I seriously think the best time to camp is in the Fall. The leaves are changing, the night skies are brighter and the outdoor air is beginning to nip. The ultimate place to be is gathered around the campfire! So grab the kids and stargazing pals, load up the RV or camper, head to your favorite campground and…
To me, there is nothing is more euphoric than the smell of bacon frying over a campfire on a cool, crisp Autumn morning. And, watching pancakes being poured onto the griddle completes the perfect, picturesque Norman Rockwell camping scene. But before we can get to the bacon-smelling part, we need some supplies, grilling tools, cookware and other essentials to make your campfire the one everyone wants gather around.
Welcome to The Ultimate Campfire Cooking Gear Guide!
So, you want to go try out camping but you don’t have an RV, camper or tent? Either you don’t have the storage space for any of those or you just don’t want to spend all that money getting all the camping gear necessary for a comfortable camping experience. Well, you still can enjoy the camping experience!
Since the Boondocking Bug bit us in January 2017, we’ve grown to love the lifestyle more and more. There’s nothing like it; setting up our RV in the middle of the Arizona desert amongst the prickly giants or in front of the red dirt canyons and mountains as the backdrop.
You’ve got the family and RV all packed and are ready to hit the road for spring break or summer vacation. You’ve got the goodies to make s’mores, roadmaps, activity books, and everything under the sun to keep them occupied. However, there’s one thing to discuss with the kids before taking off to explore the outdoors: CAMPING SAFETY. Continue reading “Family Camping Safety Tips and Tricks”
Since we’ve been boondocking periodically for over a year now, we’ve become more appreciative and better stewards of the natural surroundings, land, properties where we boondock. We try to remember that our journey and destinations aren’t just about us. Continue reading “Camping and Boondocking Etiquette”
We’ve all heard of the word ‘HACK’. Just about everything has a hack these days; even RV’s. Hacks are inexpensive remedies; utilizing objects that are meant for other intended purposes. We’ve put together a comprehensive list of cheap hacks, tips and ideas to make living in an RV or camper simpler.
The day before Thanksgiving 2014, we signed papers and handed over our keys of our home, one shell-shocking question hit us like a ton of bricks…the one question we hadn’t thought of during all the selling, minimizing, and prepping for our RV travels…
How will we meet people and forge friendships?
Being we are both fairly outgoing, we kind of let our own personalities take the reigns. We’re not new at this game. As a military family for 30+ years, it’s the life we’re accustomed to so, you could say this comes a little easier for us. Through our experiences so far, we thought we’d share our list that future or new(er) RVers who struggle with ‘getting out there’ can build their amazing relationships, have fat address books and look forward to reunions after.
1) SMILE & WAVE – Bees are attracted to sweetness, right? It’s a no brainer, we all are drawn to happy people. When we are in a new location, we smile in hopes that we get noticed as ‘those happy people in the big Landmark’ (our identity at parks). Don’t be that grumpy one that looks the other way or grumbles as others wave to you. Be approachable! Strike up conversation while walking your cat (or dog), polishing your coach or lounging by the campfire. For what it’s worth, IT WORKS! Try it, you’ll see.
2) INVITE – When we have or are planning a campfire, outdoor TV game or just sitting out for cocktails, we love for others to drag their camp chairs and cocktails over to sit with us. Okay, so you may like the rival team…we can drink to that! We’ve also been invited over ourselves and of those, we’ve become lifelong friends. In other words, don’t be shy. The worst they are going to do is decline. If they do, suggest the next day. If they decline again, it’s their loss.
Our Marine Corps friends, Ed & Gail whom we met at Malmouth AFB in 2016 and met up with again at Gila Bend, AZ in early 2017.
3) PARK & RESORT ACTIVITIES – So, you’ve just pulled in, parked and set up with your chairs and carpet out. Now you’re wondering, “what next”. “Oh look, a pickle ball court!”, “Hey, they have two pools and a jacuzzi!”, “Wow, they have Wednesday night dinners in the club house!”. Come on! Don’t sit inside and watch tv. Go out and meet people! Aren’t the activities the reason for staying at these places. You pay for it so use what you’ve paid for.
4) PLAN & SHARE OUTINGS – You’ve noticed the decals all over your neighbor’s car roof carrier and they’re screaming, “we’re hikers”. Invite them over for a cold beverage and ask if they know where the best hikes are. I bet soon, you’ll be hiking together even if it’s just a short one to grasp each other’s level. On another note, you notice the “I love my Labs” sign in an RV window and you have Labs too. Go see if they want to walk your pups together. If you don’t ask, you’ll never know. We always ask the one’s who’ve been there for awhile where the best eats are and oftentimes, end up going to dinner or lunch with them. Oh yes, and ask to borrow that cup of sugar. We’ve met the coolest RV peeps doing this.
Hiking with our friends “Timily” (Tim & Emily) from OwnLessDoMore at Red Rock Canyon in Nevada
5) ATTEND RV CLUB RALLIES, CONVERGENCES & SHOWS – Join your RV manufacturer owner’s club and other RV clubs like Escapees, Family Motor Coach Association, etc. We are members of Heartland Owners Club and Xscapers and Escapees. This is where we meet a lot of our friends. We tend to break off into different ‘interest groups’ (ie. favorite type diners, ADV/motorcyclists, RZR or Jeepers, etc.). At the Xscapers Quartzsite Convergence 2017, we organized an ADV Ride with others who also ride. We had a blast! Now we are Facebook friends with a couple.
For a comprehensive listing of RV Clubs and Associations, visit RV-Camping’s site HERE.
Xscaper ADV Riders at Quartzsite 2017
6) SOCIAL MEDIA – Before we started RVing, we joined about a half dozen RV groups on Facebook. For the first few months, we just read, listened and learned. Then, once we bought our toyhauler, we were making friends on Facebook and be messaging where we could meet up. We started following others blogs and communicated where the best places to go are. We learn so much from each other. Our Facebook page is…drum roll…Always On Liberty if you wish to follow us too!
Networking with on Facebook for over 2 years, we finally met in person RV Outlawz buds Denny & Veronica
7) GO SEE OLD FRIENDS & FAMILY – Because they’re going to have two friends and those two friends will have two friends, and so on and so on! We went to San Antonio to meet up with our Army comrades, Leon and Barb. We met a whole bunch of their Army friends and soon after, we all ‘went to the ball’. Now, we visit with several friends who live in San Antonio each time we go back. Our schedule is always full there…all because, “they had two friends…”
Even WE got to go to the Ball! U.S. Army MedCom Ball 2015
8) TRAVEL CARDS – After you’ve traveled a bit, you’ll notice others have these cool looking business cards we call Travel Cards. We exchange them like kids exchange baseball cards. We have a business card small file book that we keep them in. We write on the backs where we met them, date and type of RV so it rings our noggins a year or so down the road. If you don’t have them, get them!! Even if you don’t have a blog, simple contact information is all you need. For ours, we don’t list our phone number(s) or address. That’s a personal choice.
So, as you see, making friends is not hard to do when you RV full-time. In fact, the more you travel, the more friends you’ll make and the more destinations you have later for reunions! Before you know it, you’ll be making plans with friends to caravan or meet at new destinations.