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Gardening in Your RV; How to Grow a Garden on the Go

Kimberly No Comments

One of the things I miss from my Sticks and Bricks life, is my garden. The ability to walk outside and harvest fresh grown, organic produce for free is something I know a lot of full time rvers miss.  So when I saw Ashleigh Priest’s pictures of her “garden on the go” on the Fulltime Families Facebook Group, I got very excited and asked her to write an article on just how she made her mobile garden a reality. Here’s what she had to say:

Rver Rver, How Does Your Garden Grow?

Rver Rver, How Does Your Garden Grow?

 

2015 has brought my family a few epiphanies. We had a rough winter for 2014. Too much of it was spent in our camper, as this Floridian family tried to adjust to a Minnesota winter.  It seemed something was always happening. First our truck needed an expensive repair. Our water access port kept busting every couple of weeks. The truck broke down a second time. A third time. We were behind on all bills.  Bad weather, meant work days missed and money was tight.  Some weeks we had to decide between food or paying the cellphone bill. Food obviously came first.

RV Garden

RV Garden

Boy food is ridiculously expensive! How do people with large families do this?

Here’s epiphany number one.

If only we had a garden we could have healthy food. Too bad we travel.

March came around and my back went out. I’m young. This should not happen. It’s always attributed to my weight. Yes, I’m very unhealthy.

This was epiphany number two.

I NEED to get healthier! I really wish we could have a garden. How can this become something we can do?

I did research. Joined gardening groups on Facebook. Asked if anyone in the traveling groups have a garden. The limited replies I received were in the “that’s a cool idea” vain..  and if I followed through with the garden to keep everyone posted.

Garden on the Go

Garden on the Go

So, I got to work.

I planned out what I wanted to grow. What I’d use for containers. How to make my own compost (what’s a better fertilizer than compost 😉 ).

My original plan was to build planter boxes from pallets, have holes on both sides, put some rope through the holes, and make a loop on each side.

Then take two 2x4s, drill 7/8 inch holes in them and put a wooden dowel in the holes after putting the dowels through the rope and hang up the planter boxes. The 2x4s would have a rubber covering on the top and lean against the camper.

Phew! Let me say if that sounded like a lot of work, it was! With two toddler boys, I was already stretch thin. I got two planters built and that was that.

I planted sweet peas and green beans in the boxes.

Then I simplified.  I used four 5 gallon buckets to plant tomatoes and corn in. Everything got covered at night because there were still cool nights.

Then we got a surprise snow! That storm killed all my plants except my sweet peas. I decided to wait until May to replant.

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This time I had a different plan.

I bought some storage tote boxes, soil, pea pebbles.

I took my original 5 gallon buckets, and with a hammer, and a nail, poked 4 holes in the sides of the buckets at the bottom. I put about 3 inches of pea pebbles in the bucket then filled up the bucket about 2/3 full with soil and added my seeds for corn and tomatoes (I feel like I just did this lol). Finally, I watered the seeds and set them aside.

I replanted green beans in the wooden box I used before. I watered them and put the box aside.

IMG_20150630_194704

I was ready to expand my garden.

Butter crunch lettuce, spinach, green bell pepper, parsley, and basil seeds were all planted in the storage totes, which had been prepped like the buckets, with several holes and pea pebbles topped with soil.

In one tote, I planted the lettuce and spinach together. This way I have an instant salad with the combination of these greens.

The other box was a little more tricky. I went to Dollar Tree and bought two long, plastic planter boxes. I poked holes in them. Next I filled the tote box the way I did the other containers. I then grabbed two pieces of broken concrete blocks we had laying around and placed them on top of the soil in the tote box. Afterwards I placed the Dollar Tree plastic planters, each on the concrete pieces. There was space in between these, which is where the green bell pepper was planted. In one planter I put seed for basil and the other for parsley.

So far everything has sprouted wonderfully. I’ve harvested two large handfuls of sweet peas already. My lettuce has been harvested for salad as I please. My corn is growing along with my tomatoes. My last box has just sprouted in the last couple weeks.

IMG_20150630_203007

The dirt on dirt.

I mentioned compost earlier. We made our own compost as well. We bought a Roughneck tote box (I think like 3 gallons) in dark blue. We have put in things such as used coffee grounds and filter, banana peels, orange peels, egg shells, ashes, mud, corn husks, and whatever else we thought of. We then bought fishing worms (don’t judge) and added them to the box as well. We read that the worms help aid in the breakdown of the matter and their excretions are good for the soil. I will be adding some compost to each plant this week.

I have been asked how we will transport our garden when we move. We have a bumper pull travel trailer so we are able to put the garden in the bed of the truck. We have a contractors topper on our truck so the garden will be protected during travel. As for crossing borders, we’ve never been somewhere we have been stopped, so we will address that if we ever encounter that problem. So I will say, use your best judgement and plan ahead.

Another option would be to place your garden in your shower during moves.

Rver Garden1

I’m excited to see how well our traveling garden does. I hope to have enough of a harvest to give me the opportunity to learn to can as well.

For those considering gardening on the go, this is my first garden ever. I have not killed the plants this go around (so far). If you put your mind to it and do some research, you can do it! Happy trails!

Ashleigh Priest is a proud wife of a union pipe welder/fitter. Mother of two rambunctious toddler boys, traveling this great land since 2011. Always looking for the best in life to make my family the happiest and healthiest it can be.

You can find her on facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/ashleigh.huggins1?fref=ts

Thanksgiving Dinner in an RV: 5 Ways to make it Work

Kimberly No Comments

Happy-Thanksgiving

As we prepare to celebrate yet another Thanksgiving on the Road, I reflect back to when I was in a house, in a sea of pies, side dishes and extracting the ‘guest of honor’ from our industrial sized oven and remember thinking, “How am I going to do this in our RV next year?”

 

But like all things associated with full time family rv living, where there’s a will, there’s a way!

So here are a list of options to help you maintain your Thanksgiving traditions no matter how much room is in your oven.

  1. Take it outside!  Like our pilgrim forefathers before us, Thanksgiving is a holiday best served outside.  Your site’s picnic table could be the perfect spot to celebrate your thankfulness for God’s creations.  grilled turkey
  2. Grill it! To add to our ‘take it outside’ theme, consider grilling your turkey.  With oven real estate at a premium—grilling the turkey will ensure you still have room for the really important stuff… the side dishes and pies! Here’s how we grill our turkey every year.
  3. Join Forces!  They say many hands make for light work… well many ovens make for an easy Thanksgiving.  Consider making reservations at a campground that will be hosting a Thanksgiving Potluck or possibly host one where you are.
  4. Bring it in!  Many local grocery stores provide catered meal options for Thanksgiving.  Do the whole meal, the side dishes or any combination that works for your family.  Then on the big day, it’s just heat and eat!
  5. Go out!  Maybe this year is the year to have Thanksgiving at the Grand Canyon or at a restaurant with an ocean view.  There are tons of locations that will be open for Thanksgiving so skip the cooking, cleaning and the left over relocation and enjoy the day with a little extra pampering.

Bonus Tip: Serve!  Thanksgiving is a great time to serve others.  If you have no Thanksgiving plans considering serving as a family at a local food charity in your area.  To find one, simply google something like “location soup kitchen”.

Top 5 Tips for Thanksgiving in your RV

Kimberly No Comments

Hip Laura Show Button

Living in an RV requires daily routines that involve words like small, manageable, and minimal. Thanksgiving dinner, no matter where you cook it, has a tendency to be big! This week on Roadschool Moms, Kimberly and Mary Beth share their 5 Top Tips for whipping up Thanksgiving Dinner in Your RV and it involves two words: Instant Pot!

  1. Get an Instant Pot! If you don’t already own an Instant Pot, this is the time to seriously consider investing in this amazing kitchen appliance. Both Kimberly and Mary Beth were skeptical at first of one more kitchen gadget. But both are in agreement that it has transformed their RV kitchen and cooking routine for their families!
  2. Gather your favorite Instant Pot Recipes. Thanksgiving day is not the time to experiement with new thoughts or ideas on how to make tried and true recipes in the Instant Pot. Roadschool Moms put together their Instant Pot Thanksgiving Recipe Book to help guide you through the day!
  3. Make a list and check it twice! Although living in an RV doesn’t always resonate with bulk food shopping or storing grocery items for days, this is definitely the week to find that extra refrigerator or counter space to do just that! Go through your recipes and make your shopping list. Ready, set, GO! (This is a great time to enlist the help of your roadschoolers in estimating the ingredients needed, actually handwriting the shopping list, and helping in the kitchen!)
  4. Don’t wait until Thursday to get the party started! Do as much pre-Thanksgiving day planning and cooking as possible. If you already own an Instant Pot, now might be the time to go out and invest in an extra pot and lid for this already amazing kitchen appliance. Go ahead and cut up any vegetables for ingredients, such as celery or onions, a few days ahead and store them in containers. If you are making deviled eggs, boil your eggs a day in advance. (Just don’t forget to go ahead and peal the eggshells so the inside yolks do not turn green.) Every minute you spend before Thursday is one more minute you can take out of the kitchen to enjoy your family on this special holiday.
  5. Share the Thanksgiving spirit. You don’t have to have come over on the Mayflower to share your Thanksgiving feast. This is a great time to be neighborly and take advantage of your nomadic surroundings. Sharing the cooking load with friends and neighbors takes some of the the heat off your kitchen and also makes for a memorable holiday meal. Kimberly and Mary Beth shared Thanksgiving dinner together during their first Fulltime Family meetup! It’s a great time to make new traditions and memories!

 

To listen to the Roadschool Moms’s take on an Instant Pot Thanksgiving Dinner in the RV, tune into the November 15th episode of Roadschool Moms over at iTunes!

Roadschool Moms is a live, one-hour weekly broadcast dedicated to the needs and challenges facing today’s roadschool moms. Kimberly Travaglino, of Fulltime Families, and Mary Beth Goff, the Road Trip Teacher, team up every week to offer listeners a fresh take on homeschooling while traveling full time, working in current events and featuring a mix of expert guests.

Roadschool Moms Offer a FREE Instant Pot Thanksgiving Cookbook

Kimberly No Comments

Roadschool Moms  recently hosted their first Annual “Instant Pot Thanksgiving” sharing tips and recipes directly from Instant Pot and Roadschool Moms alike.  Special Guest, Laura Passaglia from HiPPressureCooking.com joined Kimberly and Mary Beth to provide expert tips on creating full meals with three zone cooking in your Instant Pot!

Hip Laura Show Button

As a special gift, all readers can receive their free copy of the Roadschool Moms Instant Pot Thanksgiving Cookbook full of submissions from real roadschool moms and Laura P. too!

Created by Skip Shute

Created by Skip Shute

Instant Pot Recipes for:

  • Main Dish
  • Turkey
  • Side Dishes
  • Desserts
  • Soups
  • Leftovers
Are included in this one of a kind recipe book!  You can listen to the entire episode here: http://ultimateradioshow.com/roadschool-moms-instant-pot-thanksgiving/
large_happy-thanksgiving-title

 

Be A Part of this Independent Film about RVing Families

Kimberly No Comments

Are you tired of seeing RVing families portrayed in the media as ” victims of circumstances”?

Are you tired of hearing thing like “don’t worry, it will get better” from well-meaning RV neighbors?

Are you interested in inspiring other families to live an intentional lifestyle?

Then, we have an avenue for you to do something!

suburban

Our fellow nomadic neighbors, the Suburban Pilgrims are embarking on a film-making adventure and your support can help dispel the myths of full-time rving families and give an inside view of what it really looks like to live a mobile lifestyle with your kids in tow.

You can be a part of this ground breaking film!

JOIN THE JOURNEY!

suburban3

 

 

Fulltime Families Introduces Trailblazer Lifetime Family Membership

Kimberly No Comments

Fulltime Families has received numerous requests to re-instate a Lifetime Membership Option after our initial Lifetime Membership was sunset last spring.

After consulting with members, and membership experts, we are proud to unveil an option that honors our original Lifetime Family Members while providing new members a Lifetime Membership option.

Introducing the brand new Fulltime Families Trailblazer Lifetime Family Membership!

This membership boasts the following benefits:

Existing members should login to Fulltime Families before purchasing the Trailblazer Lifetime Family Membership to retain their original membership number.  If you need assistance with this, please email Chris@fulltimefamilies.com

Previous FtF Lifetime Members will now assume the exclusive title of “Pioneer Lifetime Family Members” to honor their early commitment to the community.

Did you know that Charter Memberships, Pioneer Lifetime Memberships and Trailblazer Lifetime Membership are multi-generational membership models?  This means, these membership benefits are extended to your children without any additional membership fees.

To purchase the new Trailblazer Lifetime Family Membership go to: https://www.fulltimefamilies.com/joinftf/join-now/

Please note, this membership option will be closely monitored to account for inflation or unforeseeable changes in the economic climate.

 

Roadschool Moms to Host Cruise Retreat for Listeners

Kimberly No Comments

Roadschool Moms, the weekly Sunday night, live internet radio show the supports traveling and adventure seeking homeschool moms (and anyone else who wants to be a part of the journey), announced recently that they will be joining the already established Cruise Chics Annual Retreat.

“This October, moms across the country will be hanging up their RV keys for a few days and heading out to the open seas.” says host, Kimberly Travaglino.  Host, Mary Beth Goff add, “I can’t wait for the Real Refreshment this retreat is sure to offer moms.”

The cruise will feature inspirational speakers, workshops, leisure activities and fun group activities geared towards building community.

Cruise hostess, Michele Harkins, The Cruise Chic, came up with the vision for this retreat while on a cruise with her husband.  “Wouldn’t this be an amazing setting for a retreat for women, to be replenished and taken care of?”

Michele promises many blessings on this cruise:

  • Beds are made 2 times per day
  • All meals are prepared
  • And the journey also includes unlimited CHOCOLATE!

During a recent episode of Roadschool Moms, Kimberly and Mary Beth shared, “…these 40 spots are available to any of our listeners.  You don’t need to be a fulltime RSM, you don’t need to be on the road, you don’t even need an RV to join us.  Our is and always will be an inclusive group.”

Who: All Women who need Real Refreshment

What: Cruise Chics Retreat at Sea

When: October 13 – 17th, 2016

How Much: $100 down / $92 per month

How to book: http://mharkins.cruiseonegroups.com/#/groups/7540466 use code “RSM”

For more information, listen to the recent episode “Refreshing Your Soul” on Roadschool Moms at the Ultimate Homeschool Radio Network or subscribe to the weekly podcast via iTunes.

And tune in every Sunday night at 9pm est to be a part of the live show!

FtF Annual Leprechaun Trap Contest

Kimberly 1 Comments

Dear Fulltime Families Kids and Fulltime Families Explorers,

We have a pesky leprechaun that is traveling with us in our RV.  From time to time, we wake up to all sorts of naughty things he’s done, like left dirty laundry all over the floor, turned DJs bed into a matchbox parking lot, and covered Candy in everyone of Tonia’s hair bows!

We’ve tried everything we can to catch him, but we need your help.  Can you please create a Leprechaun Trap for us and post your pictures of it on the Facebook FtF Site?  http://www.facebook.com/groups/fulltimefamilies/

Then we’ll have a vote on the one that we think will work best.

You don’t have to send your trap to us.  We’ll recreate it from the pictures and finally catch that little green guy!

To help you, we’ve included some examples of other traps kids have made:

AliciaLeprTrap3

 

 

 

Leprechaun-Trap-Up

 

For more info about Leprechaun Traps go here: http://www.squidoo.com/leprechaun-trap

Contest Details:

This contest is open to all children!

Please post your pics on http://www.facebook.com/groups/fulltimefamilies/ by Midnight, March 16th.

March2014

Special Note for FtF Explorers to earn your Leprechaun Trap here are the achievement details:

-ages 5 – 8 Using household items of your choice create a leprechaun trap of your own design, upload your pictures to the FtF Explorer Site.

-ages 9-12 Using household items of your choice create a leprechaun trap of your own design, then film a demonstration of how the trap works. Include why you choose the materials you used.

-ages 13 – 16 Using household items of your choice create a leprechaun trap of your own design, film a demonstration of how the trap works. Include why you choose the materials you choose. Research the legend of the Leprechaun and write a brief paper of where the tradition started, and what it means.

The FtF Explorers Program is a scouting program for homeschool / roadschool boys and girls.  For more information or to sign up your Explorer go to: www.fulltimefamilies.com/explorers

 

Judging will take place on March 17th.

Winner will be announced March 18th, 2014.

 

Casting Opportunity for RVing Families in the LA Area

Kimberly No Comments

CASTING
*PAID TV PROMO FOR DESTINATION AMERICA*
SEEKING FAMILIES WHO OWN A RV
(RV MUST BE 2010 or Newer Model and MUST Have The RVIA Seal/Plaque)

SOCAL CASTING COMPANY is seeking RV OWNERS (Must Be 2010 or Newer Model) and
THEIR FAMILIES (prefer kids from 6-15, but don’t limit), any ethnicity,
who are active, fun-loving and find great value in using their RV
(Once again, the RV must be 2010 or Newer and have the RVIA – Recreation Vehicle Industry Association Seal/Plaque)

Whether it’s camping trips, vacations, family bonding time, connecting with
nature, your favorite ghost story, getting out of town or unplugging from the
world around, please come share your passion and RV experiences with us!!!

INTERVIEWS: Saturday/February 6, 2016
SHOOT: February 29 – March 4, 2016 (One Day Only)
Shoot Will Be Late Afternoon Into The Night
Enjoying Family Time Telling Stories Around The Campfire
Pay is $2000.00 per family – all media buyout for one year

For consideration, please email kimberly@fulltimefamilies.com
with the following information ASAP:
-Your name and all family member names and ages
-Email and Contact Number
-RV Year, Make and Model
-Pictures of your family, pic of the RV
-Brief 1-2 sentences about your families’ favorite places to go and things to do while RVing
Come Share Your Camping Stories Sitting Around The Campfire
We look forward to hearing your adventures !!!

Interested in more opportunities like this? Complete our simple form to be the first one to hear about casting calls for RVing families.

2015 FtF Valentine’s Exchange

Kimberly 3 comments

FtF Kids across the country are welcome to join in on the 2015 Fulltime Families Valentines Exchange.

Kids participating in this year’s exchange will receive tons Valentines from other FtF Kids via the mail.

To get in on the fun, add your family’s info to the document in the Fulltime Families Members Only FB Page: https://www.facebook.com/notes/fulltime-families-members/2015-ftf-valentines-day-exchange/758316557555606

Children can document where their Valentines came from by using this optional document below:

Valentine Exchange Map

 

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