Rv Life is small. There is no getting around that. You can buy the largest RV on the market and at some point, you're still going to feel like you need some space! What RV Life doesn't have to be, however, is uncomfortable. I like to think this picture of Trinity and Myles illustrates that. I mean, look at that little smashy face basking in the sun!
Now, imagine that cute little smooshy face, trying to crawl all over your lap, unable to get comfortable, staring at the sandwich you just made after you've spent the last hour trying to back in to your new stall straight, following a three hour drive through the mountains with convertible drivers flipping you the bird as they angrily pass you because you're going 40mph pulling your home. Now you're covered in dog hair to boot.
Translation? Living with him, in this rolling home, isn't always this cute.
RV Life is very popular right now, and lots of the online resources are telling you the same things; You need an Instant Pot (you do though, for real.check them out HERE! ), you need an RV Fridge Fan (again, you really do), and a whole host of other things you can find by googling "Must Haves for RV Living."
Considering the fact that there are countless lists and resources full of every day items you will need, I have decided to share with you five things that we didn't find on any of those lists that have made our lives so much more comfortable.
As illustrated earlier, living with pets in an RV can be really challenging. I love my dogs OBSESSIVELY but I have to say that sharing space with them has truly been our biggest challenge. I wouldn't trade it, mind you, but we have had to make some adjustments. We typically only use the kennel when we leave them alone but sometimes we kennel them for mealtimes too. Myles in particular is a very persistent beggar (and incredibly hard to train) so sometimes they get a time out so we can enjoy our meal. A lot of RV Life has included the theme of "Healthy Boundaries" and that applies to the pups as well, even if its just because we are all touched out and need a minute without a pug snorting in our ears. The kennel isn't super sturdy but the collapsible, light-weight and easy to clean design made it a winner for us. We bought two of these, one for the dogs and one for the cats when we are moving to a new spot. They were around $15.00 at Wal-Mart and can be found HERE.
Ok, I already had this pan and used it daily as our comal for heating up tortillas and as a griddle for frying eggs. It's literally the most used pan in our home. What I didn't expect was for this pan to be necessary for making an RV oven work so much more efficiently. RV ovens are kind of a joke for serious cooks like myself. Because of the fact that the flame runs straight down the middle of the oven, your food typically cooks really well (or burns) in the center, leaving the sides raw or cold. By putting the griddle pan (which fits perfectly) on the bottom shelf of our oven, heat is conducted more evenly, allowing for a more even bake/roast/toast/whatever. Bonus points for the fact that it is multi-purpose. I love Lodge Brand cast iron and use it exclusively. You can find the griddle right here on the Lodge site.
This is our coffee maker. If you're not a coffee drinker I suppose this won't help ya much, but that Yeti mug is awesome for everything from soup to oatmeal to hot tea too. Here's why I love (and prefer) this combo over other popular RV coffee making options:
A few things to note about this combo:
It's really easy to think that if something is small, narrow or otherwise space efficient that you'll have room for it in the RV. That's how I felt about the broom, until it was CONSTANTLY in the way. Someone was always tripping over it or having to move it out of the way. At one of the parks we stayed at in the very beginning, I spied someone with the exact rig as us and quickly noted her broom storage. She had one of these grippers stuck on the *outside* of the trailer so that when she parks, the broom goes (and stays) outside. As soon as I found one at Home Depot, I snatched it up! When we're rolling, of course, the broom travels indoors but as soon as we set up in our new spot, we sweep and put that baby outside! If it's raining (like it has been for 3 days), it hangs out inside with us and then we all remember why the gripper was so necessary. If you've got wall space you could certainly hang it indoors, we just happen not to, plus I'm happy to avoid wiping the wall down all the time from broom dust and yuck. Like I said, we found ours at Home Depot, but they are all over the place online.
Do not make the mistake of thinking that just because your RV *Sleeps* a lot of people that it will *Seat* a lot of people. For example, ours sleeps ten, but we quickly discovered the main living area seats about 6 comfortably, max. That means we can have exactly 1 guest before things get weird.
Also, our dinette *allegedly* seats 6, but it really doesn't without someone banging their knees on the table's legs & folding hinges. This chair is perfect for adding to the end of our table so that four of us can spread out with someone sitting in the chair. We pull this chair out when we have friends over, at meal time, when we need an extra seat outside, or if I'm just cleaning out the fridge and want to be eye level with my task. ;) It folds almost completely flat (gotta love Ikea for small space design) and the Command hook designed for step ladders works great. This chair was only $7.99 at Ikea and you can shop this hook just about anywhere. Ours hangs right on the wall and has never been an issue. We do remove it when we're traveling so as not to put undue stress on the hook.
*BONUS TIP*: Every site will tell you about "DampRid" for the condensation issue many RV's face in wet weather or climates. It's good stuff and important to have. It wasn't until we had an outright condensation crisis, however, that I heard about "Hyper Vent", which is a material used to prevent condensation build up (resulting in mold and mildew) under your RV mattress. It was originally designed for boats, but its AMAZING for RV beds too. Only wish we had figured that out BEFORE we had to trash our mattress and completely rebuild our frame. I mean, we got a nice memory foam mattress outta the deal, but still. ;) It ran us around $100.00 for our Queen sized bed which would have been a small price to pay by comparison. Check out Hyper Vent HERE!!!
I realize some of these things are kind of random, but they really have made a huge difference for us. I hope this list helps RV'ers & Future RV'ers alike! We are always happy to answer any questions you might have, so feel free to leave them below, reach out to us via email or contact us through our Instagram page, @oursupperstories !
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