Christmas is almost here, meaning it’s time to break out the decorations and make your camper merry and bright. This is great news for the holiday-loving RVers out there, and many will rush to get their decor up as soon as possible. Others, however, may be left scratching their heads as they wonder how they could possibly decorate such a small space as well as they would a house.
For instance, a full-sized Christmas tree will just not fit in most RVs. In fact, even those that will hold a normal tree won’t do so well, meaning anyone looking to decorate a trailer or motorhome this season will need to find an alternative to the traditional tree.
Fortunately, there are actually a number of amazing options out there, and many of them are ideal for RV living. Below are some of our favorites.
If you can’t fit a whole tree in your tiny home, why not bring just half? No, we don’t mean you should cut off the top half of a tree. Instead, get one of these handy trees that are split in half vertically and sit against the wall. They’ll give you all the looks of a full tree, without consuming too much space.
This is a major win for anyone with a small amount of floor space and traditional taste in decor, and the fact that it’s flush with the wall makes anchoring the tree a cinch.
2. Pencil tree
A beautifully decorated pencil tree takes up little space. Image via Facebook
Perhaps you don’t have tons of floor space, but a tree could still reach up to the ceiling. If this is how you feel, a skinny “pencil” tree might be just the thing for you.
These tall, thin trees give you plenty of room for ornaments, but fit quite nicely into a corner. They are great for those who want a tree to put presents under, but don’t mind a slightly unusual look. Just be sure to anchor the tree somehow before moving your RV or you may be in for some broken ornaments when they fall from such a height.
3. Tabletop trees
Tabletop trees are easy to move around. Image via Facebook
If you’re working with a tiny RV, you’re going to have to think even smaller. In these cases, a tabletop tree is a great solution.
Of course, putting the tree on the table does mean you lose some dining space, but we think this is a small sacrifice to pay to have a pretty, sparkly Christmas tree to look at for the holiday season. Besides, tiny trees can be moved to the floor and wedged between furniture quickly and easily, ensuring safe transport for all decor items.
4. Outdoor trees
Outdoor trees won’t take up any floor or table space. Photo via Facebook.
Another option for those who don’t want to sacrifice floor or table space is to set up an outdoor tree. As long as it’s okay with the RV park you’re staying in, you can simply put up an artificial tree, decorate it with outdoor lights and weather-resistant ornaments, and enjoy your tree as you sit around the campfire.
We don’t recommend putting the gifts under this tree until Christmas morning, but opening presents in the great outdoors will make for a fun experience as long as the weather isn’t too cold.
5. Wall tree
Hang Christmas lights in the shape of a tree to save space. Photo by editor
Many RVers have gotten craft-happy and created some pretty awesome “wall trees” from such items as felt, foam, and even a string of lights. This is an amazing option if you are super limited on space and don’t want to give up your tabletop.
The felt version is perfect for those with kids because it can be decorated with felt “ornaments” that the kids can move around, and the light version is great for anyone who loves the twinkle of Christmas light. There is even a pre-made version for the less crafty among us.
6. Decked-out garland
Garland is an equally-festive alternative. Image via Facebook
If you’d rather skip the tree altogether, you may find that a pre-lit garland works well for RV decor. You can hang the garland wherever you like, hang your ornaments from it, and plug in the lights for a gorgeous, out-of-the-way display that still incorporates the warm glow and colorful trinkets we all love so much.
As long as you secure it well, the garland can stay in place during moves, but you may want to remove any breakable ornaments in order to ensure their safety throughout the ride.
By choosing one of these awesome Christmas tree ideas, you can have all the cheer of the season in your tiny home-on-wheels and still have plenty of room left for cookie baking, carol singing, and watching your favorite holiday movies.
What are you waiting for? Grab a tree today and start enjoying the most wonderful time of the year!
We'd like to thank Do It Yourself RV for the wonderful blog. Check them out HERE!
You're on the road, and it's the holiday season, but you're not sure what options you have for Thanksgiving in an RV? This article is for you!
Potlucks are a great idea when it comes to putting a big meal together in a small space. Everyone pitches in and brings something, and it's a great way to meet new friends, bonding over good food, family, and the RV lifestyle. Throughout the country, RV parks offer community-style Thanksgiving potlucks. Often the main course is taken care of, and you bring a side dish or dessert to share which surely makes life much easier when you’re only responsible for the green bean casserole or apple pie. Rayburn RV Hideout in Brookeland, Texas, hosts a potluck dinner each holiday. The park provides the main dish and guests offer a side. Check it out!
It’s good to research in advance what parks offer a Thanksgiving celebration. Search for parks that provide potlucks or even sometimes a full-service Thanksgiving feast. In Kentucky, there are some state parks with Thanksgiving dinners and events. Click Here
In Tennessee, there are there are eight parks with restaurants on site like the Riverboat Restaurant at Paris Landing State Park to the Thanksgiving Harvest Buffet at Cumberland Mountain State Park. For a full listing of the state park restaurants in Tennessee and their holiday offerings visit the link to Read More.
We’ve talked about restaurants, RV or state park professionally cooked dinners and potlucks, but that doesn’t mean you can’t cook your own. With a little planning of what to cook and how to best prepare with the space available this route is entirely do-able.
The first thing to consider is the size of your turkey or ham. Unless you're cooking for the full and extended family there is no need to go super large on turkey so why not go with a smaller one? In some cases, you can even go with a light turkey breast vs. the whole turkey. The same goes for ham. They come in a variety of sizes that should match your cooking space just fine. Another option is to grill or smoke the turkey or ham if your camp provides grills, it’s another option that allows you to make the most of your space.
Are the sides taking up all the cooking space? Make the side dishes and order a pre-cooked turkey from a local grocer that offers this type of service (Order Here). Maybe even buy some premade sides while you’re at it. Take the stress off of yourself to do everything is the key here and it saves time on clean up!
Planning and cooking ahead is always the smart approach. Cook some or all of the sides in advance and keep them in the refrigerator or a cooler until you’re ready to heat.
Crockpots are a life saver AND a space saver. You can put them anywhere so long as you have power nearby. Recipes are always aplenty, and you can get creative with side dishes AND desserts. Read More
The most important thing is to enjoy yourself, your time with family and loved ones and if that means getting a Swanson turkey dinner for two, do it and have a Happy Thanksgiving!
Massachusetts is not only part of the earliest history of the United States, but is also full of hidden gems and amazing places to visit and experience. Below are a few that are truly fascinating.
From her travels for over three decades through Europe, the Middle East, Asia and more, Isabella Gardner found herself addicted to bringing back strange and beautiful objects from foreign lands. It all started when she lost her first and only child to pneumonia, Isabella suffered a two-year-long depression. Her husband decided to take her on a trip across Europe, sparking a love for life and collections. Isabella collected over two thousand artifacts from paintings to sculptures, drawings, manuscripts, and photographs.
Her private life remains somewhat of a mystery as she burned thousands of her letters before she died to leave little behind about her personally. What we do know of Isabelle comes from her life as a socialite with a passion for eclectic and rare esoteric possessions from foreign lands.
The House of Paul Revere is the oldest remaining building in downtown Boston Massachusetts.
What you might not have known and about Paul Revere is that he was a silversmith, making everything from belt buckles to 900-pound bells for the town of Boston. He also worked as a dentist which was typical for silversmiths. To prevent demolition, Revere’s great-grandson helped found the Paul Revere Memorial Association and opened the house to the public, in 1908, making it one of the earliest historic house museums in the United States. Representative of colonial architecture, the house sits with period furnishings and a Colonial era garden. In the courtyards lies one of Paul Revere’s silversmith bells.
On a side note: the engraving of the Boston Massacre by Revere was less a piece of art and more to be used as a court document against the British showing exactly where citizens were shot in the square.
The Bulb River consisting of bright purplish-blue grape hyacinths follows a curvy path, not unlike a stream of running water, on the grounds of Heritage Museums & Gardens in Sandwich, Massachusetts. It's bordered with bright yellow daffodils which flow down a gentle hill winding around trees on the grounds of the museum to create the illusion of a flowing river. Aside from the brilliant vibrancy of these flowers in springtime, the fragrance is quite remarkable and beautiful to experience. The brain behind this incredible creation is Les Lutz, the Director of Horticulture and Facilities Management at Heritage. On Mother’s Day, when the bulbs are in full bloom typically, mothers get to enter for free.
Important to note that the bulb river is only in full bloom for about a week. The Heritage opens on April 15th.
Polcari’s Coffee on Salem Street in Boston Massachusetts, established in 1932 by Ralph Polcari, has an enormously wide assortment of herbs, spices, nuts, and coffee beans. Polcari's Coffee is not your average coffee shop. The current owner and virtual son of Mr. Polcari, Bobby Eustace, considers himself a museum keeper, committed to running the business with Mr. Polcari’s intended vision.
If you’re there traveling through during the summer months, be sure to get their Lemon Slushes made fresh outside the shop.
It was during the war of 1812 that the USS Constitution earned the nickname “Old Ironsides” when her crew witnessed shots hitting the ship merely bouncing off the side. The USS Constitution in Boston Massachusetts, which was commissioned by the first US president, George Washington, is the America’s Ship of State. The Ship today can be found at Pier 1 of the former Charlestown Navy Yard in Boston, at the end of the Freedom Trail. Old Ironsides was one of size her size, built in 1794 and was designed more specifically to be heavily armed and better constructed than the ships of the time.
Over the decades the ship has undergone many restorations to maintain the integrity of the vessel and prevent further deterioration. The ship currently keeps a crew of 60 active duty Navy sailors that help promote its mission and the understanding of the Us Navy’s role in war and peace.
The visitation of the USS Constitution is on a first come first serve basis and does require proper identification, such as a driver’s license, though visitors under the age of 18 do not require proof of ID.
In North End Boston Massachusetts, an area of Italian culture and heritage from many regions of Italy, a celebrated with throughout the year with food and parades, St Anthony’s Feast is the largest Italian religious festival in New England. Coordinated by the San Antonio Di Padova Da Montefalcione social club, one of the most vibrant “Little Italy” communities, this event is held annually on the weekend of last Sunday in August. In the North End where the festival is held, you can enjoy over 100 food items, souvenirs, parades and religious services.
There is easy access to the festival right off the Freedom Trail in the North End of Boston.
Massachusetts is so rich with history, both popular and more obscure and every bit worth the visit and tour.
All of these fun facts and more can be found at https://www.atlasobscura.com/things-to-do/massachusetts
We the people, declare Connecticut, the nutmeg state, home of Yale university, one beautiful place to travel and create some new memories with family and loved ones.
Lyman Orchards in middle field Connecticut is one of the most popular attractions in New England. It’s a family establishment with a long history from generation to generation with plans for future generations to continue to maintain and preserve the land and heritage.
During the summer months, you can pick blueberries, raspberries, peaches, and strawberries and every summer 350,000 red and yellow sunflowers are planted to create Connecticut’s original sunflower maze. Family-friendly events like the fruit festival take place all throughout the year. Make sure to look at their event calendar for food tasting, workshops and more! http://lymanorchards.com/events/
Lyman Orchards Middlefield
Fun and food for all ages, Milford Oyster Festival is an annual cultural fest held on the third Saturday of August. The Festival is considered to be the largest one-day festival in the New England region. Live entertainment is provided, featuring acts like a Rolling Stones tribute show and Blackberry Smoke, a Southern rock and roll band from Atlanta, Georgia. Thirty-five thousand oysters and clams brought to you by East Coast Shellfish Growers Association & the Annual Milford Oyster Festival. There are tons of great food options as well as beer & wine!
The PEZ name comes from the German word for peppermint, “PfeffErminZ”, but was later simplified to just PEZ and was invented in Vienna, Austria by Eduard Haas IIII, as an alternative to smoking. In 1952, PEZ began selling in the United States. Its first candy manufacturing facility was built in 1973 in Orange, Connecticut. More recently PEZ opened a Visitor Center with the most extensive, most comprehensive collection of PEZ memorabilia on public display in the world! There are sizable structures created from the PEZ dispensers and candy like the PEZ motorcycle built by Orange County Choppers and more. Plenty of games and fun things to do are also available like the PEZ trivia game, factory store for uniquely branded PEZ take home gifts and an interactive historical timeline!
If it's your birthday you can get birthday packages that include a dedicated staff member to host your party, provide goodie bags, pizza, soft drinks and everything the Visitor Center has to offer. You can also find candy making demos with fresh samples supplied to groups of 10 or more Monday-Friday.
On to the Colony Grill in Stamford for good eating and pizza with a distinctive history! The original location in Stamford is a post-prohibition tavern opened in 1935. What was then, an Irish immigrant neighborhood in Stamford, Connecticut, Colony became famous for a one-of-a-kind, thin-crust pizza that earned quite the reputation with a signature, spicy and full of flavor “hot oil” drizzled over the top. The original Irish-American owners of the Colony Grill employed some Italian and Eastern European chefs during the Great Depression that led to what would later become their history-making heritage in thin crust pizza.
Mount Tom Tower, located in Washington Depot at Mount Tom State Park, which is one of the earliest state parks in Connecticut is among the original 15 created between 1913 and 1918. Charles H Senff donated the land in 1911, and after his death, his widow ensured that all followed through and that proper legislation passed to make it official in 1917.
To get to Mount Tom Observation Tower and Mount Tom State Park Litchfield is three flights of stairs up and nearly a one-mile-long hike that ascends Mount Tom to get to the 360n degree tower observation deck, here you can view Massachusetts' Mt. Everett, New York's Catskills, and the Long Island Sound. The stone it’s built from comes from the mountain itself and a former stone fire lookout tower on top of the mountain. The summit of Mt. Tom is 1325 feet above sea level and offers canoeing, swimming, fishing, and hiking.
Mount Tom Tower Mount Tom State Park Litchfield
Additional resources if you're RVing in the area and looking for a place to set up camp we recommend Seaport RV Resort and Campgrounds found here: https://www.sunrvresorts.com/Community/SPO
While in Mystic there are a number of great restaurants with a variety of settings. http://www.engineroomct.com/ downhome but modern comfort food with a great selection of spirits.
Another great food spot that really matches the culture and feeling of that area is The Oyster Club. http://www.oysterclubct.com/
What are some of your favorite hidden gems in Connecticut? Comment below, we’d love to hear from you.
Arizona is a beautiful place to travel with many uniquely hidden, not so famous, incredibly diverse and amazing landmarks in its terrain that is unlike other states. Located northeast of Flagstaff, about 15 miles from Tuba City is one of Arizona's indeed hidden gems. Everyone knows the Grand Canyon, but in a very untraveled area between the Hopi and Navajo reservations in northeast Arizona lies the Coal Mine Canyon. Coal Mine Canyon is on the outskirts of the painted desert, a 120 mile stretch of very colorful land in the Moenkopi Wash.
Remote and isolated, Coal Mine Canyon is unique because of the rock or land shape and detail - the colors produced from the sandstone and minerals that vary from a deep rust to a light beige and back to a dark charcoal. The formations consist of wildly contrasting bands of color quickly changing from one to another. During certain seasons, patches of green appear at the bottom of the ravine. The views can be rugged, steep and narrow at points and very wide at others. The canyon has a varied layout of eroded spires, cliffs, hoodoos, also called tent rocks, and gullies all in a spectrum of shapes and colors. It's an incredible sight and a great place for landscape photography.
Photo courtesy of Your Hike Guide
While hiking is available in the canyon though not advertised, camping is not. RV parks closer to Tuba City can be used as your base camp. Make sure also to bring plenty of food and water as there isn't a restaurant for about 15 miles or so. Not too far from Coal Mine Canyon is the meteor crater that does come with an RVpark. Hit the canyon in the day and the crater at night while falling asleep to a view of the stars as you've never seen.
A few tidbits on the meteor crater: it’s approximately 50,000 years old, and it sits at an elevation of 1,740 m or 5,710 ft above sea level. It's about 1,200 m (3,900 ft) in diameter, and 170 m or 560 ft deep. At The center, is 210–240 m or 690–790 ft of rubble lying above the crater bedrock. It's a site to see and something worth photographing. The stars at night are as visible as visible gets with the open horizon and no city lights to take away from the celestial beauty after sundown. Additional information on the crater can be found at: www.meteorcrater.com
Next to the Grand Canyon, Sycamore Canyon is the second largest canyon in Arizona. Sycamore is 56,000 acres of greenery and canyon and is only accessible by foot or horseback. Outdoor lovers have plenty of options including hiking, swimming, horseback riding, fishing and observing the wildlife in one of Arizona's most beautiful yet least traveled areas.
Photo Courtesy of Arizona Leisure
The land and rock in Arizona are full of color and Sycamore Canyon doesn't disappoint. Formations like pinnacles, mesas, arches, and buttes, make the scenery quite astonishing.
Arizona has some beautiful mountainous scenery as well. One that isn't as widely visited is Mount Graham in southern Arizona.
Photo Courtesy of Elevation Maplogs
The mountain's elevation reaches an incredible 10,724 feet. It is the highest elevation in Graham County, Coronado National Forest, and the Pinaleño Mountains. Mount Graham's highest peak itself is frequently referred to as "High Peak." It is twentieth of the 57 ultra-prominent summits of the lower 48 states, and the most prominent in Arizona.
While there, be sure to check out the observatory as well. For additional information visit: http://mgio.arizona.edu/visiting-public
Photo courtesy of Mount Graham Observatory
From Mount Graham we take you even further southeast to Bisbee. In 1877, tracker, Jack Dunn found signs of mineralization that led to Bisbee's growth as a mining city, and by the 20th century, the mining industry was in a boom! Bisbee was one of the largest cities of the time competing with St. Louis and San Francisco.
Bisbee has some of the oldest and most original attractions, from Warren Ballpark to Arizona's first golf course, and community library. All still in operation today. A big draw to this day is the Copper Queen Mine that produced millions of dollars of wealth, not just in copper but also gold, silver and other minerals. In 1975 the mine closed but you can take a tour of the mine today with a retired miner that will give you the experience of what it was like to work there. Check out more information on the tour here: www.queenminetour.com
Something to consider before making the trip is caterpillar/butterfly season. During the spring months, the area becomes infested with caterpillars and ultimately butterflies depending on the time of year. It’s quite the site if you’ve not seen it before.
If you need a place to stay for a couple of days, there is the Queen Mine RV Park www.queenminervpark.com. There are some really neat places to eat as well such as Bisbee’s Table www.bisbeetable.com. The town is full of history and even nightlife if after eating you’d like to hear some live music or check out some art galleries. Also… one last morsel of fun is the Annual Bisbee 1000, The Great Stair Climb. Information on this foot race can be found here: www.bisbee1000.org. Climb the stairs and the enjoy many other fun events that make the race unique.
Photo courtesy of Bisbee Table
These are some of our favorite hidden gems in Arizona. What are some of yours?