Full-Time RVing: Rental Property Hell!?! And Uh, Think Twice Before Doing THIS With An Ax.

My renters were not going to renew the lease on my place in Florida. And I was relieved. It had been a year and a half. My showplace of a yard HAD to be shit by now. (It was.)

It hadn’t been touched for a year and a half. I knew this would happen.

Here’s a before and after of the front walkway, to give you an example of the severe mess that it was:


Here’s how I left it for the renters back in April of 2015


Left: How it looked in October 2016.

Right: After 2 weeks of work fixing it.😡 Notice how you can’t EVEN see the bird feeder in the ‘before’ photo from overgrown bushes and weeds.

Before deciding to come back, I asked 4 landscape companies for a quote. I only got ONE reply with a quote after they looked at it. They said it would cost just over TWO THOUSAND DOLLARS to clean it up.

Two GRAND? I couldn’t believe it. That’s how I knew for sure the yard was fucked. My only option was to come home and do it myself. *sigh* 😩

But I was in western Colorado.

My rental? …in Florida.

It was the renter’s responsibility to keep the yard manicured. In true renter form, they didn’t do jack shit. Just mowed.

I had to drive 1500 miles from Durango, Co to Santa Rosa Beach, WITHOUT my RV, to get this done.


The house was a mess- needed pressure washing of the deck and siding, facia boards needed paint, the inside needed cleaning, but MOST of all-

The Yard.

It almost made me sick when I first saw it. For a year and a half, the shrubbery and vines GREW unchecked.

Unbridled. Raging. Wild. Unjustified. Growth.

Plants were growing into areas they were never meant to be. Dead weeds littered the beds.

Thank GOD my business partner, Marshall, came with me to help. A few local family and friends helped out some as well.

It almost made me sick when I first saw it. For a year and a half, the shrubbery and vines GREW unchecked.

The job would have taken me AT LEAST a month of work on my own and I would have been overwhelmed. The whole cleanup took Two. Fucking. Weeks., between us and outside help. (This won’t happen again. I’ve made sure of that with the new renters.)

How was the house? Let’s look at a few of the top ‘gems’:

Here are some of the fun little presents they left in my jammed garbage disposal: a ponytail holder, a gear of some sort, a wad of hair, a blue thing, and some other spongy unidentified objects. Item not shown? The beer bottle cap that was jamming it. Did anyone tell me the disposal didn’t work? Pfff, don’t be silly. Of course not.
Sorry, gross, I know. But this is my feet after walking barefoot, INSIDE the house for a few hours. Ugh! Good thing I had a high arch.
Once again, thank god for Marshall, who figured out how to get this sink piece attached and working again! I NEVER would have been able to. Both sinks were like this. Just, how??? Did anyone ever tell me they were off and potentially broken? Nope.

The house had more, but we don’t have enough time. Let’s get to the jungle yard.

When I work in my yard, I get after it like a Tasmanian Devil. That’s how I do it.

This time I went at it like the Tasmanian devil on adderall. There was more work to do than I had EVER had to tackle, and time was of the essence. Problem was, I hadn’t done yard work in a year and a half. (Maaaaaybe I was a little out of shape for the activity)

Third day in…

Marshall and I had wacked away at the shrubbery for a good part of the day. Late afternoon, he went back to the place we were renting, and I stayed. Unable to quit.

That’s when I decided ‘screw these bushes’ to a group of fast growing shrubs in the front yard. They would keep growing fast so why not get rid of them all together?

I used the loppers at first. But I was cutting thick branches, and they couldn’t handle it anymore. (Pun intended.)

Getting pretty thick, loppers were getting tired, and so were my arms.

Then I remembered, ‘Ooh, I have an ax!’

I grabbed it and dug in. I made some good headway, swinging it straight up and down at the base of the 10′ tall overgrown bush.

One of the many debris mountains we made, to the right. We ran out of room and started another pile across the street.

After a few good swings, I started feeling cocky about my new skill. My precision was getting pretty good as far as my aim went. I felt a bit like a badass with that ax.

As my confidence rose, my reasoning and logic apparently dropped.

Head held high, I wondered how I looked, swinging that ax.

Ax: 1    Kelly: 0

Then I thought about how a guy chops wood. It was much different than how I was doing it.

I was swinging ‘like a girl’. Straight up and down. A man chopping wood starts the swing from BEHIND him.

Naturally, I thought, ‘I should do that too.’

Here’s a man swing example of what I tried next.


Bad idea?

I spread out my feet for stabilization and grabbed the ax by its end with both hands.

I started the swing from behind me and brought it up over my head with some momentum.

It only took the one swing for my lower back to IMMEDIATELY disagree.

It decided that I was done cutting down the jungle. It was having none of this ‘ax’ shit.

It took me from ‘Bad-Ass’ to ‘Bad-Back’ in .2 seconds.

It only took the one swing for my lower back to IMMEDIATELY disagree.

My back seized harder than the strongest constrictor snake has ever squeezed its prey. It wasn’t pretty. I immediately lost any resemblance of looking like a ‘badass’.

My torso did a full-blown involuntary reverse crunch.

From that moment on, in excruciating pain, I couldn’t do ANYTHING but stay in an upright ‘backbend’.

This guy represents my position. But I couldn’t move around like him.

Kelly was up shit creek! I was all by myself. I had a car. I needed to get home.

I gathered my things, hobbled across the street VERY carefully and slowly. Tried getting into the car, but I couldn’t. As I tried, pain would cause me to scream at random intervals, as if I had Tourettes. It was sort of a ‘sing-scream’ sound.

So, using my car as a pair of crutches, I lowered myself to the ground where I laid on my back, hoping the pain would subside somewhat.

I took this photo while I laid there. My view is my driveway across the street.

Am I gonna have to sleep right here? Shit, do I need an ambulance???

I was glad none of my neighbors saw me, they might have thought I had been shot, or had a heart attack. I was lying on the ground in the dark outside my car with the driver’s door open.

(Wait, only one neighbor out of the two that were there would have cared. The other probably would have stood over me and laughed. But, that’s another story.)

Eventually, because I am stubborn, and I didn’t want to sleep on pavement, I tried getting in again. I finally succeeded. The process of getting my broken body to the car, driving 20 minutes to get home and getting all the way up the 21 steps into the rental house and onto the couch took me about, ah, just over TWO hours.

No joke.

Here I am trying to get up the stairs that night:

I spent the next day on the floor on my back. And guess what?? It was my birthday. The worst birthday EVER. On the floor, ALL DAY.

Happy ‘stay on the floor all day’ birthday to me.

Nature Calls

That first night, before my Bday, in the middle of the night I had to pee.


I seriously did NOT know how I was going to get up off the couch to get to the toilet. Not to mention, how could I possibly squat down to the toilet?

Moving even a centimeter caused more Tourettes. (Not sure how Marshall didn’t hear me. I was on couch, he was in the bedroom)

He’s not a dick, I made him take the bedroom because he was nice enough to come with me to help!

I literally was contemplating alternatives; could I call Marshall in to get me something to pee into? (I would STILL have to sit up)

I couldn’t come up with a good alternative. It was pee on the couch or get up.

I started to cry- almost like an anxiety attack. I think I was freaked out by how ‘broken’ I was and how painful it was. Eventually, I calmed myself down, and got up.

Once I dropped trousers, I knew there was NO getting those back up.

Bathroom duty took almost an hour from start to finish. Once I made it to the bathroom, I thought about peeing in the shower standing up. Luckily, there was something I could hold onto to assist, so I did.

Once I dropped trousers, I knew there was NO getting those back up. NO way in hell that was possible, or even worth trying.

So after my deed, I used a towel to cover myself and waddled back to the living room. I eventually made it down to the floor, covered in towel and blankets.

I stayed on the floor the entire next day. BORING.

Thanks to Marshall for taking care of me, and for my friend Susan, for bringing me good drugs, and Rich for the place to stay!!

The next day we decided since I was out of commission, we should go ahead and head to Tampa to visit his brother.

I could sit at a house, or sit in a car. May as well sit and be visiting. So we went.


I’m holding my back PRETTY straight here in St. Petersburg… actually surprised I was rounding it at all. I STILL am ‘tender’ and really have to watch how I move.

We came back and finished the house job.

Very. Carefully.

Did I Learn My Lesson?

No. (sigh)

I am pretty stubborn.

I would likely use an ax again, yes. However, next time I think I will stick to my ‘girly overhead swing’ method.

My yard suffered a little as I didn’t end up with the stamina to keep it all up and to finish all the wacking jobs that needed to get done, but we got it back into good shape for the next renters.

Renters, shit better still look like this next year, or your WALLET suffers. Not my back. 

They have been THOROUGHLY warned and ‘schooled’ as far as what they need to do to keep up the yard.

They know damn well that it will come out of their pocket to get it back into mint condition if they fail to keep it up, ’cause if it happens again?

-I’m hiring someone to do it for me and it’s coming out of their deposit!



Road Trip Blessings

Marshall and I also visited other family along the way of our Great Road Trip. First, his parents in Phoenix, my dad and stepmom in Austin then of course his brother in Tampa.

I met my cousin, Sarah, for the FIRST time, in Austin.

Cousins!! The only one I have ever met.
Dad and Stepmama reunion.

It was just over a month of a road trip.

I truly enjoyed seeing old friends in Florida and was super humbled by all the peeps that wanted to see me! Love y’all!!

It was a WONDERFUL feeling to finally get back into my house on wheels! I spent Thanksgiving with friends of Michael’s in Durango, then Christmas with Marshall and his folk’s.

I then took my RV out to be ALL by myself in Superior, Arizona just last week. I mean, NO other RVs or people in sight.

I wanted to see if I could travel all alone, as Marshall and I won’t be traveling together FOREVER. I had only been truly alone for maybe a handful of nights before this.

My little plot on thousands of acres of national forest!  Tonto National Forest outside of Superior, Az.
Another view. Nobody but me.
It’s gonna rain! I got to witness ‘flash floods’ behind me down the hill after this torrential rain. It was SUPER cool!
Gizzie and Trixie got a LOT of free wandering on our walks. No worries about running into someone with their dogs unleashed that might eat one of mine. 
Cool dead Saguaro cactus cross. Tonto National Forest, Superior, Az.
I did my two weeks alone there and it wasn’t bad! I did go back to Marshall’s folks’ place for Christmas dinner, and I met up with friends a couple of times. Otherwise, it was just me and my Girls. We did ok. Not that I would choose to do that ALL of the time.

I also made some very cool new friends, such as Jennifer and John of OurRvLife! They full-time as well in a rocking Class A rig. They just got solar because they want to boondock like the ‘cool kids’. 🤣

You know you are having a good time when you get selfies like this. And, that’s not a dog shirt I am wearing, that’s really a dog in my lap. Just so you know.

Actually, they have wanted to boondock for a while now. They just got their solar setup so I will be hanging with them during the upcoming mid-January Quartzsite gathering, boondocking as usual.

Currently, I am back to the FIRST area I ever boondocked, near Quartzsite, Arizona. I’m camped with a circle of new friends. It’s been almost a year since my first stay here last January.

What a weird, wonderful full circle. Hey, now you’re caught up with me, right at the beginning of the year!

Happy New Year!! 🎉

What’s up, 2017????!! Here we go!

Me and my rolling Crib in our new spot.
Coolest ‘rock’ in the background. (Palm Canyon) Lights up reddish/orange at sunset.
Our camp is waaaaaaay over there. Past the three big ant piles. Palm Canyon, Az. 




13 thoughts on “Full-Time RVing: Rental Property Hell!?! And Uh, Think Twice Before Doing THIS With An Ax.

  1. Hello my online friend, I have been following your adventures. I live in my rig, in Tonopah, AZ. I joined a group on FB, we call ourselves Queens, (site is Dilemmas and Dramas of the RV Queen) it is a group of ladies, all RV’ers, no men, site. We discuss many trials of RV living. And we are having a get together. Or I should say I am trying to have a get together. Please join us, since you are in area.

    Attention all Queens and Future Queens in the Arizona area. Lets meet and have a potluck lunch. It would be great to meet some of you Happy Campers. The event is rain or shine inside the Clubhouse. Arizona Oasis is right on the Arizona-California border and is only approx. 15 miles west of Quartsite. There is no cost. Just bring your own table service and something good to eat to share. There is a soda machine in the Clubhouse if you need or byo whatever. Also bring your significant other if you wish. I am Sure they will be hungry too. Please let me know if you plan to attend and how many if possible.

    Another Queen is staying at Arizona Oasis RV Resort and the resort is letting us use their clubhouse at no cost. It is on January 30th, from 1-3. Would love to meet you in person,


    Just so you know I am not a stalker, (lol) check out the fb page or check out mine, Cheryl Culleton

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Good luck with your new renters I to rent a few houses in fl . My last renter moved out in august temp 100 turned off elec left fish and shrimp in frig I found it 6 days later smelled like someone died. In the process of cleaning house my wife took a floor vent out to clean then she forgot and stepped in the open hole broken femur in two places total bill 129.000 dollars. Sometimes being a landlord sucks. They didn’t cut the yard for 6 months had to get a bush hog cost 600 just to cut lawn. They lost all their deposit but didn’t seem to care .some people just suck. Hope you feel better


  3. So glad to hear your back is doing much better. We were back and forth on whether to sell our home in the mid-Atlantic beginning of last year when we decided to RV full-time. I’m the worrier, and I fought hubby hard on not renting but selling. I ‘won’, we sold it and haven’t looked back since. The security deposit just ain’t enough to cover all the damage a renter can and will do. Fingers crossed you secured better renters and you’ll have lesser headaches (and back aches)!

    BTW I am enjoying your candid posts. I like someone who tells it like it is! 🙂 Happy 2017 Rolling!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks man!!! Glad you enjoy the candid!! It’s my life unrolling in front of my and your eyes! Good to hear you sold. If you don’t need the income, if any, it’s not worth it. And you’re right about the security deposit! I seriously hope these renters will do right by me.😬 Thanks for following along Donna!

      Liked by 1 person

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