Our New Grand Plan

When we left Boise almost five years ago we assumed we would eventually return.  After all, thirty-three years of our lives were there along with family and friends.   Over time (and winters in Arizona) we gradually thought of landing in Arizona but it wasn’t to be soon.   We loved full timing and had no plans to stop.

Health issues are frequently the cause for full-timers to hang up the keys.   As you know, we’ve had to deal with a fair amount of those in the past six months.  Even though Randy’s surgeon, the ultimate cheerleader, thought we could keep traveling, we just didn’t feel it was prudent,  given the complications we continue to work through.  We didn’t feel good about getting in the truck June 1st and heading out on a seven month road trip, as had been the plan.   Nor did we think living in the trailer through the summer heat could be pleasant – we learned about that last September.

We still plan to wander in our trailer but decided to accelerate the plan for finding a home base in Arizona.  That is our new grand plan.

Over the last months we have been looking and praying about where we should locate. Randy and I have looked at a variety of 55+ communities over the years and knew we were headed to one of those.   Our rental properties in Meridian were prepped and listed for sale.

fullsizeoutput_4ebbOur friends Warren and Connie showed us around their Sun City community north of Tucson along with several others.  We considered their community seriously.

P1020856Our friend Beth went with us to explore another community north of Tucson.   We had a fun afternoon and joked that this kitchen island was really a kitchen continent – especially to three people used to living in an RV.   

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This master bathroom was bigger than Beth’s motor home or our fifth wheel!  And way more than we needed or wanted!

Randy grew up in Tucson and had always wanted to return.  The desert is beautiful around Tucson, even having Saguaro National Park nearby.  Tucson was the leader in the heart-strings, clean air and beauty categories.

Yet, we had enjoyed our times in Mesa so knew we should also consider the Phoenix area.  For two people who used to drive through the area during the college commute from Flagstaff to Tucson, to even be considering Phoenix as a landing spot was a major mind shift!    

Phoenix is the choice we eventually made – for a variety of reasons.  We want to live by a major airport.  Mayo is in Phoenix and will be part of our lives going forward.  Randy’s brother and our sister-in-law are here.  Spring Training is here.

fullsizeoutput_5087In the Phoenix area, we liked Surprise and the community of Sun City Grand.   The amenities in Sun City Grand are beautiful and widely varied (like the 55+ RV Resorts we’ve grown to love).  

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Lake Pleasant is nearby for paddling and White-Tank Regional Park has great hiking (and campsites).  The Seattle Mariner’s Spring Training facility and the very economical Sun City RV storage lot are nearby.   We identified our preferred community.  We just needed to find a house.

While waiting for the sales on our rental properties to finalize, we defined our basic requirements for an eventual home – two bedrooms, a den, two bathrooms, a three car extended garage and a big bathtub (one of the few things I missed from our house). 

Because we want to continue to RV, we needed an extended three car garage for the big truck.  It takes up most of a two car garage on its own and we intend to replace my Audi convertible.   

Given our list, we saw exactly ONE house that met the criteria and we really liked it.  Randy measured the garage to see if the truck would fit.  We made an offer the next day  and it was accepted.

Our realtor called a few days later to ask if we wanted to see the house again and Randy asked if the sellers would let him actually drive the truck in to make sure it fit.  They laughed and agreed.

 

fullsizeoutput_511bWhen we met our friends Kent and Pam in Las Vegas a few weeks ago they brought us a painting and two suitcases they have stored for us.

fullsizeoutput_50c6Darrell and Cindy brought our possessions that had been stored at our daughter’s house when they came down last week.  We hadn’t kept much when we left the big house.

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Darrell and Cindy were with us on our pre-purchase walk through.

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We are homeowners again!  One house in Boise became two houses in Meridian which became one house in Surprise!

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Our friend Joan, with husband Patrick, painted us a lovely watercolor as a housewarming gift – even though she hates that we didn’t find a house in Mesa!

fullsizeoutput_511dWe have owned our new house for three days now.  It has been a whirlwind, partially because we have NO furniture!   We bought a few things from the former owners but are really starting over with most of it.   We’re going back and forth from the house to the trailer and will be for a couple months.

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Randy’s always wanted a front porch – a front courtyard will do!

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And a back patio too.  This is one of the projects – add more shade back here!

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We have an orange tree and a grapefruit tree.  It is a good thing we’ve learned to tolerate grapefruit juice.

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We have a good sized lot with desertscaping.  Lots are differentiated by color of rock.

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The truck still fits!

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The bathtub hasn’t been used in the first three days 😦

 

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The previous owners were great – leaving us tons of documentation.

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We had our first over night guest – Beth of course!

Are we sad that we had to give up full time RVing and have a new plan?  A little, of course.   Given an option, we would never have gone through the last six months and the life changes it necessitated.   But we did and we move forward. 

We are EXCITED about our new home.  We think we will enjoy living at Sun City Grand.    Having a home base will make other kinds of travel easier.   We will continue to travel in the trailer – hopefully later this summer to escape the summer heat – the same way northerners escape the winter cold.

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We still have a map to finish, just not this year!

 

About Serene

Former full time RVers, transitioning to part time RVers. We've still got a map to finish! Home is the Arizona desert but we may not want to be here in the heat of the summer!
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16 Responses to Our New Grand Plan

  1. Ann Shadiow says:

    Fantastic 💗💗

  2. Kim Goehring says:

    Very excited for Randy and you. A new adventure in life. 😊

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

  3. Betty says:

    Congrats on your new home. Happy for y’all!!!!

  4. Mark P McClelland says:

    Congrats on your new home!! I guess we won’t be seeing you in Maine this summer after all?

  5. Teri McClelland says:

    Congratulations on your beautiful home! It looks like you’re going to be surrounded by friends.

  6. Guerin Fischer says:

    good for you two. you deserve it. can I come down and play golf with you?

  7. Dave Duxbury says:

    Alright. Good for you two. Looks like a wonderful place.

  8. Catie says:

    Wow….Congradulations. Sounds and looks like a fabulous place to settle part time in . Enjoy folks. 🤗💕🤗

  9. Cheryl Moe Monson says:

    Congratulations to you both! Lovely place and perfect location:). So happy for you. I’m still on the Prairie much of the time supporting and advocating for Mom and Anders. Brian and I keep flying back and forth once per quarter. We are re-evaluating our Boise home situation and probably about where you and Randy were 6 or 7 years ago. In the mean time, we’re enjoying our 4 grandchildren, a bit of travel and the gift of life. Headed to Chicago to see the Cubs vs the Cards at Wrigley the beginning of May. A first baseball visit for me. Glad all the pieces of your puzzle are coming together:) Prayers have been heard and God has been good to you. Hugs to you both. ❤️ C

  10. Wow! Congratulations! It looks very nice. I’m so sorry Randy’s health has changed your plans but it looks like there is happiness to be found in your new home. Caroline and I made a surprise move to Tucson in January. We’d love to see you sometime.

  11. Amy Urian says:

    Awe Serene, good to hear you and Randy were able to get a new plan together. I have to say the last year has been interesting it seems for everyone. Maggie is in 5th grade this year and we are just tryig to enjoy these last few weeks of elementary school before big changes happen with Middle School and new life chapters.

    The house landscaping looks great, and easy to maintain. No grass to mow, but I wonder, what is the snake population like? That is what I think of when I think of Arizona and Florida and other parts of our beautiful country.

    Congrats on your new adventure. Blessings always,
    The Urian

  12. bdunn3901 says:

    How exciting for y’all. Everything has worked out well and I know you will be happy, happy in your new home. Enjoy 🤗

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