Looking for a simpler life, but not too simple…


I’ll tell you a little bit about my self. My name is Justin. I am 28 years of age, born in LaCrosse WI, and raised in Las Vegas NV. Husband to a wonderful, quirky, beautiful wife, Tara (aka TheOrganicSister) and father to a brilliant, self-educated, sensitive son named Zeb.

I love all things that go vroom, homebrewing, simple living, gardening, sustainable living, being with my family.

And long walks in the park. 😉

I’m blogging to keep a journal of our journey that we’re about to take.

Our family’s plan is to travel around the U.S. full-time, hopefully finding work on the road and eventually a new home and homestead. We have friends in NM with an organic farm that we hope to intern on, two of my old bosses have a business in Louisiana that I hope to work for, an uncle in Wisconsin that may have work and friends and family around the country that we plan to visit.

In September, we purchased an old beat-up 1982 Winnebago Brave, 22ft with a Chevy 6.2L diesel engine. [Insert manly grunt here.] Every since we purchased it, I’ve been working on it everyday after work, including painting the interior, building cabinets, installing wood flooring and shower and wall panelling, new power steering and fuel pumps, new tires, changing brake fluid, resealing the roof, resealing the windows, new black water tank (man, how fun that was), new countertops and tabletop, a new gas cap where a sock previously was, new shocks, numerous engines leaks, and new batteries.

Benny the Brave needs stencilling
Look, there’s the sock!

I’ve really enjoyed every minute of it. It’s become my second love.

Still on the To Do list for the RV: Install solar panels (ordered last week), straight veggie oil conversion (that hopefully I can partake in the installation of), and a few details Tara has to finish up inside. I also need to find a trailer for tools and my motorcycle (because I can’t go anywhere without my motorcycle), because the RV will not tow my truck.

Since I got laid off two weeks ago, I’m rushing to get everything done in hopes to get out of Vegas as soon as possible.

Tara has a Flickr set of more photos here. She won’t update it until all her work is done. 😛


22 responses

  1. Woot! First comment!

    I’m quirky eh? lol

    December 24, 2009 at 12:22 am

  2. Welcome to the ‘ol blogosphere Justin. Glad you joined us. Stoked to hear your side of the story, so to speak. hahahaha. And very interested in watching the conversation take place from a construction side. Would love to do something similar. Excited for y’all and already offered a place here in middle Georgia for a coupla days for y’all when you hit the road!

    Looking forward to the reads.

    December 24, 2009 at 12:25 am

  3. Welcome to blogging! Have fun traveling with the family! The RV looks great!


    December 24, 2009 at 12:29 am

  4. All I can say is AWESOME! I’m excited to follow along during the conversion. Pictures, pictures, pictures! We had talked about converting a school bus someday, we’ll see how it goes for you. 🙂 I second the manly grunt for the 6.2L Diesel and if you convert to veggie, you’ll be unstoppable. Best of luck!

    December 23, 2009 at 9:06 am

  5. Justin,

    Found your post from my wife, fotosbymeg, who follows your wife’s blog. Great job! Greater undertaking! I am looking forward to reading of your adventure. Stop by if you’re in the neighborhood.

    Steve in Central CA

    December 23, 2009 at 9:21 am

  6. Hi Justin! I’m glad you’re blogging. I’m excited to see your take on things.

    December 23, 2009 at 9:25 am

  7. victoria

    love tara’s blog and read it all the time! i am excited for u and your blog…can’t wait to be one of your fans too 🙂

    December 23, 2009 at 9:28 am

  8. Deb

    Welcome to blogosphere Justin! It’s awesome to get to know you 🙂

    December 23, 2009 at 9:31 am

  9. Good for you guys! (And, good for you for starting the blog). Good name, by the way.
    My name is Kristin. I am Tara’s friend from our middle school years. Its been about that long since I’ve visited Vegas. We have kept in touch over the years. Thank you for the Christmas letter and photo you guys sent. It’s great!
    We hope to be on your lists of friend and family around the country you will visit. 😉

    December 23, 2009 at 10:09 am

  10. This is so awesome!!! What a great way to see the country, meet new people, and re-prioritize. I am both jealous and excited for you and your fam. I would totally do it if I didn’t have 4 cats and a rabbit. Somehow, I don’t think that would go down so well. 🙂 I can’t wait to read about your journey!

    December 23, 2009 at 10:17 am

  11. Amber

    Your wonderful, quirky, beautiful wife directed me to your site. Looking forward to reading from your prospective. Enjoy.

    December 23, 2009 at 10:20 am

  12. Can’t wait to follow along on your adventure! Hope you guys will stop by when you get to the Pacific Northwest!

    December 23, 2009 at 10:22 am

  13. i love that it’s called BRAVE. perfect! i’m looking forward to reading about your adventures.

    December 23, 2009 at 1:38 pm

  14. The RV is looking great! I bet you can’t wait to get on the open road. I’m from Louisiana and can tell ya the place is cool!!!! Good luck with the blog. 😀

    December 23, 2009 at 1:50 pm

  15. miranda

    Woo hoo! Welcome, Justin! Can’t wait for you guys to park at our place for your whirlwind tour of Ithaca.

    December 23, 2009 at 2:52 pm

  16. Carol

    Congrats Justin. Just love Tara’s blog and I can tell yours is going to be fun to follow too.

    December 23, 2009 at 8:34 pm

  17. Arp

    Welcome! Looking forward to hearing more about your adventures.

    So were you already well-versed in automobiles? I’m theoretically interested in knowing how cars work (and thus how to fix them) but I’d prolly rather spend the time learning how to brew beer.

    December 24, 2009 at 6:58 am

  18. Mon

    Hey, showing you some blogy love as per Tara’s request. 🙂

    Love this whole venture. There will be ups, there will be downs, but it’ll all be an adventure that will add to who you are.

    I’m a nomad myself and totally get this.

    Wishing you tons of travellin’ goddnes.

    December 25, 2009 at 12:31 pm

  19. Mon

    erm, goodness even….

    December 25, 2009 at 12:32 pm

  20. Hi!
    I “know” Tara and came over to visit.

    I really like the title you came up with, and I am totally impressed with all the work you’re doing on the RV! I can’t wait to hear tales from the road!

    December 25, 2009 at 6:18 pm

  21. Looking forward to following your adventures! Welcome to blogging!

    December 28, 2009 at 6:00 am

  22. Scott

    Hey there, I’m soon to be off on the same adventure. I’m buying an old Winnebago in a couple of months in California. I would like to find a diesel so I can run grease but they seem pretty rare.

    I’m planning on starting with a 79 Chieftan or so. Something with low miles. Hope your project is going well. smithoman in chandler arizona

    January 9, 2010 at 4:52 pm

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