By Machelle James
What an amazing past two weeks we have had at our RV park! The stamped concrete patio is almost finished. The crew will come back and power wash and seal it in about a week.
They also did a technique that gave it a wood-looking edge that you can see in the pictures. It needs a little more sanding down, but we both absolutely love how it is turning out!
Trusses up on the roof
AJ has been working on the roof and making necessary adjustments to the walls before the plywood goes up. He has been consulting with a local builder up here on building codes to make sure he is doing it right. That local builder came over and offered to have his crew put the trusses up. I think I about cried when he offered his crew to us. They came over with tractors and had them all installed in 2 hours. I cannot imagine how long that would have taken AJ and his friend Tim.
We bought them all lunch and off they went to finish what they were working on for the day. I have been humbled at the generosity here of neighbor helping neighbor. Yes, we had to pay for the labor of his crew only, but I almost fell over with how inexpensive it was. Truly, my heart is so Thankful at the support and kindness we have received. And knowing it is done the right way gives me a huge sigh of relief.
Water issue at the campground
We recently found we have a water issue when we received our water bill. It was hundreds of dollars more and a thousand gallons more than our previous bill. We were having much less business and it was quite a shock to us. AJ originally thought it was the underground spigot plunger having the leaks. He could visibly see the leaks in 5 sites, as that is where the ground was wet.
Our representative at Utility Supply Group walked him through how to diagnose the problem. Turns out it wasn’t the spigot. It seems that our actual water connections, with the PVC piping underground, is what is leaking. Oh, this is bad. AJ is going to need to dig up the areas that have obvious water leaks and replace the joints that are leaking. I hear the dread in his voice as he digs up the area around the spigot and figures out how to fix this mess. In the meantime, he shut off all the water to one area of the park until the leaks are fixed.
AJ got his tractor!
On a positive note, AJ FINALLY got the call that his tractor was ready for pick-up. Talk about one happy camper! He bought a Yanmar with a loader, gannon and forks. He borrowed his friend’s super-sized trailer to drive to the valley and pick it up. The snow was ready to fall when he came back, so we haven’t even used it yet! I know he is thrilled with his new workhorse, as we can finally do our most of own tractor work.
As we prepare to celebrate Christmas with family and friends, we are so thankful for their love and support. We keep hearing the same thing: “We cannot believe you followed through with your dreams. Most people say they are going to follow their dreams, but get scared and give up.” First off, you have to be really passionate about what you want to do, what you like to do, and do what makes you happy.
Wrapping up 2021 …
As we wrap up 2021, there are a few revelations and reflections we would like to share:
In our case, we sold our beautiful home and almost everything we owned to pursue our dreams of owning an RV park. We were serious about moving forward. You have to have “skin in the game” and that skin costs money! If you aren’t scared to death to move forward, you aren’t serious enough. It’s terrifying to think about the “What if’s.” “What if we fail?” “Well, Darling, what if you fly?!” You just need to do it!
Keep your emotions out of your business: Do what is best for your business and not for your emotions. (Example: Cutting down scrub trees so awnings and slides outs will open versus, I like trees, I want to keep them.) Do what is best for your customers.
We have learned so much over this past year, both personally and professionally, that we are excited to see what the future brings.
Thank you for following our Campground Journey and See You in the Trees!
We wish you all a Very Merry Christmas!
AJ, Machelle and Jenna
Read previous articles here.
Machelle James and her husband, AJ, built, from the ground up, a 15-acre RV park in Heber-Overgaard, Arizona, in the beautiful White Mountains 140 miles from Phoenix. Follow them on Facebook @ AJ’s Getaway RV Park or on Instagram at ajsgetawayrvpark.