I have always loved going on adventures and dreamed that one day we could raise our children to love traveling as well. Once we had our children, we started talking about living on the road full time so that we could go wherever we wanted and the kids can learn to love nature and explore from very young ages. We were able to make that dream a reality within a few months.
Once we decided we wanted to really do this we went through every option of RVs when researching. We finally landed on a fifth wheel because of the taller ceilings making it feel much more spacious, having two bedrooms so the kids could have their own space, and having an easier pull because we travel fairly often.
Going Where Work Takes Us
Once I had our children, I became a stay-at-home mom so the transition into the RV was easy as I continued my role. My husband, Mike, was a nurse and travel nurse positions are widely available on the road. So, once he got the experience necessary, he got a job as a travel nurse. Now we travel wherever his work takes us but we get to chose where we are headed.
Taking Our Home On The Adventures
There have been so many ups and downs! My favorite experience so far has been the chance to just pack up and go away for a weekend and bring our house with us. We decided to take a couple of hours to drive to visit Crater Lake as a family and we had the luxury of pulling our house with us. It was so beautiful and an incredible experience!
Our First Road Trip In Our New Home
When we got on the road, our first stop was 3,500 miles away from where we started. We knew our tires were 5 years old which is generally a max-age for RV tires, but we wanted to make it as far as we could. At the beginning of the drive, we talked about the way the truck would start to drive if we blew a tire. Well, about 1,500 miles into our drive, I was driving and the sun was setting and suddenly there was a jerk in the wheel, a loud noise and the fifth wheel bumped around! My first thought was that the fifth wheel had come unhitched! I looked in the rearview mirror and saw some rubber fly out of the wheel and realized we had blown a tire. We were close to an entrance ramp, so I pulled over as far off the expressway as I could and my husband hopped out to inspect the damage. It took half our fender with the blowout, but we had a spare tire. Only, it turns out that the spare tire isn’t rated for going on a fifth wheel for long trips (it only held 40 psi instead of 80) and it wasn’t fully inflated. Mike got the blow out off and the spare on, then we waited for a tow truck to come out and inflate the tire. I looked for tire companies that had trailer tires, but we were in the middle of nowhere and ended up driving close to 100 miles to sleep in a Cabela’s parking lot and wait for Discount Tire to open the next morning. Mike took the trailer to get the tires swapped out while I took the two-year-old and 11-month old by myself to breakfast. We made sure to get a fifth good quality tire for any future blow out!
Go With The Flow
Having a two-year-old and 11-month old as well as a high energy Aussie doodle, my best advice to those starting out with kids is to go with the flow. Things will be different and kids have a hard time with change, so it is important to be patient and be okay if the kids have more screen time than normal or if it takes longer to get to your destination than originally planned. Prepare them as much in advance by having them help you prepare the RV or move their stuff in, spend a few nights in it before you leave your sticks and bricks and spend extra time loving on them! As for the dog, we had to find a dog park to run her to help her release some of her energy so she is calmer in our small home.
We really haven’t had a hard time adjusting too much. I would say our biggest adjustment is with our two-year-old and morning wake up time changing. If there is movement in the RV, he is up and out of bed within seconds. We got a toddler alarm clock to at least teach him to stay in his room if he wakes until it is an okay time to come out of his room. This way, I can get up early to go workout and know he will still be in his room when I get back.
It’s Your Home Do What you Want
Enjoy the process! Nothing will ever go the way you expect, mainly because the walls are never straight. Expect bumps in the road, but shoot for the stars. All the hard work you put into your renovation is rewarded daily while you are living in the beautiful renovation you completed. The feeling of ‘we did it’ is such a great feeling! Once you are in it, it is okay if you discover you want to change something or do it a different way than you had originally thought you had wanted.
Keeping the Road To Adventures Open
We don’t know how long we will be traveling, we are very open to however long this lifestyle works out for us- it could be a year or it could be 8 years! We have even talked about a plan where when we are ready to settle down that maybe we will build a whole barn to park the RV in and still live tiny but have property. The possibilities are endless with our family adventures.
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