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Living in an RV, I love having the ability to move wherever we wanted to go. Living in an RV simplifies a lot of things, but also amplifies a lot of things…like dirt! Condensing life into small spaces forces you to live closely with one another, with the dirt, and mess of all the adventuring. Really, you should try it at least once in life. We lived in an RV full-time for three years with...
An RV adventure is a great excuse to crank up the barbecue and get grilling. But barbecues don’t have to be for meat-eaters only. Whether you are already vegetarian or vegan, or just want to go greener and try something a little different, there are plenty of vegan and vegetarian barbecue ideas to try. A vegan or vegetarian barbecue definitely does not have to be limited or boring!
Travelling or even living in an RV does not mean that you have to resort to basic camp cooking. Living the RV lifestyle, you can still eat like a gourmand and enjoy a wide range of delicious recipes. Since space can be limited in an RV kitchen, you may find that you have a smaller array of cooking equipment than in a regular home kitchen. You may have to be careful about how you organise your RV kitchen, and come up with innovative storage solutions. But the lack of space and fewer pieces of equipment do not mean that you have to compromise on flavour. In this article, we will explore some one pot meal ideas to inspire you to cook up a storm with little fuss and minimal effort as you enjoy the RV lifestyle.
RV Cooking - Three One Pan Meals Great for RVing - YouTube
One of the best things about RV adventures is that they allow you to get closer to nature. Part of that should be eating fresh, seasonal, local produce. To that end, we’ve come up with this list of easy one pot meal ideas for each of the seasons, so you can enjoy no-fuss food throughout the whole year, no matter where your adventures may take you. While you may not encounter all four seasons everywhere you go, having recipes on hand for a range of different weather conditions and times of the year will help you cook easily and quickly wherever you end up.
One Pot Meal Ideas for Spring
Spring is all about light, zesty flavours and fresh greens. Spring recipes should be all about the new life springing up all around to banish the winter blues. These spring one pot recipes are all easy to cook up in your RV, and should help you make the most of the best flavours of the season.
Simple Stir Fry
Stirfrys are great one pot meals – you can use whichever vegetables you have on hand, and make use of the best fresh, seasonal produce.
Great as a quick mid-week meal or as a side dish, this stir fry is a great way to showcase the flavours of fresh spring greens.
Asian greens such as mizuna, mibuna, pak choi
Baby Carrots (thin strips)
Mixed seeds (optional)
Fried egg (optional)
Gather your ingredients and slice as required.
Mix soy sauce and honey to form a dressing (quantities to taste).
Heat a wok (or large pan).
Drop the vegetables into the pan, and drizzle over the dressing.
After mere moments, take the wilted veg from the wok.
If you wish, top the stir fried vegetables with a fried egg or a handful of mixed seeds.
Sprouting broccoli is one of the appealing vegetables you can harvest at this time of year. Use these healthy florets to create a simple, kid-friendly alternative to cauliflower cheese – a great way to get kids to eat their greens.
50g butter (or margarine)
100g strong cheddar (or other cheese of your choice)
Seasoning – salt, pepper, mustard powder to taste
Chop your broccoli, and finely slice scallions and chives.
Place the broccoli in your pot and par-boil until slightly softened.
Drain off the water from the broccoli and return the pot to the stove top on a low heat.
Add the butter (or margarine) and, once it is melted, add the flour and stir around for a minute or so, slowly adding in the milk and then the cheese to create the sauce.
Once the smooth sauce has formed around the broccoli, remove the pan from the heat and add your seasoning, scallions and chives.
Serve your broccoli cheese with some crusty bread.
Carrot and Kohlrabi Fritters
Fritters are an endlessly versatile and easy family meal, and you can use carrots and kohlrabi, as in the recipe below, onions, as in the image, or any vegetables, herbs and spices you fancy to ring the changes.
These fritters are great snacks for summer picnics, or for packed lunches and can be made in next to no time for a family-friendly lunch. Since they are so portable, these can be a great option for adventures away from your RV, and can be cooked ahead of time and enjoyed cold as well as being eaten hot as a quick meal.
Other herbs (to taste)
Seasoning to taste
Grate the carrots and kohlrabi and finely chop spring onions, chives and other herbs.
Add the egg and flour and stir to thoroughly combine and coat the vegetables.
Heat a pan coated with olive oil.
When the pan is hot, scoop dollops of the fritter mixture and flatten out in the pan.
After around 3-5 minutes, turn your fritters and cook for around 3-5 minutes on the other side.
Serve – with dips or salsas if you wish.
Frittatas are a great way to use up whichever fresh ingredients you have.
A frittata is another great easy meal for families on the go in an RV. You can have a delicious, child-friendly meal on the table in next to no time, and best of all, you can make your frittata in just one pan, so it is easy when it comes to washing up too.
Mange tout/ peas
Vegetable stock cube/ seasoning to taste
Olive oil (to grease the dish)
Grate carrots and beetroot, finely chop onions.
Caramelize onions in a hot pan, then throw in the root vegetables.
Whisk up eggs (2 per person) and add these to the pan.
Add your spinach (or other green vegetables) and mange tout/ peas, and mix in.
Add grated cheese on top if you wish.
Serve with a spring salad.
Nettle & Potato Soup
Nettles may be stingy but they can be delicious too – especially in the spring!
One cool way to make your money go further when travelling in an RV is to make the most of the wild food at your disposal and eat the weeds! The common stinging nettle can be found all over and while it may be a bane to gardeners and make your legs sting if you brush past them on a countryside walk, they are also incredibly useful – and delicious. Get into the swing of foraging by donning some gloves and picking some fresh nettle tips to cook up in your RV.
Nettles (and other foraged spring greens, as desired)
Garlic (or foraged wild garlic)
Seasoning (to taste)
Boil potatoes and mash them.
Add water and stock to create a smooth soup texture.
Finely (and carefully) chop garlic, nettles and other spring greens and add these to the pot. (Pouring boiling water over the nettles first will eliminate their sting and make them easier to chop.)
Simmer for a few minutes until all the ingredients are combined.
Serve your soup – perhaps with some nice bread.
One Pot Meal Ideas for Summer
Summer is a time of plenty, when there will usually be plenty of fresh, local ingredients to choose from. When the sun is shining, you do not always want to be stuck inside cooking. Of course, you will likely also be enjoying plenty of barbecues and campfire meals as well as some light, healthy salads knocked up in your RV. But when you do feel the need for something warm, these one pot meal ideas make it easy for you to provide a hot meal on a cool evening without having to slave for hours over the stove.
There are plenty of risotto recipes that are sure to be one-pot wonders ideal for your next RV trip.
Pea, Bean and Spinach Risotto
This creamy take on rice and beans is usually made with ricotta, though you could use other soft cheeses, or even cashew cream if you would like a vegan option.
Fava beans or green beans
Spinach (or other greens)
Salad crops (for side salad)
ricotta cheese (or other soft cheese)
Seasoning – salt and pepper – to taste
Prepare your fresh produce, shelling peas and slicing green beans if required.
Add water, vegetable stock and rice to a pan and bring to the boil.
Add vegetables and ricotta and simmer for around 15-20 minutes, stirring to prevent rice from sticking. Add a little more water if it becomes too dry.
Season to taste and serve with a seasonal side salad.
Mediterranean Vegetable Spaghetti Medley
Mediterranean ingredients lend themselves perfectly to a range of easy one pot meals that you can cook up in your RV.
Spaghetti is a family-favourite and so quick and easy to make that you may find yourself cooking it over and over again over the summer months, as you use up delicious tomatoes fresh from the vine, as well as other summer vegetables and fruits. There are two options, the first is to pre-prepare a sauce or finely chopped mix of vegetables to enjoy with your spaghetti, the second is simply to add the finely chopped vegetables to the spaghetti once it has been boiled, as in the recipe below.
olive oil (to taste)
seasoning to taste
Add your spaghetti to a pan of boiling water and boil until soft.
Meanwhile, finely chop your vegetables and herbs.
Drain the water from the spaghetti and then add your vegetables and herbs along with a drizzle of olive oil and seasoning, return to the stove top on a low heat, stirring all the time and combining all the ingredients.
Serve, with additional fresh herbs as garnish if desired.
‘Three Sisters’ Soup
Corn, beans and squash are often called the ‘three sisters’ – they were planted together by native cultures and still thrive together today. They are excellent companions in the garden and work well together in the kitchen too. This simple soup is a delicious way to celebrate their fresh summer flavours in your RV.
Corn (off the cob)
Seasoning (to taste)
Chop your squash and add these to a pan of boiling water.
Slice your beans and prepare your sweet corn and add these to the water as soon as the squash is soft, along with your vegetable stock.
Use a masher or blender if you wish to turn squash into a pulp and create a smooth soup consistency, adding a little more stock or water if required.
Add salt and pepper to taste and serve with bread or as a stand-alone meal.
One Pot Meal Ideas for Fall
As the night’s draw in and temperatures fall, RV travelers may well want something a little more warming. But filling your bellies with hearty and warming food still doesn’t mean a huge amount of effort, or lots of pots and pans to wash up at the end of the day. Here are some seasonal one pot meal ideas for the fall:
Bean chilli is a perfect fall meal to warm you up on a cold evening.
Green beans may be done for the season, but you can still find fresh beans that can be taken from their pods and cooked, or dried for later use. This recipe is a great way to use these healthy beans, along with late season tomatoes and chilli peppers.
seasoning to taste
Pod fresh beans (or open a tin). There are many different types of bean you could use.
Sauté onion in a large saucepan, add finely chopped chilli pepper (to taste).
Add tomatoes and fresh beans and simmer for 10-15 minutes.
This warming dish is perfect for a chilly autumnal day. You can also vary this recipe to use up whatever other root vegetables that you might have in store.
Chilli Pepper (To Taste)
Cinnamon (To Taste)
Pick, peel and chop your pumpkin.
Sauté onions, garlic, finely chopped chilli pepper, ginger and spices in a large pot.
Add water, vegetable stock, pumpkin, tomatoes, carrot and bring to the boil.
Simmer for around 20 minutes until the vegetables are all tender and the stew has thickened.
Serve within the shell of the pumpkin if you wish. (To further save on washing up!)
Seeking out fall produce can be a fun activity for an RV trip, and there are plenty of ways to use all those fresh goodies when you get back to the RV.
Autumnal Vegetable Curry
There are many different curries that you can make throughout the year using fresh. Locally sourced produce. This is one option perfect for the fall.
Autumn greens (any)
Optional: flatbreads to serve
Pick and chop ingredients.
Sauté onions, garlic, chilli and spices in vegetable oil.
Add tomatoes, vegetable stock, pumpkin/squash and other vegetables.
Simmer until the sauce has thickened and squash/pumpkin is tender.
Serve with flatbreads for the perfect warming fall meal.
One Pot Meal Ideas for Winter
People often think of winter as a time of scarcity but if you look will find that there can still be plenty of seasonal produce to eat at this time of year. Here are some winter one pot meal ideas to inspire you to make the most of the produce available at this time of the year as you travel around in your RV:
Winter Greens Hotpot
Hotpots are almost infinitely variable and are a great way to make a one pot meal for the whole family to enjoy. This is one option for a hotpot, which makes use of winter greens.
Kale is a wonderful ingredient for winter warmers and can be a useful green over the coldest months.
Kale (and other winter greens)
Sweet Paprika (To Taste)
Smoked paprika (To Taste)
Salt and pepper to taste
Source your fresh winter greens and prepare other ingredients.
Dice and sauté onions, carrots and garlic.
Add water, lentils, plenty of winter greens, vegetable stock and spices.
Simmer for around 20 minutes until lentils thicken the stew.
Serve with some crusty bread.
Creamy Spinach & Pesto Pancakes
If you are looking for something a little out of the ordinary for a light yet comforting winter dinner then these pancakes could be a good option.
Spinach/chard/ other winter greens
Dried or fresh herbs (to taste)
Seasoning (to taste)
Cream cheese (or vegan cashew cheese alternative)
Harvest your winter greens and herbs.
Mix leaves with cream cheese and season to taste.
Make pancake batter with flour, eggs and milk.
Make your pancakes in a frying pan.
Spoon creamy spinach/winter greens mix into your pancakes.
Roll up the pancakes and serve.
Mixed Vegetable Dahl
This is another multi-purpose and variable curry recipe that can be a go-to recipe over the winter months. You can make it as mild or as spicy as you wish.
Red lentils are super healthy and super easy to cook. They can play a starring role in many one pot meals ideal for RV travelers.
Any winter vegetables/greens you have to hand
Flatbreads (to serve)
Select your winter vegetables (use this recipe to use up whatever you have available).
Sauté onions and garlic in vegetable oil and add your spices (to taste).
Add vegetables, vegetable stock and red lentils.
Bring to the boil and simmer for around 15 minutes.
Serve (with flatbreads if desired).
These recipes should have inspired you to branch out and create some different, delicious and exciting one pot meals in your RV. If none of the recipes above whet your appetite, there are plenty more one pot RV ideas to choose from – or you could just throw out the recipe books, use your imagination, and create your own.
Travelling with kids in an RV can be a very different experience to travelling as a couple or with other adults. Of course there are a range of practical issues to consider – but beyond this, there are social and comfort issues to think about. Whether you are living in an RV, considering the switch to full-time family RV life, or planning a family RV vacation, these tips for travelling with kids in an RV should help you navigate all the issues, make the most of your time and resources, and avoid the most common pitfalls.
RV'ing Is The Only Way To Travel With Kids!! - YouTube
The Joys (and Woes) of Travelling With Kids in an RV
The main challenges of travelling with kids in an RV can be varied, but often include:
Space and storage issues.
Mess and chaos. (Especially with younger kids not good at putting toys away.)
Boredom (which can lead to bad behaviour)
Travel sickness (kids can be more prone to motion sickness)
Meeting kids’ educational needs (especially if living in an RV full time)
Fortunately, each of these challenges can be overcome. You will find plenty of tips to help you do so below.
What is more, the joys of travelling with younger members of your family in an RV far outweigh the woes. Some of the great things about RV travel with kids are:
The fact that they see the world through new, less jaded eyes. (RV travel can be a great way to see the wonders of the world, and seeing them with young kids can help grown ups to see them afresh.)
Seeing something – like the Grand Canyon – for the first time is amazing. Parents can re-live those experiences seeing things anew through their kids’ eyes.
The chance to spend time with your kids without endless distractions. (RV travel and RV vacations mean plenty of family bonding time.)
The opportunity to actually be around to watch your kids grow and thrive. (Without the pressures of work or mundane chores to distract you.)
While there are plenty of things to teach your kids when on an RV adventure, there are plenty of things they can teach you too. Learning experiences for all abound when you are heading to new and exciting places.
RV travel can also make it easier to instil a positive world view, ethics and morality in your kids, which can, in turn, help you have hope for the future, as you see what an amazing person your little monster is becoming.
Why an RV Lifestyle is So Good for Kids
In addition to being good for parents, living an RV lifestyle (whether full time, or on vacations) can be really good for kids too. There are plenty of ways in which an RV lifestyle can be good for kids.
RV Travel Makes Kids Happier
Kids are happier when they spend time outdoors, in the natural world. An RV vacation can be the perfect chance to let kids be kids.
Unfortunately, mental illness is becoming more and more prevalent in young people. For many, this world is an increasingly anxious, unhappy and lonely place. The global environment is such that anger is on the rise and often it can seem that empathy is in decline. Broadly speaking, we are ever-more seeing the psychological stress that comes from a feeling of lack of control in the face of instability and uncertainty. Worldwide, an estimated 700 million people suffer from a mental disorder.
While not all data agrees that there is up up-tick in mental illness, there is significant evidence to suggest that young people are those most profoundly affected. A number of studies have shown that teenagers have experienced much more of a rise in depression and other mental health problems than the general population.
Spending time outside, surrounded by nature, has been proven in a range of scientific studies to have profoundly positive psychological effects on those of all ages. Green spaces make us happier and calmer, boosting the ‘feel good’ hormones in our brains. What is more, there are even bacteria in the soil which can boost seratonin levels – so digging the dirt can be good for us all.
Travel in an RV is a great way to get closer to nature, and to immerse ourselves and our children in the healing power of the natural world. What is more, by taking us away from many of the major stress triggers of daily life, and allowing us to spend more quality time as a family, RV travel can make kids calmer and happier.
RV Travel Makes Kids Healthier
Of course, improving mental well-being has a considerable knock on effect on general health. RV travel can make kids healthier in body as well as in mind.
We are facing an obesity crisis of epic proportions. More and more children are not getting the exercise they need to stay happy and healthy. RV travel can help you make sure that you and your children are not amongst those who neglect the importance of exercise – and learn to love energetic pursuits. By freeing yourself and your family from the gym and heading out instead to enjoy the natural playground of the great outdoors, you can help make sure that your kids get the best start in life, and form healthy habits that will last a lifetime.
RV Travel Helps Kids Learn:
Rving can be a wonderfully fun and exciting activity for the whole family, but it can also be an educational experience. Kids can learn a lot from a camping holiday, not just about the natural world around them but also about themselves and how they interact with the world. Here are five lessons all parents should concentrate on teaching their kids when travelling with them in an RV:
Care For Our Planet
Our planet is in peril and the only hope is for everyone to get on board with a greener and more ethical and eco-friendly way of life. It is vital that the next generations learn to treat our planet better, and care for the planet begins with an appreciation of its many wonders. By sharing the joys of the natural world with your kids, and teaching them to respect it, you can make them into conscientious citizens of the future.
Never before has it been so vitally important to raise future citizens of our planet who understand that it is their role to protect rather than to consume. Low-impact RV travel can be a wonderful way to get close to the natural world, to appreciate its beauty and to learn what we as humans can do to protect it for ourselves and for future generations.
Kindness and Consideration
Have you ever been surprised on a campground by the rudeness and lack of courtesy on display? Late night noise, early morning awakenings and rowdiness are often part and parcel of a trip to a family campground. But you can use this as an opportunity to teach your children more about consideration, and having a thought for others around you. Family campsites are also often a great place to meet like-minded people – a little kindness can go a long way, so parents should lead by example. How about helping another family set up camp? Or inviting some neighbours on site to share your picnic or barbecue? You might all just make some new friends along the way.
Co-operation & Teamwork
The family who camps together learns to work as a team. From pitching a tent or setting up camp, to collecting firewood or cooking camp meals together, camping can make co-operation and teamwork a central part of the experience and teach your children valuable skills that will come in handy throughout their lives.
Teamwork makes the dream work… family camping is all about teamwork and co-operation, whether you are in a tent or your RV.
RV camping destinations are also the perfect environment in which to instil some self-reliance in your children. Many children today rely too much on their parents to do almost everything for them. It can be difficult in daily life the freedoms that we may have had as kids. But on a safe, secure campground, it can be easier to loosen the apron strings a little. Let kids learn how to make a campfire, for example, or explore a little on their own. These are the first, small steps towards independence.
Practical skills like making a fire or camp cooking, putting up a tent or reading a map can also be excellent things to teach your kids, and an RV adventure is the perfect time to teach these things. Having a range of practical skills will stand kids in good stead as they grow.
Less Is More
In our modern, consumerist society, it is easy for kids to just want, want, want. All around them are inducements to buy, buy, buy… but camping in an RV can be a chance to get away from all that and to teach your kids about the joys of living simply – and about how little we actually need to be happy and content. Moving towards a zero waste lifestyle in an RV is a great goal for families travelling in an RV.
How to Relax
RV travel can be a rewarding experience for the whole family. Life is not just about learning – it is about fun and relaxation too. Getting away from it all in a beautiful, natural setting can help you show your kids, by example, how to relax and unwind – an increasingly important skill in our modern world.
What NOT To Do When Travelling With Kids in an RV
THINGS TO BUY for RV Family Living - BECCA'S LIST - YouTube
Here are a few general tips on what not to do when travelling with kids in an RV, to help you avoid some of the most common pitfalls on your next adventure:
Don’t Let The Kids Rule the Roost (But Don’t Dictate Everything Either)
One of the common mistakes that parents tend to make when travelling with kids is making it so the whole experience revolves around them and their needs. While of course you want your kids to have a great time, the very best family vacations and adventures are the ones that allow the adults to have a great time too. Parents should remember to also think about their own wants and needs. Try to choose camping destinations and activities that everyone can enjoy. Communicate as a family, take everyone’s thoughts into consideration and try to choose options that allows everyone – kids and adults alike – to get their way.
Don’t Bring Everything Including the Kitchen Sink
Kids do often come with a lot of paraphernalia. Those with young children will know that it is nearly impossible to pack light. That said, when packing for a family RV vacation, or planning what to include when downsizing your life to fit full-time RV living, it is important not to get carried away. Remember, the more stuff you have with you, the longer it will take to set up camp, and to pack everything away at the end of your stay and the more cluttered things will be along the way. Be prepared for different eventualities but don’t bring everything including the kitchen sink. Make a list and keep things as simple as possible.
Don’t Forget The Essentials
Making a list will make it easier to make sure that you have the essentials on hand when you need them, and remaining organised will help you find them when you need them while you are away. Don’t forget essential items such as, water, food, clothing, cooking gear, plates and utensils… make sure you have all the basics before you think about adding any extra items to your list.
Don’t Wing It And Just Turn Up At A Campground This Summer
In summer, space in some places can be limited – and can end up feeling more like a car park than a campground! Plan ahead.
Spontaneity and RV vacations with kids usually just don’t mix. Don’t forget that family-friendly campsites will often fill up quickly when the kids are off school, so book well ahead of time to avoid disappointment and don’t try to just wing it and turn up in hopes of getting a spot. Long, hot journeys will not end well if you have to find an alternative place to stay at short notice.
Don’t Keep Kids Too Close (But Do Keep an Eye On Them)
RV camping adventures offer the perfect opportunity to give your kids a taste of freedom. Many family-friendly campgrounds offer the opportunity for kids to have some adult-free time with other children. Cut those apron strings and don’t hover over your children all the time – it is important to give them some freedom and space. Do keep an eye however, and make sure your kids are safe, hydrated and protected from the sun when they are running around a campsite.
Now we have considered the basics, and looked at the broad picture of travelling with kids in an RV, lets take a more detailed look at the different stages and considerations of an RV family adventure:
Tips for Keeping Kids Happy While Driving
The drive to reach your destination can often be the most fraught part of travelling in an RV with kids, especially if they are very young. To keep things going smoothly you should:
Take regular bathroom and rest stops.
Make sure you have plenty of water accessible during the drive.
(Eco-friendly water bottles can help keep everyone hydrated.)
Keep snacks on hand.
(Healthier snacks could include things like fresh or dried fruit, fruit or vegetable chips, home-made fruit roll-ups, trail mix with nuts and seeds etc…)
Bring along books, magazines or other entertainment to keep them occupied and entertained on the road. (If you decide to bring ‘screens’ along – make sure that you have the ability to keep them charged on long journeys.)
(For example, you could play ‘I spy’ or other spotting games, counting games, ‘would you rather…?’ or word games.)
Have a family sing-along as you drive.
(There are plenty of fun, family-friendly travel songs to choose from, whether you listen to the music or just make the music yourselves.)
Make up a family story.
(Everyone can take turns adding a word or a sentence as you drive along.)
Tips for Keeping Kids Happy on Site in an RV
One of the first things to bear in mind is that it is very important for kids to know where they are. You might be surprised by how many kids on camping trips don’t have a clue where their parents have brought them. Looking at maps and surveying the surroundings can help them understand the location, and help them to get to grips with what exciting things there might be to see and do there.
It can also be a good idea to involve kids with general jobs around your RV. As you set up site, gently encouraging kids to help can be a teaching opportunity, and could give them important skills for their futures. Get them to help not only with RV jobs, but also with general jobs like fetching water, fetching firewood, starting a fire perhaps, cooking etc… Be sure to make these things fun, so they don’t feel like just a whole bunch of chores.
Once you have set up camp, keeping kids entertained should be a priority. As mentioned above, it is important to give them some agency and freedom. However, it is also important to find things that you can all enjoy doing together. Here are some ideas:
Nature hikes can take you and your family to the most amazing places!
Taking a walk, whether long or short, can be a great way to see an area at its best. Be sure to leave the RV behind for a while and head out to enjoy nature on your own two feet.
Whether you take bikes with you, or hire them once you get there, cycling can also be a wonderful way to get out there and enjoy the natural world.
Kayaking or Canoeing
You can head out to explore on water as well as on land. Again, whether you take them with you, or hire them, kayaks or canoes can also be fantastic for getting out there to enjoy the wonders of the natural world.
‘Guddling’ in Rock Pools
‘Guddling’ is a Scots word for playing rock pools, mucking around in the water and reaching for fish and other rock pool creatures. Take the time to help little children understand the creatures that they find and take the opportunity to teach them a little about the marine environment if staying near a coastline. Rivers, lakes and ponds can also all allow kids to learn about aquatic life.
Playing on a beach is lots of fun – rockpooling, sand castles and so much more! RVing can take you to some amazing beach locations.
Whether it is in the sea, a stream or a lake, a supervised summer paddle or swim can really inspire children to explore the natural world. Perhaps you could ford a stream to explore the other bank, or reach a small island just off-shore? Again, you can take the time to discuss any other creatures that you see.
Visiting a Bird Hide
A secret den in the woods or on the edge of an estuary, the chance to be an explorer discovering the secrets of the bird world: kids will love this adventure. Encourage kids to learn to recognise different bird species and make a note of which birds you see.
Kids will also love building their own dens using the natural materials around them and they will love it all the more if parents join in and help them build their forts, princess castles, wigwams or explorer’s hideaways.
Make (or Enjoy) a Rope Swing
Why not make (or find) a rope swing and enjoy swinging wildly from the trees and leaping off into muddy puddles? Yes, parents too! In for a penny, in for a pound! Embrace your inner child and join your kids in their outdoors play.
Climbing trees is an activity that we somehow usually grow out of as adults – why? Trees are the product of amazing evolutionary processes – the lungs of our planet, ancient, wise, and giving. Make some time to get to know trees better, and make some new arboreal friends.
Conducting a Bug Hunt
Kids love to discover the secrets of the insect world too. Take a magnifying glass and a container and head out on a bug hunt with little ones, helping them to identify the various creatures that they find and discussing their importance in the ecosystem.
You can also let kids go off and explore ‘on their own’ (nearby) to give them more of a sense of freedom. They will soon come running back to show you what they have found.
Wildflower Art Activities
Kids who enjoy art and craft activities can have a great time simply getting out there in the wild and finding some flowers to sketch. Perhaps you could get them to keep a notebook and fill it will pictures of wildflowers they find, along with their names. You never know, you..
In an RV, being organised is important. Whether you are living in your RV full time, or using your RV to enjoy exciting vacations, organisation is definitely key. The more organised you can be, the less the small amount of space available will be an issue, and the more time you can save. Saving time means having more time to relax, unwind, and enjoy the amazing destinations that the road has led you to, around the world. Organising an RV kitchen is always one of the more challenging organisational tasks for those living an RV lifestyle.
An RV kitchen and eating space can be as homely as any such space in an ordinary home – as long as you get things right when it comes to organising it.
A kitchen is the heart of any home – even when we are talking about an RV that is serving as a home away from home. RV kitchens can be small, and so the challenge can be even greater. But by following the tips in the article below, you can make sure that you make the most of the space available, and make sure that your RV kitchen runs like a well-oiled machine. Follow these tips and you will be whipping up a storm in any campsite or wilderness pitch in your sleek, orderly RV kitchen.
Less is More – Downsizing in an RV Kitchen
Being organised in an RV kitchen means being prepared for almost any eventuality. But being prepared does not necessarily mean having a lot. Sometimes, in an RV kitchen, it is important to remember that less is more. Here are some tips for downsizing in an RV kitchen:
Avoid Unnecessary Gadgets
Most of us are guilty of buying gadgets sometimes that we really don’t need. In our home kitchens, these can often languish in the back of our cupboards and are rarely, if ever used. In an RV, where space is usually much more limited, it is even more vital to make sure that you don’t lose place to these white elephants. What is more, reducing unnecessary gadgets is one way to save energy in your RV.
Bring Only as Many Plates, Bowls, Cups and Utensils as You Actually Need
Keeping things simple and uncluttered in an RV kitchen can make it easier to enjoy a back-to-nature experience.
When preparing for an RV vacation, or downsizing to fit your life into an RV that you plan to live in full time, it can be tempting to prepare for everything and anything. When choosing plates, bowls, cups and utensils, do not be tempted to bring more than you really need. If some unexpected party arises, having too few will rarely be a disaster, while if you bring too many of any of these things, they are likely to give you a storage headache over time. What is more, more things to eat from and with just means more washing up! Not exactly what you should be aiming for – especially if you want to save water in your RV.
Choose Pots and Pans to Feed Your Family, Not an Army
The same thing goes for the pots and pans you use to cook your food. Think about choosing multifunctional cookware that is big enough to create meals for yourself and any family you are travelling with. If you are travelling alone, or as a couple, you really don’t need massive cooking pots and pans, and can make do with much smaller cookware items. Looking into the vast range of one pot meals that you can cook in an RV should help you realise just how few pots and pans you really need.
Grow Your Own – Buy and Store Less Food
While it can be nice to have your store cupboards well-stocked with food, whether you are living in your RV or not, sometimes, less is more when it comes to food too. Shop more wisely, and take lists when shopping so you don’t over buy. Growing your own food in your RV is one great way to reduce that shopping list, and paying more attention to seasonality and sustainable food can help you to stay organised for meals in your RV kitchen throughout the year.
Working Towards Zero Waste Living in an RV Kitchen
Finally, working towards a zero waste lifestyle in your RV is not only good for the planet, it can also help you keep clutter and mess to a minimum. When you have less waste, there will be less trash to worry about – which could free up some valuable space in your RV kitchen and help you stay more organised.
Once you have taken steps to reduce and downsize in your RV kitchen, before you take things further, it is helpful to look at the big picture before you start drilling down into the details. These general tips will help you look holistically at your RV kitchen design and organisation:
Designing for You
First off, always remember that you are designing for you and those who travel with you. General tips for RV kitchens layout and features often forget that we are all individuals, with different needs and preferences. For example, if you are a six foot tall man, you can store items with ease much higher than a far shorter female RV owner.
As well as taking practical, physical things into account, it is also important to be realistic about who you really are and how you will really use the space. Are you always super neat and tidy, or are you really a rather messy cook? Are you a kitchen genius who can cook up complex meals in next to no time? Or are you lacking a little in the cooking skills department? Factors like these, and a number of other things, can mean that what works really well for one RV owner will be a nightmare for another. Individual factors can dictate what should be included in the space, layout, and practises for using the space.
In an RV kitchen that is well-designed and well-organised, you can cook just as many wonderful meals as you can in a regular kitchen.
Zoning an RV Kitchen
Even though an RV kitchen is very small, thinking carefully about where you place each and every element can save a lot of time and effort and make things a whole lot easier when you are using your RV kitchen.
The prepping surface might be considered the ‘heart of operations’. Thinking about how close (or far away) other elements of the kitchen are placed from here can help you work out the best layout. There may be fixed elements in the layout already. These usually include:
A stove top or hob.
Cupboard (or cupboards) depending on the size of your RV.
You may also have an oven, microwave, and other features.
However, in addition to these built-in items, you will also likely have a range of other elements to consider in your RV kitchen. Elements that it may be helpful to consider include:
A chopping board, knives and other items needed in the prepping area.
A drying rack for washing up (and any dish washing things)
Cooking pots, pans and utensils (that are used during cooking)
Condiments and spices used during cooking
Short-storage fresh food (that will be used quickly)
Long storage food (to be used later)
Crockery and utensils for eating the meals you prepare.
Recycling bin/ composting bin/ waste receptacle
When deciding where to put each of these elements (and any others you may need), think about where you will be when you need to access each one. Think, also, about how often you will require each item.
‘Zoning’ is a way to designate areas for different elements in a system. For each ‘position’ that you will find yourself in when using your RV kitchen (at the prepping space, at the stove, at the sink) try to think about what you will need when standing there (and how often you will need those things). The things that you will need most often should be positioned closest, while things you will only need occasionally can be placed further away. Try to think about how easy and quick it will be to grab each of the elements you need.
For example, while standing at the prepping area, you are likely to need easy access to your chopping board and prepping knives and utensils every time you use the space, so these should be as close and easily accessible as possible. (How about using a magnet to secure knives and chopping board beneath upper cabinets, for example?) You will also need easy access to your fresh food…
By working through things in this way, you can find the best place for everything you need when working on a meal, washing up or otherwise using your RV kitchen space. Having everything in the right place can make organisation a whole lot easier.
Workspace Time and Flow
One of the great things about zoning is that even in a very small space, it can save a surprising amount of time. Thinking about how you move around the space can help an RV kitchen to operate in a more organised way. When deciding how to lay out your kitchen, and where to store certain items, consider the paths you take between the different elements and try to make sure that those paths and movements are as easy and obstruction-free as possible. For example, when reaching for your spices from the stove top, you don’t want to have to move storage jars out of the way…
Without a doubt, storage is one of the main challenges in an RV kitchen, especially if your RV is on the small side. When choosing new items for your RV kitchen, considering items that you will be able to store more easily will undoubtedly make organising the space easier.
Many great examples of how stacking pans for RV cooking can be used inside in the oven and on the stove top, but also on campfires outdoors – multifunctional items mean less items are needed.
Kitchenware designed to stack, for example, can make storage of such items a lot easier. It can save space in your kitchen cupboards and make it easier to retrieve items when you need them, and to know where to place them when you put them away. Stackable camping cookware can be extremely useful in an RV kitchen for example, as can stackable storage jars.
Foldable & Collapsible Items
Another useful space saving tip is to look for foldable or collapsible items. Those prepping an RV as a bug out vehicle may find it useful to invest in some collapsible water containers, which can be filled up when the need arises. All RV owners could also consider other folding items, such as:
When storing and organising dry good in your kitchen, try to consider how frequently each of the goods will be required. Such items will usually keep for a long time, and so can often be stored for much later use. Those dry goods you use most frequently should be stored closest to prep and cooking areas, while those used less frequently can be stored further away.
You can keep dry goods neat, tidy and fresh by storing them in recycled glass jars – an eco-friendly choice which can help you cut down on plastic in your RV kitchen. Preppers or larger families travelling in an RV could also use larger ceramic or enamelled bins with lids that seal to store larger quantities of dried goods.
Storing & Organising Cans & Jars
Try to store cans so you can use the oldest first, and so you can see the labels. This will make it easier for you to grab what you need.
Whether you have canned your own produce, or buy cans from the store, these are easy to store neatly and in an organised way in your RV kitchen. If you are storing your own preserves, make sure that you label these clearly with their date of bottling so you know the order in which to use them. Try to keep things to be used first to the front of shelves, or in the position where they can be accessed most easily.
One way to do this is to create a system which allows the cans you placed in your cupboard first to be pulled from the bottom of a holder, while cans placed later are added in at the top. You can use a simple metal magazine rack to create such a can holder system.
Storing & Organising Fresh Produce
Fresh produce should always be stored where it is easily accessed when you need it, never hidden away where it can be forgotten and left to go to waste at the back of a cupboard or out of sight. Fresh produce not in the fridge can be stored effectively in fruit hammocks, or hanging baskets placed in your RV kitchen, for example. Such hanging storage can help to save space on your worktops as well as making access easier.
Fruit baskets or fruit hammocks hung in your RV kitchen can help save space and are a good organisation tip. They can be used to store fresh vegetables too.
Storing & Organising Pots & Pans
As mentioned above, pots and pans that stack or fold are always a great option when it comes to organising an RV kitchen. Other storage solutions for pots and pans might involve a wire or hooks which allows you to hang pots and pans by their handles, and access them easily when they are needed. Sometimes, it can be a good idea to store lids separately from their bases, perhaps held by their knobs with a taut wire strung along a wall or cupboard door.
Storing & Organising Crockery & Utensils
Keeping crockery and utensils in an organised and orderly fashion can sometimes seem like one of the biggest challenges when it comes to storage in your RV kitchen. Perhaps this is because plates, bowls, mugs, cups, knives, forks and spoons, spatulas, peelers and other items come in so many shapes and sizes.
Where you have chosen stackable items, these are likely to be very easy to store and organise. If, however, you have some older and possibly mis-matched items that still have useful life left in them and you do not want to part with, there are still a number of things you can do to keep things in order.
For example, plates of all sizes can be stored and accessed more easily if you keep them vertically in a cupboard, help between wooden dowels.
Cups and mugs can be hung from hooks on the bottom of cupboard shelves to save on space and make them easy to grab.
Cooking utensils can be stored in tall jars (like those used to store spaghetti), the lids of which can be screwed on in transit to keep everything in place.
In a cutlery drawer, you can keep things orderly by creating a series of boxes to compartmentalise the contents – forks in one section, spoons in another etc… Lidded boxes in a cutlery drawer may work better than standard partitions, since the contents is less likely to become muddled in transit – then you can take off the lids of the compartments when you reach your destination, for easy access to the items within.
By considering all the tips above, you should be well on your way to making sure that your RV kitchen is super organised, and everything runs like clockwork.
Whether you are a new couple, honeymooners, or have been together for years, finding the romance can often be a challenge. Our hectic and often chaotic lives can sometimes leave little space and time for romantic connection. Romanic RV vacations can be the perfect way to bring romance back into your lives. In this article, we will explore the idea of a romantic RV vacation, think about what it really means, and share a range of tips for your loving adventure for two.
RV Romance and Adventure!!! - YouTube
What is a Romantic RV Vacation?
The first thing to consider is what a romantic RV vacation actually is. What does ‘romantic’ really mean? And what implications does that have for planning and taking such a vacation?
At its core, the term ‘romantic’ is all about feeling, and atmosphere. It is about the connection between two people who love each other very much. While often, ‘romantic love’ is held up in contrast to the steadier, deeper love of an old married couple, trivialised with Hallmark cards, pink hearts and hot-house roses, really, it is simply about connecting with the one you love, creating an atmosphere of intimacy and happiness, and showing your loved one that you really care.
An RV vacation can be the perfect way to create this feeling and atmosphere. But while most people are familiar with images of romance, fewer understand that ‘romantic’ is not an objective adjective, it is very much a subjective one. What one person finds ‘romantic’ may leave another cold. It is important to understand that a romantic RV vacation can be many different things – it can take a range of different forms, depending on the individuals involved and their specific situation.
For this reason, it is important, when considering a romantic RV vacation, to think about yourself and your partner. Rather than blindly following a ‘formula’ for romance, consider who both of you truly are, and how you personally find a connection, and a sense of romance.
Why RV Vacations Can Be So Romantic
While it is important to consider yourself and your partner as individuals, however, it is important to consider too the ingredients that generally make for a romantic vacation. An RV vacation can deliver many of these things:
Spontaneity, and the Chance to Seize the Day
When you own an RV, you can head off for a vacation at the drop of a hat. You can seize the day and inject some spontaneity into your life. With no hotels to book, trains or planes to catch, and far fewer things to orchestrate, you are your partner can be far more free to head off and spend some quality romantic time together. You can be freer to make impulsive choices, and go wherever the wind takes you.
Privacy, and the Chance of Some ‘Alone Time’
Getting off the beaten track can mean some amazing wildlife encounters, as well as the chance to find a little romance. Bison in Yellowstone, early morning.
Romance can be a little tricky to ignite in the middle of a crowd. In any case, why be the same as everyone else? When you are planning your romantic RV vacation, you can think about doing something a little out there and going somewhere not a lot of other people go. Avoid the tourist hotspots and mass tourism centres and you can forge your own path to romance. Take yourselves off somewhere the two of you will be undisturbed, be it a shady glen, a secluded cove, a wind-swept strand or some other quiet corner and you can enjoy some time off the beaten track.
What is more, staying in your RV rather than in a hotel or another accommodation option where there are a lot of other people around can give you a much higher level of privacy – making it far easier for you to focus only on each other.
The Opportunity To Put Yourselves in the Way of Beauty
Gazing out over the Grand Canyon from North Rim.
A beautiful setting can really help the romantic atmosphere along. If you put yourself in the way of beauty and you are with the right person there can be nothing better. RV vacations often really allow you to get out there and be in beautiful landscapes in a way that is not possible with many other types of holiday. Imagine setting up camp just inches from a sandy beach with waves lapping gently on the shore, imagine pitching up in a green glade in the heart of an ancient woodland, or surrounded by the giants of an old-growth forest. Imagine looking out over a bucolic orchard, vineyard or rolling fields of farmland, or the dusty vista of a cactus-strewn desert… on an RV vacation, there are almost endless options to put yourself in the way of beauty.
The Chance to Let Nature Do The Talking
Even when the weather is not what you might wish, a stunning scene can help create a romantic mood. Sunset Point, Bryce Canyon.
Not sure what to say? Let nature do the talking for you. There is nothing more romantic, many would say, than looking out over a sparkling ocean on a calm summer’s day, or up at sparkling stars wheeling through the night sky above your heads. A sunrise or sunset can always lift the mood and will make the heart rejoice. One of the things people commonly say about RV vacations is that they see far more sunsets and sunrises than they have before. RV vacations really allow for free and easy commune with the natural world.
Adventure, and the Chance to Try New Things Together
Another ingredient often said to foster romance is adventure. An RV vacation allows couples to see things they have never seen before and do things together that they have never done before.
You and your partner should be adventurous together – it is only when we push ourselves and see others around us pushing themselves too that we can see what we, and they, are capable of. Likely you will both fall in love with each other all over again. For some, adventure might simply be navigating a strange new place, for others it might be a hike in the mountains, for some dare-devils it may be a no-holds-barred thrill-seeking ride on, for example, a white-water rafting, heli-skiing or paragliding adventure. Whatever you do on your romantic vacation, if you challenge yourselves and each other, you will see your own true, best selves shine forth, and can become closer for the experience.
An RV vacation can put you in the path of many such adventures – they lay in wait around practically every corner on the road!
The Chance to Forget the Time
Time on a romantic vacation should pass like a hazy blur. Watching the clock can be the antithesis of romance. On an RV vacation, you are in control, so you can forget the clock and scheduling everything down to the last second. Instead, you can enjoy the spontaneous fun of discovering new things and making mistakes together. Even if things go wrong, that can often be a bonding experience.
Opportunity to Get the Heart Pumping
Whether it is running through the rain, cycling along a country lane, ice-skating across a frozen lake or simply gazing into each other’s eyes as you try something new and scary together, getting the heart pumping is just the thing to kick-start a bit of romance. The best romantic moments are the moments when you feel most alive, as though you and your loved-one are the only ones who are living at this peak of intensity and nothing and no one can bring you back down to earth.
An RV vacation, which can bring you into close contact with the natural playground of the great outdoors, can offer plenty of opportunities to get some exercise endorphines, and get that adrenaline pumping.
Opportunities for Al Fresco Dining
There is often something very romantic and sensual about dining outdoors, and an RV vacation offers plenty of opportunities to eat outside, both at the campground itself, and as you set out to explore the surrounding area.
As well as enjoying barbecues and campfire meals, couples on RV adventures can head on out for a romantic picnic on a serene, secluded beach backed by swaying palms or looming pines, choose an outdoors venue for a dining out evening meal, or simply eat an ice cream together in some beautiful, natural location.
These are just some of the reasons why an RV vacation can form the perfect backdrop for romance.
Preparing for Romantic RV Vacations
While there is something to be said for the level of spontaneity that is possible with a romantic RV vacation, it really could save a lot of heartache if you do take the time to plan ahead at least a little. You may have planned delightful picnics, envisioning clear blue skies and soft sand,for example, but what will you do if the weather is less than perfect? It can help to have contingency plans in place.
Before you head off your your romantic RV vacation, before you even decide on a destination you should:
Check traffic conditions, road works or road closures on potential routes.
Check over your vehicle to make sure everything is in order.
Check you have the basics – fuel, water, food etc… for your stay. (Making a list of things to pack can help you make sure that you can quickly assemble everything you need.)
Choosing a Romantic Destination for an RV Vacation
Choosing a romantic destination for an RV vacation can be helpful. While you could just hit the road, since romance can be found just about anywhere, doing a little research before you go can help make sure that you get the romantic break you are expecting.
The first thing to remember when choosing a romantic destination is that you are choosing a romantic destination for you and your loved one. Be sure to try to make your trip a romantic holiday for you, not the romantic holiday you feel that you should have. Make sure you consider your own needs and wants as well as those of your partner, finding a balance between both of your needs, and finding a destination that will suit you both.
For example, many people’s go-to image of a romantic destination is, perhaps, an idyllic sandy beach bathed in warm sunshine. But such a destination may not be right for everyone. A snow clad mountain scene, a woodland or forest glade, a desert oasis or even a city destination may suit you better as a couple. Always think about your own personal preferences as a couple before deciding on a destination for your romantic RV vacation.
A romantic stop on a journey through Grand Tetons National Park. Self-taken.
Personally, my husband and I have found romance in all sorts of places. Our romantic camping adventures have taken us to National Parks in California, the Pacific Northwest, Montana, Wyoming, Utah and Arizona. We’ve found hidden gems of campgrounds in New England… we’ve travelled all across the wilds of Scotland, and elsewhere in the UK, down through France, Germany and Switzerland to the Alps. We have camped near romantic castles, near quaint villages, on picturesque farms, in mountain glens and sweeping valleys, near tranquil lakes, wild lochs and roaring waves. We have found connection, peace and romance in a wide range of breathtaking natural settings. But the journeys for you and your loved one may be very different.
Activities for Romantic RV Vacations
One of the questions for those taking a romantic RV vacation is what you should do together while you are away. There are a range of different activities which could be romantic, and which you might wish to incorporate in your time away.
Romantic Activities for the Campground:
First off, let’s take a look at some romantic activities that you can enjoy right there at your camping spot. For example:
Snuggle up in a Hammock, or on a Picnic Blanket
Finding a lovely spot for a cuddle is easy when you are in a beautiful natural setting. Don’t restrict yourself to the immediate environs of your RV. Consider slinging a hammock for two between two trees, for example, or spread a picnic blanket on a beach or an enchanting meadow.
Share a Hobby
No matter what you like to do, doing something together is the important things. Consider hobbies, old or new, that you are your loved one can share. Do a spot of birdwatching today, take photos together, paint or draw together, make music together, read to one another… there are plenty of hobbies that could keep you happy and busy together around camp.
Build a Campfire
Nothing sets the tone like a campfire in a beautiful natural setting.
As the day begins to draw to a close, the flickering flames of a campfire can make things begin to heat up. Stoke the romance by building a campfire and settling down together to gaze into its fiery glow and enjoy some romantic cuddling and conversation.
Cook Up A Romantic Meal Together
Dining together can be romantic, but cooking together can be romantic too. Whether you are enjoying toasting marshmallows over your campfire, manning a barbecue together, or bumping elbows in your small RV kitchen – just the simple acts of preparing food together can be very romantic. Doing it together also means that one person in a couple does not end up doing the lion’s share of the work.
Stare at the Stars
Finally, when the sun goes down, gazing up at the glorious night’s sky with your loved one, and seeing the stars beaming back down can also be another ingredient for romance. Lie on a blanket on the ground, or in a hammock and gaze upwards together, or share special moments looking through a telescope for a closer look at the heavens.
Romantic Activities Out and About:
Romantic activities for an RV vacation are not only restricted to things you can do at and around camp. Here are some other activities that you might also enjoy that many could consider to be romantic:
Farmers Markets & Pick Your Own Places
Farmers markets and pick your own farms, orchards or vineyards can all be romantic places to visit. Not only will you be able to pick up farm to fork produce to enjoy later in the evening, you can also enjoy magical moments – popping strawberries in one another’s mouths, perhaps, laughing together over comically shaped vegetables, or sharing a tender kiss amongst the vines.
A romantic vineyard could be the perfect place for a little romance.
Shopping (Or Window Shopping) Excursions
As well as shopping for food in attractive places, some couples also enjoy other types of shopping. They might treat one another to a special gift such as a piece of jewellery or something truly meaningful to them. Some couples love antiquing – finding objects imbued with history and freighted with meaning can help you take pleasure in your own shared history, perhaps.
Historic sites and attractions can also be very romantic places. Visit castles, for example, to find fairytale romance. Play at homesteading on an historic farm. Experience the romance of the seas on historic ships, or the romance of the rails on a vintage train. There are plenty of historic places to visit that will help romancing couples to get into the right mood.
A cabin made for two? History and natural beauty: Cunningham cabin, with breathtaking views of the Grand Tetons.
Of course, nature also offers a wealth of attractions that can often add romance to an RV vacation. If you see a wonderful waterfall at dawn, look out through primordial mists over an ancient forest, see the sun glinting off the water as white-capped waves lap against the shore, or experience sunset over wonders of the world like the Grand Canyon, then you will find it easily understand why trips to such sites are conducive to romance.
For some, looking at nature is not enough. RV vacations are also the perfect opportunity to immerse yourself in such environments. Hiking, cycling, kayaking, canoeing, sailing, climbing, and many more outdoors pursuits can all be extremely romantic activities to enjoy.
Food & Drink for Romantic RV Vacations
RV Date Night ! - YouTube
Food and drink can be key ingredients in creating a romantic mood. Here are some romantic meal ideas for your RV vacation:
One Pot Campfire Curry & Flat Bread
Spicy food has been shown to inflame the passions! Chemicals in the spices and chilli can actually mimic the processes of arousal and could be perfect to get you both into a romantic mood. So cook up your favourite curry recipe and toast a flat bread over the fire then tuck in together to enjoy sensuous eating with your hands.
Fiery Chocolate Chilli
Another spicy option to heat things up a little, this chocolate chilli also offers the indulgence of chocolate to the mix, a dish that looks and feels sophisticated but which takes next to no time to knock up. This can also be served with bread, or with a dish of rice.
Salmon Fillets With Pesto Crust & Fresh Greens
This simple yet classy dish is sure to impress your loved one, yet is not very difficult to prepare, even with the limited facilities on a campsite. The pesto can be prepared ahead of time using fresh herbs, pine nuts, garlic and olive oil – ingredients that can put a spring in your step and which some say also act as natural aphrodisiacs!
Honey Glazed Vegan Kebab Sticks
Honey is always associated with romance – as in honeymoon – and fertility, think of the phrase ‘the birds and the bees‘… and it turns out that honey really can be good for your love life. Honey is good for you in a range of ways, and better health can lead to a better relationship with your loved one. Spread vegetables, halumi, and whatever else you fancy with honey and soy and grill kebabs over a campfire for something just a little bit different, with a hint of smokey sweetness.
Arugula, Fig & Feta Salad
Grilled vegetables, fig, feta and (another natural aphrodisiac) arugula can be combined to create a delicious (and fancy looking) special occasion salad, served warm to keep off the winter chill, or cold to beat the heat on a hot day. Healthy yet delicious, this could be the perfect thing to serve your loved one on your next romantic RV vacation.
For a sweet treat after your main meal of the day, you could also consider romantic desserts – chocolate is often a favourite ingredient for romance – how about melting some in a fondue pot and dipping fruits into it. This treat could be perfect with a glass of wine, or even champagne, or, if the weather is chilly, perhaps hot chocolates would go down a treat.
There are, of course, also plenty of other romantic meal ideas that you could serve. As before, we sure to always bear your own tastes and your partner’s tastes..
Dogs truly are “man’s best friend” and recent statistics note that over 68% of the population owns a share of the 89 million dogs roaming this country. With more and more folks making full-time RVing their lifestyle, more happy pups than ever are out and about exploring the ramblings roads and winding routes that make up North America.
While traveling with your fur baby full-time isn’t really much more complicated than having a dog in a house environment, here are 13 tips to make your life on the road a little easier for yourself, and your best friend.
Keep a consistent schedule.
Dogs do best with a consistent schedule. We have found that no matter where the road leads us if we keep close to our pups regular eating, exercise, and bedtime schedules we have a calmer and overall more well-adjusted fur baby. Constant change is a challenge for humans and dogs alike. Keeping to a schedule, even on travel days, goes a long way towards a harmonious life on the road.
Dog companions LOVE life on the road.
Do some research.
Just as you plan your route for the day, it’s important to do some research for your pup. You will certainly want to do some research on the best campgrounds for the entire family. Although many campgrounds allow dogs, the large cement parking lot style RV parks may not have the best options for places to take fido for a walk, for instance. Smaller, family-run parks could possibly be a good alternative for an environment that includes grassy areas and add to the enjoyment and well-being of your pet.
Along with a consistent schedule, it can be very helpful to your pooch to have a steady supply of their favorite dog chow. Many brands are available nation-wide making it easier than ever before to find your favorite. It is important to keep it fresh as well by storing the food in a sealable plastic Vittles Vault or similar container.
Beach time is always a highlight for pups on the road.
Bookmark Bring Fido on your laptop.
There are multiple websites available that offer information on pet-friendly traveling and favorites include Bring Fido and Your Dog Advisor. These sites include local knowledge and recommendations on lodging, restaurants, and activities in many cities across the country. The search engine features first-hand reviews in many cases so you can be assured you and your furry friend will be welcomed with open arms.
While National Parks do not allow dogs on trails you will find the State Parks next door often do!
Search for local and regional parks for exercise.
A good research plan should include a search for local and regional parks. These are a gold mine for dog walking and many even have dog parks within their limits. Either way, they are a perfect spot to meet other dog owners and allow your pup plenty of exercise and fresh air as well as an opportunity to increase the all-important socialization skills.
Many wineries are dog-friendly.
Use a dog crate.
The majority of pups do best when they are their own private place and a dog crate fits the bill. A crate can quickly become your dogs “safe place” and you if you haven’t used one before you will quickly realize that most dogs truly embrace having their own spot to retreat. Having a favorite plush toy or two is another fantastic idea for helping your fur baby feel at home, even on the road.
Everyone likes to have a special friend to nap with.
Take regular breaks.
The key to any road trip is to enjoy the journey, not just the destination. This is even more important when traveling with fido and taking a break every couple of hours allows the entire family to stretch their legs, take a bathroom break, and perhaps do some sight-seeing. Farm stands, wineries, and historical sites often have a fantastic picnic and grassy areas along with big-rig parking.
Frequent breaks are good for all members of the family.
Ask around for local vet recommendations.
In the unfortunate circumstance that you need to visit a vet along the way, the best option is to ask locals for vet recommendations. Many campgrounds and grooming services, along with pet stores, can point you in the right direction. Another alternative is to check out reviews on sites such as Yelp, although it’s important to verify how old the reviews are.
With the right vaccinations, you can even take your furry friend to places such as Lake Atitlan in Guatemala.
Make sure to carry your dog’s vaccination paperwork.
Without a constant home base and vet, it is vitally important to carry your pups medical paperwork with you. In the event of an emergency or even a yearly exam, it is essential for whatever vet you are seeing to have full knowledge of all medications, vaccinations, and exams that your dog has undergone.
A well-socialized dog is a good dog.
Microchip your dog.
Every single dog should be microchipped for their own safety. A microchip is a tiny transponder around the size of a grain of rice and by far the best bet in having your dog returned to you if they get lost. Although not a tracker, dog services, vets and rescue organizations always scan for chips in order to reunite dogs and their owners. The most important reminder; make sure to register as your pet’s owner so that your contact information will be up to date.
A perfect cafe dog just takes practice.
Check the weather.
Pet’s are greatly affected by the weather just like you are. It is best to be prepared by checking the conditions where you’ll be traveling. Dog boots and a coat are an excellent idea for snowy and cold conditions. For high heat or humidity regions, it is helpful to add ice cubes to your pups water bowl, search for shade and water sources, and a self-cooling pad can be a lifesaver.
Swimming is the perfect hot weather exercise option.
Be a responsible dog owner.
We know that you think your dog is the best pet ever. What is important to understand is that not everyone may find them quite so appealing. Some people are afraid of dogs and as impossible as it seems, some are simply not dog admirers. Keep your dog leashed in public when not at an off-leash approved area. In dog-friendly areas take the time to socialize your pup so they are comfortable lying under or next to your table quietly and for goodness sake, always make sure to clean up after your dog!
Family memories including your fur babies are priceless.
Never leave your dog in a hot car. Ever.
This should be a given and yet dozens and dozens of dogs perish every single year. Even if you think you’ll only be a minute, this is never okay. Just don’t do it.
Some National Parks even allow dogs in certain areas.
At the end of the day, with a bit of pre-planning and organization traveling full-time with your dog is highly rewarding. The ability to spend the majority of time with their “pack” is every dog’s dream so give your furry friend a big hug and start planning!
Let’s face it, nobody wants to talk about toilets, but it is a subject our bodies will not allow us to ignore, and camping can add additional challenges. That is why we have assembled a list of ten portable potties that can end the discussion and let us take care of business.
There is a broad assortment of portable potties on the market. Some are as simple as a bucket with a seat and a lid, while others claim to offer all the comforts of home. All the toilets reviewed here are flushing toilets.
All the toilets reviewed have a familiar toilet seat, a freshwater reservoir, a flushing mechanism, and a detachable separate portable holding tank that can be emptied at any dump station or toilet. The capacity of the holding tank could be a determining factor for your selection based on the number of people sharing the toilet, and the length of trips. In our case, there are just two of us, and a smaller 2.6-gallon holding tank is good for three to four days. Some holding tanks can hold 5.0 gallons or more.
One advantage of 5.0-gallon models is that they are taller; closer in height to a standard bathroom toilet. The smaller units are lower. We have s wooden stand that is about six inches high on which we set our smaller potty. A disadvantage can be weight. Water weighs approximately eight pounds per gallon. A full 5.0-gallon waste tank will weigh 40 pounds.
Some toilets are sold with a starter kit of holding tank treatment that liquifies solids and reduces odor, much the same as the treatments used in RV holding tanks.The element of design that is a personal consideration is the shape of the unit. While all are perfectly functional, we prefer square-based units rather than oval or round units. The square base seems to provide a slightly more stable base, especially if the unit is sitting on grass or soft ground. However, the oval styles work perfectly well too.
A Simple Hack
A shower tent makes an excellent “outhouse” when set up near the camper.
We have found that a simple utility or shower tent makes an excellent bathroom or outhouse. Our vintage camper is small and to use the toilet inside would require setting it in the middle of the floor and putting it back in its storage closet after use. Setting up the shower tent outside the camper makes it convenient, private, comfortable, and outside!he major differences in the potties reviewed here are overall design, size, and apparent quality of construction, especially the seals for the holding tanks that prevent leakage and odors.
Preferences and Ranking
Obviously, smaller tanks are easier to handle. If you require a larger capacity holding tank, hopefully you will have a strong teenager to take care of latrine duty. In any case, any of these beats looking for a secluded tree, only to find poison ivy facing your exposed quarter.
Treatment, Cleaning, and Storage
Most portable potties are sold with at least a starter packet of “toilet treatment” that helps control odor and makes emptying easier. Some of these packets, packaged for larger RV holding tanks, treat up to 40 gallons of water, therefore, you may need only a tablespoon or two of treatment for a 5.0-gallon, or smaller, tank.
Typically, we take the waste tank to a camper dump station and empty it there. Smaller capacity units can be carefully emptied into a toilet. It is a good idea to have rubber gloves available. After dumping, thoroughly rinse the holding tank and place a small amount of tank treatment the holding tank. Most portable toilets are made of ABS plastics with special finishes that help flush easily and prevent the contents from clinging to the toilet bowl.
Do not use household toilet bowl cleaners, bleaches, scouring powder, or scrubbers designed for ceramic toilet bowls. Warranties may not cover damage due to the use of damaging cleaners, therefore, use only recommended portable toilet cleaning products. These will degrade the toilet bowl surface and damage flushing seals, allowing liquids and odors to escape. Clean the toilet thoroughly before putting it in extended storage. Proper care and cleaning will greatly extend the life of the toilet.
Put water or a sheet of toilet paper in bowl before using it for solid waste.
Close the lid before opening the wastegate.
Keep paper towel or other wipes handy to clean the toilet after use. Do not flush these in the toilet.
Note, leaving this, or any other closed container, in the hot afternoon sun will cause the holding tank to build up pressure. The only release for this pressure is the flush handle or leaks in seals due to excessive pressure. While occasional workmanship issues may result in leaks of fluids or odors, most such events are the result of improper cleaning, failure to fully close the flush handle, or leaving a unit exposed to direct sunlight.
Note that even with perfect seals, flushing any toilet briefly opens the holding tank, allowing odors to escape. These odors can be minimized by using commercial holding tank treatments as recommended.
To ensure long lasting satisfaction and use: (1) read and follow each manufacturer’s assembly, operating, cleaning, and storage guidelines, (2) clean units thoroughly after each outing, and (3) do not leave units exposed to direct sunlight. Excessive heat buildup in the freshwater and waste water tanks can cause pressure that will affect seals, distort the shape of the holding tanks, and weaken construction materials.
There are many ratings available on the web and most range from very good to totally dissatisfied. However, on a scale of 1-5, all these units scored 3 or better overall. Ratings here are based on a minimum of 50 or more ratings available from multiple sources online, unless the model is relatively new, and no ratings have been posted.
For the toilets reviewed, flushing is a two-step process. Add fresh water to the bowl using the bellows or pressure pump. Toilets with a pressure pump have a flush button that releases water under pressure into the bowl, presumably for better bowl cleaning. To transfer the contents of the bowl to the holding tank, there is a flushing handle that opens a valve and allows the bowl contents to flow into the holding tank. The flush handle must be manually opened and closed.
This is a typical design with a bellows plunger that pumps water into the toilet bowl
All the units reviewed here list for between $60.00 and $160, based on the manufacturer’s suggested retail price. Actual in-store and online prices may vary significantly from the manufacturer’s suggested retail price.
Any of these toilets are ideal for use out and about in the great outdoors, camping, on boats, or RVs when away from “facilities” for extended periods. They are multi-purpose and extremely versatile and may have home uses for convenience in workshops or garages, or for patients or potty training toddlers.
The manual pump builds pressure in the holding tank. When the flush button is pressed, water is released under pressure to rinse the bowl.
Camco – Camco is a large US business that produces plenty of outdoor portable products and accessories. Launched in 1966 with one product, Camco has grown to more than 700 employees and 130+ products.
Coleman – Established in 1900, Coleman is a recognized, established producer of camping and outdoor equipment.
Dometic – Another recognized manufacturer that focuses on the RV market and has been around since 1968.
Earthtec Toilets is a division of Sequoia Brands, a company dedicated to bringing environmentally friendly solutions to specialty products. Earthtec’s focus is on products that are serviceable and dependable.
Palm Springs Outdoors produces a variety of products for both camping and backyard living.
Reliance – A respected brand in the industry that has been around for 45 years.
Thetford – A company well recognized for its camper toilets, Thetford mentions that one of its aims is to make mobile living more comfortable, which is exactly what we are looking for.
The Campo 4531 lightweight toilet is especially convenient for small campers, tent camping, and day use. It is a compact unit that is ideal for one or two people for a long weekend. Let’s face it, portable potties are not high-tech, but this one feels almost like home.
The detachable 2.6-gal. holding tank is not only sufficient for two-to-three days, it works like the “real thing.” Most users find that it is of durable construction providing years of dependable service.
A bellows plunger delivers freshwater to the bowl. The sealing slide valve makes flushing easy and locks in odors. As with all portable toilets we recommend a reliable brand of toilet treatment to help control odors and make the unit easier to clean. Durable parts and seals mean long-term use.
This toilet is only 11 in. high. We recommend setting it on something sturdy that raises it six inches for more comfortable use.
Pumping flush action cleans the bowl
Sliding gate valve seals in odors
Easy to clean
Sturdy construction—compact and lightweight
Durable parts and seals—long-term use
A personal favorite that is reliable, functional, and compact.
Earthtec has combined the unlikely pair of terms, “portable potty” and “high tech” to a achieve a top-tier environmentally friendly product. For example, the ETEC is supplied with a pump that Earthtec claims takes the “nasty” out of emptying the holding tank.
Earthtec toilet will support up to 440 lbs. The 5.0-gal. tank will hold up to 50 flushes. The ETEC is also supplied with a cleaning wand that attaches to a hose (not supplied) and is designed to clean all areas of the holding tank.
Designed and produced by a company that considers the environment while delivering an essential service.
The real “high tech” is in the Nano-technology coating on the bowl and inside the holding tank. This coating adds a hardened, very slick friction-free surface that allows toilet bowl and holding tank contents to slide easily through and out of the toilet.
Earthtec toilets also have a swing-out discharge tube that makes it easy to empty the holding tank into campground dump stations without spilling a drop and cuts down on odors during the process.
Described as a heavy duty portable toilet, the Palm Springs outdoor toilet is claimed to provide comforts of home. It is sure better than a hike into the woods.
Manufactured from high density polyethylene (HDPE) for superior strength and durability. This outdoor toilet has a 3-gal. fresh water tank and a 5-gal. waste water tank. “Double sealed valves” between the tanks and one-piece construction of the waste tank prevents leaks and reduces odors.
The larger capacity waste tank also raises the unit to the height of a household toilet. Of course, a full waste tank will weigh close to 40 pounds.
It includes a great list of specifications that all focus on providing quality for a low price.
A less familiar name in portable toilets, but a solid product at a competitive price. We see this as a solid option that will take care of business.
The Campa Potti MT is Thetford’s update of the earlier Campa Potti MG. It has a 3.6 gal waste tank, an intermediate size for those who want more capacity than the smaller 2.5-gal. waste tanks but who do not need the heavier, larger, heavier models. The freshwater tank holds 4.0 gal.
The new design is also easier to carry and has a lid that latches shut.
It has a rotating pour spout for the waste tank that makes it easy to empty into a public dump station or a toilet.
All Thetford toilets include starter packs of deodorant treatment for the holding tank.
This update of an earlier model has improvements that make it a strong player in this group.
The Thetford 92860 has a 5.5-gal. high capacity holding tank as well as a 4.0-gal. freshwater tank. The larger capacity also means that it is roughly the same height as a standard household toilet.
The Curve has a more modern style.
As with all toilets in this review, the manufacturer claims easier waste disposal and clean-out
According to the manufacturer, the toilet will hold in excess of fifty flushes before needing to be dumped. We recommend checking the level. A full holding tank will weigh about to 44 pounds.
One feature we liked is the toilet paper compartment on the lower right side of the unit. Another feature is the electric flush button (uses 6 AA batteries—included). Of course, this means one more appliance that requires batteries.
A combination of styling and functionality for a family of four or more.
Set it up in a utility or shower tent this could be set up for larger family reunions or at a temporary worksite without having to rent a commercial portable potty.
User comments included that it was inclined to tip over if not restrained in a moving vehicle (camper) and the electric flush, while convenient, adds a potential point of failure.
This toilet features a larger seat and an increased bowl size than many of the portable toilets reviewed. The Camco uses a bellows plunger to pump water into the bowl and pull handle on the front to empty the bowl into the 5.3 gal. holding tank.
The Camco Model 41541 is approximately the same height as a standard toilet, making it more comfortable for some users.
A simple, single locking latch makes removing the holding tank easy. The same spring-loaded latch automatically reattaches the holding tank. Like most toilets reviewed, the seal between the holding tank and flush valves keep odors in the holding tank.
Most owners found this to be a very good portable toilet, especially for the price. The..
Theo: A tired dog after a long walk, resting in the RV.
If you own an RV, or enjoy renting one for vacations, you already know how much fun an RV adventure can be. There are a wide range of benefits to getting out there on the open road and enjoying a range of beautiful, natural locations. What you may not realise is that your RV adventures can be as much fun for some pets as they are for you!
While (as for us) the drive there may be a bit of drag for your pets, the chance to get out there and enjoy the wilderness and experience stunning scenery and the great outdoors can be as amazing for them as it can be for us. Dogs in particular are fantastic pets to bring along on RV trips, or even to keep with you when you live full time in an RV. But certain cats, and even smaller pets, can also find a home, or a home away from home, in an RV.
Can You Really Keep Pets When Living in an RV Full Time?
Traveling with Pets in an RV - What It's Like Full Time RVing with Animals - YouTube
If you are contemplating downscaling to live in an RV, one of the things that may be stopping you is the thought that your pet or pets won’t be able to come along for the ride. The truth of the matter is that some pets will do just fine living full time with their owners in an RV. Many people living the RV lifestyle full time do keep pets. Animals are amazingly good at adapting to circumstances. While, of course, you will need to take their needs and wants into account as well as your own, and having pets does add complications, they need not necessarily be a barrier to an RV lifestyle.
Of course, there are certain things to consider when it comes to deciding whether or not keeping a pet when living in an RV is a good idea. For example, it is important to consider:
How far you will be travelling, and where.
How long you intend to spend on the road between stops.
Space availability in your RV. (For pets and for all the things they will need).
The type of animal you are considering keeping and their requirements.
The individual character of your pet (if you already have one). Some pets are far more adaptable, calm and resilient than others.
The financial cost of keeping the pet or pets in question.
Legal requirements regarding the pets for the areas in which you will be travelling.
Simply considering the above and using your common sense will often give you your answer regarding whether living in an RV with certain pets is a good idea or not.
For example, while one dog may be doable – four dogs would almost certainly be far too much. A relaxed and chilled out pooch may do amazingly, while a highly strung and nervous hound may be miserable.
Can You Really Vacation in an RV With Pets?
While living in an RV full time with your pet or pets might not be a goer, that does not necessarily mean that you cannot go on vacation with your pets in your RV for shorter periods of time. While many of the same considerations apply when you are only going to be in your RV for a limited period, there are work arounds for nervous pets and for other concerns if you are only going on vacation.
One of the benefits of having an RV and being able to take vacations in it is the fact that it is far easier to take a pet with you than it is if you plan to stay in a hotel or other accommodation. Your RV gives you a way to travel, a place to sleep, and a place eat and relax without having to worry about whether or not your pet is welcome. For dog owners in particular, this can significantly simplify going on vacation with your pet. Rather than worrying about finding dog friendly accommodation, restaurants etc…, restaurants etc… you just have to check that dogs are welcome at the camp grounds you are considering for night stops.
What Are the Benefits of Having a Pet When on the Road?
Dogs can love getting out to explore the world, and you can enjoy taking them there in your RV.
Having a pet with you on your RV adventures can bring its challenges every now and then. But on the whole, bringing a pet with you in your RV is an overwhelmingly positive experience, with a wide range of benefits. For example:
Pets can offer companionship, especially if you are travelling solo.
Stroking pets has been proven to have therapeutic health benefits, and is great for your mental well-being.
Pets can be a source of great fun and amusement.
Taking dogs for a walk can encourage you to get out and about while camping and mean that you get plenty of exercise.
Pets can also become a talking point and allow you to forge connections with other campers.
Documentation You’ll Need To Bring When Taking a Pet in your RV
Of course, having a pet with you in your RV is not all fun and games. It is important to take things seriously and make sure that you are fully prepared. For example, you will need to make sure that you bring all the relevant documentation on board. You may well need:
Proof of ownership. (Perhaps permits for certain pets in certain places.)
The details of your pets microchip. (We highly recommend that dogs/cats are chipped, so they can be reunited with you should they be separated from you through some accident.) If pets are not chipped, do make sure at the very least that they are wearing a valid and up to date ID tag with your phone number and details.
Vaccination records. (Some camp grounds insist on seeing this information before they let your pet stay.)
Documentation regarding any allergies or medical ailments that your pet may suffer from.
Documents relating to any pet insurance that you have taken out.
Photographs of your pet. (This is a good idea as you can use these to help find your pet if something bad happens and they go missing.)
We none of us like to think that something bad will happen. But it is best to expect the best but prepare for the worst.
Pet Safety in an RV & On RV Adventures
Before you set off, it is also important to think about how you will safeguard your pet throughout each stage of your adventure. Here are a few tips to help you keep your pet safe:
Make sure your pet is not loose in your RV while you are driving
Small pets should be housed safely in their cages or enclosures, cats should be in secure cat carriers, and dogs should either be in secure crates, or harnessed with a special car dog harness. If your pets are loose, they could easily get badly hurt, or could cause you to become distracted and have an accident while driving.
Having a dog or other pet roaming loose when driving can be dangerous. Make sure your pet is well secured.
Make sure your pet does not overheat or become dehydrated
Never, ever leave pets alone in your RV if it is very hot. Pets can overheat and even die if there is not adequate ventilation. Do not drive for too long without considering your pet’s water needs, and do not leave pets alone in your RV on a campsite for too long without making sure they have enough to drink, and the right temperature. Likewise, when taking a dog for a walk or playing catch on a hot campsite, make sure your pal does not overheat and make sure that they always have access to fresh drinking water.
Keep your pet away from poisons and other dangers
Do not leave pets unsupervised in your RV around anything that could poison or otherwise harm them. Make sure there is no access to fuel, anti-freeze etc. and that they cannot get into any mischief. Some pets can be safely left on a campsite on their own for short periods, but you should really not leave a pet alone and unattended for too long – no matter how pet-proof your vehicle may be.
Make sure pets do not eat anything that they shouldn’t
…Or have run-ins with local wildlife
Dangers lie outside your RV too. If you are travelling to remote, pastoral or wild locations, be sure to keep a close eye on the local flora and fauna. Make sure your pet does not ingest any poisonous plants, or have any run-ins with local wildlife. For example, look out for snakes, if travelling in an area where you may encounter some… keep an eye out for large predators like bears when in the woods – these may attack dogs if they feel they are a threat – especially if they have young. Even local farm animals may pose a threat if you are not careful – cows, for example, have been known stampede dogs that get between them and their calves.
These two seem to be getting along just fine. But not all animal encounters run as smoothly. Be careful around any other animals with your pet.
Be Wary of Letting Your Pet Run Free
While, in certain places, it may be perfectly safe to let your dog off their leash, it is important to employ common sense. Consider the surroundings: other people and other animals, as well as the natural terrain. Only let your dog off leash where it is safe (and permitted) to do so.
Keeping your pet safe is largely a case of common sense. Make sure that their basic needs are met at all times and keep potential dangers in mind, and you and your pet are sure to have a safe and enjoyable time on your RV adventure.
A Pet Essentials Packing Checklist
It is almost time to hit the road. But before you go, you will need to make sure that you have everything that you need to take care of your pet and keep them happy and healthy. Here is a pet essentials packing checklist, to help you make sure that you have remembered everything:
Food for your pet.
A receptacle or receptacles for your pet to eat from.
Water for your pet.
Something for your pet to drink from. (You may like to consider investing in a no-spill water bowl to use in transit.)
Pet’s cage or enclosure, cat carrier, dog crate or harness.
A leash for your dog/cat.
Bags to pick up after your dog. (You should consider getting biodegradable bags, to go greener on your camping adventures.)
Any essential medicines that your pet may need.
Toys for your pet and things to keep them occupied while you are travelling.
Old towels to dry off outside pets at the door in wet weather.
When your dog likes doing things like this, and swimming in the sea, having old towels around to dry them off before they go into the RV is essential!
Pets in RVs – Troubleshooting:
While having pets in an RV is usually a positive experience, there will be certain problems to overcome. Here are some troubleshooting tips to help you overcome some of the most common problems for RV owners with pets:
Reluctant RV Campers
Some pets just don’t seem to take to RV camping trips. But that does not mean that you cannot convert them. Sometimes, you can win over your pet and turn them into an RV lover. To get pets (such as dogs) used to RV adventures:
Try a short ‘dry run’ before taking a major trip.
Take your pets bed or other familiar items with you so it feels like ‘home’.
Keep to a campsite routine, so creatures of habit feel more comfortable.
Keep pets tired out and entertained, so boredom does not kick in.
Some dogs, like this happy guy by the look of things, love to travel, while others feel a little motion sick when on the road.
Some pets can experience motion sickness – just like humans can. Pets will often get better after spending more time on the road. In the short term, you can help them out by:
Cracking a window to provide better air flow.
Take a break as often as possible.
Giving them a drink and a bite to eat to settle their stomach.
Look out for the signs – in a dog these include yawning, drooling, whining and general signs of discomfort. That way you can try to prevent mess and stop before there is a bigger problem.
If you find that your pet refuses water while you are travelling then you may need to stop more frequently. They may be telling you that they feel unwell, or that they need a pee break. They may also prefer cool water, so make sure you provide this as soon as you can if their water has become warm in transit.
If your pet always seems to spill their drinking water while you are on the road, then you could look into non-spill drinking solutions, or reconfigure the lay out of their area so that they can still reach water conveniently, but so that it is not in their way.
If a pet refuses food, again, it may be a sign that they feel unwell. Some pets may also take some time to get used to a new regime. Motion sickness may be to blame, though it is important to rule out an actual illness. If your pet is fussy, it could simply be that you are trying to feed them something different from usual. You may have to find space to store and take with you a sufficient supply of what they usually eat.
One of the challenges for those Rving with pets is storing and keeping pet food fresh. How easy this is will, of course, depend on what your pet eats. Tins are relatively easy to store, but may not be as good for your pet as a wholefood diet. If you can, try to pick up local, ethical meat for your cat or dog rather than trying to source brand name cat or dog food on the road. (This is also a way to cut down on waste and move towards a zero waste lifestyle in your RV.)
When you are on the road, regular bathroom breaks are essential – for you and your pets.
Many RV owners travelling with dogs for the first time believe that their dogs are very unhappy travelling in the RV, when in fact, the problem is often simply that they have not stopped often enough to allow their dogs to stretch their legs and do their business. Make sure that you incorporate sufficient bathroom breaks into your itinerary – not just for you and other human travellers but also for dogs that are travelling with you.
Cats are generally good at finding and using litter trays. If there is a problem, make sure that the litter tray has been cleaned out and that your cat is happy with its location. If cat litter gets everywhere, consider purchasing a litter catching mat to place beneath the tray.
Exercise & Entertainment
Many of the problems encountered by first time RV travelling pet owners are caused by the fact that their pets are not getting enough exercise, or are simply bored. It is vitally important to make sure that dogs get a good walk at least once or twice a day, and ideally the chance to run around. Indoors cats may not need a walk – but they still need some fun. All pets should have adequate entertainment – both on the road and when you set up camp. Tired, entertained pets are more likely to be happy pets, and everyone is more likely to have a good night’s sleep at the end of each day.
Odours in the RV
Another common complaint for those new to keeping pets or travelling with pets in an RV are the smells that animals sometimes inevitably make. Making sure that you clean out all pet areas on a regular basis can help keep unpleasant smells to a minimum. (Incidentally, feeding cats and dogs on a healthy, whole-food diet can also keep smells down.)
Should smells linger, you can deodorise litter trays, bedding and upholstery with bicarbonate of soda… or you can just open a window.
The tips above should help you enjoy travelling with pets in your RV. The only thing that remains to decide is where your next RV adventure will take you.
Reducing the waste we produce should be a key goal for all those who want to live a greener, more ethical and sustainable way of life. Living a zero waste lifestyle is the only way to ensure that we are part of the solution to the planet’s ills rather than part of the problem. In this article, we will look at home we can go about living a zero waste lifestyle in an RV, whether we vacation in one, or live in an RV full time.
What is a Zero Waste Lifestyle?
A zero waste lifestyle is one in which all the basic needs of existence are met without the generation of any waste. Waste can take a variety of different forms. We might be taking about wasting energy, water, food or a wide range of other resources. One of the most pressing concerns, however, for those living a zero waste lifestyle, is the plastic and plastic composite waste that humanity generates in copious amounts.
Moving towards a zero waste lifestyle is all about taking back control, and taking responsibility for the things we buy, the things we throw away, and the true cost of those things.
The Problem With Waste
Plastic pollution is a major problem. You can do your part to reduce plastic waste and other forms of waste in your RV.
Around the world, people are waking up to the problem of plastic pollution. The statistics are shocking. Humanity’s annual consumption of plastic materials has increased from around 5 million tonnes in the 1950s to almost 100 million tonnes today. Unfortunately, much of the plastic we use ends up in our rivers and oceans – scientists have shown that up to 12 million tonnes of plastic is entering our oceans each year – an amount that could fill a rubbish truck every minute!
Unfortunately, all that plastic sticks around. Plastic does not usually biodegrade naturally in the environment, and will remain there, in every ecosystem of the planet, for hundreds of years. By living without regard for the waste we generate today, we are creating a massive problem not only for ourselves but for many generations to come.
Of course, plastic is not the only material that poses of problem when it comes to the issue of waste. Vast quantities of items and materials end up in landfill sites each year. They pollute the environment and contribute heavily to climate change and global warming.
Waste is a massive problem. It is easy to become overwhelmed, and to wonder what we, as individuals, can really do to mitigate the problems. The truth of the matter is that much of the power is in our hands. While governments and big business do have to do their part, there is still plenty that individuals can do to reduce the waste burden on our planet. Little steps that we can take on the road to a zero waste lifestyle can really add up to a surprisingly big difference.
How Can RV Living Help People Live a Zero Waste Lifestyle?
If you are considering a switch to a full time RV lifestyle, downsizing from a full-sized home into RV living, you could be taking a massive step in the right direction. One of the reasons for the massive waste problem on our planet is runaway over-consumption. Many of us live in homes far larger, more fully stocked and more energy, water and resource consuming than we really need. Downsizing to an RV life is one way to reduce the amount we own and use. It can also help us to be more mindful of the things we use, and the things we throw away.
Even if we simply vacation in an RV, simple, camping adventures can allow us to waste far less than we might on a hotel vacation or other less eco-friendly getaway. Vacations can often result in waste – especially when we are at one remove from the waste we generate. On an RV vacation, we are responsible for the waste we generate – more able to see how much there really is. (We are the ones who take out the trash and empty the tanks.) By allowing us to take a good, hard look at the waste we produce, RV camping trips allow us to make changes towards a zero waste lifestyle.
Low / Zero Waste Camping | Tips to Make Less Trash - YouTube
Tips for Zero Waste Living in an RV:
Whether you are living or vacationing in your RV, there are a range of simple steps that you can take to reduce waste in every area of life. Before we take a look at each area of your RV, and a range of tips to help you reduce waste in all areas, let’s first think more generally about moving towards a zero waste lifestyle:
Reduce Consumption in General
Reducing waste does not begin with your rubbish – it begins with the things that you buy. More than that, it begins at the very start of the life-cycle of the things that you buy. When moving towards a zero waste lifestyle, it is important to look deeply into the history of the things that you own, and to consider the origins of each and every material.
It is important not only to think about the waste for which you are responsible in terms of what you personally throw away, but also about the waste that occurs in producing the products that you buy and use in the first place. Energy waste, water waste and the waste of physical resources, as well as physical solid waste and pollution, are all important things to think about.
Being aware of the environmental cost of each and every product you select is key to moving towards a greener lifestyle. But making the right choices when buying new items is only part of the answer to the problems of waste. It is also important to consider how we can reduce our consumption in general. Making do with less and truly evaluating whether or not we really need each and every item is crucial for those who really want to come close to living a zero waste lifestyle in their home and in their RV.
The Challenges of Living a Zero Waste Lifestyle When Travelling
One thing to think about when it comes to living a zero waste lifestyle in an RV is that it can be somewhat more difficult to live waste free when you are travelling around in an RV than it is when you have a fixed address, or stay at home.
One of the problems is that you may well have less access to online resources and online shopping. This can make it more difficult to source eco-friendly alternatives to waste intensive products. However, there are ways to get around this problem. For example:
You may be able to find alternatives in shops.
Where you cannot, you may be able to do without products all together.
Where you cannot live without something, you may be able to find an inventive DIY solution, or make something yourself.
You may be able to get the internet in your RV. You may also be able to arrange to have items posted to you care of the campsites you stay at, or get things sent to a post office box.
It can also be more of a challenge to avoid disposable items when you are out and about. Below, you will find tips that are more specific to travellers, as well as general tips for reducing waste that could also apply in regular homes.
Zero Waste in an RV Kitchen:
Re-using glass jars for storage is just one upcycling solution for your RV kitchen.
Let us begin by taking a look at the heart of culinary operations – the RV kitchen. This is where much of the waste we generate is created. Here are some tips to help you move towards a zero waste lifestyle in this part of your RV:
Upcycling Ideas for an RV Kitchen
Whether you are fitting an RV from scratch, or updating your current RV kitchen, upcycling can provide a solution for improving the space without having to buy anything new (that will contribute to the waste problems we face).
For example, you could:
Use reclaimed wood to create new cabinets, worktop or shelving.
Use reclaimed fabric to make new blinds for a RV kitchen window.
Upcycle old ceramic pots, tins or glass jars for RV storage.
Choose Natural, Biodegradable, Recyclable Kitchen Items Rather Than Plastic
Beeswax wraps are one great plastic-free solution for storing leftover food. They will stop waste from plastic wrap.
If you do need to buy new items for your RV kitchen, think about how you can reduce the amount you need to buy wherever possible. But when you do really need something, consider options that are biodegradable, and which will not cause a waste problem at the end of their useful lives. For example:
Choose biodegradable paper towers (from sustainable forestry) rather than purchasing synthetic wipes or using synthetic sponges or cloths.
Choose a metal washing up bowl if you need one.
Select wooden/metal washing up brushes etc.
Choose wooden spoons/ spatulas rather than plastic or composite utensils.
If you need disposable plates, go for biodegradable ones.
Choose stainless steel pots and pans rather than ones coated in Teflon.
Choose knives and other kitchen tools without plastic handles.
Use beeswax wraps or metal or silicone containers to store leftovers rather than plastic wrap.
Select biodegradable bin bags.
Reduce Plastic Food Packaging
IS IT POSSIBLE!?! // Plastic free in our RV for 1 month // The Van Project - YouTube
Another major source of plastic in the kitchen of your RV is the plastic packaging that comes wrapping much of the food that you buy. In order to cut down on waste, it is important to do what you can to reduce the amount of this plastic that you bring into your RV in the first place. While some of the plastic packaging can be recycled, much of it cannot, or is not. For this reason, prevention is better than cure in this matter. To reduce the amount of plastic food packaging that comes into your RV in the first place:
Grow food at home and take it with you in your RV, rather than buying food on the go.
Cook from scratch, using simple, fresh ingredients as much as possible rather than buying lots of packaged, processed food.
Buy food from local farm shops and food producers rather than from major supermarket chains.
Consider sourcing plastic free food online if you cannot find it in local stores. (A number of places offer food packed in cardboard and/or compostable bioplastics.)
Reuse/ Recycle Plastic Food Packaging
Plastic bottles used to make a vertical garden that could easily find a place in an RV.
It is likely that you will find it difficult to eliminate plastic packaging from your life entirely. When plastic packaging does enter your RV, you should do your best to recycle it whenever possible, either through a local recycling point, or by giving it a second life in your RV. New uses for plastic packaging might include:
As plant pots and containers for growing food or other plants in your RV.
As cloches (or mini greenhouses) to protect seedlings or as make-shift propagators.
For containers to hold small items and keep your RV tidy.
For the creation of unique pieces of art.
Prevent Food Waste
Plastic waste is a major problem – but it is not the only one. Food waste is also a major concern in the world today. You can combat food waste in your RV by, first off, reducing the amount of food waste that you generate in the first place. You can do so by:
Buying only what you really need. (Make a list when shopping to avoid over-buying.)
Preserving fresh produce by making preserves that can be stored without the need for energy (refrigeration or freezing). Canning techniques, making jellies, chutneys and other preserves and dehydrating produce can all help with this.
A sustainable RV owner will always make space for some home grown/ home made preserves to take on their travels.
Make meals using the leftovers from previous meals. (There are plenty of great recipes out there to choose from.)
Of course, there will always still be food scraps that cannot be eaten or used. But these should not be wasted either. Place food waste in a small compost bin under the counter in your RV kitchen and you can use this useful material as a growing medium in pots to grow more food for you and your family. Composting is something that can be easily done in even the smallest of spaces. Cardboard, paper and organic matter of various kinds can be composted too. You could even consider getting in some live-in worms to help you with your composting – and set up a wormery in your RV.
Zero Waste in an RV Living Space:
Let us now turn our attention to the living space in your RV. This is where you will sit, relax and unwind. No matter how large or small your RV’s living space may be, here are some tips to help you move towards a zero waste lifestyle:
Upcycling Ideas for an RV Living Space
Wood pallets can often be sourced for free. In a DIY RV interior, they could be used to make a wide range of functional and attractive furniture.
As in the kitchen, upcycling can allow you to reduce the number of new items that you need to buy. For example, you might be able to:
Upcycle old wooden pallets/ furniture to create a new built-in seating area.
Make a swinging chair or hammock to make a relaxing place to sit or lie and to make the most of the space. You can use reclaimed fabric for this project.
Upcycle an old shelving unit to make valuable extra storage for your living space.
Choose Natural, Recyclable, Long-Lasting Living Space Items
Whenever you choose new items, as in your RV’s kitchen area, it is important to think carefully before purchasing anything new. Of course, you could consider purchasing or acquiring second-hand furnishings and leisure items. Whenever you do buy anything new, it is a good idea to opt for natural materials where possible. Items should be recyclable at the end of their useful lives, and should be as long-lasting as possible. For example:
Choose wooden and organic natural fabric furnishings rather than those made from plastic.
Choose natural, organic fabrics for any soft furnishings and window dressings.
Avoid buying plastic toys for children and opt for eco-friendly alternatives.
Wooden toys and other eco-friendly options can be just as much fun as plastic options and are far kinder on the planet.
Recycle Consumer Electronics and Devices
If you have televisions, radios, laptops or other consumer electronics and devices in your RV, try to keep these for as long as possible rather than upgrading all the time. Of course, these items will eventually reach the end of their useful lives. Rather than simply throwing these things away, be sure to find a dedicated electronics recycling service, which will give these items a new lease of life, or recycle their various components.
Zero Waste in an RV Bedroom:
Next, we will turn our attention to the bedroom of your RV. Here, too, there are a range of different ways to reduce waste. For example:
You may not be aware of this, but synthetic fabrics (made from plastic derived from fossil fuels) are incredibly energy intensive to produce, and come with a high carbon cost. They are responsible for large amounts of waste and pollution, not only at source but also during the time you are using them. Every time you wash synthetic fabrics, you are washing plastic particles down the drain. These often eventually find their way into our rivers and oceans.
Instead of choosing synthetic bedding, make sure that you choose organic, natural fabrics to go waste free. Of course, unlike plastic fabrics, natural fabrics will biodegrade naturally at the end of their useful lives.
Give Your Wardrobe a Zero Waste Overhaul
Organically grown, sustainable cotton can be an eco friendly option for RV bedding and for clothes. Since it biodegrades at the end of its life, it can also help you move towards a zero waste lifestyle.
In order to overhaul your wardrobe, you should also consider:
Buying second hand rather than buying new. (Or swapping clothes with friends or family when you feel like something new.)
Donating old clothes to charity, or gifting items to friends or family.
Buying less. Less is more – not only will having a smaller, simpler wardrobe make storage easier in your RV, it will also help reduce waste and be kinder on the planet.
Buying higher quality pieces that will last rather than cheap ‘fast fashion’. Not only will higher quality pieces mean you have to buy less often, it will also significantly reduce the number of clothes you have to throw away.
Zero Waste in an RV Bathroom:
Finally, lets turn our attention to the bathroom of your RV. Here, too, there are a range of great ways to move towards a zero waste lifestyle:
Do What You Can To Prevent Water Waste
Preventing water waste is another facet of zero waste living in your RV. You can find a range of useful tips to help you prevent water waste and save water in your RV by following the hyperlink.