Life is happening 12/13/21

Jeff is now doing some welding for an artist making a table, repairing a trailer, fabricating a box or whatever else metal-related needing to be done as well as working with Hot Air Expeditions as a member of the Hot Air Balloon Chase Team. We have been very busy recently as Jeff has started working for two places but we still don’t have the Jeep out here. We had paid for a transport company to pick the Jeep up in Delaware, where Jeff’s parents are holding it for us, and have it delivered here in Phoenix, but the carrier has canceled twice now. Needing someone reliable, we canceled with them and booked with a different company. Hopefully they will be more reliable!

For now, we wake up in the mornings, pull the bus out of our parking space, and drive to whichever location Jeff is working at for the day. Then Bray and I go about our daily tasks while Jeff works. (Sometimes it means finishing our rest as Jeff has to be at the balloon place by 6!)

Braydon has been enjoying putting together wooden vehicle kits from my parents.
He used some of his birthday dollars to buy some paint!
Our “kitchen table” gets daily use in many different ways!

Braydon and I have been pretty regular with his school work. It doesn’t matter what day it is, if Jeff is working, we have time to do school. This workbook he has been doing has a STEAM section that he particularly enjoys.

Braydon was experimenting with “string vibrations” and we tried to make a guitar with a tissue box. I don’t think they make them as sturdy as they used to!

If Jeff is working with Josh, the artist, we can charge our battery bank quickly as the sun shines really well on the parking lot there. If we can park where all four panels get sun, we have been able to pull in over 200 watts. Most of the time we have to just park wherever we fit, but we are thankful for good solar spots when we can get them. We haven’t plugged in to the electrical box at our parking spot yet. We honestly don’t want to pay for it… but if we have too many more cloudy days, we might have to. We have been using more power at night than we can harvest during these cloudy days. There’s a lady here on Craigslist that has a slightly smaller battery bank than ours and a huge solar panel. We are hoping to buy it from her and add it to our current setup to hopefully be able to keep up better.

Scarlett has been enjoying finding all sorts of funny places to nap in. She especially likes days at Josh’s because she can soak up the sun coming in the window all morning!

Jeff had his first few shifts at Hot Air Expeditions this weekend! The first couple flights were canceled because of wind or technical issues, but he has three flights under his belt now and everyone said he was doing great! He also has been having a lot of fun with it. Over the weekend he did a morning and an evening shift both days. That means we have to be there by 6 am and, while he has the afternoon off, his night flight doesn’t get back until 7 pm. The place is down a nice, quiet street with a goat farm, some public desert land, a horseback riding place, and many different cactus all around. We enjoy our days there, but the sun is at a really inconvenient angle for harvesting solar power.

The weather has been very chilly in the morning, t-shirt weather in the afternoon, and then cold again at night! We find ourselves layering, unlayering, and relayering throughout the day as appropriate. As soon as the sun sets, the air turns very cold as there isn’t much humidity, cloud cover, or landscape to hold in the heat. It’s a very interesting phenomenon!

Braydon is ready for bed, but very tired on our drive back to our parking space for the night when Jeff works a second balloon shift. He gets his glow stick after he’s dressed for bed, puts on his headphones (the engine is really loud and he doesn’t like it, so he keeps his noise-blocking headphones he has for shooting nearby for when it’s too much noise) and curls up. It’s only about 30 minutes to our parking spot, but sometimes he falls asleep and then we just carry him back to his bed when we park.

Braydon fell asleep on the way back to our space after Jeff got off work.

We are really looking forward to having the Jeep out here so we don’t have to park the bus every night. We have to back it in between the neighbor’s fence and a cement pad without hitting the fence of the people on the other side of the driveway from us. It’s difficult enough to do during the day but when it’s dark out, it’s even worse. It has been really great just taking our home with us wherever we go, though. It’s nice to put our groceries away as soon as we take them out of the cart and it’s nice to be able to make food whenever and wherever we are hungry. It’s also been nice not having to “go home” to do other home responsibilities – you can wash dishes while you’re fueling up the tank! The cats have enjoyed having us around all day too… even if they do run and hide whenever we drive!

Sue is just as adorable as ever and is warming up to #buslife. Though, she still runs under the bed to hide every time she hears the keys!

Tuesday morning I have an interview with a cleaning company I’m very interested in. More details will follow if the interview goes well. I’ve been applying to so many different companies and this is the first one that has asked for an interview, so I’m excited! We will have to see if/how it works with our schedule, but I’m hopeful it will!

3 thoughts on “Life is happening 12/13/21

  1. love’n the update! congrats on the jobs Jeff! sounds interesting, definitely not
    good to hear Bray is doing his school work, it’ sounds exciting!
    hope the interview goes well!
    it’s a shame about the Jeep! good help is hard to find! 😠ugh..
    that would be so much easier! I can’t imagine moving the bus so much!
    hopefully it arrives this week!
    glad you’re enjoying the solar panels!
    have fun and stay safe! 💕🤗


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