Living a life of travel in an RV is not always luxurious. There have honestly been times we question our sanity for making this leap. Don’t get me wrong, RV living is amazing, but it can be stressful at times. So let me explain what makes it difficult and why it is worth it!
When we decided to downsize from 1,800 square feet to our home on wheels, our motivation was easy. It was our daughter. She was the inspiration to begin this lifestyle of adventure. Downsizing was our golden ticket to more family time. If we gave up the house and eliminated all payments, then life would be more simple and more time could be focused on our family.
Living in a small space can be challenging at times. Downsizing and elimination were the hardest part of the transition. I literally had dedicated a room of our house to my closet and condensing that down to a small (very small) closet has been quite the task. Not to mention family heirlooms, kitchen supplies, furniture, you name it, it was tough!
If that’s where this post wrapped up, it probably wouldn’t seem worth it to downsize, but…
Life with less is MORE!
It is not about the smaller space, but more about what the smaller space gives us in return. Letting go of “stuff” has given us MORE freedom, flexibility, travel, and family time than we ever could have imagined.
Tiny living means your space can go downhill FAST! I could have just cleaned up the RV and in no time it will be chaos once again, especially with a 3 year old. My husband always says you can tell what I have been doing based on the trail left behind me.
Guilty as charged.
Yes the space can look as if a tornado has hit, BUT I can have the space picked up in no time. The key in a small space is everything has it’s place and there is a place for everything. I have to consciously tell myself to put something away as I use it. This was not as big of a deal in a house, but in a small space putting it away “later” adds up quickly and starts to take over the space. This starts to make the space feel even smaller and cramped.
One of my favorite parts of RV living is fast and efficient clean up. No more using my whole day off on Saturday to clean a larger than needed space. My Saturdays are free to explore, spend time with family, or pretty much anything I enjoy or want to accomplish. That is huge compared to mopping wood floors all day as I did before in our sticks and bricks home.
Any marriage or relationship has disagreements. I wish I could tell you this lifestyle makes them all disappear. That this lifestyle is stress free and your family will get along great. Unfortunately if you plan on traveling with someone, living in tight quarters can magnify situations. The good news is, it also magnifies the good as well.
So yes, traveling with your significant other for a living can cause disagreements over directions, scheduling, or who is taking up too much time in the bathroom (Don’t ask me how I know this). On the other hand, it can magnify your love for each other by all the bonding time you get in return. We don’t wake up every day and go our separate ways to an office job. We wake up and work as teammates together, we parent together, we explore together.
On the other hand, some of you may be worried about spending too much time with others. You may be wondering about alone time. Although the time we spend together as a family is wonderful, everyone needs alone time. There are ways to get a well needed break. Remember you are camping at some pretty amazing places. When we camp at the beach, I go put my toes in the sand and enjoy the waves. When we camp near beautiful trails, I can go for a walk or run. I even enjoy browsing in stores or grocery shopping to be solo for a bit.
Camping for a living means there are times our resources are limited. We may be camping in a spot with no hookups which means we are forced to conserve water and battery power. This all comes down to the type of camping you enjoy. I am not going to say I “enjoy” having limited water and resources. It can be challenging at times when all you want is a long hot shower and a quick wipe down is all you get.
It’s all about the give and take. There is a lot of give in this lifestyle, but there is a lot of reward. In return for having these limitations we take for granted in our homes, we get spectacular views, make a smaller footprint, and live more budget friendly.
This is not a deal breaker for living in an RV. Some campers can choose to stay in full hookup campsites and resources are plentiful. For us, we have learned to love the payoffs of living off the beaten path.
All in all, life on the road has it’s difficulties, but in the end it has surpassed all our expectations. There are pros and cons, but essentially it came down to our family craving adventure. We longed for quality time together and memories that could never be taken away from us. We didn’t want to put our hope in treasures of this earth. We wanted to make the most of our time together and explore this beautiful country while the moment was there for the taking.
Life is short and unpredictable. It is a gift. Our moments make up our lives. So live your moments to the fullest. Don’t sweat the small stuff and use your gift for more than gathering up possessions that will rust and fade away. Enjoy what you do and do what you enjoy.
Living small and on wheels was our answer to living our life to the fullest. Your journey may be different. RV living is not for everyone, but we all have a journey. What is your journey? What could having less “junk” in your lives do for you and your family?