, in that we can try new things to pay down debt, but also disappointing in that there isn’t nearly as much room to trim our budgets as I’d like. So I need to get back to work for Judy and hustle some more lessons ASAP. My first north country voice student (minus a few vocal coaching sessions) is tomorrow, so I am looking forward to that.

It’s also hard to make frugal food purchases when you are trying to lose weight (both of us) and hoping your diet can help fix your body (me). I have been doing a great job so far – trying to keep my food budget to $30-40 per week – but Ross is buying a lot of his own food too…and it is just a lot of work to choose which fruits and veggies you can afford if you need a lot of dairy products, for instance. I know we will keep refining it though…lots of things will get easier when we are on the same schedule too.

The next step for Ross is promoting his solo album. Meanwhile, I need to not only make more money, but start getting on top of RV planning. Hoping we can set up an RV appointment this week for the spring.

That’s all I have for now. Thanks for reading!