For adults it’s easy to see the freedom RVing offers. We are liberated, if only for a short time, from the discipline of everyday life. No grass waving in the breeze waiting to be cut, no honey-do list on the refrigerator, no office commute.

It’s the kind of freedom that begins in your shoulders, releasing the tension you didn’t realize you were holding, allowing your neck to relax perfectly against the pillow of your reclining camp chair, and ends with waving off the kids to explore and have their own adventure.



Maybe it’s my extended level of relaxation. Or maybe it’s that the campground is filled with like-minded people. No matter the reason, my kids have more freedom when we’re on an RV adventure than they do when we are at home – or on any other type of trip we take.


Feet up and relaxing, while the kids are off playing at The Vineyards Campground in Grapevine, TX

Our first order of business upon arrival is set up, and the girls’ job is taking the dogs out for a relieving stroll.

Then, an overview of the campgrounds for all of us. During this walk we let the girls know their boundaries, point out any place that will require adult supervision, and review our personal rules.

Our list of rules isn’t long, but it is non-wavering. The girls understand – learned through trial and error – that breaking the rules means campsite incarceration and constant accompaniment by mom or dad. Which is no fun for anyone!


Our rules:


Stay together. As we often travel with cousins, this rule applies to any group that leaves the campsite. You return with the same people you set out with.



Tell us where you are going. If your plans change, let us know. Do not make us search for you.



Come back when called. Period. No excuses.


Do not enter any other RVs. Obvious exception if we are traveling with family.


No water activities without an adult.


Depending on the campground, we may send the kids out with a safety product or two.

If the campground is large, or very busy, the kids each carry a walkie-talkie. We chose the Cobra CX112 because it came in a 4 pack and wasn’t terribly expensive. A word of caution – walkie talkies are really fun when you first get them. So be ready for lots of banter. Thankfully it settles down soon enough.



If the campground has wooded trails that we allow the girls to explore we add a Falcon Sound 911 personal safety alarm. We like this horn for its loud sound, small size, and Velcro loop which attaches easily to belt loops. If the girls get lost it’s easier to follow the sound than try to pinpoint their location by radio. “I’m by the big tree” usually isn’t helpful.



We’ve found that offering our girls the freedom to explore and play in unknown surroundings has made them more self-assured and adventurous in all areas of their life. Traits they will, hopefully, carry into adulthood.