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Getting Closer


Snufy1

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Congratulations!!

My best advice for anyone just starting out... slow your roll! It's easy to get excited about your new found freedom and want to go, do and see everything at once. Moving from point A to B is often just as much fun as your destination. Build leeway into your itinerary to allow yourselves to be "distracted" while en-route. Schedule "down time" at each stop. That allows you to extend your stay a bit, take a day for routine maintenance or set out earlier than planned to take a more leisurely/scenic route you just heard about.

Some of the most interesting things I've seen and done while on the road where never planned.

 

I've seen plenty of folks that try to "blaze" around the U.S. trying to tick off their buckets lists.. and just as many that burn out after the first year. Some choosing to return to a stick'n bricks just for a "vacation" from the full-time lifestyle. ^_^

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That's great advice Yarome. PPL need to slow down an smell the coffee. Going RVing is the best adventure there is. Lot's of ppl to meet, things to do.

The USA is filled with many amazing sites. Different Food from seafood to Meats. Having lived in New England most of my life, now living in Fla, i have seen the difference, Been to NOLA an Vegas. To add to this an other ppl's advice only big thing ya need to think of is what time of year to head to any point in the usa.

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In our working~stick house years, travel always a destination and a planned return as the purpose. When you go out fulltime, the travel is your purpose or your reason to be out there. Most of us spend a major part of our lives seeing the world through a windshield. This is the time to change that.

 

Make your RV your home by personalizing it. Nobody buys a stick house and then leaves everything as it was when purchased, but we put up family pictures, change colors, change light fixtures, replace window coverings, and many other modifications. That same thing should be done with a fulltime RV and do so soon after moving in. The goal is to reach a point where if one says to the other "let's go home" both think of the RV, no matter where it happens to be sitting. That is one of the key factors to being happy as RV travelers for a very long time. "Home is where we park it" should not just be a cute saying but a fact.

 

Realize that as you travel, all of life's baggage will travel with you. On a vacation those things can be put aside or ignored, but as a fulltimer every bit of this goes with you. You will still experience mechanical problems, family difficulties, and all of the other unpleasant parts of life, even funerals. They are part of life and living in your RV does not remove them but at times makes them more difficult to deal with. RV living will bring new issues to replace all of those which you leave behind and sometimes there will only be the two of you there to support each other. Such events will either strain your relationships or make them stronger. Plan now to be sure that it is the latter. No method of living prevents life challenges but with some forethought you can adapt and experience the best that life has to offer!

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Thank all of you for the advice.

We are Tom & Michele

 

We have only planed 1 thing so far that is the Vintage rally at Pismo Beach in May. After that we are going to take our time to get to New England in time for the colors. Michele wants to see New York City, and I have family back there. If we make it all the way back this year cool if not there is next year. I want to drive old Hwy 40 all from San Francisco to New York City. We would like to see as many National Parks as possible. We will workcamp as needed I'm a cook so I think that might help finding a job.

 

We have both lived on a boat so we know what living in a confined space is like. We have been marred for 11ys and have worked together for all that time. I think our relationship is strong. I know that no mater where you go there you are and life comes along for the ride.

 

We are making our RV our RV Michele is making drapes/ curtains. Outside of all the work I have been doing cleaning and making sure everything works. I made the bed a queen instead of a whole room bed. the original owner was 6' 7" and had a custom bed installed it was actually the size of the room. I'm designing indirect lighting for the main cabin. There are a few places we want to put some shelves.

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We have both lived on a boat so we know what living in a confined space is like. We have been marred for 11ys and have worked together for all that time. I think our relationship is strong. I know that no mater where you go there you are and life comes along for the ride.

Your experience should serve you very well. There are many similarities, but since I've not lived on a boat, I'll not compare beyond the space limitation factor. It should prove interesting to compare as you move ahead.

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Thank you Kirk I always like what you have to say. All of the points that you mentioned are things that a lot of people don't think about. You can't plan for those things and who would want to. You have to be ready for them

 

I really like the Forums and have learned so much just reading whatever topic I think might help. When I do have a question I always get an informative answer

 

We are still looking for any advice we can get.

 

Tom & Michele

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Much of my kitchen gear came from TheBoatGalley.com. The main difference is I didn't need pot anchors since I don't cook while in motion. :) It sounds to me like you will do well in this new to you life.

 

Linda Sand

Linda, I was just planning to take my regular cookware with us in the RV, we have loads of cupboard space. Do I need "special" RV cookware (stackable) etc.? I love my cookware, and it's something I won't have to buy or "adjust" to since there are going to be a lot of other adjustments! Your thoughts?

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Do I need "special" RV cookware (stackable) etc.? I love my cookware

 

Not at all. Use what you have and are comfortable with. You might consider "trimming" down your set though. Ie., do you really need a 1qt & 2qt sauce pan? Will you use your big 12" deep skillet when only cooking for two 95%+ of the time? Would cooking in batches for more people make more sense than carrying the extra weight, burning more storage space and requiring more water to clean full-time?

 

If you are open to changing your cooking gear out... and if you plan on doing much outdoor cooking you "might" consider going with cast iron. It's versatile (indoor/outdoor/induction), easy to clean and heats more evenly on typical RV gas cooktops. Just sayin.. ;)

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These are some of the ideas I'm looking for. The things we need to bring and the things we need to leave. We don't have belly boxes to speak of ( 2 30h x 6h x 12 ) there is some storage under the sofa and a little under the bed. The rest is drawers and overhead cabinets. So we need to be careful with what we take.

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It's interesting to look back on our first year fulltiming and think about what we might have done different. We set out to put what we thought we'd need in the rig and then had a few weeks away from home to try things out We decided on one warm weather set of clothes and one cold weather set that included layers we could use during "In between" times. It worked for us then and we've adjusted as we went. We took along about 1 1/2 weeks worth of stuff, figuring that would work for laundry runs once a week.

Turns out we nearly had it right. So far we've worn our warm weather stuff 99% of the time because we've moved south when it got cold! Laundry once a week has become our routine although we can stretch that a little where necessary.

Some things we never used and got rid of.

For some special events like a Western Night and St Patrick's, we've gone to a thrift store, bought appropriate stuff then washed and donated it back after the event.

Big thing for us has been STAY OFF INTERSTATES. We aren't in a rush anymore and you can't see anything from the Interstates. We only use them when we have to and it has been so marvelous seeing the places nobody else knows about.

I'd also recommend keeping a journal or a blog, after a couple of months you start to forget where you have been and what you saw where. A journal helps jog your memory.

And take LOTS of pictures.

Have fun it's great out there.

BnB

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Linda, I was just planning to take my regular cookware with us in the RV, we have loads of cupboard space. Do I need "special" RV cookware (stackable) etc.? I love my cookware, and it's something I won't have to buy or "adjust" to since there are going to be a lot of other adjustments!

There are a lot of variables in this question. Moving from a house to an RV you nearly always have less storage space for kitchen needs. Pam changed her cooking pans to a set that have removable handles which clip on. The entire set nests to take far less space. We also didn't take any of our cast iron because of weight limitations. Since we never host large family gatherings in the RV there is need for far fewer "place settings." We only carry settings for 4, since all experienced RV folks know about bringing your own table service, a common practice in the RV world. The key factors in selection are weight, space, and choosing things that serve more than one function.

 

EDIT; I should mention also that we use a lot of disposable service as well, just to minimize the dish washing chores. Since moving to the RV we nearly always serve food directly from the cooking pan on the stove directly to the plates, eliminating the need for serving dishes.(very common in the RV community)

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...all experienced RV folks know about bringing your own table service, a common practice in the RV world.

 

That's very true. I only carry service for 2 and enough for "serving ware" (an extra dinner plate and large bowl). I purchased individual pieces rather than in "sets" that I would largely discard and most are in odd numbers based on what I would actually need. Ie., 1 butter knife, 3 forks and 4 spoons. Anyone that doesn't know to B.Y.O.D (bring your own dishes) will be eating off a flimsy paper plate and have to use their fingers. :lol:

 

Everything that you carry should have a specific purpose, ideally, have more than one use and only needs to fill your own personal day to day requirements... not... "I might need that sometime". "Sometime" rarely comes.. and if it does.. you would be surprised how resourceful you'll become.

 

Ie., When doing pancakes and scrambled eggs for breakfast.. do you really need two skillets? Who ever said it was against the rules to scramble eggs in a sauce pan? ;)

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Well it looks like we will be able to start our adventure after the first of the year. Any advice is welcome. We are planing on Work camping some but just would like to enjoy the experience first.

Tom

Congrats, and I'm a tiny bit jealous! We have to wait until April!!!

 

Make your RV your home by personalizing it. Nobody buys a stick house and then leaves everything as it was when purchased, but we put up family pictures, change colors, change light fixtures, replace window coverings, and many other modifications. That same thing should be done with a fulltime RV and do so soon after moving in. The goal is to reach a point where if one says to the other "let's go home" both think of the RV, no matter where it happens to be sitting. That is one of the key factors to being happy as RV travelers for a very long time. "Home is where we park it" should not just be a cute saying but a fact.

So, Kirk and Pam...we were concerned about putting anything on the walls which requires "holes from nails". I was thinking we could put a couple things up with 3M hooks that pull off. What do you do? We were going to take some small pictures of family to sit out and a few little things we like, but had not planned on much. Our unit is new, and we like it actually just as it is. It is simple and neutral. We will change out the comforter (IDK if our current one will fit the RV king bed or not), may or may not add throw pillows as they just slide off leather. I had planned to take a couple small silk plant for inside and a small real succulent or 2 for outside - they can put inside too if weather dictates. Enough to make it feel homey, but not too much to have to put away when we move it. We even though about taking a throw rug for the family room (no carpet). Of course we would have to roll that up when we put the sliders in and that might be a pain in the tusshie! Comments?

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If you are open to changing your cooking gear out... and if you plan on doing much outdoor cooking you "might" consider going with cast iron. It's versatile (indoor/outdoor/induction), easy to clean and heats more evenly on typical RV gas cooktops. Just sayin.. ;)

Our plan is to cook on weekends when the campgrounds are more populated and play during the week. The weekend will be for chores. We plan to cook all our meals for the week and freeze them. When we go on a long hike, we don't feel like preparing a meal when we come home so this way it will be done. Even now I always get at least 2 meals from 1 cooking. I do have many cast iron pieces already, some is porcelain covered, but that is what I use all the time. I also make pizza in cast iron skillet. Yes, I was only going to take the essentials and what I use the most of. I won't carry all my cast iron due to weight.

 

We only carry settings for 4, since all experienced RV folks know about bringing your own table service, a common practice in the RV world. The key factors in selection are weight, space, and choosing things that serve more than one function.

So I guess I can take back 1/2 of the Corelle I bought! :) I bought 2 sets of 4. I was going to invite you all over, but if you are bringing your own dishes then great!!! Good to know it's BYOD, I would have been eating out of the pot with my fingers!

 

We decided on one warm weather set of clothes and one cold weather set that included layers we could use during "In between" times. It worked for us then and we've adjusted as we went. We took along about 1 1/2 weeks worth of stuff, figuring that would work for laundry runs once a week.

For some special events like a Western Night and St Patrick's, we've gone to a thrift store, bought appropriate stuff then washed and donated it back after the event.

Big thing for us has been STAY OFF INTERSTATES.

Good info on clothing. Living in CA, we know all about layers. The best thing I've found to make your spring layers work well in colder weather is Smartwool underlayers made for hiking. They are thin, wicking, and they dry super quick when washed (but I hang to dry). They are a bit pricey, but worth it to me. Another thing that is less expensive and very warm for the gals is "cuddle duds". We will be going to Midwest over holidays so we will definately have to make our stuff work for colder weather.

Anyone that doesn't know to B.Y.O.D (bring your own dishes) will be eating off a flimsy paper plate and have to use their fingers. :lol:

:o:D:lol:

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We carry enough dishes to cook and serve 6 and can also accomodate 4 toddlers. We do have family that visits, friends who come camp with us etc. We also do not want to do dishes 3 times per day as we prepare different meals.

 

I would bring the rug for the living area. As you have no carpet, you will find that when it gets cool the floors will be cold. I'd try for an indoor/outdoor area rug that you can rinse with a hose to clean as you will eventually spill something, or track something in on your feet.

 

We carry way more clothing than we need, but we can go up to a month without doing laundry. We move north and south and were originally from MI and there are many times we have been glad we kept some of our heaviest wear as even in the south you can get a front that will make the temps dip to, or below freezing.

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We boondocked a lot so had to conserve water. Therefore, we had more dishes and especially silverware than most of you seem to have. We didn't wash dishes every day. We wiped them with a used paper towel/napkin but let them sit in the dishpan stored under the sink. We used Corelle and never broke a piece and they stack in a thin pile rather than stoneware.

 

We also had neutral colors and to used a large area rug with bright colors to add some color along with throw pillows.

 

We were successful with poster putty for putting small things on the walls. We love Southwestern art and had some special objects displayed.

 

We did laundry once every two weeks or so more underwear was needed! If clothes weren't noticeable dirty or smelly, we didn't mind wearing the same over again.

 

Our 5th wheel that we used the first 8 years of full-timing was a Travel Supreme. They did custom work. We were visiting the factory to order ours and they showed us one being built. The woman couldn't part with her dining room set so the whole living room/dinette area was a hutch and the big table with 8 chairs..... no other seating in the RV! It also had a small chandelier. We always wondered how it traveled and how long they did it. The table had three leaves and they had to be taken out to close the one slideout. Then the chairs had to be distributed in other spots. Everyone is surely different as to what is important to them!!!

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Linda, I was just planning to take my regular cookware with us in the RV, we have loads of cupboard space. Do I need "special" RV cookware (stackable) etc.? I love my cookware, and it's something I won't have to buy or "adjust" to since there are going to be a lot of other adjustments! Your thoughts?

 

Take what you love if you have room for it. I was thinking more about gadgets like blade safes for my knives and cutting boards that don't go wandering.

 

we were concerned about putting anything on the walls which requires "holes from nails". I was thinking we could put a couple things up with 3M hooks that pull off.

3M command strips become a necessity for most of us. They make picture ones that let us fasten our clock right to the wall rather than hang it from a hook. The hooks are weight rated so be sure you get ones big enough to hold what you want to hang and that you get the blue ones if you are hanging in a damp environment like a bathroom.

 

When deciding what kitchen stuff to bring be aware that potlucks are not uncommon so you want something big enough to deal with that. I'm grateful for the people who brought a big enough pot to cook spaghetti noodles for all of us. My favorite dishware is Corning pie plates with plastic covers. They work as bowls for eating chili at home or storing restaurant leftovers to reheat in the microwave or to bring deviled eggs to a potluck.

 

Yes, bring the rug. Cold floors are not wonderful.

 

One of my favorite pieces of clothing is my Polar Fleece jacket along with my winter hats and gloves. When sitting by the fire in the desert you will be glad to have them as the temperature drops quickly when the sun goes down in the desert.

 

Linda Sand

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I do have many cast iron pieces already

 

Good to know it's BYOD, I would have been eating out of the pot with my fingers!

 

Usually when folks are talking about how much they love their "cookware" I immediately think (my fault) of some of that shmancy stainless steel. If you're already packin iron then by all means.. take it with you and get your cook on. Your rig has enough cargo capacity so that it's okay to weight splurge a little in areas that are important to you.

 

Most RV rigs walls are not well suited for screws and picture hanging, but many folks use commander products that are both secure and easily removable without damage to your walls. They have all kinds of sizes and variations. (Looks like Linda already mentioned those while I was typing.)

 

BYOD just makes sense, but it's never a bad idea to have a few decent paper plates and platic utensils on hand. They're also handy on those days when you just don't feel like doing dishes. One area where you might not be so frugal is having enough coffee mugs, sippin juice and/or wine glasses (whatever your thing is) for impromptu invitees.

 

I may only carry 2 dinner plates and 3 forks but I also carry 4 coffee mugs and whiskey glasses. Gotta have priorities, right!? ;)

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So, Kirk and Pam...we were concerned about putting anything on the walls which requires "holes from nails". I was thinking we could put a couple things up with 3M hooks that pull off. What do you do? We were going to take some small pictures of family to sit out and a few little things we like, but had not planned on much. Our unit is new, and we like it actually just as it is.

Would you do that same thing if this were a new house? I believe that it is important to personalize any home that you expect to live in with comfort and satisfaction for a long time. Consider replacing the existing pictures installed by the RV builder with some of the pictures that you enjoy in your present house. It isn't just a matter of family pictures but of personal decorating taste. We do use the Command strips but we have also used screws for heavier items and don't worry about that much as long as they are in locations where something will hang over the spot even if the pictures we like are gone. We did have a lot of family pictures in our bedroom, but we also had two favorite pictures from home in the living area of the RV, one of those replacing what the manufacturer had put up. We added many small items and mementos of our travels by me installing small shelves edged with galley rail above our entry door and the living area windows. Over time, we replaced all of the window coverings(I'm fortunate to have a very talented wife with a sewing machine!) doing those in the bedroom 4 times and the living area 3 times over the 12 years of fulltime. Pam also used throw pillows in places and very small personal touches.

 

As you make the RV look more like your familiar surroundings it will speed the arrival of the time when "lets go home" means returning to the RV no matter where it happens to be parked, and not travel back to your starting point.

 

I also made and installed a custom headboard on our bed, changed the bathroom mirror, and put some custom cabinets into the living area. Initially we personalized with things like throw rugs and afghans on furniture, and eventually reupholstered much of the furniture. As you start use small things from your house to make this your home, then move on to bigger projects as time rolls by. We found or made places for many of our small mementos in the motorhome by putting

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We added many small items and mementos of our travels by me installing small shelves edged with galley rail above our entry door and the living area windows. Over time, we replaced all of the window coverings(I'm fortunate to have a very talented wife with a sewing machine!) doing those in the bedroom 4 times and the living area 3 times over the 12 years of fulltime. Pam also used throw pillows in places and very small personal touches.

 

As you make the RV look more like your familiar surroundings it will speed the arrival of the time when "lets go home" means returning to the RV no matter where it happens to be parked, and not travel back to your starting point.

 

I also made and installed a custom headboard on our bed, changed the bathroom mirror, and put some custom cabinets into the living area.

Wow! Impressive! I don't think ours will come with any pictures. I do want to save room for those things we want to "add" in our travels. IDK if either one of us would put holes in the walls because we looked at one used unit and it had holes left in the walls and it wasn't good. I agree with adding personal touches and the more it feels like our S&B house, the more we will feel at home. Oh, and I just bought a sewing machine today. I used to sew all the time...Now, I just need to mend my hiking pants, but I am capable of sewing up some stuff! :)

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