$25USD/yr on the
List of 2015 donators
(a.k.a. Tracking your
Our daughter Audrey's
SMU-themed VAF cap, safety glasses and lab coat.
A. Reeves photo.
In the lab...
Audrey's fall grades are in: 3.8 overall (3.9 in
Audrey currently has a 3.9 GPA at SMU.
Yesterday we got a text from our daughter Audrey, a
sophomore at SMU majoring in Biochemistry, saying she
starts training for a lab job this coming Wednesday.
The Lippert Research Group (web
link) is working with chemiluminescence in the body.
She will start out helping to analyze chemicals found in
saliva to look for trends between stress and depression.
Some of the other research involves using widely
available smart phone technology, for example an
iPhone's camera, to test for lung cancer.
Freshman year GPA calculated: 3.896
...Audrey Reeves Fall 2013
3.85 GPA after her
first semester at SMU.
Why I don't fly
much, or go to fly-ins, and flew 25 hrs last year (less
Regular 'ol Cashflow 101. Daughter in
college. The current plan is biochemistry major /
world languages minor at SMU, most likely with graduate school. In other
words, more expensive than our house. No, 'm not
doing OSH, or SnF, or really anything for the next ten
years. And I'm OK w/it.
I can pretty much
guarantee that if you send in a donation over the next
few years, it will be spent on helping this wonderful
young woman become a productive member of society. Then
we start it with the Tater....
1996 w/tail kit.
Latest Reeves Family News:
Two pages of notes from our daughter's freshman Biology
class at SMU. She did this at home on a Saturday
"pre-studying". [ed. I can pinpoint the moment
when I realized my daughter was smarter than me.
It was seeing these... dr]
How to Donate.
Pay $25USD yearly if you use it - our family will convert that into
food, shelter & clothing most likely college
tuition for the next few years.
Is this site, and its forums, part of your regular internet
scan? Then please pay
for the goods and services you regularly use by
a yearly honor system donation of $25USD - an amount less than (1)
cup of Starbucks a month. This site is a small business in
every sense of the word (one employee), and this one family has
everything riding on it. We're not going to flood you with emails, snail
mail, or pop-up ads. Bandwidth, servers (and raising a
family) isn't free. To those who donate,
do not start threads in the forums along
the lines of 'People should donate!' Donate if you think
VAF is a good product, don't if you don't. God Bless
You either way. Thank you. dr
- VAF is our
family's stab at American Small Business. It provides
about 95% of our family's total income. As far as I know, I'm planet
Earth's only full-time Van's RV online community provider.
- Our family
has entered 'the college years'.
- Ads on the
site do not pull in what you might suspect. I
WISH I made
what some folks on the internet think I do. It always
cracks me up to read occasionally on other boards how some
person has a problem with me asking for donations. Funny
how most of the time those folk's I.P. addresses resolve to
this site on nearly a daily basis. They must think
the servers and bandwidth are given to me out of the
goodness of my internet provider's heart, and that groceries
magically appear in my kitchen. ;^)
- Over the
years this site has been online in various forms, best I can
calculate is I've spent over
bringing it to you.
April 2000 and June 2014 I pushed out over
M-F daily editions of the site.
- No fly-ins
or events attended this year (or last) or planned for
foreseeable future. Family budget rules.
up to the magazine rack inside a bookstore, and grabbing one off
the shelf - one targeting the Van's RV community. One that
is published over (250) times a year. You do
this every weekday for a year, never paying once. The
pages have ads, because without them, magazines fail. One
day, an employee of the store asks you if you've enjoyed the
last 12 months of magazines. "Absolutely!", you say.
They then suggest that if you've received value from these that you make a donation of $25.
If I just did
advertisers only, or just donations, I'd have declared
bankruptcy long ago. A few of the
smaller mom 'n pop advertisers here have had to close up shop
and/or curtail their advertising budget in order to stay in
business in this down economy. Donations are more
important than ever.
I hope you will
adhere to my wish that folks NOT start threads in the forums along
the lines of 'People should donate!'. It's very
important to me that this site raise funds the EXACT OPPOSITE
WAY thousands of organizations do it. I'd ask that you simply read this entire page once
a year or so, ask yourself if you think you are my target
audience, and decide for yourself.
I encourage folks to use their birthday as a when-to-donate reminder.
Why? Here is the chart showing 2014 credit card donations
broken out by month. Hopefully you can see why I encourage
folks to donate on their birthday - it spreads the income out
over the whole year instead of having to make due until the
'lump at the end'. I'll take it however I can get it, but
December tends to be an accounting marathon (not to mention
January-November a budgeting challenge). ;^)
I'll never put
a single thing in your inbox or mailbox asking for money. Ever.
Jump right to the
How to Donate Money
Perception vs Reality:
Perception: I work an hour
each morning, then spend the rest of the day napping on a
pile of cash.
Reality: That would be awesome, but it's not really what
In 2007 I bet my house and family's future on the success of
this web site - just before the start of one of the worst
economic meltdowns in our country's history. So, I
pretty much spend every waking second trying to market it
and make it better. Unless I'm
asleep, I rarely go more than an hour without sitting down
at the computer. Not having a commute and self-employed means
you're working three minutes after you wake up, as well as
sixty seconds before your head hits the pillow. I work
every evening, seven days a week. Even
Perception: We are rich.
Reality: We are not. We follow a budget
There is no other paycheck...just
this site, and it is
and time consuming to run. I thank God every single
day for the advertisers and donators that have helped keep
Perception: You can take off work whenever you want.
Reality: Good one.
This site will be online forever.
Reality: I hope so.
The intent from the beginning was to 'virtually' feed the
soul of the ten year old kid still inside each of us that
wants to fly more than just about anything else. You
held your hand out the car window as a kid and pretended it
was a wing. You had a cardboard box in your room with
a control stick and drawings of instruments on one side, and
you sat in it pretending you were upside down over the
mountaintops. You watched every single airplane that
flew over your house with rapt, unwavering attention.
I've taken great pains over the last decade to
duplicate some of those feelings here. To convey the
dream and promise of RV flight, a sense of happiness, of
accomplishment, of motivation, of friendship, of caring, of
compassion wrapped in a
Christian, positive, civil tone. In other words,
the exact opposite of most websites on the planet these
days. But sadly, the banker man doesn't care much for
these uplifting emotions.
The stone cold, brutal reality (the point I need to drive
home) is that unless a certain number of regular readers donate
the site will struggle, and I'll be forced to go get a technology job
somewhere to better support my family. It's just cash flow. I do love airplanes, and
especially RVs, but my family comes first. Always.
If you are one of the regulars, PLEASE donate yearly. It
literally means the difference between the site staying and
How to Donate
donations in the order below.
However you decide to donate, even if it's a bag of pennies,
$25USD in some scrap paper
with your name on it somewhere.
No middleman fees and instantly ready to go
back into my local economy at the businesses that offer our family
cash discounts - farmer's market, gas station, restaurants,
doctor (5%), dentist (10%), optometrist (10%), clothes, etc...
You'd be surprised (source).
It stands an
equally good chance of being handed to our son Tate at a rate of
$4/day for lunch money at school.
Local cash discounts slightly outweigh credit card transaction
fees (next option).
Delta Romeo, LLC.
P.O. Box 270321
Flower Mound, TX 75027-0321
takes 3% of the money coming in (4% from outside U.S.), but from
a paperwork/accounting standpoint, it's pretty painless for me
to track who sent what with a 1-click download. I know
I'll get the spelling right, because it's whatever you typed it.
It doesn't require much manpower to stay on top of, and if you
can get some air reward miles, even better.
You can use a
credit card from pretty much any country, and you don't have to
have a PayPal account, making it the easy choice for those
outside the USA. 90% of eBay purchases use PayPal (eBay
owns PayPal). It's secure.
made out to
'Delta Romeo, LLC'
(if you're in the USA)
Delta Romeo, LLC.
P.O. Box 270321
Flower Mound, TX 75027-0321
*Why does VAF use an honor system business model?
- any United
States citizen who has EVER been in
no-shit, bullets coming at you combat.
You know who you
are, and I will never be able to thank you enough for
protecting my way of life. Please enjoy the site free for the
rest of your life.
currently serving in the United States Armed Forces
- police officers (past or present)
- current Kindergarten thru grade 12
- firefighters (salaried or volunteer - past or present)
employed by Van's Aircraft
- anyone acting as a moderator in the forums
- My Mother-in-law.
- anybody currently
- the (2) renters at 'theVanCave'
The simplest explanation I can offer is because it's less work for everyone
involved, it keeps the non-corporate vibe intact, and it helps preserve my sanity. Forcing anyone to pay just to
view or post introduces another colossal layer of complexity, and changes
the vibe. Hello
unintended consequences. I
this site to be different from everything else. The non-corporate vibe thing is very
important to me - it has to do with the 10-yr old inner
child in me that I want to protect.
Also, when I
have to go look up my username and password for some website
just to see a dang site, I want to put a shoe through the
monitor. I vowed to never make this site be that.
Three more reasons...
First, as a United States citizen who is VERY appreciative of those who defend(ed) my freedoms, the 'exempt from donating' category
at left is of
primary importance to me. Who would setup and maintain the list of
thousands of free combat veteran accounts? How do you verify their credentials?
This all implies employees, and an office, and status meetings,
and peer reviews, and a thousand other things that a) gets us off topic and
b) killed large
parts of my soul
in a previous corporate life. I'd have to charge much more to
cover the increased overhead, just so I could net the same
amount. It becomes an episode of ‘The Office’ every
day. Thank you, but no. I do it this way for my own simplistic,
Second, it releases me from
the ‘I paid my money so this is the direction I expect you to go with the
site’ back and forth. If you don’t feel you got $25 in value during the
past 12 months, don’t pay. On the other hand, if you visit often, post, saved
or earned money on something in the classifieds, don't fit
in one of the exempt categories and still choose
not to pay, well, I don't even know what to say to that.
Q: Ever hear
wire was invented?
A: Two pilots got in a fight
over a penny.
Third, this honor system business model allows those who are on the fence
regarding getting into the hobby to virtually ride along, for years if
that’s what it takes. The soft sell approach gets people involved in the
hobby and sells kits. Having to pay just to see what’s inside right there
at the beginning, right when you're just getting interested, is a major buzzkill.
Thanks to those that ‘pay their tab.’
Things I'll never
do with VAF:
You'll never have to click through a pop-up
ad to see any page. There will never be an ad that moves
your screen over to the side and starts talking to you.
When you go to the front page, it won't start singing, or
dancing around, or try to get you to buy some car or cable
service. You'll never have to login just to see the dang
story. I'll never start a VAF
or put together a VAF lawn tractor discount.
It's focused only on RVs and the people who fly and build them.
$2.08 a month. I
don't think anyone can argue that isn't an outstanding value!
2014 Donation lists: (Cash/Check
Thank you for supporting
our family's small business,
Doug Reeves (and family)
(worked out a barter deal with something I was hunting for...)
- Clements, Jon -
Dalton, David - Karpayev,
10yrs - Rosales, Paul - Schoen, William -
Settle, Curtis (Bill) - Thorne, Mark - Webster, Tom
Lastly, in the 'Rolling
the Eyes' category...
I appreciate the
sending me some insignificantly small amount in order to get your
name on the list of contributors.
Having said that, I only
actually list and consider those names of people who donated at least
$25/yr. In other words, if you sent ten cents via PayPal, your name will not appear on the site as
someone who donated. Yes.....it has happened...by a couple of
people with 1,000+ forum posts. They each
used a credit card to send ten cents. What they don't
realize is that PayPal took the entire ten cents for their
processing fee, so in reality they just spent a few minutes
typing in their credit card information for nothing.
Well, they did spend some of their money....just not on me.