Finances of Living in a Fifth Wheel Toyhauler
Full Time RVing – RVing at 3 NPS Parks
Fun and Fabulous Times
October – Family and Friends Visit
So the plan has changed a little bit more! Volunteering in the winter (happened!) during January, February, and a little of March; working in Canyonlands National Park (sort of!) during a little bit of March, almost all of April; working in Grand Canyon National Park (unexpected!) during last bit of April, May, June, July, August and September.
After that, we were working for Grand Canyon Associaion for the month of October (Sasha has been working for them this summer, but I will be working for them too.)
October 2011 – Where are we – Still at the Grand Canyon but we took some time off to visit with Family.
Expenses: For the Month of October: Grand Canyon and Sedona!
Expenses for October 2011
- Food, Food and Household: $23.64
- , Out to Eat: $93.79
- Transportation, Diesel: $400.75
- , Motorcycle, Gas: $17.99
- Household, Propane: $0
- , Laundry: $6.75
- , Electricity: $74.10
- Camper, Registration: $248.00
- Communication, Cell Phone: $0
- , Internet: $154.62
- , Postage: $10.95
- Recreation, Books: $22.00
- , Fun Stuff: $1.50
- , Gifts: $35.52
Total Expenses = $1,089.62
Happy But Sad Too
Wow, one of the lowest months this year. I was just going back over the expenses of the year, and this month was the lowest we have had so far. Kind of sad too. There is no way that we can be below $1K with living in a national park and buying groceries in a resort town.
So Let’s go over the numbers:
We Are Not A Red Meat Family
Food: Well, we spent a ton of money last month on food. This month we still had lots of food stored up, and when we were traveling with my parents, they paid for groceries for the week, and still had lots of food left over. So we got that.
We did not go into town except for when we were with my parents, so when we were coming back from Sedona, we picked up some fruit and veggies. Those are the hardest things to keep for longer periods of time. I suppose there is a way to do it, but I so like a crunchy apple. And for the fall, that is the first really sign of fall. I guess we will just have to go back east or head further west to eat some good apples.
We also did a bunch less eating out. First off, when we went out to eat with our parents, we split the meal in half, so the price was less. Then we did not eat out as much, and when we did, we went to either a McDonalds or Burger King and only got things on their dollar menu. Since I can not eat their hamburgers anymore (because of all the bread), I get a side salad and fries. Not a great meal, but it fills you up enough.
We went out to dinner once at Maswik Lodge, they had good food, including a meatloaf dinner that was really quite reasonable. We both got it, with some veggies and a potato. They also had wifi there, so we had a nice evening.
Then when Karyn and Leo were here, they treated us to a great dinner at El Tovar and a fun dinner at the Arizona Room. Both dinners were extra special because of them.
Changing the Name of a Category
Household: The electricity is high this month because of the fact that it is getting COLD! We are not liking this weather, and can not wait to get into warmer climes of Lake Mead National Recreation Area near Las Vegas. This will be our third winter there, but this is the first time that we will be getting there so early. So the electricity was high. We also used some propane to keep us warm! When we get into November, we will have to fill up, I am sure.
We are also paying for laundry, another thing that will decrease when we are in Lake Mead.
Registering Our Home
5th Wheel: The Registration for the 5th Wheel is for two years. So you could really half it and then cut it into one twelfth, but really, why? The expense is $248 and we won’t have to see that expense now for another two years. As far as I can tell, the registration is pretty cheap. $10.33 a month.
Stingy Advertising Means More Money
Transportation: This was the month we bought diesel. We are averaging a month and a half to two months before filling up again. As long as we can take the motorcycles out, less is used with the truck. But we can’t always do that.
When we were coming back from Sedona, we filled up the diesel again. This time, we learned our lesson, and did not go to Sam’s for diesel, instead paying a couple of cents more per gallon and going to Safeway. There we could fill up without having to have separate slips and separate transactions.
While I am all for saving money, saving time and having less hassle is also important. Our time is important. Sometimes we lose sight of that in saving money. And the Safeway is near the highway on the way home as opposed to the Sam’s being in town and it also has a convoluted way of getting into the gas station. Only one tank for the diesel and both the way in and out is extremely narrow, making the turn much harder with a large truck. The Safeway looks like trucks come in all the time, and there is tons of space. So it makes sense to go there.
Oh, and Sasha got gas a couple of times with the motorcycle. With him filling up at the Desert View gas station, it leaves more in our tank for the generator and my scooter. We will just have enough to make it to the end of the month and once we have hooked up and gone down to the lower climes, we will fill the gas tank up again.
Happiness in Sending Packages
Communication: We wanted to make sure the gifts we sent out for Brenden’s birthday as well as other gifts, were sent out in time. After we saw the condor with Karyn and Leo, we got them a book about condors and sent it out with information about the condor we saw together. It was pretty impressive.
And the internet, sigh, well, it was high because we keep going over the monthly amount. We plan on changing the plan and the company in December when our two year contract is over with Verizon. How I dislike a contract, well, the next company we go with will not get a contract.
Green Laser Pointer Creates WOW Factor
Recreation: We had a bit of fun here, getting some great maps and postcards when we went to some unusual places. Sasha loves maps and loves studying them, to figure out where to go next, so why not?
We also got some gifts, not just for Brenden, but also for our families and friends. We decided to help support the park by buying stuff through their stores, rather than through Amazon or someplace different. I just wish sometimes that they would publish and make a book in the US rather than in China. I have been seeing books being written in US, but the book itself was made in China! Sigh. If you can find books you love to have, make sure they come from here. At least we can hope they come from here.
Present Day Laura: 2011 was the best year for us as far as seeing friends/family and making new friends. It might mean spending a little more money on something but ultimately you find your happiness.
Anyway, I am happy that we went real low this month, because I am pretty sure next month will be high. We are moving to Las Vegas for the winter, we will be checking out some new and old places that we used to eat, and we have to pay for health insurance again that month. So it will be high. How High, check out the November Expenses.