Ask me anything! No, seriously – ask away

69 thoughts on “Ask me anything! No, seriously – ask away”

  1. I’ll play.

    Is that YouTube video really you? The one with the wet suit, the gallon of baby oil, and the teaspoon of sand. If it is then I respect your flexibility;-)

    And a more boring question… as an escapee programmer what skills/technologies would you steer a high schooler towards to maximise both earnings potential and career longevity should they live in a high wage, high cost of living part of the world?

  2. Can I ask a few? Some to consider:

    What are your future travel plans? (key places you want to be sure and visit)
    What are the worst parts of living in an Airstream (there have to be some downsides, right)? My parents are considering an RV and would like to know what they’re in for.
    I know you do some work on the side these days — is that enough to cover your annual expenses (letting your investments grow) or are you pulling from investments to fund retirement?
    The Patriots: greatest team ever because of skill or cheating? 😉

  3. I have a couple of questions, none related to one another…
    I am about to retire early myself and plan to begin my own blog of my adventures. What advice can you provide regarding PRIVACY. You obviously are very transparent but at the same time a blogger such as yourself is concerned about you and your wife’s personal safety as well as financial safety.
    I love the idea of your airstream, your dogs, your outdoor adventures. Is there space for firearms in an RV? I like to hunt and the idea of traveling in an RV like yours with my rifles and shotguns is appealing, allowing me hunt in several states.

    Last question, aren’t you at all concerned about how inflation ( consumer goods, fuel, AND cost of healthcare) may negatively affect your early retirement? That inflation and costs for just about everything will force you to either love on poverty level (one day) or force you back to a corporate job?

  4. Thanks for taking our questions Steve.

    To follow on on Slow Days. questions. What programming languages do you see being valuable over the next 5-10 years. My son is heading to college in a few short weeks, and want to write code. I have my opinions, but interest into hearing your thoughts.

    What’s the family and in-laws think of the whole early retirement, traveling in a airstream?

  5. This is a great way to get more interaction from your readers, Steve – I like it!

    How about this… what have you run into since retiring that isn’t as good as you had hoped or is just completely unexpected in a not-so-good way?

    — Jim

  6. Where are you monies invested? A search through your blogs suggests they are at Vanguard, can you be more specific? How much of your savings are in retirement vs non-retirement accounts? I ask because we will be fully FIRE’d at the end of the year and we are building our plan for living in retirement without access to our retirement funds for about 10 years.

    Troy @

  7. Do you have any type of fitness routine now that you do not go to a gym?
    Do you have a favorite beer?
    What’s Courtney’s biggest pet peeve with you?
    Are you coming to Michigan?
    Are you getting T-shirts? 😉

  8. Now that you’re living in a small space, do you and your wife sometimes feel that you are spending too much time together? How do you find “me time?”

  9. Awesome idea, this is going to be a fun post to read!

    Where is your favorite place you’ve ever traveled, and where is the place you’re most excited to go?
    Favorite bands/type of music?
    If you could travel back in time and tell your 16 year old self one piece of advice, what would it be?
    If you had to live somewhere longterm again (other than Arizona) where would it be?

  10. If y’all wanted to start travelling internationally (EUROPE, ASIA), what would you do with your airstream, truck and belongings?

    Have y’all ever considered buying a boat and doing the “great loop”?

  11. I’ve noticed that you and many others like Personal Capital. I can’t get past the idea that it is an unnecessary risk to have all that financial info kept in one location. Why do you think the reward outweighs the risk?

  12. I think all my questions have already beed asked above, but here goes:

    Future travel plans – both w/ and w/o the Airstream?
    Side hustles? Time vs $ (if applicable)?
    What isn’t as rosy about early retirement?
    Investments – Where/What?

  13. I feel like a retirement needs at least 3 legs…ie a little rental income, brokerage dividend income and then also our IRA (for me) and my husbands 403b. I struggle with should we invest less in the brokerage and more into the husband’s ROTH…. which offers less options. How do you decide? Especially now that you are retired but have some blog income?

  14. I too got tired of emptying the PEE tank and made a mod to natures head you might like. I involves using the black tank for pee tank and allow larger “gray” tank. check it out

    I did have to do some mods.. i reinstalled the p tank holder and cut area in bottom to allow tube to go to help with stability of NH.. the tank support does provide some front to back support and that is needed.

    love the info you share on videos and the TSR blog.. very inspirational for sure.

    all part found at local Lowes or Homedepot store.

    1. Thanks Carl! Yup, we’re definitely planning to do a similar mode in our rig. Like you, I sometimes get tired of emptying the liquids! 😉

  15. What feedback has your friends and family given you about retiring at 35? I get really strange looks when I tell people that I don’t plan on going back to work at 37.

  16. I would like to know more about traveling with dogs and pet friendly travel. Are there any restrictions on taking your dogs on trails in national parks in the US? Any other advice/info you can share about traveling with dogs in an RV/trailer.

  17. How did you decide how much to put into retirement accounts vs. ‘taxable’ investments? What is your draw-down strategy? What camera do you use for filming your videos?

  18. How many questions can we ask?

    What are your political views and how do they relate to your early retirement lifestyle? Not so much as who you vote for but what do you stand for.

    What is your take on Thousand Trails? We are researching (probably too much) to become full time.

    Have Ya”ll come up with a number that if your investments got down to that you would have to resort to plan B and go back to work? This is our biggest fear and the reason we suffer with the ONE MORE YEAR problem.

  19. Having been in the RV for awhile are you now interested in either renting a place for say 3 months a year to get a break from the RV and close quarters? Or alternately buying a small place in a LCOL area? Or if you plan to keep RVing, how long do you currently expect to do that? Cheers.

  20. Wife and I are on board with FIRE for a year now, we are both frugal, this just takes frugality and planning for the future to its logical conclusion. We have a house we love, I like the idea of traveling and so on, just wondering why you didn’t work another year or so and have a home base to come back to and rent your house out or something. Thanks, really enjoy the blog

  21. Easy questions…(maybe):
    1. Any plans on traveling to the East Coast?
    2. Any big beer trends you are noticing on your travels? We are seeing a tremendous amount of breweries in the Northeast brewing these “hazy, mildly bitter” IPAs. Was wondering what you are seeing out West.
    3. How much cash do you keep on hand?
    4. With your travels so far, have you visited any places you would like to invest in local real estate?

  22. Do you think it wise to buy a home in this market? Low interest, price at all time high especially in high cost of living area. I guess the theoretical question I am pondering is that would it be worth it to borrow let said a few hundred ks to buy a house, then having to pay that back in a certain amount of time plus the interest. Which make it cost twice what it is? Or just keep saving and once your nest egg get to a certain point, just move to a low cost of living area or downgrade your lifestyle? I kinda of know what your answer would be, since you and your wife sold your home and downgrade. But can just justify your thoughts again. Thank you and love your honesty and straight from the hip type of blogging!

  23. How long do you think you will enjoy living in a trailer in the great wide wilderness? I can certainly see doing it for a year or two for a sabbatical, but I would want to rejoin society at some point. And by that, I mean having real world, face to face, friends that I get together with weekly at least, though perhaps on a rotational basis. Are a multitude of virtual friends enough? Do you never want a permanent base camp to explore from?

  24. What is your general breakdown of your $30k per year expenses?

    Do you think you will ever consider living in a brick and mortar residence again in the future? If so, would you probably buy or rent?

    How old are your dogs?

      1. One more question, but very multi-part. 🙂

        When you are regularly at a gym:
        – What is your favorite body part to work and what specific exercises? How many reps and sets, etc…
        – Does Courtney lift too?
        – I know you mentioned mostly vegan at home, but do you do any other eating patterns? i.e. IIFYM, IF, OMAD, clean/intuitive eating, etc…

  25. How do you maintain those close personal connections with others because you are traveling full time? Skype, etc are okay but what about physically getting together with your close friends and family?

  26. Steve,

    Very important question. Quite possibly the most important and deep of all the questions posited so far. Please be completely honest in your response to this inquiry of the utmost importance.

    Did you like the ending of How I Met Your Mother, or did Robin not really deserve it?

    1. I try to limit myself with the sweets, but it’s darn tough most of the time. On average, probably a piece or two of chocolate per day. I LOVE chocolate chip cookies, though. Especially the soft ones. 🙂

  27. Hi Steve,

    Thanks for this opportunity, as a new blogger I have lots of questions. And not only does it look like you’ve been doing this for awhile, but you’re good at it!
    I like to have my 20-year old daughter read my posts before I publish them on my blog to make sure I don’t use slang or popular culture references in the wrong way. When she read my latest post, she snapped out, “Make this title less buzz feed!” I told her I use an SEO title generator to create catchy titles and she cringed.

    Question: Should bloggers use SEO title generators? What are the pros & cons?

    p.s. – The title in question was “You Should Experience Chautauqua at Least Once in Your Lifetime and Here’s Why.”

    1. Good question! It’s tough for me to tell you what to do because, well, it’s your blog and you’re ultimately the deciding voice in what goes on. I can tell you that I’ve personally never used one of those title generators. That said, I do believe they can help in certain circumstances, but I’d be a little careful about relying on them as the “final answer” with your titles. I do agree with your daughter that the title does sound like clickbait. It’s the “Here’s why…” part, I think that really hints at that.

      More or less…I definitely see value in using link generators for suggestions or hints (although I never have), but I’d probably carefully monitor what they produce and alter the title, a bit, based on how I want my blog to come across.

      Hope that helps! 🙂

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