LEAVE HOLIDAY STRESS BEHIND FOR CHRISTMAS IN YOUR RV

Christmas is my most favorite time of year. The traditions and meaning of the season are so deeply entrenched in me that for many years the thought of leaving home never occurred to me. It seemed to me that a Christmas away from home wouldn’t feel much like Christmas at all.

The first year we left home for the holidays, I was filled with anxiety. I couldn’t help but wonder if I’d regret taking my kids away from the familiar, not to mention myself. As it turned out, I worried needlessly.

 

 

Anything I could do at home, I could do in the RV. I decorated, baked, wrapped gifts, and played Christmas music. When we were pulled over for the night, we could cuddle up and watch a Christmas movie together. In our home away from home, Christmas was almost the same. Almost.

 

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WHAT TO SEE AND DO WHILE RVING IN FORT MYERS & SANIBEL FLORIDA

 

How do you know an RV destination is a success with your family? We know a destination is a hit when we make reservations to return before we’ve even left. 

Over the Christmas break, our family spent time in the Fort Myers & Sanibel area in our RV. When it came time to go, no one was ready to leave, least of all me. I felt like we’d only skimmed the surface of all there is to see and do in this little piece of paradise.

 

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GO BABY GO, GO RVING

We were in a campground on the Washington coast the day we found out we were expecting our third baby. It was a cool summer day and the breeze carried the salty smell of the ocean. Having been traveling full time in our RV for almost two years, we were one state short of hitting our goal to see 48 contiguous states. Our plans for the future were now uncertain.

The question on our mind was would we continue to travel full time in our RV now that we were expecting a baby? As we contemplated the last 2 years of traveling, we realized if there was one thing RVing had done for our family, it had strengthened our relationships. Since everyone was thriving on the road, we decided to keep traveling. Given the age gap there would be between Thing 3 and our older boys, we knew RVing would give Thing 1 and Thing 2 a priceless opportunity to bond with their baby brother.

There is this notion that once a baby comes all adventures must be put on the back burner. We disagree and liked to use the phrase “expecting adventure” as we waited for our little bun to finish baking.

On April 12, 2014 our little bundle of adventure, Thing 3, arrived. We spent the next few weeks RVing not too far from our care providers and planning for our summer travels. Once we got the sign-off that we were both healthy, we initiated Thing 3 into the world of RVing with an epic trip from Key West, FL to Alaska. It was wild and wonderful, a trip we won’t ever forget. 

Thing 3 turns nine months old this week. During those 9 months he has been to 14 states and 3 provinces. We’ve learned a few things about RVing with a baby that we are happy to share with you so grab a sippee, errr….a cup a tea, and getting ready to plan your own RV adventures with your little one.

 

Patience Patience Patience 

Traveling with a baby is going to take more time than traveling without a baby. I have to admit this, along with less sleep at night, was probably the biggest adjustment. It didn’t take long to learn Thing 3’s limits. A typical travel day might start with a 2-3 hour drive followed by a 30-60 minute stop. In the afternoon, we may get in another 2-3 hours. When our GPS says 4 hours we know it will take us at least 6 hours. It’s been a wonderful opportunity to grow in patience. Really! Traveling with a baby has brought new meaning to the phrase “it’s about the journey not the destination”.

 

Planning

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HOME SWEET HOME ON WHEELS

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Up until now the places we’ve stayed on our journey from Key West to Alaska have been new to us. This week was a little different. We spent the week in one of America’s heartland states, Indiana. It’s the place where I grew up and where the majority of my family still lives. Our mission this week was to spend quality time with family and to see at least two new things in the area. We wanted to show our kids that you can find always find adventure near or far.

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READY. SET. GO RVING! LET’S GET STARTED FROM KEY WEST, FLORIDA

The first week of our journey from Key West to Alaska has gone wonderfully well. Of course, how could a week in the Florida Keys not be wonderful? Especially when your RV is parked right on the Gulf of Mexico.

The Keys are a chain of islands off the tip of the coast of Florida. There are 1,700 islands total with only 43 being accessible by car. These 43 islands are connected by a 127 mile long highway, the Overseas Highway. It’s a fairly easy drive in an RV, and we didn’t have any problems with our 40’ fifth wheel. Although take note, if you are driving or pulling a larger rig, parking lots big enough to stop in are somewhat scarce, so you may want to plan accordingly.

The drive through the Keys is one of our favorites in the country. Crossing each bridge, you take in a stunning display of color where deep brilliant turquoise gives way to the light aquamarine of shallower waters, and then the soft tans of sandbars. The islands are filled with charm and whimsy. Small colorful beach shacks sit alongside large modern beach homes in visual harmony. You’ll find everything from small local health food stores to touristy shell shops.

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