A Map and a List

All roads lead through Kansas City. Or at least that’s how it’s looking on my travel map for the rest of the year. My travel map. I’m actually going to be starting to travel, wow.

Bluffton, SC to Madison, SD – through Kansas City. Madison, SD to Coffeyville, KS – through Kansas City. Coffeyville, KS to Wisconsin Rapids, WI (where my parents live) – through Kansas City. Wisconsin Rapids, WI to Quartzsite, AZ (maybe, this one is still up in the air and probably won’t happen till the beginning of January) – through Kansas City. If you enter the addresses into Google maps it looks like a misshapen star, uneven points jutting out from the boarder of Kansas and Missouri.

One of yesterday’s tasks was creating this map, so that I can see exactly how much driving is in my future. It’s a lot. Really, I’m going to be, for the most part, a slow traveler. I’d prefer to go just a couple hundred miles in a day and then stop for a while to soak up the sights as I meander on down the road. This keeps you from burning out, and saves money on gas.

But I thought getting to SD to establish residency before I started working in Kansas was probably a good idea, so that SC doesn’t try to claim taxes from the money I’ll be making there. I mean I’ll be having to pay KS tax money on those earnings anyway, having to pay two states would be rubbish.

Whether this method will actually keep SC off my back once January rolls around remains to be seen. I am seriously contemplating hiring a tax preparing person (what do you call those?) come the beginning of next year for the first time ever because I’m not too sure how all that stuff works for full-timers, and unlike with a lot of the other RVing prep work that I have been doing, failing to do taxes right could actually have some pretty serious consequences.

Now on to the actual topic of today’s missive, which is another list! Woo! Lists, exciting! Okay fine, not really exciting, but still very helpful when you’re planning to do something big and complicated and amazing. As soon as I heard back from Amazon I started working on a list of things I needed to do to get from living stationary in my RV to traveling full-time in it. This would be what I came up with:

  • Finish minor RV repairs (riveting, gray tank vent pipe, make sure hitch works properly)
  • Decide on a mail forwarding/residency solution
  • Figure out routes and rest stops along the way
  • Research health insurance through ehealthinsurance.com
  • Research full-timers policies for truck and RV
  • Make an estimated cost sheet for all of these things

Those were the big ones. If this list looks short to you that’s because it kind of is. Since I’m living in the RV already I got a lot of necessary stuff done before I moved into it, consider this phase 2. The list for Phase 1 can be found back here.

I also picked which campground in Kansas I was going to be staying in right away since earlier reservation means a better spot. Also once Julie and Fish move out and shortly before I leave I’m going to do a full clean of the Casita, vacuum and scrub everything down before I go.

* * *

Oh, for anyone who is interested, my race went well! The temp was a relatively cool (for SC in July) 80 degrees, and I finished the 3.1 miles with a time of 37 minutes and 41 seconds. Like I said, I’m a jogger, not a runner.

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  1. Misty on July 9, 2012 at 9:21 am

    Hee, yay! 😀 Closer and closer!

    Definitely take it slow, especially if you’re better than me at finding places to shower. I was in a hurry to get north because the heat was tormenting my poor cat, but now I kind of wish I’d stopped a little more! The best pace was definitely about 200 miles a day, which was the pace I took on weekdays when I had to work in the morning. 🙂

    I also recommend stopping at the “welcome” stations when you go into a new state. There will be lots of information on state parks, museums, and other things to see and do. Also, make sure you have a road atlas! You can get them at WalMart, and they will save your butt. Sure, you can always stop somewhere with internet, but it’s so nice to be able to just pull to the side of the road and check the map really quick. And then if you decide to get off the highway to see something and you’re out in the middle of nowhere, you will still be able to figure out where you are. 🙂

    By the way, even my hippie bad-planner fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants self will be hiring a tax prep person at the beginning of the year. With my weird work and living situation, it’s just not worth it to risk making a mistake! I’ve known too many people even in normal situations who have been absolutely ruined by not paying their taxes correctly. :/
    Misty recently posted..Pictures, finally!My Profile

    • Becky on July 9, 2012 at 2:38 pm

      Hee, looking forward to it. Road atlases are definitely a good thing, my Dad swore by his.

      Still so much to do!

      • LenSatic on July 10, 2012 at 6:31 pm

        For boondocking, check out the DeLorme Atlas & Gasetteers. Not only do they show you the regular highways for point-to-point navigation but, also, topographic maps that show State, BLM, and Forest Service lands, GPS grids, small back roads and trails, and public and private campgrounds. When living little, it best to have items that serve more than one purpose.

        That said, I admire your abilty to plan ahead. Once we find a nice spot to boondock on, that’s when I pull out the A & Gs to see how the hell we go there. 😉

        • Becky on July 10, 2012 at 10:36 pm

          Hehe, thanks for the tips Len. I’ll take a peek at that atlas. 🙂

  2. Kristin on July 8, 2012 at 5:56 pm

    I’m really excited for you! Glad you’re taking us “with” you!!

    • Becky on July 8, 2012 at 8:10 pm

      Thanks Kristin! I may not be traveling with someone, but in a way you’re all coming with. Less lonely this way. 🙂

  3. Laura on July 8, 2012 at 2:14 am

    Search the IRS website and also all the relevant State’s Department of Revenue websites regarding “Part year return” tax return. For example, when I moved from Colorado to Nevada last year I filed a part-year with the state of Colorado, and no return in Nevada since there is no personal income tax in Nevada.

    I’ll never forget 1992, when I worked in five different states… that was a paperwork nightmare, and no such thing as electronic tax filing at the time! Had to file five part-year returns 🙂

    I’ll be hitting the road fulltime in about 2 weeks myself, and plan on keeping my Nevada residency for the rest of the year at least – just easier for me to keep it as is for now, although more expensive than SD (insurance, registration, etc). Eventually when I meander my way up SD way, I’ll establish residency there.

    • Becky on July 8, 2012 at 8:10 pm

      Yeah that’s what I did when I moved from Wisconsin to South Carolina, just want to avoid having to fill out the paperwork if possible, haha.

      I can’t imagine having to do it for 5 different states, yikes. Watch though, it’ll happen at some point while I’m on the road now…

      • Laura on July 8, 2012 at 8:55 pm

        Spreadsheets are your friend – in particular, Google Docs cause you can access it anywhere and never lose docs to hard drive crashes, and OpenOffice cause it’s free 😉

        Keep track of EVERYTHING. Mileage, gas, every expenses of all types. In particular, keep track of dates 🙂 Trust me on that one! There are circumstances where you may be able to write some of your expenses off on your taxes. Besides, money management is *THE ABSOLUTE KEY* to success in the vagabond lifestyle.

        For example, a lot of my travel expenses in the late 1980s-early 1990s I was able to claim as business expenses because I was writing and selling magazine articles (ghost-written, dang!).

        In the late 1990s-early 2000’s I was able to claim most of my travel expenses as I was traveling the country as a public speaker for a variety of financial aid and scholarship organizations. The tricky part there was keeping track of expenses that were reimbursed by the various organizations vs the ones that weren’t reimbursed (it got messy!) but it was also easier as I was traveling from a home base in Colorado. Much easier to differentiate pleasure travel from business travel 🙂

        As to whether travel to a particular job site, such as your upcoming job at Amazon, is deductible or not is something you will have to research. “Moving Expenses” deductions are rather tricky – definitely look into it though.
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  4. Becky on July 7, 2012 at 10:57 am

    But then I’d be driving from WI to SD in January when parks aren’t going to be open and snow will be on the ground (not to mention it’ll be freezing cold). Plus it creates more work in the long run when I have to switch my mail forwarding (which I’ll still need), and insurance plans up there later.

    I’ve given the whole thing a lot of thought and making two trips makes more sense right now.

  5. Kim on July 7, 2012 at 10:53 am

    LOL- it’s true what you say about Kansas City. Or Kansas in general if one lives in the South and wants to go west or northwest.

    Many people find the prairie boring to travel through but I think it has a stark beauty.

    I like your travel M.O. Makes a lot of sense to take your time.
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    • Becky on July 7, 2012 at 11:22 pm

      Hiya Kim. I’ve spent very little time in the central states and have lived in forested areas all my life. It’ll be a nice change of scenery for me.

  6. jim on July 7, 2012 at 7:54 am

    Most states have reciprocity with one another re: income taxes. If you pay in one you get credit for it in another. Don’t make a needless trip for nothing. It appears your 2 trips north from KC could be combined into one to eliminate resource waste.

  7. LilNomad on July 7, 2012 at 4:28 am

    Make sure youve got your AAA, Good Sam Club or whatever emergency roadside service you plan on using.

    • Becky on July 7, 2012 at 10:45 am

      Ayup. Guess on the list I had that rolled in in RV insurance but it is definitely an important part.

  8. Marvin on July 6, 2012 at 10:23 pm


    200 miles per day would be max – slow and easy with lots of breaks to check everything out , then find a comfy spot to relax , boonedock , and save a few dollars . Should be a great adventure .


    • Becky on July 7, 2012 at 10:45 am

      Yeah this fall isn’t going to be like that, I definitely like that travel model though. 😛

  9. Tina on July 6, 2012 at 9:31 pm

    Nice map! That is a lot of traveling but if you don’t have to be rushed should be lots of cool things to see.

    I plan on selecting SD as well so looking forward to what you find out, especially with health care.

    Great job on your race ; )

    • Becky on July 7, 2012 at 10:43 am

      Not sure yet how rushed it will be. I need to be in Coffeyville by Sept. 28, how long I’ll give myself to get to SD before that remains to be seen. When I go to WI I’ll be traveling straight through to get home in time for Christmas.

      Health care costs look like they’ll be about the same as they are here in Bluffton, at least for a high deductable plan. More on that to come.

  10. Teri H on July 6, 2012 at 2:59 pm

    I’m getting excited for you! We are headed towards Sioux Falls, SD (our residency is in Madison, SD). Have fun with the planning!
    Teri H recently posted..Ogling at Ogallala, NE for a week!My Profile

    • Becky on July 7, 2012 at 10:40 am

      You must be using My Dakota Address as well then. 🙂 That’s the one I plan on using, seems to be the right mix of features and cost for me. Have fun in Sioux Falls!