“Our new life…"
Updated: May 12
Albeit, for 1 year…although I hear there is a pool at my work that we don’t make it for the full year. See end of post for poll.
Here are some fun stories so far for you to decide whether we make it or not.
Yesterday, after we woke, Jen mentioned that these cats are being turkeys. Apparently she is referring to the fact that they slept all day yesterday than had a party last night once we tried going to bed. I laughed and Lila asked from her bed “What?” And I told her that Mom is mad at the cats and she responds with “Stop being mad mom, it’s our new life!”
For those of you that don’t know, a travel trailer has a fresh water, grey water, and black water tank. So the fresh water is just that fresh water to use for everything we use in the trailer - drinking water, washing dishes, washing hands, taking showers and flushing the toilet. Grey water tanks collect all water from all sources except the toilet and on our trailer we have 2 grey water tanks - one for the kitchen sink and one for the shower and bathroom sink. Lastly, the black tank collects the toilet water. Yuck!
So at some point you need to empty these tanks when they get full. Fortunately, our first stop of this journey has full hook-ups which means there is a fresh water hose that we can hook up to our trailer to supply water and we don’t need to fill the fresh water tank and there is a sewer connection that we can connect our sewer line to to dump the tanks. Remember, National Lampoons Christmas Vacation - https://youtu.be/BeskbiJjCXI Oh yeah, that is the fun part about trailer life right!
We had just bought the trailer about 2-3 years ago and when you pick it up from the dealership they give you this tour of all the features in what feels like 2 minutes since we are so new to this and have no idea what half of the stuff is. Anyways, the salesperson shows you how the tank valves work and which connection goes to which tank. We had spent some time in the trailer for a night or two (I think it was at my parents house) and later drove it home. Before our next trip, we decided we should go empty the tanks. So as a family, we drove up to the rest area near our house that has a free dump site and I proceeded. Jen and Lila didn’t want anything to do with this but they did stand there and watch.
Did I mention that I was in my regular everyday favorite foot attire - flip flops…
Oh I also forgot to tell you that apparently you are supposed to make sure the tank valves are closed before you take the cap off… Ugh! (Salesperson should have closed it)
Yes, with Jen and Lila standing there watching, I took the cap off and (with the tank valve wide open) my poor feet got an unsanitary bathing…It almost makes me cry just thinking about it. Those flip flops never recovered.
Anyways, back to yesterdays events
All the tanks have sensors in them to tell you how full they are but black tanks are notorious for getting false readings since stuff (aka black stuff) gets stuck on the sensors. So I decided we should empty the tanks out this morning so in my flip flops I proceeded to get everything hooked up. Fortunately, now I ALWAYS check the tank valves ALL the time to make sure they are closed. I hooked everything up and emptied both the black and grey bathroom tanks BUT the sensor was still showing 3/4 full for the black tank. On almost all newer trailers they have what is called a black tank Flush system that you can hook up a water hose to and it has a sprayer in the tank to help clean and evacuate the tank. So I thought, heck, we have full hook-ups, lets flush this baby!! With hose hooked up, I turned on FULL water pressure and I could hear the sprayer doing its thing and I was thinking “oh yeah, black tank sensor you are going to be so clean and showing empty!” After about 5 minutes of this, I ask Jen to tell me what the readout says and she says……3/4 FULL!! What the…!?? Of course I want to see for myself so I march into the trailer and sure as Sh*t (pun intended) she was right. I then decide I will take the flashlight to look into the toilet to see if it is full or not (yes, you can see right down into the tank) and…….
OMG!!! Why is there water all over there floor in the bathroom and water seeping out of the wall!!! Holy Cow!!
First thought - Great, what is this going to cost me!!!
Backstory to that statement:
About a year ago, we were on a camping trip to Cape Disappointment (for me, yes) with our friends Sam, Kelli, Steven, and Jason. Everything was going well for the first night, but then the next day I came down with some bad stomach bug. Thankfully, there were multiple bathrooms within a couple hundred feet of us. Not to get into too much details but when Jen asked everyone who wanted to go on a hike everyone but me went and while they went on a 3-4 hour and came back and said we got 12000 steps in, I was able to say HA, I beat you and I only walked to and from the bathrooms the whole time. Not fun!
Anyways, when we were packing up the trailer, I (still not feeling great but better) was on the roof cleaning off the slide-out and Jen was inside with Jason getting ready to push the button to bring it in and Sam was standing on the ground watching the whole thing. So I said “go ahead” and they started moving the slide out in and then it stopped. Normally, I would say stop but I didn’t say anything so I proceeded to say “Go AHEAD!” At which point we hear a crashing sound and a sudden stop followed by me saying “Great, what is that going to cost me?! Sam still talks of this story with great laughter…. Luckily, it was only a cabinet door that got in the way. FYI, the person(s) IN the trailer is supposed to check for that.
Back to the story -
Jen: Where did it (the water on the floor) come from? We have never had that problem before…
Steve silently thinking to himself: Oh yeah, right, we have never had THAT problem before BUT we have had sewage spilt on me, grey tank valve break, cabinet door break in slide-out debacle, entire roof seam on front end of trailer fail not once, not twice, but three times and the whole front end had to be replaced (fortunately, under warranty), and the front jack broke…..BUT YES we have NEVER had that problem happen before!
Steve speaks: I don’t know where it came from but I assume it had to do with the black tank flush since that is what I was doing for the last 5 minutes.
After some investigation and clean up, apparently I (yes, I) should have had the pressure regulator on the hose before I hooked it up to the Black tank Flush. Also, there were some hose connections that were slightly loose. Good News - from what I can tell there is no damage and I think all the water got picked up or dried out in the midday heat.
THIS MORNING (Friday)
Lila was not having a good morning, She apparently had the same problem I had the other night with an open window and not enough blankets so she ended up in our bed and boy, was she grumpy.
To add to her grumpiness, I got up to go use the bathroom and saw that a cat (I think Trouble) threw up in 2 spots in the trailer between my bed and the bathroom. Eww! So I got back into bed and told Lila to go clean up her cat’s throw up. Let’s just say that didn’t go well.
Side note: We have told Lila that she is going to have new chores now that she is almost 10 and we are living in the trailer (down by a creek) We haven’t laid out what those will be until…
Dad: Lila, one of your responsibilities from now on will be to take care of all cat-related issues since they are your cats and you wanted them.
Lila: But, but, but Mom is supposed to help me…that was what was said before
Dad and Mom: Correct, that was before you were almost 10 and living in a trailer (down by a creek)
Lila: but, but, but….
Dad: Get out of our bed and go clean up the cat puke so I can go to the bathroom.
Lila: (Temper-tantrum) but I don’t want to get out of this warm bed! (Screaming)
Dad proceeds to pull blankets off child :)
Mom gives Dad the look!
but…. Lila, begrudgingly, picks up cat puke shortly there after (Success!)
On a good final note, we went for a short mountain bike ride the last 2 days and Lila got a lot better at it and enjoyed it the second day.
Welcome to our new life!
Click on the "Take the poll" link at the top of the blog to vote on how long you think we will make it. Have confidence in us!