It's about time.

Many of you can relate to Working long hours at your career. Raising your families. Buying a home and paying all the bills related to being homeowners and parents. We're now retired and don't need all that work and expense. Now "It's about time" and what we do to follow our dreams.

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Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Why I Do What I Do, Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup, Wires All Tidied Up and Solar Panel Pads Sealed On The Roof.

Our Location today is Quartzsite, Arizona, U.S.A. 

We were up shortly before 8:00 this morning so that gave me time to do my morning reading. When I read a Comment from Flowergirl I didn’t even think about it and started writing a response. After a short while I realized it wouldn’t be seen by anyone because it was a NOREPLYCOMMENT. Thinking others might want to understand why I do things myself I saved it for tonight’s blog post. I’m sure my sister Anna who reads our blog will remember what I am writing here. 

As a young child my parents would buy me Building Blocks or a Mechano Set for a Birthday or Christmas Gift so when I played I was always building things. Years later as I watched my father try to build things I would make suggestions that would frustrate him but it did work better than his idea. 

With my father having grown up on a Farm he had me helping to repair the family car in the driveway when it was snowing before I was in grade school.  When I was thirteen I purchased my own welding equipment that helped make things easier building things for my father. 

In High School, I majored in Architectural Drafting but not having a Drafting Table because it wouldn’t fit in my bedroom and having to use the Family Dinner Table as a desk for larger sized drawings added frustration to family meals. By my graduating year I had changed my mind as to what I wanted to do as an occupation for the rest of my life because I have always been a hands-on person. After Graduation I got jobs for different companies where I would build things for other people in Fabrication Shops. I even went to Night School at the local College to better my welding skills but only as a hobby. 

As those smaller companies were going out of business I ended up taking a job with Ford Motor Company starting on the line. The intention was to work for them for five years, save a few dollars then go back to the outside world and get a trade. Someone who knew my abilities advised me to apply for an Apprenticeship so I did. I would later retire from Ford’s having served Thirty-Six years as a Journeyman Welder in the Casting Division. You name it, I can weld it with the proper equipment and Filler Wires 

I have worked at great Heights on Smoke Stacks, Cranes, inside machines that I wiggled my way into and when I signaled the job was finished, would be pulled back out by a rope tied to my feet. 

Treating others the way I wished to be treated earned me a lot of respect so if I asked simple questions about things I wanted to learn more about the Other Tradesman were more than willing to teach me. Not only would they answer my question but give me a lesson and all the theory behind it. Days later as a joke they would test me to see if I remembered and I'd shock them by answering it correctly. 

When our economy was booming I never even considered retiring. When the company announce the closure of our plant I could have bumped a Junior Employee with a Young Family to the street but instead I chose to retire. That choice gave me the freedom to move on to another stage in my life. 
Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup and a Chicken Salad Sandwich.
Kathy tries not to let any food spoil.
More Soup for tomorrow.
Rving has given us the freedom to see what nature has given for our enjoyment something I never took the time to do while I was still working. Unfortunately, not all RVs are made the way we would like so that’s where these Projects or Transformations take place. 

When I work on our projects I've mostly pre-engineered them by a simple sketch on a piece of paper. There may be some fine tuning that has to be done but nothing very drastic. During my career, I learned to work with the best equipment as well as working with the minimal amount of tools. With the lack of a Workshop it adds time to any job but that time also allows for me to know that the job is being done right. 
The first picture with all the panels raised.
When I work on these projects I have Kathy’s blessings because she knows it will be to our benefit. On our Avalanche Fifth Wheel we had made Sixty-Two Modifications that made it a more User Friendly Unit. As mentioned before I try not to break the bank, so that is another reason that our projects may take longer than paying someone else to do a lesser job for more money. We’ve also had other things done for us in the past by others and had to redo it ourselves to make it last. 
The Solar Panel Cables fastened down and
ninety percent covered with Wire Loom.
While Kathy made Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup this morning I headed back to the roof to fasten down the Solar Panel Cables. I didn’t like the looks of the Cables lose all over even though they were being held by Wire Clamps. I used the last of the Wire Loom Material I had in the truck to tidy things up by the time Kathy called me for lunch. She had been running the Fantastic Fan to take the heat out of the trailer but it was blowing that Aroma directly in my face. She didn’t have to call twice for lunch. 
Solar Panel Cables secure and neat.
After lunch Kathy stayed behind working on her Bookkeeping while I went to Herb’s Hardware Store to get more Wire Loom. They only have four different sizes, all in Five Foot Lengths that cost more than the Twenty-Five Foot Lengths. When I get back in Windsor, I’ll make certain I have more in stock before we head south next year.  
Dicor Sealed Solar Panel Pads.

With the Thermometer reading 81 F (27 C) inside the trailer later, I understood why I felt I was being cooked on the roof. All the Cables are now neatly Bundled and all the Solar Panel Pads have been sealed from the weather with Dicor Self Leveling Sealer. 
Steak and Acorn Squash with tomatoes.
I grilled some small Steaks for supper on the Weber while Kathy cooked up a nice Acorn Squash for a side. We have no Idea what we’ll be doing tomorrow, either Working, Wandering or Visiting. Thanks for following along and feel free to leave a comment. Be Safe and Enjoy!

It’s about time.

The World's Great Proverbs 

What you lose on the swings you gain on the roundabouts.


  1. Thank you for the information. I always marvel at how you seem to do these projects and finish them off so professionally.
    I know from past experience, being able to repair, replace or install things yourself not only gives a feeling of accomplishment, but gives a sense of security the job was done by someone who cares.

  2. Wow, thank you for that. Now I get it. I was thinking you were a little crazy for doing all that work yourself. I hope you realize what a gift you have. I think you do. Carry on.... it's fun to watch. And be careful!

  3. PS My wonderful hubby has trouble changing windshield wipers. Kathy is a lucky woman!

  4. Very interesting career you had! I figured your background had given you the skills to change and fix things the way you do, and you obviously enjoy it. The solar panel installation is looking very good!

  5. The last two panel pictures explained it all. Super job, Rick. We readers now can copy the installation and do not have the difficulty part to engineer the installation. Benno had been wondering how you set the angle of the solar panels to the sun and I was going to ask you for a picture. By using widely available angle material the installation is cost efficient and doable with very little tools. Fantastic!

  6. Nice and neat Rick, the fellow that helped me out the other day, used the wire loom also to keep the wires looking neat.

  7. Hubby loves to tinker too and he is quite the welder. The thing he missed the most when we started fulltiming in 2010 was his workshop. Thing he is looking forward to the most when we close on our new house in January is the workshop. So good you can do those modifications yourself. Saved money and made you happy to boot.

  8. Great story. Paul is a jack-of-all trades also. What a gift you two have.