Well, here we are! We’ve been in Fort Collins for a few weeks, and have been living full-time in our Class C RV for over six weeks now. I’ve learned quite a bit about myself and my wonderful little family. Here are some key take-aways:
Introverts, take heed of weekends.
I didn’t expect how pregnant with people the RV parks can be. You can practically feel the presence of other people. The parks breathe with them, and even when inside, you get the sense that you are never alone. Folks circle your camper with their children and dogs and bikes and sports equipment. If you’re in a park with lots of amenities, you can expect unexpected noise — from Friday night dance parties that bump along into the wee hours after a hard work week to random trains (?!) chasing you and your dogs around what should be a serene lake, there is very little peace on weekends.
Perhaps this is just me coming out of the oh-so-popular Memorial Day weekend, but as I sit here on a Friday and listen to the hum of new folks and the barking of dogs on either side of me, I’m a bit peopled out. A long hike today was rejuvenating, but goodness do I miss the silence of our home.
Drive longer stretches and stay in place longer.
When we started on this glorious snowjourn, I had thought we would enjoy spending a few days in Mississippi, a week in Texas, a few weeks in Denver, and then a few weeks in Fort Collins.
What’s a two to three hour drive in an RV with a towable car behind it?
Well, I discovered those two-three hours turn into five and six with traffic (LOL) and now that I’ve driven several hundred miles myself, they take their tolls. I’ll confirm in a few weeks when we head back to our home base in giant chunks, but you might as well bite the bullet, do the tiring driving in bigger chunks, and enjoy your stay when you get where you’re going!
Small spaces dirty up fast, but clean up even faster!
Real talk, I was super nervous about keeping two dogs, five birds, and two folks with ADHD in a tiny little space. However, we prepared well for our trip — a spray bottle with vinegar mixed with water goes a long way, and while we clean up a little bit every day, we were very deliberate in creating a space for everything. When all you have to do is pick up a piece of clutter, turn 360, and slide it away, cleanup goes far faster that I would ever have hoped!
I have some pretty good ideas of how I want to live large in our big house when I get home as well!
Traveling with our fur and feathered family is easier than I thought it would be.
I was pretty nervous about working and living and loving and thriving and exercising in a tiny space with all our beloved creatures.
How would we work if the birds started screaming?
Would the Starlink internet keep us afloat–and be fast enough for video calls?
Would I even be able to do yoga if I can’t turn around without tripping over a dog?
Rain is the bane of my existence with some of these issues, but I’m loving our extra long walks. The parrots are absolutely thriving with their wingdows and time spent right next to us as we type away on our keyboards. And because the bunks come equipped with lovely curtains, we can wrap up the big parrot cages in the morning to safely let out the littles, who fly happy circles around us in our RV.
A few things have been our saving grace:
- Investing in a drivable (Class C or Class A) with a tow vehicle is heads and tails easier than towing a trailer. The car follows wherever we go without swaying into other lanes no matter the weather, and attaching and detaching is super simple when we accidentally drive into gas stations that are a tiny bit too small for our turning radius.
- We overprepared for the birds, and they love the different scenery out their windows.
- We created a beautiful outdoor space with a rug and tent, which has been such a boon. I work outside most days on our lanai in our home in Florida, and this works particularly well when the weather cooperates. This has doubled as a yoga space, and even though we perform reaaaaally inflexible poses, the freedom to move has been incredible.
- We picked campsites with fenced doggie parks. Nia and Obi, our little peibies, really love the freedom of being off-leash, so these little camp K9 sites have allowed them to roam and play and enjoy, even when I’m recording tutorials for work.
Overall? It’s been a great time.
I’ve loved being able to spend real time with my family and friends around myriad campfires. It’s been challenging at times (like when we had to move campsites twice on the day of my aunt’s memorial service), but nowhere near as tough as I thought it might be. We’ve met friends in multiple states, sampled wines from local Harvest Hosts, floated in glorious pools, cooked a ridiculous number of hotdogs and s’mores, hiked high into the mountains and deep into canyons, and eaten more green chili than I’d ever thought I could stomach, and it’s been… lovely.
I can’t say that I’m not looking forward to being home, but I’m looking forward to future camping trips even more. Here is our gallery of joy so far:
I am forever grateful we can take our whole family with us and explore the rest of the drivable world, all together.