Jaclynn Wilkinson


Eighteen Months Nomadic



We’ve officially been nomadic for 18 months and we find ourselves getting cozy in Lake Chelan, Washington for the summer!

With two weddings remaining summer 2022, we’re preparing to leave the state, but not just yet. I feel the need to stay close to my couples around their wedding dates which puts us not traveling too far for the next couple months.

While preparing to write this post, I found THIS one from 6 months ago where I interviewed our family on how nomadic life is going for each of them. I loved it so much, I decided to write this post in a similar fashion! Enjoy!

Best Part of RV Living You Didn’t Expect

The best thing about living in the RV is it cost less than I thought which gives me more free time than I imagined. I thought that, when I did my initial online research, I thought RV spots would be 50-70 a night, and RV spots ended up being $25-$35/night with a lot of availability with Good Sam or Passport America RV clubs. Living in an RV cost a lot less than I thought it would. It also aloud us to get Dinah (our poodle).


We have a home! For the first year of living nomadically, we relied on hotels, resorts, and Airbnb. It was a beautiful SUPER fun and luxurious chapter in comparison. However, nothing compares to waking up somewhere that feels safe and familiar with everything unpacked. We’re home owners with out the weight of a home. The plumbing, electricity, appliances, they’re all simple and straight forward. Anything that can go wrong, is easily accessible and relatively inexpensive to fix. If we ever feel unwelcome, unsafe, or annoyed anywhere, it is easy to pull up the automatic load levelers and find somewhere else! Our average RV park charges $40/night so it’s no loss to find another one on a whim.


Well it can move. It’s a house on wheels. So it can go from place to place without trying to pack up your stuff. So basically we can hear each other from every part of the place. I like that. Becuase basically you can just be anywhere and talk to every one.




Worst Part of RV Living You Didn’t Expect

Laundry. When we were nomadic and in hotels for a year, we did no linen laundry. Towels, bedding…having an RV, the amount of laundry we have to do has significantly increased. Having an RV makes that harder to manage. The constant tinkering. The RV has so many little parts and systems and pumps and regulators and tubes and hoses and wires. There’s always something that needs messed with or its gonna fall apart. Similar to having a house in that way. Sleeping. I do not sleep well in the RV. Nothing in here is big enough for me. I’m like not even that big. I’m just a little bit big. And now everything is two inches too small.


There was a lot I did expect. Small space gets messy quickly, fighting constant water damage in the PNW, possible engine problems with our house on the side of the road, finding places to park, etc… I was right about those and none of them were as bad as I was prepared for. What I DIDN’T expect? Constant risk assessment in moving from one place to another. Every time we relocate there’s a chance our home ends up in a shop for an unknown amount of time. We move pretty freely around towns but moving to a completely new area is always a little nerve wracking. Also, THE RAINN. I am so happy we’re in Lake Chelan and out of the constant down pours. Not only was fighting water damage in a 1997 RV difficult, but the sensory input of water hitting our cozy house-box became overwhelming. It was impossible to ignore. Luckily, we’re out of the worst of that for good now! Balancing the old school RV vibes with a hotel/resort stay once in a while is pretty important to our mental health. Unlimited hot water showers and big comfy beds are definitely something we miss.


Oooh. There’s a couple of those. So one of the bad parts of living in an RV is that stuff can fall down when we’re driving it so we have to clean it when we’re done driving it. It’s annoying.


Well. That it’s just a really small space.


Random Comments on our lifestyle?

It makes dating difficult. I’ve really enjoyed going to every game store I can find. I really like game stores. I really like games. I spent thousands and thousands of hours being educated by other people. And I’m now 34 years old. Effectively retired. Sitting around in an RV park on a Thursday with all the retired people. I can tell you, undoubtedly, I’ve learned more from video games and board games, playing with my friends online and in person than I have being formally educated. I’ve enjoyed being able to spend more time playing games.


The last year we became a lot more social in the PNW. We made stronger friendships and met a lot of cool new people. For YEARS we avoided making friends. But last minute, made all these awesome connections…right before leaving. That has been harder than expected. I’m still so grateful for those experiences. I am hesitant to make new friends knowing we’re entering a chapter this fall of moving around a lot more frequently…but I’m working to rewire that. I have really enjoyed our nomadic flow of staying in each area for a few months at a time. I feel like I really KNOW several towns and cities like home towns and that’s really cool. I am excited for Lake Chelan to be that for us now.


An in the middle thing is that sometimes when I’m using my phone, and I’m sooo focused, I can’t really hear a lot because I’m so focused on my game.


No. Having a dog now is pretty cool. And that dogs are so cute.


What’s after Lake Chelan?

South. South south south. South to Reno. South to Vegas. Then, south of the border. Then, south of another border and south of another border. Just keep going south until there’s no more nothin.


Nevada! Probably Reno. I’m really excited to stay at the GSR again and play a lot of Black Jack. I know my heart will explode to see the Joshua & Palm Trees again. After Reno, Likely, Las Vegas. I think there’s a 60% chance we settle somewhere in Nevada between Reno & Las Vegas long term. We’ll see!


I have no idea. But the only thing that I know is that I’m getting an oculus after Lake Chelan.


No idea.


How much longer do you think we’ll be Nomadic?

I will never not be nomadic again. The cost of being in a fixed location is absurd. The opportunity cost of only being able to be in a certain place is way too high. The cost of that inflexibility. The amount of effort it would take to take a job that’s even an hour away. That’s too far away. It’s suboptimal. Sort of to rephrase the question is like when do I think I will find somewhere that I return to on a very regular basis? Like when do I plan on owning a house or when do we plan on renting a retail store front or when do I plan on doing something that would tie me long term to a place? The answer to that question is when I find a place that’s worth staying in. When I find a place that welcomes me. I’m a particular way and I’ve seen so many cities even really close together within Washington where Everett is a policing disaster and Tacoma is a fucking riot. They’re not that far apart. And You wouldn’t know without being there. And so you know, I plan on being a lot of places for a short period of time and if I ever find somewhere that’s very welcoming, then I will give myself a reason to return. I haven’t really found that yet though.


At least one more year. Possibly Five. I think a lot of it depends on if/when we upgrade the RV and how much we enjoy NV as short term residents!


Ummm Hmm. uuuummmm. Seventy three or ten days. Oh! I mean seventy three or seventy six days.


For one hundred days like how Clynn said. We’re gonna have one hundred best day ever days.


Previous Posts

One Year Nomadic

Favorite Washington Campsite

Pastel Bridal Shower

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