Our Story

“You live around here?” “Where do you live?” “Are you from near by?” “What’s your current address?”

Inevitably, this question is brought up every time we meet someone, and, I’m sure you have a similar experience. The difference between you and I would be our replies, because ours always starts out with, “Well, Currently….”.

Nomads, gypsys’, bohemian, line traps, storm chasers, vagabonds, we’ve been called them all and it all started in 2009.

 

No. Wait. In order for you to completely understand our life,  I should give a little back history first. My husband, Jimme , and I started dating in 2003 and we’ve always done things a little outside the box.  We moved in together with in the first 2 weeks of dating, went on a vacation outside of the country after only 3 months,  bought a dog and starting building a home together in the first year and then became engaged in 2006 and married in 2008.  So, to us, our out of the box life style is natural.

We did infact go through some of the normal trails of a new couple living together for the first time; learning more about each other, trying to keep our individuality, working towards our goals, paying bills, etc.  I managed a well known portrait studio in our home town and J.O. was  working in various occupations but never found his passion. From butcher to mailman, realtor to machinist, he tried them all, but not a one fit the bill.  Then, in 2007 he discover the I.B.E.W and the apprentice program with Missouri Valley Line Constructors  and it seemed right up his ally.  He could work outside, see his progress, be contributing to society and everything was looking great.

For those of you that don’t know what a Journeyman Lineman is, I like to describe them as outdoor, high voltage electricians.  Yes, he is the man that climbs those high poles and towers to make sure you have the power to turn on your computer to read this blog.   The one down fall, he would have to travel full time while in his apprenticeship.

We basically lived apart though out  our engagement and our first year marriage, trying to see each other whenever possible. Which, ended up being on average one weekend a month. As newly-weds, we should’ve been enjoying our new home, having fun together, but, there was only a lot of work and even more lonely nights.  We had the white picket fence dream (literally, I hand painted that fence) and it seemed more like a night terror.  It wasn’t worth it.   Not us, the house wasn’t worth it. The separation.  The stress and all the tears.  So, after many long, late night talks, we made a decision.  I quit my job.  We got rid of our home and I joined my husband on the road. We chose us. <3

We’ve now been traveling full time together since 2009.  There have been many memories made and there will be many more stories to tell.  From living with no running water for an entire Iowan winter to learning how to fish for dungeness crab on the Pacific ocean.  We have learned the art of downsizing, packing, how to deal with moving to a new state with a three hour notice, moving off the mainland and to Hawaii with 10 days notice, buying a new house, starting a rental business and, most importantly, cooking in a very small kitchen.

Join us on our journey as we travel this amazing world, photographing and exploring in different areas, learning new things and all the while making sure your power stays on (so you can read this blog).

Our Basset

contact us at followthehighlinehome@gmail.com

Comments

Our Story — 18 Comments

  1. Love hearing of new adventures and those that are willing to do what they need to do. I appreciate electricity and those willing to do such a dangerous/rewarding job! I have a cousin that has worked pipelines for ever and has had to be away from his family. Good for you that you chose to be with him!

  2. I’ve always told my husband that home is with him wherever he may be. If our kids weren’t in such a good school or if didn’t have kids in school I would travel with my lineman too! What an awesome experience for you guys! I’m excited to read about your adventures!

  3. Hey you two! Love your site! Super interesting and entertaining!
    We so loved meeting you both and wanted to stop by in the morning on our way out on the 5th but we were worried it would be too early for you with your friends over on the night of the 4th.
    We saw the cute cottage and were able to watch the fireworks — it was beautiful!
    When you come to San Diego, look us up. If it is available, we have an apartment downstairs you can spend the night in. We’d love to have you!
    Let us know and safe travels!!
    xo Brett and Sheila

    • Wonderful! Thank you so much! We had a lovely time with you two as well! Meeting lovely people such as yourselves is one of the many reasons we love traveling. So glad you were able to spend another night in Big Bear! Look forward to keeping in touch!

  4. I’m so glad I found this blog! I’ve been dating a journeyman lineman for several months now and love it, but everyone seems mystified as to how we make it work! It’s nice to find other gypsies :)

    • We’re happy you found us too! It’s a wonderful life that many have a hard time relating to. So happy to hear that you’re enjoying it!

  5. I found your Blog on Pinterest. I am currently looking for that special “home.” You see like your husband, my boyfriend went through lineman school here in California. His goal: work for PG&E. Now that he is working for PG&E 4 1/2 hrs away in a 28 ft travel trailer (10 ft of that is a “garage” for his other girl….his Harley) I am living with his parents. Just like the two of you we moved in after a few weeks (I moved into his parents…he was working 2 1/2 hrs away) and a 1 month stay has turned into a year and a half. I came up with the CRAZY idea that I wanted to live in an rv/motorhome/trailer. WHY NOT right? I love the transformation you have done to your home, your story is awesome, and I love your blog!!!

  6. I have been a line wife myself for 19 years now. We are just now getting ready to start the camper life and I’m so excited!! The children are almost raised and it’s time for me to go on the road with him. We got married at 17, crazy I know. Lol! We are shopping for a camper so if you have any tips that might help us decide , please, let me know.

  7. We just started living ina fifth wheel three months ago. Money became scarce and we had to sell our house and looking at all the options avalible to us – renting, manufactured home etc – fifth wheel seemed the best. My mother in law called her daughter in terror – Shawna has the kids living in a trailer park – so the daughter call and asked if I wanted the kids to come live with her – most people have no idea how free and beautiful this lifestyle is – materialism goes right out the door – no room :) – the kids feel like they have won the lottery – a pool they don’t have to clean, horseshoes, a tennis court – all electric and water included in our monthly payment – all of a sudden mom and dad have time to roast marshmellows – to sit and do a puzzle – I have never felt such peace. I wondered at the many Lineman stickers I saw on trucks in the RV Park and I stumbled upon your web site – Now I get it :)
    thank you for posting this.

  8. Hidy Ho,
    Just wanted to say Thank You- and we are all wanting to buy 5th wheels and chase y’all across the country, lol. – Ok I have to ask- How did y’all or did y’all take y’alls rig with y’all over seas. And then y’all brought it back? WOW- I wonder if I can get over the fact of being higher than 10ft. off the ground. lol. His job is Spooky- and I thank him for doing it. And You for being out on the road with him. You have given up so much – just to be with the one that trips you trigger. I came across your story-looking at remodeling travel trailers, And I was wondering could you use house furniture, in stead of the crap that they put in the trailers.
    I want to buy a trailer and gut it, inside walls too. Maybe a 28 or 32 ft. and make a bed/living room/kitchen/ and then have a bathroom /closet. Now I’m not really planning on the resale. I am looking to live in it and move it maybe one or two times. I live in Texas, And I’m planning on moving to Southern Calif. But was thinking of buying here. Because of price. It’s still up in the air. I still need to sell my home and DOWN SIZE, and get rid of. and make my family understand This is the Right thing for me. I’m 57, I lost my wife of 25 yrs to Cancer and her youngest son (38) owns land east of L.A. out in the mountains. My sister thinks I’m losing my mind. selling my home and doing this. Lol maybe I have, I just wish De was still here to do it with me. God Bless y’all,
    Jack & Little Sister (Boston Terrier)

    • Hello & Thank you for your kind words! I’m sorry to hear about the loss of your wife, but am happy to hear you’re considering starting a new adventure! We actually did not bring our RV with us when we lived in Hawaii, we put it in storage and rented a condo :) You should totally follow your heart, downsize and try out life on the road. I’m sure your wife would be happy to see you do something outside of the box in her memory :) YOu can replace the standard RV furniture with everyday furniture to make it your own. We have had a lot of luck with furniture from Ikea. Because it’s European, it’s generally smaller, which is great for RVs, and you can assemble it in the rig, making it easy to get in. We even have a RV sized sleep number bed. Keep us updated!

  9. What an introduction!
    I’m very pleased to have come across your blog. My husband is a 2nd year Lineman Apprentice in Houston, TX; we moved from San Diego with no previous exposure to the line-life and after a year of renting we have decided to live in a 5th wheel for its flexibility and simplicity. I am eager to remodel and I was looking for black splash tile images in an RV when your blog came up, this blog you have created is certain to be a great resource for me and I thank you for sharing your experience.

    Be Well!

    -Joanna

Leave a Reply