RV

How to Hand Wash Laundry in a RV

A lot of the fancier RVs these day have a washer/dryer combo installed on them. This makes it fantastically easy to do your laundry while on a trip or living in a RV as long as you have full hookups. However, the travel trailer we live in doesn’t have one of those handy gadgets. So that leaves two options to getting your laundry done: laundromat or hand washing. Neither are my favorite, to be honest. However, we are blessed to live close to my parent’s for now, so when we go to church on Sunday, we bring all our laundry from the week and wash it. If we don’t finish our laundry before we head home, my mom will finish washing and drying the clothes and then put them in garbage bags for us to transfer home. I do all the folding at home before putting them away. 

There are those times when we’re sick and can’t make it on Sunday or we need something washed that day. Packing up three young children to go to the laundromat is a bit excessive in my opinion, especially since I would be there for hours. Even the RV parks that have a coin operated laundry on site do not appeal to me. In the 9+ months that we’ve been living full time in our RV, we’ve only been to a laundromat once and that was a couple weeks ago! (Our son peed all over our bed, so we needed the sheets washed before bed that night). 

So that leaves us with hand washing. The best way to do it is with a bathtub; unfortunately our RV only comes with a shower. So the next best thing is a 5 gallon bucket. I also have a mobile washer (it’s like a plastic toilet plunger with holes in it) that I bought years ago. That’s really all you need besides your dirty laundry and laundry soap.

Washing clothes by hand really isn’t that hard and is easily achieved in just a few steps. The only part that I find difficult is wringing out jeans or pants. You can buy a wringer for that, but they tend to be over $100 for a good quality one that won’t fall apart, so we haven’t gotten one yet. Anyways, here are the basic steps to do your laundry at home.

Step 1: Gather the clothes you need washed. How many pieces you can wash at a time is dependent on your container size. For a five gallon bucket, I usually can fit in a couple pairs of underwear, a couple shirts and a few pieces of my kids clothing. These go about halfway up my bucket. Any more than that and there wont be enough room to fully wash the clothes. Add clothes to your container.

Step 2: Fill bucket 3/4 full with water (I wash with cold water), making sure clothes get fully soaked. (I do all of this in shower, making spills easily go down the drain and easy to drain/fill the bucket.)

Step 3: Add a tiny amount of laundry soap. I use Trader Joe’s laundry soap which is highly concentrated and only put in a tablespoon of soap at the most. 

Step 4: Using mobile plunger, plunge clothes for 5 minutes (or 10 minutes if using bathtub or bigger container). Drain.

Step 5: Fill with water again.

Step 6: Plunge clothing again for 2 minutes. Drain.

Step 7: Pull out each item and wring out as much water as possible. Hang clothes to dry.

I hang the clothes in my bathroom, draped over the shower and cabinet doors. Our shower is a corner shower, so I can’t add a shower bar inside to hang our clothes on that. If your shower doesn’t have that problem, place a spring loaded shower/curtain rod high up in the shower and use hangers to hang the clothes for drying.

The picture above shows when we were living on private property and had permission to hang up a clothesline (really just rope tied around a few trees). All the campgrounds I have looked into and stayed at since then have not allowed this. So using the shower/bath is the perfect solution (also great for wintertime no matter where you live!).

So this is what we do for our clothes. While I haven’t done all our laundry by this method, it’s so useful for when we miss a week of laundry or need something washed right away. My aim is to be able to hand wash everything except our bedding, rather than relying on someone else or the laundromat for our laundry. In our setup, bedding is almost impossible, so while traveling, we will be using a laundromat for those items. 

How do you do your laundry in your RV?

 

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Recipes

Homemade Queso

This coming Sunday is Father’s Day, so to celebrate my amazing husband, I’m posting about one of his favorite recipes we have (the Instant Pot Hearty Chili is another recipe he loves). Combine the two and my husband is in heaven! So here’s a little back story about my husband eating queso for the first time around me…and how it didn’t turn out like you would think! 

One of the first dates I went on with my boyfriend (now husband) was to a football game. His best friend played, and his sister and sister’s friend did cheerleading for the team. The whole family had gotten involved at first by helping with selling concessions. So, of course, we had to stop by the concession stand and get some food. HoneyBear order nachos. I remember the people behind the counter pumping out this thick, golden yellow goo that was known as queso. Now, I’ve eaten it before, but I think it was at that time that I really started not liking queso. In the dim interior of the concession stand, it almost seemed to glow a faint neon yellow. 

So why am I posting about queso? Well, the answer might surprise you and it definitely doesn’t make any sense. I tried some queso in Texas at the recent family reunion and happened to like it. Encouraged by my finally liking this favorite food of my husbands, HoneyBear began making queso regularly. I didn’t mind and it actually was pretty good.

Now, though, I eat it fairly regularly and for a pretty bad reason. I’m experimenting with being gluten-free (that’s a whole other story) and I feel much better when I don’t eat gluten. Queso is free from any gluten ingredients (that I know of) and I eat plain tortilla chips with it (also gluten-free). So I traded gluten for chemicals. Now, I know this isn’t ideal and I’m working on a recipe that uses real cheese, but for now, this is what I eat.

Plus, this one really does tastes like the queso that is served at most concession stands. It’s nice and thick, but runny enough to serve over chips or to add to chili or hotdogs when it’s warmed up. We use green chilis in this recipe, but feel free to try jalapeños instead to bump up the spicy flavor. If you’re looking to make queso for pennies and not as many chemicals as the stuff sold in stores, this is the way to go! You won’t be sorry you did!  

Homemade Queso
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Ingredients
  1. 2 lb. sharp cheddar velveeta
  2. 2 cans (4 oz.) diced green chilis
  3. 1 cup milk
  4. 2 Tbsp. butter
Instructions
  1. Dice the velveeta into 1 in. cubes. Add green chilis to a blender and blend until mostly smooth. Place all ingredients in a medium sized saucepan. Heat over medium-low heat, until velveeta has fully melted; stirring constantly. Serve warm and enjoy!
Notes
  1. You can substitute some or all of the green chilis with jalapeños. The more you substitute, the spicier it will be.
Goldilocks Domesticated http://www.goldilocksdomesticated.com/
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Family

5 Road Trip Tips with Young Children

Recently, our family of five went on a road trip from Houston to Seattle. We were in Texas for a family reunion and decided last minute to buy a car and drive back home. Seeing as we had three young children (3, 1 and 2 months; all in diapers) and no vehicle (we’d been borrowing my parent’s car), this was actually a pretty good idea. We had flown to Texas and I didn’t like it at all. So, after the fun of buying the car, now we had to figure out the logistics of transporting our family cross-country with no preparation.

First was packing our small duffel bag with all the clothing essentials for the trip. This would let us bury the bulky suitcases and not have to move them. Next up was a grocery trip. Here, we bought drinks, snacks and sandwich fixings for the journey. The grandparents donated an ice chest, so that was taken care of. All that was left was packing everything up and heading out. We learned a few things and wanted to share them with you!

1. Buy groceries for the trip

We only planned for one meal a day to be eaten out. This saved us lots of money on food in the long run. Plus, since we had bought plenty of fresh fruit, cheese, meat and crackers, there was plenty to give the girls whenever they were hungry, instead of making them wait for meal time or having to buy expensive, crappy junk food from the gas station we were at. 

2. Pack necessities in an easy to reach bag

The last thing you want to do when you stop (especially when it’s cold) is to be digging through tons of stuff to find what you need. Pack everything you need in a smaller bag, you’ll be glad you did!

3. Pack lots of extra clothes

There would be times when the children would sleep, so we’d keep driving and driving to stop and find out that the kids had leaked their diapers. We used all the clothes we packed and could have used even more! Next time, we’ll make sure the children’s suitcase is the easiest to access! 

4. Kids don’t need as much entertainment as you would think

Our two oldest barely played with anything on the trip. Neither did they have movies to watch. They both had a bag full of their new Christmas toys to play with, plus coloring supplies and books. Instead, they mostly slept or played with their clothes, legs or shoes.

5. Make sure you take a long rest stop a couple times a day

A lot of the stops were just filling up with gas, changing diapers and handing out food. However, we made a point to have a few rest stops a day where we let the kids really run around and burn off energy. This helped keep the whining at bay when in the car and kept up mama’s spirits too! 

Our family had a blast road tripping across the US and hope to definitely do it again in the future. (I’m rooting for this winter, when HoneyBear has three to four weeks off at a time…fingers crossed!) The kids were easy, the miles flew by and we had lots of fun! 

Would you want to travel with your young kids?

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Recipes

Old Fashioned Macaroni and Cheese

 

When I was growing up, my mom never really cooked from a box. She always did everything from scratch…including macaroni and cheese. My mom always made this delicious mac ‘n cheese that I requested often. It was only at friends houses that I would have the boxed mac ‘n cheese. I never really liked it, and to this day, I prefer the one that my mom made me growing up. 

As I started cooking, I was surprised to discover how easy and simple this meal is. It requires only three ingredients and just a few simple steps to put together. While it can be a bit plain to someone who is used to overly processed foods, my family has discovered that a bit of pepper (regular or seasoned pepper) makes the meal very enjoyable.

You can also add ham, sausage, veggies; the possibilities are endless! Just take the base recipe and add whatever your family loves. Our favorite has been to add ham. Just toss in some chopped ham before it goes in the oven and while it’s cooking, toss a salad together. A quick and easy meal the whole family will love!

Old Fashioned Macaroni and Cheese
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Ingredients
  1. 16 oz. pasta
  2. 16 oz. cheddar cheese
  3. 2 cups milk
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350. Cook pasta according to directions. While pasta is cooking, dice the cheese into 1/2 in. cubes. Grease a 13x9 pan. After draining pasta, add half of the pasta to the pan. Add half of the cheese. Repeat layers. Pour milk over the pasta and cheese. Bake for 30-45 minutes, stirring halfway through. Serve hot and enjoy!
Goldilocks Domesticated http://www.goldilocksdomesticated.com/

 

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Family

5 Ways to Help a New Mother

 

So someone you know is having a baby. Maybe it’s their first child, or maybe it’s their fifth. While support tends to be freely available for a woman with her first child, it’s the moms with more than one child that desperately need the support. So what to do for that mom? Here are some great ideas that she will love you for!

1. Meals

When you have a baby, its a lot of adjusting and sleepless nights. You are exhausted, but fully in love with that new life. All your energy is focused on getting this right, learning to change diapers on time, breastfeed correctly, burping, and sleeping when you have any opportunity. The last thing on your mind is food. However, it is one of the most important things that a new mother needs to rest. 

The best things to bring are thick, warming and filling meals, the ones you usually eat in the dead of winter. Soups, stews, pasta dishes. You also want soft dishes, nothing really too hard or crunchy. It’s honestly just too exhausting to expend that much energy to feed yourself. 

For bonus point, prepare the food ahead of time and bring it over to mom’s house. Start the cooking of the food for mom, so all she has to do is serve it when it’s done. 

2. Easy single portions for mom

While having meals is great, since mom has to still feed everyone, single portion foods for mom is so handy! One of my friends made these breakfast sandwiches with egg, cheese, bacon on sourdough English muffins. That my friend, was the best food ever. I would heat one up when I was exhausted but starving, with no energy to dig out a leftover container, serve up some food and then wait for it heat it up. They were a life saver! I treasured every single sandwich and nearly broke down in tears when they were gone. So making things like breakfast sandwiches, cheeseburger buns (basically a ground beef cheeseburger wrapped completely in dough), chicken salad sandwiches and other simple foods are so appreciated.

3. Adult time

Especially with a mom with multiple kids, they are often left at home all day by themselves. Just having someone come over and talk to them for a bit is welcome. Just don’t expect to be offered food or water, that new mom needs to rest without having to worry about you. 

4. Helping around the house

As moms are exhausted and focused on baby, the house will fall into disrepair. Washing dishes, starting a load of laundry, sweeping the floors or starting a meal for mom are all things that are very welcome and very appreciated.

5. Babysitting

This can be as simple as coming over, telling her that you are here to watch after the kids and ordering her to bed. Naps are one of the most precious commodities with a new baby. It can also be taking the older children and letting mom and dad have a few quiet hours to themselves.  

So here are some basic ways to help a new mom out. Don’t be afraid to offer your time, as Mom isn’t going to just come up to you and ask for help (unless you are really good friends). Also, don’t just assume that the mom has all the support she needs. I’m well known within my church group, but have very few close friends. I definitely didn’t have much help at all with my third child. In fact, only my mom, my husband’s mom and two friends did anything. While I highly appreciate what they did for me, I desperately could have used more help, especially around the house and with my older children. 

What did you find most useful that someone did for you in the postpartum period?

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Recipes

Chocolate Sour Cream Muffins

 

What could be better than chocolate first thing in the morning? I can’t think of anything else I’d rather have. Throw in an easy recipe and it’s like a match made in heaven! The only thing better would be someone else making them and serving them to you, hot and just the way you like it. You might like them served in bed too! I just happen to not like being served food in bed (I may be just a bit paranoid that my bed may get dirty.)

My quirks aside, these muffins are delicious! A moist chocolate muffins that melts in your mouth. It’s perfect for those mornings when you want to make breakfast, but need something quick and easy. I let my husband make the elaborate morning meal, but I’m more of a baker and want easy and quick; these are my go to recipe for breakfast. The best thing is, they taste amazing with all purpose flour and the gluten free flour blend that I use. My husband couldn’t even tell the difference!

However, for me, what takes these muffins over the top is the way I serve them up. When they are piping hot from the oven, I cut a X in the muffins (being careful not to cut my silicone muffin liners) and place about 1/2 a tablespoon of softened butter in them. That yummy grass fed butter just melts straight into the muffins, making them a delectable mouthwatering treat that I would love to have every morning.

I dare you try them with butter, they just might be your favorite morning treat too!

Chocolate Sour Cream Muffins
Yields 12
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Ingredients
  1. 1/4 cup butter, softened
  2. 1/2 cup sugar
  3. 1/4 cup brown sugar
  4. 2 eggs
  5. 1 tsp vanilla extract
  6. 1/4 tsp salt
  7. 1/2 tsp baking soda
  8. 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  9. 1/4 cup baking cocoa, sifted
  10. 1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  11. 1/2 cup sour cream
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350. Line or grease a muffin pan. Cream together butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Mix in one egg at a time, along with vanilla, salt, baking soda and baking powder. Sift cocoa butter into bowl, mixing well until fully incorporated. Alternate additions of flour and sour cream until fully combined. Scoop into muffin tins. Bake 18-20 minutes. Cool in pan for 5 minutes.
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Recipes

Instant Pot Hearty Chili

 

The ultimate comfort food from my childhood! Brown up some beef, add beans, water, and that good ole’ bag of premixed spices. Let it all stew away and you had yourself a good pot of chili. For the longest time, I kept on making it like my mama did. It was so cheap and easy! As we started moving to a more natural lifestyle, I was ready to move on from the pre-packaged mixes. Yet I knew we couldn’t give up chili. It’s always been one of my favorite meals and I’m pretty sure it’s my husband’s favorite food.

So we tried some different recipes. They were not that great. They either had huge tomato chunks, were too watery, had too many vegetables or they had no beans. We were looking for something that was thick, meaty, with beans to fill you up and it of course had to be spicy. I finally found a slow cooker recipe that seemed promising. Without much hope, I made a batch. That batch of chili was so spicy, not even my spice loving husband could eat it! However, he could tell that this recipe had promise. So I made another batch, this time drastically reducing the amount of cayenne. Now that was one good bowl of chili! It’s been our go to recipe ever since. I can make up a pot every week and my husband wouldn’t mind a bit. Over time I’ve made adjustments and changed a few things, the main one being on how it’s cooked.

I recently just got a pressure cooker, the 8 quart Instant Pot. This recipe seemed like the perfect thing to convert to the Instant Pot, as I could make a pot in 30 minutes, unlike the 4-8 hours of the previous recipe. This is helping me to remember to make dinner (since I don’t have remember earlier in the day) and it saves on electricity, which is good, because a lot of RV parks charge you separately for using the power. 

I’ve many compliments on the recipe, so I hope you enjoy this one as much as we have and our friends and family has as well!

Instant Pot Hearty Chili
A thick, hearty chili to fill the belly and satisfy the soul.
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Ingredients
  1. 1 lb. ground beef
  2. 1 onion, diced
  3. 1 can (15 oz.) tomato sauce
  4. 2 cans (15 oz.) diced tomato
  5. 4 cans (15 oz.) black beans, undrained
  6. 1 can (4 oz.) diced green chilis
  7. 1/2 tsp. celery salt
  8. 2 tsp. cumin
  9. 3 Tbsp. chili powder
  10. 2 tsp. salt
  11. 4 1/2 tsp. black pepper
  12. 1/4 tsp. cayenne
Instructions
  1. Set Instant Pot to Saute. Add ground beef and onion; cook until meat is browned. Hit the cancel button. Add in remaining ingredients; stir. Close lid of Instant Pot and make sure the vent is closed. Press the Bean/Chili button. After the chili cooks, either quick release or let the pot cool down naturally. Serve hot with grated cheese, maybe some sour cream. Don't forget the cornbread and honey!
To cook in a slow cooker
  1. Brown meat and onion in a skillet over medium high heat. Add to slow cooker. Add remaining ingredients. Stir. Cook on low for 8 hours or high for 4 hours.
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RV

10 Items to Make Full Time RV Living Easier

 

In this recent post, 10 Necessities for the First Time RV Owner, we covered the basics needed for RV living.

In this one, we will cover the extra things you can buy to make life easier while living in a RV (especially if you full-time). While none of these items are absolutely needed for a good time in a RV, they are definitely helpful. Here are the 10 items we have found helpful for the RV lifestyle

1.Water Splitter

Good for when you want higher water pressure than an outdoor (or indoor!) shower can provide. (Don’t install while someone is trying to use the water in the RV; ends in unhappiness!) 

2. Shower Faucet

Stock shower faucets aren’t great. Up your water pressure and extend your hot water with an upgrade.

3. Cover for Roof Vents

To keep water out so you can have airflow even if it rains.

4. Aftermarket Towel Hanger

Great for when you need to hang more than two towels.

5. Racks for Kitchen Cupboards

Doubles your cabinet space.

6. Storage Containers

We have deep storage areas under our benches in the bunkhouse (we have a dinette that can be converted into a bunk bed). It was not really practical to store anything under them. Two plastic storage bins that fit the space and we’re good to go! Easy access to all we need (we store toys under one and extra kid linens and dress-up clothes in the other).

7. Hangers with Wire Hooks

We originally started with cheap plastic hangers. I was surprised to discover that the hook part was so thick that they barely went over the bars in our little closet. We have since upgraded to coated wire hangers from Ikea. The wire hangers are about twice as thin as the plastic ones were and have made accessing our clothes much easier.

8. Command Velcro Picture Hangers

These have been invaluable for hanging our pictures and artwork around the RV. Nothing has ever shifted in our moves, yet I can still access our picture frames to change our family pictures. Plus, If I ever decide to change something, I can remove the hangings from the wall with no damage.

9. Dehumidifier

During the winter time, water condensation collects like crazy throughout the house. We learned this the hard way. With showers being taken, dishes washed, water boiled, food cooked and no ventilation, we had water collecting everywhere. I was wiping down exterior walls constantly and cleaning up mold and mildew on the underside of the couch, the kitchen cabinets and the window sills. If you’re going to live in a RV during the winter, a dehumidifier is so helpful! We bought this one and we love it!

10. Compact Cleaning Supplies

With no place to store full sized brooms, mops and vacuums, how were we going to keep things clean? This was solved slowly, with lots of research and looking. Most RV supply stores have compact brooms, so that was easy. Next was a vacuum. We finally found a hand vac that also had a head and arm extension to make a tiny vacuum cleaner that you could stand up straight and use. Last was a mop. My goal was to find one with a re-usable cleaning head, as we were mopping often!

In the end, these 10 items are very helpful to living full time in the RV. Each and every things is being used constantly and I’m glad to have them!

What items do you feel are useful to make full time RV living easier?

 

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Recipes

Chocolate Shortbread Cookies

I love sugar cookies! They bring back memories of Christmas time in my childhood. So why am I writing about sugar cookies, when this is clearly a post about chocolate shortbread cookies? I’m glad you asked! You see, these cookies have evolved from sugar cookies in a very unlikely manner. I’m not the most creative cook in the place, in fact, I like following recipes to the “t”. One day, I had committed myself to making dessert for a gathering at my parent’s house. However, our RV was getting fixed and I had left my recipe book behind. Also, I had very basic ingredients to work with. My mom doesn’t have a lot of my recipes, as she doesn’t bake from scratch often. I had no idea what to do. My mind finally fixed on a recipe that has been in our family since I can remember…sugar cookies. Our family only makes them for Christmas though. Plus, I was really in the mood for chocolate. Did I dare try to change the recipe?

Well, I dared! I substituted some of the flour for cocoa powder and baked up a bunch. I was pleasantly pleased to see that they were edible and even looked halfway decent! When it came to tasting them, well, it wasn’t what I expected! Instead of a chocolate version of sugar cookies, I had come up with a chocolate shortbread cookie. 

If you like shortbread and you like chocolate, these are the cookies for you! Chocolaty, crumbly and in bite sized morsels, they are great for snacking or gifting. Eat them with a glass of milk or crumble them in vanilla ice cream for a decadent treat. Frost them with a buttercream frosting (how about some green for St. Patrick’s Day?) or dip them in a glaze…the possibilities are endless! 

How do you like to eat shortbread?

Chocolate Shortbread Cookies
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Ingredients
  1. 1 c. butter, softened
  2. 1 1/2 c. powdered sugar
  3. 1 egg
  4. 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  5. 1/2 c. cocoa powder
  6. 2 c. flour
  7. 1 tsp. baking soda
  8. 1 tsp. cream of tarter
Instructions
  1. Cream butter and sugar. Mix in egg and vanilla extract. Combine dry ingredients; stir in. Refrigerate 2-3 hours.
  2. Preheat oven to 375. Roll dough into 1" balls. Roll in sugar. Place 2" apart on a lightly greased baking sheet. Flatten slightly with a sugared glass. Bake for 8 min. Cool for 2 minutes on baking sheet; transfer to cooling rack. Cool completely.
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RV

10 Necessities for the First Time RV Owner

 

When I first got into this RV adventure, I had no idea what to expect. My thoughts were that I would buy a fully equipped house and that was that. While I did buy a full “house”, it wasn’t fully equipped. There are numerous things we’ve had to buy and more is on our list. Starting on a full-time RV lifestyle is NOT cheap! Even so, I do not regret our decision. I’m loving this lifestyle!

So the question remains, “What do you need to buy?” (This is also assuming that your RV came with some basics, like a sewer hose, water hose and water pressure regulator.) Also answered is why on earth is there firewood in the picture! Here are the 10 RV necessities for the new owner:

1. RV/Marine Toilet Paper

Necessary for the restroom. Do NOT try to use regular toilet paper. All you’ll do is clog the black tank and it’s not fun dealing with that! We use this brand.

2. Chemical Toilet Treatment

Helps keep down the odor and breaks down waste – helpful if you don’t want your bathroom to smell like a porta-potty. This is what has worked for us so far.

3. Leveling Blocks

Not every site you park at will be perfectly level. You’ll need leveling blocks to level out the trailer. Your slides won’t work unless the RV is level, plus you can damage your fridge if it’s running and not level. We use these ones.

4. Tire Chocks

Helpful as insurance, so your RV doesn’t roll away on you. However, as new owners, we just use some split wood. Actual tire chocks are far down on our list.

5. Stick on Levels

Once your RV is fully level (for first time leveling, you can get a level that you put in the bottom of your freezer), use stick on levels on the front and side of your RV (near the hitch jack). Now that they are accurate, you have an easy reference next time you move your RV, plus you won’t have to deal with trying to level the RV with a level in a freezer that is probably full! These white ones will blend in great with most trailers.

6. Hitch Lock

We have a travel trailer, which is pulled by a regular hitch on a pickup truck. We bought a universal hitch lock with a cam lock. The lock is so thick that most won’t even be tempted to try to cut it and a cam lock is near impossible to pick. Perfect for stopping people who might try to hitch to our trailer and haul it away.

7. Surge Protector

One of the worst things that could happen is to plug in somewhere, have a power surge happen and all your electronics get fried. That would end up being a very expensive fix (thousands of dollars). Instead, buy a surge protector to prevent that from ever happening.

8. Power Adapters

We have a trailer that runs on 50 amps. While most campgrounds have 50 amps, some only have 30 amp hookups. Then, there are times when only 15 amps (regular house power) are available. What do you do then? Well, you buy power adapters. We have a 50-30 amp adapter and a 30-15 amp adapter. This allows us to hook-up anywhere we need. In fact, we are currently running off of 15 amp power and are using both adapters.

9. External Water Filter

At first, I was convinced we wouldn’t need one of these. We were planning on buying a gravity-fed filter for drinking and cooking, so why did we need one? However, at our first site, the water available was coming through a hose that was buried underground, was rarely maintained and barely used. Water quality was a concern, especially with the landlords. For everyone’s peace of mind, we bought this one. We attached it to our water pressure regulator and then attached our drinking water hose to it. That hose was then attached to the RV. Just don’t forget the flush the filter first! Otherwise, your water will have a bit of charcoal in it.

10. Mirrors for your Tow Vehicle

If your RV happens to be a fifth wheel or a travel trailer, you’ll be towing your RV with a pickup truck. Stock mirrors just don’t cut it. You have two basic options – attachable towing mirrors that attach to your existing mirrors or replacing (upgrading) your existing mirrors for ones designed for towing. The first option is much cheaper and has the added benefit of being transferred easily between vehicles. The second option looks nicer, are not easily lost or stolen, and are great for the trucks that you know is going to be the permanent tow vehicle. When we got our trailer, we were towing with our truck that we knew we wouldn’t use for long. The attachable mirrors made more sense for us.

So there are the 10 things we as new owners needed for our RV. We bought all these as soon as we could when their need came up. We made many trips (often for only one thing) that we could have avoided if we had a list like this to begin with.

 

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