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The Big Push

November 21, 2011

Wow.  What a weekend!

Saturday… the heavy lifting

Our son-in-law Scott drove up from Houston on Friday evening.  We started work Saturday morning by loading the new reclining loveseat into Scott’s pickup truck and driving to the RV storage lot.  We decided to go ahead and gain some space by removing the single chair next to the door.  It came out easily.  There are four bolts that protrude through the floor, and since they’re hidden under the floor by compartments, we’ll probably end up cutting them off when we have the new flooring installed.  For now, they’re covered to prevent a tripping hazard.  Removing the existing sofa-bed turned out to be a fairly easy job as well.  It was held down by a single bolt.  We opened it up flat and it went out the motorhome door pretty easily.

With the backs removed, the new loveseat went through the door easily.  Once it was inside, the backs slipped down and locked into place, a very simple process.  We centered the loveseat in front of the living room window, sat down and reclined to get the distance from the wall.  It really looks good.

The folks at the Goodwill store in McKinney took the old RV chair and sofa without batting an eye.

There is room between the loveseat and the back of the driver’s chair for a small table or cabinet.  That was where Hemi’s crate was, but for now, that’s a good spot for a large tub that holds small, unframed artwork.  That tub should fit under the bed as soon as we find a small table to put in that space.   On the other end, next to the kitchen cabinet, there’s space for a very, very thin table of some sort, enough to hold a cup of coffee or cold drink.  We’ve put Hemi’s crate behind the co-pilot seat for now, but unless we can secure it somehow when the motorhome is under way, it may have to be relocated.

Back at the house, we loaded some large well used, heavy pieces of furniture into the pickup, and Nell headed back to Goodwill with that.  Scott and I took the cargo trailer back to the RV, and transferred all of the show booth equipment into the basement compartments of the motorhome.  It will need to be reorganized to make it more efficient, but we did get everything stored, and it does all fit.

All of this was finished by noon, so we stopped for lunch at the local Sonic drive-in, then returned to the house. After the trailer was parked back in the garage, we loaded the box spring and old mattress from the guest room into the back of the pickup, and Nell made another trip to Goodwill while Scott and I brought things downstairs that he was taking back to Houston.  By the time we got all that downstairs, Nell returned with the truck.

Scott had come from Houston with the full intention of working all day Saturday, staying overnight, and driving back to Houston on Sunday.  We were actually done with all the heavy stuff early enough to get him loaded and back on the road by 2pm Saturday.  By 8pm that evening, he was back home with his family, truck unloaded, and, I suspect, thinking about going fishing on Sunday.

Before we made all the moves with the sofa and loveseat, Scott checked to see if the dinette table was a drop-down style.  That would have given us a little more maneuvering room.  It isn’t, but in working with the table, Scott discovered something we didn’t know.  The top slides toward the kitchen, exposing a leaf that can be lifted out and positioned against the wall, extending the table perhaps another foot.  Now we know why there were two more dinette chairs stored under the bed!  We could entertain guests and still be comfortable.  The photo above doesn’t show the table extended, but you can at least see a different view of the layout.  It’s already obvious that Hemi has selected his spot.  After all, it face the door, and it’s the only place where he can see outside.

Nell and I filled the back of the Trailblazer with tubs and boxes and returned to the RV.  We transferred everything into the living area of the motorhome, and with Hemi sitting on the loveseat in the middle of everything, we started unpacking and finding places for things.  We also completely filled a large tub with things to be trashed.  This exercise confirmed what we both knew:  I have kept waaaay to much art stuff.

We locked up the RV and headed for home around 5pm, totally exhausted, but satisfied that we had just had an extremely productive day.  Nell fixed a quick dinner while I walked Hemi, and we sat down to eat.  After sitting for a while, we both discovered we were so tired and stiff from lifting, carrying, stooping, etc. that we could barely move.  We both fell asleep early in front of the TV.

Back at it Sunday… Early!

And we both woke up around 3am on Sunday morning, each with a ton of things going through our minds that needed to be done.  We made coffee and by 4:30 am, we were tackling our closets.  This time, at least the second or third pass for both of us, we were brutal.  In addition to a box of household items, we filled six 30-gallon trash bags with clothes, all bound for Goodwill tomorrow.

We took three more full boxes to Half-Price Books, and made stops at Target and Walmart for plastic containers with tightly fitting snap-on lids.  That’s for things like cereal, chips, snacks, etc.  Then we had a late breakfast at Waffle House, and headed home to crash for a couple of hours.

Early in the afternoon, we made two runs to the RV with clothes and several more boxes of miscellaneous stuff.  We left the boxes sitting with walkway space between them, and got all the hanging clothes hung in the closet.  Note:  I said we got all the hanging clothes hung in the closet.  Considering that much of it consists of work clothes for Nell, since she hasn’t retired yet, reducing our clothes that much is a major accomplishment.

In the midst of all this, starting Sunday morning, Nell cooked an entire Thanksgiving dinner.  We will be settling into the motorhome on Thanksgiving Day, and that’s a holiday Nell doesn’t give up easily.  So while she was still in a kitchen she knew, and knew where everything was, she cooked Thanksgiving dinner.  Just for the two of us.  There was a turkey with dressing, mashed potatoes and gravy, sweet potatoes, cheese and broccoli casserole, and cranberry sauce.  The whole thing.  And I stuffed myself.


Nell has gone to an early doctor appointment, then will stop by Goodwill (again) with all those bags of clothes, along with the two director’s chairs we’ve used the last four years at festivals and shows.  That’s a story for another blog, but for now I’ll just say that it didn’t make a lot of sense logistically for us to haul two sets of chairs around.  We’ll go buy two real good outdoor camping chairs in the next few weeks.

While Nell’s gone, I’ll bring the remaining few items downstairs in order to completely empty the rooms upstairs.  The forecast for today (Monday) calls for scattered occasional rain.  We’ll take more things over to the RV, and then we plan to unpack the rest of the boxes, and do some organizing – and reorganizing, I’m sure.

We are scheduled to move the motorhome on Tuesday.  This will be an odd week for us as we spend time in the house getting the last odds and ends out, cleaning, waiting for the final pickup of the last items of furniture, and settling into the motorhome.

We close on the house on Monday, one week away.  Then, for the next 2, 3, or 4 months, until Nell decides it’s time to retire and hit the road, we’ll live in the motorhome.  That will be good preparation for going on the road fulltime.

We should learn a lot.

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