VIRGINIA IS FOR LOVERS

They say that Virginia is for lovers and it’s true. Lovers of national parks, hiking, scenic overlooks, nature watching, cavern exploring and night sky star gazing! Virginia is the place for all of those things. I had the opportunity a few weeks ago to do a four day getaway to the beautiful Shenandoah Valley in Virginia.

Shenandoah National Park is one that I have often gone to as a day tripper when visiting friends in Front Royal, Virginia which is at the northern most end of the national park that runs north to south in the rolling hills of Virginia.  Its 105 mile Skyline Drive along the ridge is a great place to take a Sunday drive, stopping at the many scenic overlooks along the way. I had always wanted to spend more than a few hours there and get a little further south along Skyline Drive to capture some of the beautiful vistas there.

 

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10 TIPS FOR HAVING A MAGICAL RV VACATION AT WALT DISNEY WORLD

When I was a little boy, my mom and dad never had money for family vacations.  Thankfully, my grandparents did.  They had seven kids and eight grandkids, but they still managed to take all of us to Disney World for four different family reunions.

 

We stayed in a hotel for most of those trips, but the one I remember most vividly involved a Winnebago RV rental, an epic road trip, and a campsite at Fort Wilderness. My grandfather always recalled that trip as his favorite too. He loved renting the RV and getting out on the open road–and he LOVED the wild west theme at Fort Wilderness.  That trip with my grandfather happened over thirty years ago, and I have been dreaming of replicating it with my own children for many years.

 

This past winter we finally had the chance to take our three boys to Disney in a Winnebago rental of our own–and it was epic. We brought the boys on classic rides like Space Mountain, and Pirates of the Caribbean at the Magic Kingdom, and we ate wiener schnitzel and yodeled in Germany at Epcot.  But more than anything else, we all loved our time relaxing together at Fort Wilderness, which is truly one of the world’s greatest campgrounds. Our boys have not stopped talking about this trip to Disney World, and they probably never will.

 

Is your family considering an epic RV adventure to Walt Disney World? If so, here are 10 tips to make your trip magical and memorable–and worth talking about for years to come.

 

  1.  Camp at Fort Wilderness:

 

There are other campgrounds nearby, but if you can, book a site at the Fort. It may cost a little more, and you do need to book months in advance, but it is worth the extra effort and money. The Fort is often called America’s favorite campground–and for good reason. It is packed with Disney magic around every corner, and it makes visiting the theme parks incredibly easy. Plus, you get all the perks of staying at a Disney Resort like early dining reservations and extra Magic Hours.

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COME BACK FITTER

Hello from The Fit RV Headquarters! James and I just got home from a whirlwind RV trip in the fantastic stat of Arizona.

The trip went off without a hitch, I’m happy to report. We finally got to bust out our bikes OUTSIDE! It’s been a long snowy winter in Utah, which meant the only biking we were getting was on the spin bike in our basement. Not nearly as fun as the real thing. So, the warm Arizona sun was a welcomed break. It felt great to temporarily shed my parka and pull on a pair of shorts.

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HAPPY CAMPERS

One of the best parts of promoting Girl Camping is watching women go from thinking that it looks like a fun thing to do, to actually going on their first campout. I have had the pleasure of mentoring many women in the beginning of their journey before passing them off to someone back in their geographical area for their first official campout.  It’s disappointing not to be there for the fun part but I recently got to experience the excitement of three first time Girl Campers at our annual Kickoff Campout at Turkey Swamp Campground in Jackson, NJ.

The excitement had actually been building for months within our online community. Facebook comments and shares about gear and menus and the potential for bad weather abounded. To manage the excitement of an upcoming camping trip it helps to talk a lot about it. We booked the first weekend the park was open knowing the weather could be unseasonably warm or annoyingly cold! We didn’t care. The winter was too long and part of the fun of camping is dealing with the elements.

 

Making camp with the girls is half the fun. Everyone lends a hand to make it happen. Jean created centerpieces from the downed pine branches from the previous nights windy storm. 

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9 STRUGGLES WITH LIVING ON THE ROAD

RVing gives you the flexibility to explore the U.S. and it’s easy to romanticize the idea of RVing full time. While full-timing is an exciting endeavor, the reality is that there are struggles and sacrifices for this lifestyle to thoughtfully consider before diving in. Below are 9 struggles we realized as we lived on the road and how we learned to handle them.

 

Limited Storage Space

No matter how minimal you live, moving your life into an RV will challenge that! You have limited closet and storage space, and even your fridge can only hold so much food. Leading up to our time in the Airstream, we had already started living more minimally. Each year we would purge belongings we no longer used and tried not to hold onto stuff just because we had the space for it. It’s a great way to live whether you’re in an RV or not, and we’ve realized how many things we have that we really don’t need.

 

Tight Quarters

What is more difficult than limited storage space, is limited living space! When you are in each other’s personal space all the time, it’s impossible to avoid conflict. You don’t realize how precious alone time is until it’s taken away. We found that the best solutions were going for walks/hikes, or setting up a comfortable outdoor space so that someone can hang out under the awning when alone time is needed.

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