A Day in the Life of a Kingdom Wife
Living in a 29ft camper trailer; not exactly the stuff dreams are made of, but here we are. Finding a groove and learning to live simplistically. Some normal daily tasks used to be taken for granted now take extra steps to accomplish. Adjusting to a much smaller space and discovering how to live without all the creature comforts and access to city life things. After assessing all the challenges I still wouldn’t trade it for anything else!
I recently unpacked a box which contained these wonderful stemless wine glasses I got from Home Goods before we left back home. I washed them up, displayed them on the counter and marveled. They were inexpensive, kind of corny and I hadn’t even been looking for them. In fact, we still have too many drinking glasses and I already have a great set of stemless. These though, were a little gift and pick-me-up from Papa God. I waited to show hubby until the other night, when I had put them on the counter. I said, “With all the ups and downs, detours, speed bumps, and down right trials; I really wouldn’t want to do it with anyone else.” Yeah, yeah! I know! Mushy gushy. Honestly though, I mean that with all my heart.
The glasses are simply a token to remember what they plainly state. Adventure awaits, find joy in the journey, embrace the detours, and always take the scenic route. In other words, life is tough but keep your chin up, work hard, play hard and stay positive! Today, is the exact day that marks 6 months since our lives were flipped upside down, shaken not stirred, and now, just beginning to settle! You probably already have some understanding of the roadblocks we have encountered since March 19th. One of the most challenging was after 30 consecutive days of holding an estate sale; we had to answer one question. “How exactly will we get to North Carolina?”
Embrace The Detours
Our experience living in the camper in the spring; swayed our reaction to the question. We figured a truck didn’t make sense for us after calculating tires and fuel cost. The SUV I wanted wasn’t practical, and obviously Hannah Honda couldn’t contain two cats and all our belongings.
We knew we had to spend a good chunk of money to accomplish our goal so we wanted to be able to do that wisely. Throwing our resources to the corporate wolves of moving truck rentals didn’t seem in line with our values. We decided that since we had already lived in a camper that we wanted to go all the way and buy an RV. That bubble was popped pretty quickly by the practical police and then we realized we needed to seriously pray for a solution.
Nothing really seemed to math out. But, God! We were given a wonderful opportunity to borrow (then later purchase) a truck from a family member. Then, a family friend just happened to have a hauler trailer laying around in his field! The provisions and resources God brings to us never ceases to amaze me! The biggest challenge was seeing this rusted out gem for what she was worth. A mid to late 60’s mobile home trailer with no decking and 2 popped tires. First, let me say that I had zero experience or knowledge regarding towing, hauling, trailers, hitches, drum brakes, and axles. My husband had minimal knowledge of these things and almost no experience hauling.
If you hadn’t yet noticed this is not going to be a typical DIY post. If I were to truly do it right, I would probably end up creating a 500 page manual to even begin to cover all of the details that we would need to discuss for a DIY trailer build. There are YouTube videos for that and forums galore! So, what are we doing in a DIY post?
Quickness VS. Quality
Throughout the trailer build (and the estate sale) we experienced a deep and profound sense of urgency. There were so many factors that amplified the state of urgency which I won’t discuss here however, many people were being affected by our delay in being in Washington as well as our delay not yet being back in North Carolina.
Many times we found ourselves snapping at each other all because of impatience! More often than not it was my lack of patience that created an issue. I just couldn’t understand why we didn’t just throw some wood together and call it done! I learned a valuable lesson that I believe as a culture we sort of missed the mark.
Our fast-paced, instant gratification seeking society has trained us to cut corners and we have nearly ceased our individuality and almost extinguished our free thinking ways because of this pandemic crisis. We have raised our children and trained our brains to simply follow a generic step-by-step; rather than objectively observing the evidence before us, to create not only a thesis but also a solution to any given circumstance in our lives. With Google at our fingertips and Wiki with brilliant elementary style how-to’s, we have forgotten how to think for ourselves!
Engage Your Mind
While I know that so many of you will choose offense to this bold statement, it is not I nor God who has sold you to your debtors and slave owners. You alone, by complacency and silence have chosen to stop thinking and choosing. Much of the world around us has scientifically and psychologically constructed a system to manipulate you into becoming nothing but a consumer of goods. A wanter of things. Trust me, I get the gimmes and the wants, it can be bad sometimes. I have not been exempt from the society I was raised in. I am simply choosing a different path for my journey and desire to inspire. What does this have to do with trailers again?
Quality versus quickness. Quality can be quick. Quickness can produce quality. Just not typically on the first try. Our society urges us to be in a constant hurry. I would challenge you the next time you go to a restaurant, coffee shop, or any so called service related place; deny your “usual” and instead, ask questions!
I guarantee the service quality will quickly turn to something less than subpar, but maybe just maybe; you will learn and grow. Maybe even engage in authentic communication and connectedness with another human being. We are expected to have “usuals” and live a “no questions asked” kind of lifestyle. Do you even like that same sandwich you’ve ordered for the last 10 years?
When we built the trailer we chose to do massive amounts of research. We could have walked into the local trailer sales & service store and said what we have been indoctrinated to do and say. “What do we need to do and buy to make this trailer work for us?” I can tell you right now that the answer we received went something like this: a loud laugh in the face, and the response; “May as well buy a new trailer.” Why? Quickness. Sales & service employees have been taught to preach a ‘buy now, ask questions later’ gimmick to their consumers. Consumers have been taught to choose not to think for themselves and just buy answers instead. I really didn’t get all this at first. I just got impatient and wanted to be on the road.
What I learned instead was the value of taking the time to truly ask questions and investigate the objective evidence and world around me. Yes, we consulted Google, YouTube, forums and a plethora of local and far trailer shops. But more importantly we asked questions. What do we already have? How does it all work? What is extra? What is necessary? What is the science behind drum brakes and axles? How does a hitch really work? What is happening to the towing vehicle and its components when towing a load? How does weight distribution work? Why is it important? Why did the parts stop being made and what were they replaced with? The list goes on and on.
In the end, we had the whole trailer sandblasted. Primed and painted it with spray can paint. Carefully choosing the metal fleck paint so as to make it shine like new! (I had to add a little glamour somewhere!) We completely rebuilt each drum brake hub and components. That is after a scavenger hunt across western WA and reaching out to Idaho to find parts! Laid brand new wiring throughout, using a junction box and keeping the wires cleaned up with heat shrink and coil wrap. Added lights and reflectors. Purchased rough cut milled lumber to construct the decking and built wooden box fenders to complete. We were able to register and title the state deemed homemade trailer and passed with flying colors! What the state patrol inspector said to us pretty much sums it up, “I have seen a lot of crappy homemade trailers in my day, and this ain’t one of ’em!”
Explore. Investigate. Choose.
Here’s the thing, a DIY trailer post is really not all that exciting. If you really want to have it, let me know. The root of today is learn to ask questions again. Stop choosing nothing on your own. Really think about your choices and investigate the information around you. Take nothing for face value. Especially if the message is coming from somewhere with an agenda. Grocery stores, product lines, media, entertainers, anywhere you spend money or anywhere you find advertising. You even need to be asking questions from the blogs you are reading. It is time to awaken and engage with the world around you.
Everyday we are faced with choices. Products, places, work, finances, health, nutrition, entertainment, clothing, online markets vs in store markets, emotions, responses, how we treat one another, all the things. You have choice. Quickness or quality. Consumer or actively engaged member of society. World changer or wanter of things. I want to challenge you today to think about the choices you are making. Are you engaged with your choices? Do you ask questions? Do you consciously choose or are you stuck on auto-pilot? We need to engage with one another and the objective world around us. We need to begin again to think creatively and choose to challenge what we are being sold. What do you think? What will you choose? Live life walking out someone else’s script?
Or will you choose to DIY life?
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